View from the Cheap Seats
Thursday, 26 September 2013 11:09

Movie Casting and More

I’ve never been one to go to a movie solely based on casting because, let’s face it, actors sometimes aren’t the best judge of script or director material.  The exceptions these days might be, for me, Leo DiCaprio, Nicholson or Redford or Clint or Woody Allen or, if he should ever work again, Warren Beatty.  People like that.  It’s sad, but so many great stars have lost goodwill with their audiences – remember when you looked forward to a Robert De Niro movie?  An Al Pacino move?  Those actors have to do what they have to do in order to pay their bills, but De Niro’s latest movie The Killing Season, also starring another dud as of late, John Travolta, went straight to DVD.  [Read on here…]

Thursday, 22 August 2013 11:47

Reaching Out

Our topic today was prompted by a conversation I had after my dear friend Bill Thrash’s funeral a couple of weeks ago.  His surviving sister told me that when my pal, about whom I thought I knew everything, was 16, around 1954, in the small southeastern Oklahoma town of Ada, he commandeered a shitload of dimes and tried, to the very best of his ability, to call his hero, Frank Sinatra.

I started thinking then about how many of us have attempted to be in touch with our favorite movie star, director, producer, writer, composer or author?  I used to do that very thing a lot when I was single and bored.

Here are two stories that are so personal that I’ve never written about them before...  [...]

The Only Game In Town

Here’s the first time I ever stumbled upon a film set – my family and my eight year old bad self had driven from Purcell, Oklahoma to San Antonio, Texas to attend the HemisFair ’68, a wing ding of a World’s Fair (do those still exist?) which featured H.R. Pufnstuf as its mascot and the Tower of the Americas as its symbol of both American and Texas ingenuity and, as I remember, a heck of a place to eat while slowly spinning above the earth.

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