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A major silent film and Old Hollywood fan, André Soares is the author of Beyond Paradise: The Life of Ramon Novarro, about the troubled gay Hollywood star (Ben-Hur, The Student Prince) who was brutally killed in 1968. Google+, Facebook


Author Archives: Andre Soares


GONE WITH THE WIND Actress Mary Anderson Dead at 96

gone-with-the-wind-actress-mary-anderson‘Gone with the Wind’ actress Mary Anderson dead at 96; also featured in Alfred Hitchcock thriller ‘Lifeboat’ Mary Anderson, an actress featured in both Gone with the Wind and Alfred Hitchcock’s adventure thriller Lifeboat, died following a series of small strokes on Sunday, April 6, 2014, while under hospice care in Toluca Lake/Burbank, northwest of downtown Los Angeles. Anderson, the widow of multiple Oscar-winning cinematographer Leon Shamroy, had turned 96 on April 3. Born in Birmingham, Alabama, in 1918, Mary Anderson was reportedly discovered by director George Cukor, at the time looking for an actress to play Scarlett O’Hara in David O. Selznick’s film version of Margaret Mitchell’s bestseller Gone with the Wind. Instead of Scarlett, eventually played by Vivien Leigh, Anderson was cast in…



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GONE WITH THE WIND Actress Mary Anderson Dead at 96





Mickey Rooney Was Earliest Surviving Best Actor Oscar Nominee

mickey-rooney-boys-town-spencer-tracyMickey Rooney was earliest surviving Best Actor Oscar nominee (photo: Mickey Rooney and Spencer Tracy in ‘Boys Town’) (See previous post: “Mickey Rooney Dead at 93: MGM’s Andy Hardy Series’ Hero and Judy Garland Frequent Co-Star Had Longest Film Career Ever?”) Mickey Rooney was the earliest surviving Best Actor Academy Award nominee — Babes in Arms, 1939; The Human Comedy, 1943 — and the last surviving male acting Oscar nominee of the 1930s. Rooney lost the Best Actor Oscar to two considerably more “prestigious” — albeit less popular — stars: Robert Donat for Sam Wood’s Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1939) and Paul Lukas for Herman Shumlin’s Watch on the Rhine (1943). Following Mickey Rooney’s death, there are only two acting Academy Award nominees from the ’30s…



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Mickey Rooney Was Earliest Surviving Best Actor Oscar Nominee





Mickey Rooney Dead: Longest Film Career Ever?

mickey-rooney-deadMickey Rooney dead at 93: Four-time Oscar nominee, frequent Judy Garland co-star may have had the longest film career ever (photo: Mickey Rooney ca. 1940) Mickey Rooney, four-time Academy Award nominee and one of the biggest domestic box-office draws during the studio era, died of "natural causes" on Sunday, April 6, 2014, at his home in the Los Angeles suburb of North Hollywood. The Brooklyn-born Rooney (as Joseph Yule Jr., on September 23, 1920) had reportedly been in ill health for some time. He was 93. Besides his countless movies, and numerous television and stage appearances, Mickey Rooney was also known for his stormy private life, which featured boozing and gambling, some widely publicized family infighting (including his testifying in Congress in 2011 about elder…



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Mickey Rooney Dead: Longest Film Career Ever?





Screwball Comedy Movies, Rare Screening of Epoch-Making Box Office Disaster

screwball-comedy-irene-dunne-cary-grantScrewball comedy movies, rare screenings of epic box office disaster: Library of Congress’ Packard Theater in April 2014 (photo: Cary Grant and Irene Dunne in ‘The Awful Truth’) In April 2014, the Library of Congress’ Packard Campus Theater in Culpeper, Virginia, will celebrate Hollywood screwball comedy movies, from the Marx Brothers’ antics to Peter Bogdanovich’s early ’70s homage What’s Up, Doc?, a box office blockbuster starring Barbra Streisand and Ryan O’Neal. Additionally, the Packard Theater will present a couple of rarities, including an epoch-making box office disaster that led to the demise of a major studio. Among Packard’s April 2014 screwball comedies are the following: Leo McCarey’s Duck Soup (Saturday, April 5) — actually more zany, wacky, and totally insane than merely "screwball" — in…



