Search results for ‘Comedy’

Errol Flynn’s TV Appearances over the Years!

18 Nov

“I wonder if anybody has seen this and furthermore knows of equally little known TV appearances of our Hollywood hero. Blog away dates, titles, co-stars and most of all… memories!” — shanghenz

Karl Holmberg cites the following:

Errol Flynn TV/ Documentaries


Here’s at least some of the non-dramatic stuff that has appeared on TV over the years:

“The Colgate Comedy Hour”

In the early 1950’s, NBC welcomed Bud and Lou to their new hour long live variety show, as guest hosts. Abbott & Costello boosted the show’s ratings as they performed their staple of routines, including the still popular and in demand, “Who’s On First.”

“The Colgate Comedy Hour” 1/13/52 with Errol Flynn, Bruce Cabot, Rhonda Feming, George Raft

“The Name’s the Same”

An American game show broadcast by the ABC television network from December 5, 1951 to October 7, 1955. The show’s premise was similar to What’s My Line?, but the panelists here had to guess the name of the person, which also described something (e.g. “A. Lap”, “A. Table”, “Ruby Lips”, etc). Other contestants had the same names as well-known personalities of the past and present, such as Thomas Jefferson, Napoleon Bonaparte, Arturo Toscanini and Clark Gable. In a few cases, actors and other celebrities were brought out at the end of the guessing round to surprise the contestants who were their namesakes.54

“The Name’s the Same” Robert Q Lewis, Host, 8/20/1952: The first player is Errol Flynn. Panelists Jane Alexander, Abe Burrows and Bill Cullen.

NOTE: I ran into this crediting early on  in my research but  later, could not find Flynn anywhere in the celebrity credits of the various “historic logs” on the show. Therefore,  the actor Errol Flynn DID NOT appear on this program, but a young Master Errol Flynn did (…}

“Toast of the Town”

Ed Sullivan’s show was straight out of old vaudeville; brief acts of every description, from slapstick comedy to operatic arias. At least once, he showed a film, the only known film of Anna Pavlova (doing her Swan Dance). The Muppets’ first TV appearance was on Ed Sullivan. Stiff and expressionless, with a peculiar voice and a talent for mispronunciation, Sullivan was at least as recognizable as Cronkite to early 60’s viewers. Panel show.

“Toast of the Town” playing “Himself” (episode # 5.36) May 11, 1952

“Toast of the Town” playing “Himself” (episode # 5.37) May 18, 1952

“Toast of the Town” playing “Himself” (episode # 5.39) June 1, 1952

“The Martha Raye Show”, June 7, 1955, with Errol Flynn] / NBC.

Regulars: Martha Raye, Rocky Graziano, Carl Hoff and His Orchestra, The Danny Daniels Dancers. Comedy/variety.

“The Martha Raye Show”, January 3, 1956, with Errol Flynn] / NBC.

Regulars: Martha Raye, Rocky Graziano, Carl Hoff and his orchestra, the Danny Daniels Dancers. Comedy/variety

“The Steve Allen Show”, January 6, 1957, NBC.

Steve Allen, Louis Nye, Don Knotts, Tom Poston, Dayton Allen. Announcer: Gene Rayburn.

Music director, Skitch Henderson.

Guests: Errol Flynn, Guy Mitchell, Polly Bergen, Alan Young.

“The Big Surprise”, February 5, 1957, NBC.

Mike Wallace: Host

Announcer: Jack Clark, Easy Question Girl: Sue Oakland, Hard Question Girl: Mary Gardner

Celebrity Guest: Errol Flynn

Answers $30,000 question 2/5/57

This show was intended as NBC’s answer to CBS’s enormously popular “$64,000 Question.” When it boosted the maximum prize, it became known as “The $100,000 Big Surprise.”

In this NBC primetime game show, contestants who were judged “worthy” because of good deeds or hardship answered a series of questions, worth progressively more from $1 to $100,000. If the contestant missed one of the first four questions, he or she was out of the game. Later, if they missed a question, someone else could answer a different question, in an early version of a “lifeline.” If that person answered correctly, they received ten percent of the winnings. The questions were unique in that they had to do with an individual contestant’s friends, family, hobbies or hometown.

The ‘easy question’ girl and the ‘hard question’ girl brought out the questions. If the contestant missed an easy question he or she would lose all the money; if a hard question was missed, he or she only lost half.

Later, after a format change brought newsman Mike Wallace on as host (in his TV game show debut), contestants answered encyclopedia-like questions in different categories.

Note: Flynn apparently made only this one appearance; subsequent TV listings and related news report nothing further. IT WOULD HAVE BEEN NEWS whether he’d won or lost!

