‘THE FRONTIER’ -- A THIRD WESTERN IN DEVELOPMENT AT NBC
In addition to RECONSTRUCTION and the as-yet untitled western script from Pete Berg and Liz Heldens, of FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS fame (for details on RECONSTRUCTION, go HERE ), NBC has asked COLD CASE exec producer Shaun Cassidy to write the pilot for THE FRONTIER, an 1840s-set Western to be directed by Thomas Schlamme. It will detail the adventures of a group heading west from
‘YELLOW ROCK’ NEARS END OF POST-PRODUCTION
(Mixer Doug Latislaw at work)
(actor Chris Backus looping his lines)
(Foley artist Lorita de la Cerna; her job is to record live sound effects -- in this case boot-shod footsteps -- in synch with the picture)
Co-producer, co-author and star Lenore Andriel tells me the post work, being performed at Monkeyland Audio, is going swimmingly. “We've been fortunate to be able to have all the actors come in for the ADR (looping). This is not always easy – they’re usually working on other projects, but luckily, we walked ‘between the raindrops’ on this one. We should be done with ADR by the end of next week, and have the film completed by mid-October! This should co-ordinate nicely with all the film festivals that are happening in the fall, especially in November with the Native Festivals, i.e. Red Nation, and the AFM in Santa Monica.”
‘LAST STAND’ GAINS MORE CAST
Okay, a little more cast. The modern-day Westerner starring ex-Governator
Schwarzenegger will now include Swedish actor Peter Stormare, who has been seen in FARGO and ARMAGEDDON among many
others. Screenplay is by Andrew Knauer,
Jeffrey Nachmanoff and George Nolfi. Korean
director Jee-woon Kim directed the wonderfully exuberant THE GOOD, THE BAD
& THE WEIRD. Arnold
’ SCREENING PACKS ‘EM IN AT THE
The Saturday, September 17th screening of
(1993) was the best-attended entry thus-far in the Autry’s ‘What Is A Western?’
series. Hosted by Curator Jeffrey
Richardson, the event included a discussion with Michael F. Blake, author of HOLLYWOOD AND THE O.K. CORRAL: PORTRAYALS OF THE GUNFIGHT
AND WYATT EARP, who opined that one
of the reasons for the tremendous following for TOMBSTONE is the portrayal of
the friendship between Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday: we all wish we could have a
friendship like that. TOMBSTONE
(Michael Blake and Jeffrey Richardson)
A surprise bonus was the presence of Joseph A. Porro,
’s costume designer. Porro, who designed costumes for TOMBSTONE INDEPENDENCE DAY,
NOON and many others, confirmed that, while for most Westerns, costume design
is all about a visit to Western Costume to go through the racks, he had a
unique problem: the costumers for WYATT EARP (the Costner/Kasdan version) and
GERONIMO had gotten there ahead of him and wiped the place out! He travelled to Italy for some of the
clothes, but most had to be made from scratch – and the striking individual
character of the wardrobe makes it clear that this was all to the good. SHANGHAI
(TOMBSTONE costume designer Joseph Porro)
A personal observation here; I’d seen TOMBSTONE two or three times before, though never on a screen, and while I thought it was very good, I frankly never understood its fanatical following. Now that I’ve seen it on the big screen, I ‘get’ it. Some movies truly need a huge image to unleash their power, Westerns especially.
The ‘What Is A Western?’ series, all with 35mm prints, continues October 22nd with Anthony Mann’s brilliant WINCHESTER ’73 (1950) starring James Stewart; November 12th with Clint Eastwood’s western-directing apex, UNFORGIVEN (1992) -- although I wish he’d called it something else, as it’s sort of marginalized John Huston’s equally fine but unrelated THE UNFORGIVEN (1960). There’s no entry for December, but next year’s entries will include THE PROFESSIONALS, THE WILD BUNCH, MY DARLING CLEMENTINE (for even more O.K. Corral fun), BUTCH CASSIDY AND THE SUNDANCE KID and THE GUNFIGHTER.
HAPPY 86TH BIRTHDAY MORGAN WOODWARD!
(Me and Morgan)
Morgan Woodward, the movie and TV villain par excellence who gained fame – and started the vogue for mirrored sunglasses -- with his role in COOL HAND LUKE celebrated his 86th birthday Friday, September 16th, at BONANZACON2011 at the Burbank Marriott – and I’ll have more about that event in next week’s Round-up. First garnering attention portraying Shotgun Gibbs opposite Hugh O’Brien on the WYATT EARP series, Morgan appeared in every western and non-western series you can think of, notably eight times on BONANZA, a dozen times on WAGON TRAIN, and a record nineteen times on GUNSMOKE – and was killed by Matt Dillon more often than any other actor. I’m proud to say that he also starred opposite Joe Don Baker in the first movie I wrote, SPEEDTRAP.