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Screwball Comedy Movies, Rare Screening of Epoch-Making Box Office Disaster





ROME, OPEN CITY Movie Restored: One of Most Influential Films Ever at the BFI

rome-open-city-anna-magnani‘Rome, Open City’ movie returns: 4K digital restoration of Roberto Rossellini masterpiece at London’s BFI Southbank (photo: Anna Magnani in ‘Rome, Open City’) A restored digital print of Roberto Rossellini’s best-known film, Rome, Open City / Roma, città aperta is currently enjoying an extended run — until April 5, 2014 — at London’s BFI Southbank. Inspired by real-life events and made right after the liberation of Rome, Rome, Open City stars Aldo Fabrizi, Anna Magnani, Marcello Pagliero, and Maria Michi. Though not a local box office hit at the time of its release, Rome, Open City, shot with a minuscule budget in the ravaged streets of Rome, became one of the most influential movies ever made. Its raw look, "documentary" feel, and scenes shot on…



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ROME, OPEN CITY Movie Restored: One of Most Influential Films Ever at the BFI





Australian Actress Wendy Hughes Dead at 61: AFI Award Winner

australian-actress-wendy-hughesAustralian actress Wendy Hughes dead at 61 (photo: Wendy Hughes in ‘Newsfront’) Australian film, television, and stage actress Wendy Hughes, best known internationally for the big-screen dramas My Brilliant Career and Careful, He Might Hear You, died of cancer early today, March 8, 2014, in Sydney. Hughes (born on July 29, 1952, in Melbourne) was 61. Wendy Hughes’ film career kicked off in the mid-’70s, with Tim Burstall’s psychological drama ‘Jock’ Petersen / Petersen (1974), in which she plays the wife of a college professor who becomes romantically involved with a married student (Jack Thompson). "I spent a lot of the time naked and doing sex scenes," Hughes would later recall about her work in ‘Jock’ Petersen, "because in the seventies you all had to…



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Australian Actress Wendy Hughes Dead at 61: AFI Award Winner





Maria von Trapp (THE SOUND OF MUSIC) dead at 99: Was Last Surviving Singing von Trapp Family Member

maria-von-trapp-familyMaria von Trapp dead at 99: ‘The Sound of Music’ character played by Heather Menzies was last surviving member of the singing von Trapp family (photo: The singing von Trapp family) Maria von Trapp, the last surviving member of the singing von Trapp family portrayed in The Sound of Music, died in her sleep at her Vermont home on Wednesday, February 19, 2014. Baron Georg von Trapp’s second-eldest daughter, Maria Franziska (born in Zell am See, Salzburg, Austria, in 1914) was 99. Heather Menzies played Baron von Trapp’s second-eldest daughter, renamed Louisa von Trapp, in 20th Century Fox’s 1965 blockbuster directed by Robert Wise, and starring Julie Andrews as singing nun-to-be Maria Kutschera (later Baroness Maria von Trapp) and Christopher Plummer as the Baron. (See…



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Maria von Trapp (THE SOUND OF MUSIC) dead at 99: Was Last Surviving Singing von Trapp Family Member





Philip Seymour Hoffman, Shirley Temple Honored with Library of Congress Screenings

philip-seymour-hoffman-capotePhilip Seymour Hoffman, Shirley Temple, and Oscar movies: Library of Congress’ March 2014 screenings (photo: Philip Seymour Hoffman as Truman Capote in ‘Capote’) Tributes to the recently deceased Shirley Temple and Philip Seymour Hoffman, and several Academy Award-nominated and -winning films are among the March 2014 screenings at the Library of Congress’ Packard Campus Theater and, in collaboration with the Library’s National Audio-Visual Conservation Center, The State Theatre, both located in Culpeper, Virginia. The 1934 sentimental comedy-drama Little Miss Marker (March 6, Packard) is the movie that turned six-year-old Shirley Temple into a major film star. Temple would become the biggest domestic box-office draw of the mid-1930s, and, Tyrone Power, Alice Faye, Sonja Henie, Don Ameche, Loretta Young, and Madeleine Carroll notwithstanding, would remain 20th…



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Philip Seymour Hoffman, Shirley Temple Honored with Library of Congress Screenings











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