“What’s My Line?”, May 26 1957, CBS.

Moderator: John Daly. Mystery guests: Sammy Davis, Jr. Guest panelist: Errol Flynn.  Panel show.

“Toast of the Town Panel Show” playing “Himself” (archive footage) (episode # 10.48) [August 25 1957]

“What’s My Line?”, December 1 1957, CBS.

Panel show. Moderator: John Daly. Mystery guest: Errol Flynn.

“The Steve Allen Show”, December 1 1957, NBC.

Comedy/variety. The Steve Allen Show (1956-1961). Steve Allen, Louis Nye, Don Knotts, Tom Poston, Dayton Allen. Announcer: Gene Rayburn. Music director, Skitch Henderson.

Guests: Martha Raye, Errol Flynn, Jimmy Dean, Jennie Smith, Don Adams, Army-Navy football team members.

“The Arthur Murray Party”, October 27, 1958, ABC.

Ballroom dancing, plus comedy, songs and dance contests on one of the few programs to air over all four major commercial networks. ABC premiered it on July 20, 1950 and it closed on NBC on September 6, 1960. It varied between a half-hour and one hour in length.

…. Himself – Guest aka “Arthur Murray Party Time” 
… aka “The Arthur Murray Show”

Jack Paar Show, 1/6/59 French singer Genevieve and American television show host Jack Paar (1918 – 2004) listen as Australian-born American actor Errol Flynn (1909 – 1959) talks about a bird during a segment of ‘The Jack Paar Show,’ New York, New York, 1959. And at one point Flynn is wearing the Cuban flag

Note:  I have found neither an officiall date for this show nor any record of its having survived. There does exist some photos of the appearance and there was an item in the newspaper of 1/7/59 in which the headline reads “Actor Accuses Batista Forces” and that it was said the previous night, so likely it was during the Paar Show appearance as where else might he have been to have been quoted? In IMDB it is stated that not until 1/12/59 was the first Paar show videotaped… hence no surviving record?

“Front Page Challenge”: Jan. 13, 1959. Host: Fred Davis, Panellists: Pierre Berton, Toby Robins, Gordon Sinclair. Guest(s): Errol Flynn, Scott Young Errol Flynn became a guest on Front Page Challenge after producer Jim Guthro read in a newspaper that Flynn had been in Cuba during the revolution. When Guthro tracked him down in New York, Flynn agreed to appear on the show — if the CBC paid for his “secretary” (who was, in fact, his mistress) to fly to Toronto with him.

“The Red Skelton Show”, September 29 1959, CBS.

Comedy/variety. Red Skelton, Errol Flynn, Scott Engel, Beverly Aadland. Director, Seymour Berns.

Originally broadcast on CBS, two weeks before Errol Flynn’s death at age 50.


In a sketch, Skelton portrays hobo Freddie the Freeloader and Flynn his friend, “The Duke.” After a group of beatniks (which includes Flynn’s teenage girlfriend Beverly Aadland) mistakes Freddie’s shack for a coffee bar, Freddie is informed by a policeman that all bums have been ordered by the city council to leave town by sundown. Freddie and the Duke decide that the only way they will be able to stay in town is to open their own beatnik coffee bar. Singer Scott Engel (who later went on to fame as Scott Walker of the Walker Brothers) sings “Paper Doll.”

“Hollywood and the Stars:

The Swashbucklers”, 1964. Fairbanks Sr. and Flynn, featured stories, with minor coverage of others. Joseph Cotton narrator. 25 minutes.

Hollywood Goes to War, 1964  Everyone from Astaire to Wayne (and of course…) . Joseph Cotton narrator. 25 minutes.

“The Hollywood Greats: Errol Flynn”, 1978. Barry Norman narrator. 50 minutes.

“HBO: The Legend of Errol Flynn”, 1979. Robert Vaughn narrator. 23 minutes.

“Errol Flynn: Portrait Of A Swashbuckler”, 1983. Christopher Lee narrator. 50 minutes.

“Australians”, 1988, Episode 12, “Errol Flynn”, Drama, 13 minutes.

“A&E Biography: Robin Hood – Outlaw of the Forest”,1995, (TV) …. Himself

“Secret Lives: Errol Flynn”, 1996 (Channel 4 of England), 50 minutes.

Warner Bros. 75th Anniversary: No Guts, No Glory (1998) (TV) (uncredited)

“It’s Only Talk: The Real Story of America’s Talk Shows”, 1999, excerpt from the Steve Allen Show with Errol and Steve Fencing (January 6 1957)

“Informal, El” playing “El Burlador Caliente” (archive footage) April 21 2001

Raoul Walsh and Errol Flynn, 2002, Documentary Short, French TV.