2ND ANNUAL ‘ROPE AND WIRE’ STORY COMPETITION BEGINS
If you’ve got a hankerin’ to tell a Western yarn, you might want to submit it to the Rope and Wire contest HERE.
The entry fee is $15, and the first place winner gets $10 from each entry. Scott tells me, “Last year we had 25 entries. The top prize was $250. We expect to do better this year.” If you’d like to read last years’ winners, go HERE. (note: you have to scroll a long way down)
TCM ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE POND
Just heard from Davy Turner in
that their programming on Turner Classics is very different from our in the
States: “They’re showing the old western series I grew up watching, currently
MAVERICK and GUNSMOKE. RAWHIDE (my fave
as a Clint fan) and BONANZA were shown last year. They emailed me after I wrote to thank them,
that HIGH CHAPARRAL will be next, in early October. Look forward to watching Uncle Buck and Manolito
ridin’ the England
trails again.” Tucson
TWO ROAD TOGETHER’
AT LACMA TUESDAY
On Tuesday, September 20th, at 1 p.m., the Los Angeles County Museum of Art will show John Ford’s TWO ROAD TOGETHER, starring James Stewart and Richard Widmark, script by Frank S. Nugent from a novel by Will Cook. It tells the story of a couple of tough characters bringing a group of settlers home from years of Comanche captivity.
TCM FANATIC - WESTERN NOW ONLINE!And speaking of TCM, have I mentioned that the segment I was interviewed for is now viewable here?
THE AUTRY NATIONAL CENTER
Built by cowboy actor, singer, baseball and TV entrepeneur Gene Autry, and designed by the Disney Imagineering team, the Autry is a world-class museum housing a fascinating collection of items related to the fact, fiction, film, history and art of the American West. In addition to their permenant galleries (to which new items are frequently added), they have temporary shows. The Autry has many special programs every week -- sometimes several in a day. To check their daily calendar, CLICK HERE. And they always have gold panning for kids every weekend. For directions, hours, admission prices, and all other information, CLICK HERE.
HOLLYWOOD HERITAGE MUSEUM
Across the street from the Hollywood Bowl, this building, once the headquarters of Lasky-Famous Players (later Paramount Pictures) was the original DeMille Barn, where Cecil B. DeMille made the first Hollywood western, The Squaw Man. They have a permanent display of movie props, documents and other items related to early, especially silent, film production. They also have occasional special programs. 2100 Highland Ave., L.A. CA 323-874-2276. Thursday – Sunday 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. $5 for adults, $3 for senior, $1 for children.
WELLS FARGO HISTORY MUSEUM
This small but entertaining museum gives a detailed history of Wells Fargo when the name suggested stage-coaches rather than ATMS. There’s a historically accurate reproduction of an agent’s office, an original Concord Coach, and other historical displays. Open Monday through Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 a.m. Admission is free. 213-253-7166. 333 S. Grand Street, L.A. CA.
FREE WESTERNS ON YOUR COMPUTER AT HULU
A staggering number of western TV episodes and movies are available, entirely free, for viewing on your computer at HULU. You do have to sit through the commercials, but that seems like a small price to pay. The series available -- often several entire seasons to choose from -- include THE RIFLEMAN, THE CISCO KID, THE LONE RANGER, BAT MASTERSON, THE BIG VALLEY, ALIAS SMITH AND JONES, and one I missed from 2003 called PEACEMAKERS starring Tom Berenger. Because they are linked up with the TV LAND website, you can also see BONANZA and GUNSMOKE episodes, but only the ones that are running on the network that week.
The features include a dozen Zane Grey adaptations, and many or most of the others are public domain features. To visit HULU on their western page, CLICK HERE.
TV LAND - BONANZA and GUNSMOKE
Every weekday, TV LAND airs a three-hour block of BONANZA episodes from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. They run a GUNSMOKE Monday through Thursday at 10:00 a.m., and on Friday they show two, from 6:00 to 8:00 a.m.. They're not currently running either series on weekends, but that could change at any time.
NEED YOUR BLACK & WHITE TV FIX?
Check out your cable system for WHT, which stands for World Harvest Television. It's a religious network that runs a lot of good western programming. Your times may vary, depending on where you live, but weekdays in Los Angeles they run DANIEL BOONE at 1:00 p.m., and two episodes of THE RIFLEMAN from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m.. On Saturdays at 2:00 p.m. it's THE RIFLEMAN again, followed at 2:30 by BAT MASTERSON. And unlike many stations in the re-run business, they run the shows in the original airing order. There's an afternoon movie on weekdays at noon, often a western, and they show western films on the weekend, but the schedule is sporadic.
That's it for today, folks! Next week I'll have details on BONANZACON, a review of BLACKTHORN, and a review of the book AND...ACTION!
Until then, Happy Trails!
All contents copyright September 2011 by Henry C. Parke -- All Rights Reserved