“A & E’s Hollywood Home Movies”, 2004. Brief snippets of Flynn: EF smoking/ talking with shirt off on Zaca in color (2 seconds); EF playing tennis in color (4 seconds); and Bogart, Kay Francis (?), and Flynn in gathering at private home, outside, pan shot,  b & w (5 seconds).

“The Adventures of Errol Flynn”, 2005, Documentary (V & TV)

Tasmanian Devil: The Fast and Furious Life of Errol Flynn, 2007, TV Movie documentary

Cuban Story, The Truth About Fidel Castro Revolution, 1959/2010, Documentary. 50 minutes

Cameraman: The Life and Work of Jack Cardiff, 2010, Documentary, 86 minutes


Tip O’ the Hat, to Karl! Read the rest of this entry »

— David DeWitt


Mailbag! New Novel with A Robin Hood Twist!

26 Oct

Thanks to author James Bradford Taylor for the news about his novel which has one of my favorite kinds of themes: time travel, finding yourself transported back to a much earlier era which leads to all sorts of complications, drama, comedy and action …

Robin Hood1Click the image to check out the free Preview on…

I’m told by the Author that this is a Robin Hood story, not an Errol Flynn story but “his presence is felt in a most unusual but satisfying way,” and the review on Amazon highly praises the writing. In part, it reads:

“I recommend this for all lovers of swashbuckling fiction, the action scenes are very well done but there is just as much romance of both the conventional and screw-ball variety. But like a Raphael Sabatini novel the adventure here is unleavened by any dismissal of the real consequences of violence. There are some very sobering scenes of things ‘going medieval’ that keep the mood from getting too giddy. In fact the most impressive effect Taylor brings off several times in the book is the deft key changes, in mood, atmosphere and attitude. There is certainly as much tragedy as triumph in this tale of 1215 and I found my elation was matched by sadness for the stories of these well-drawn characters.”

We tip our hat to Brad Taylor, and thank him again for letting us know about his book. Taylor is a longtime fan of Errol Flynn, and his films, particularly The Adventures of Robin Hood which inspires this book. 525 Kindle pages. Published June 25, 2015. You don’t have to own a Kindle device to read this book. The Kindle app is free for several kinds of devices, and computer operating systems.

— David DeWitt


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Wearing the moustache just fine- Kevin Kline

02 Sep


Dear fellow Flynn fans,

The last of Robin Hood finally reached the shores of the old continent and I had a chance to watch this biopic-indy flic on DVD. The casting of course is top notch and the real scoop here. Academy Award winner Kevin Kline has been linked to Errol ever since he starred on Broadway as Pirate King in “The pirates of Penzance”. Despite striking physical similarities, Kline dismissed any eventual parallel with a quick sidestep: “I consider myself rather an actor than a movie star.” Actually that is a very accurate account of Flynn`s dilemma with Warner Bros. Errol was considered rather a movie star than an actor and put in mediocre films many times with the notion, they would make money nonetheless.

Kline`s impersonation of the private Errol is what really brings Flynn to life. I guess method acting was not an option, since it would have hurt Kevin`s de-liver-y. He may be weary to walk in Flynn`s footsteps, but has been donning the pants of famous personalities like Douglas Fairbanks in “Chaplin” and Cole Porter in “De-lovely” before. He has done a ton of movie classics like “Sophie`s Choice”, “The Ice Storm” and “Cry Freedom” and is a rare hybrid actor that feels comfortable both in drama and comedy. The script of TLORH though rarely calls for an indebt characterization, so Kline narrows his acting down to hamming up the Hollywood hero. The dialogue seems like a best of Errol`s quick quips. Despite his disputable actions, Flynn is coming across very favourably.

Since this isn`t your average boy meets girl story, but the story of an aging matinee idol and his last conquest of an underage singer-dancer under the favorable eye of her manager- mother, the studio obviously decided to go easy on everybody. Especially Susan Sarandon, who as always does a fine acting job, has not to answer for the catering of her daughter to a funny old filmstar. Dakota Fanning is credible in her role of timid teenager turned into intoxicating inamorata. The film as a whole has a Sixties feel to it, which I found out of place (and time!). Clearly chosen for its scandalous topic, it doesn`t dare to bare all surrounding sordid details. Errol`s doing drugs comes across like another of his eccentrics for example.

All in all this light comedy comes and goes like a breeze leaving little impression, not even a bitter after taste. Still it is fine for a movie night in like Flynn.




— shangheinz


Mystery Egg and the Innocent-By-Sitter

20 Aug

Mystery Of The Night Club Egg

— Sherwood Anderson once wrote a book and called it “The Triumph of the Egg” and I think there’s no better title for tke latest night club comedy starring an egg with a supporting cast headed by Errol Flynn, who In his films gets top billing.

Maybe you think Flynn should get top billing here too, but if you really think about it you will see the error in such reasoning. By any yardstick, the egg stole the show.

Days ago this little episode from early slapstick days hit the headlines, and ever since the mystery of it all has taken the place of sheep-counting, with me, in those bedded moments when sheep-counting is prescribed.

Let’s reconstruct: the time Is early morning in the Mocambo, where straggling Saturday night revelers are fighting off the dawn, pitiful waifs of merriment with no place to go but home. The bar has long been closed; even the “bad ice” —if any—has long since melted. The tropical birds, in cages lining the ceiling, are calling it a day.

Suddenly melodrama begins melling. Two girls are in an argument. Then they’re in a fight Then a waiter passes with a tray. On the tray is the egg. One of the girls seizes the egg and crashes it on the wavy locks of innocent by-sitter, Errol Flynn. The Flynn role is entirely passive, even more so than recently when he was the victim in a one- punch fight with his good friend Capt Dan Topping, a fight Flynn later ascribed to the possible prevalence of “bad ice” at the party. No, you can’t give star billing to a guy who just sits and gets an egg shampoo. A star has to do something.

[Furthermore] there is no mystery about Flynn’s presence there. There is, in fact, little mystery about Flynn. Well, what about the girls? Sure, they started it all. And one of them did crash the egg on the Flynn hair-do, which was just sitting there atop an innocent by- sitter. But girls not infrequently have polita-arguments and scratch-fests in night clubs. It was the egg—the triumphant egg — that made the drama classy.

And what I like to think about, because the egg is now my favorite mystery character, is this: What was it doing on that tray? Who ordered it, and for what purpose? One of those gourmets who likes to mix his own mayonnaise? Hardly — not at that ghastly morning hour. Some bibulous gent who became obsessed with a passion for raw egg— one raw egg? Scarcely. A bachelor who wanted to take it home for breakfast? Possibly. Maybe night club habitues know the answer. Maybe all of them order one raw egg on a tray to end an evening. But what master of timing (or sublime coincidence) arranged that the egg, on the tray, should be passing at that precise instant when an angry lady was in an egg-smashing mood?

Maybe I could call the Mocambo and find out. But I don’t wanna, because then I’d have to go back to counting sheep.

— Gentleman Tim

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Errol Flynn Mailbag! George Oppenheimer

13 Aug

From Karl Holmberg:

The BRILLIANT comedy writer for the 50’s TV show Topper… had a Flynn tie-in:

George Oppenheimer had a prolific career as a critic, playwright, screenwriter and publisher. A graduate of Williams College, he was first engaged as an advertising publications manager by Alfred A. Knopf, before venturing into the publishing business as co-founder of Viking Press (with Harold Guinzburg) in 1925. Eight years later, Oppenheimer moved to Hollywood, contracted by the writing team of George S. Kaufmanand Robert E. Sherwood to complete the screenplay of Samuel Goldwyn’s spoof comedy Roman Scandals (1933). Kaufman and Sherwood had concocted the original story, but decided to leave the project because of star Eddie Cantor’s continued micro-management of their script. For the remainder of the decade, Oppenheimer worked at MGM, where he was often employed as a script doctor, ironing out incongruities and improving the work of his fellow writers. He had a hand in several major box-office hits, including Libeled Lady(1936), A Day at the Races (1937) and A Yank at Oxford (1938).

After wartime service with South-East Asia Command (First Motion Picture Unit) in India as writer, producer and director of training films and documentaries, Oppenheimer resumed his work in Hollywood, co-writing Adventures of Don Juan (1948) and scripting twenty-five episodes of the popular comedy series Topper (1953). In 1955, he forsook the screen for a position as drama critic for Newsday, based in New York. From 1970 to 1972, he held a position as president of the New York Drama Critics Circle.

Thanks, Karl!


— David DeWitt


The Ten Most Stylish Guys in Movie History

01 Jul

Errol is at 10 which I do not agree with . But what they say about all his films and how he wears his clothes is great. Love Genene

They say that clothes make the man. They also make the man in the movie and, sometimes, even make the movie itself live on in the annals of classic filmdom. With that in mind, here are a list of ten gents and the characters they played who changed our sartorial habits forever.

1. Michael Douglas/Gordon Gecko–Wall Street Arguably the movie that set the style for second half of the 1980s, Oliver Stone’s Wall Street featured Michael Douglas’ Oscar-winning turn as corporate raider Gordon Gecko, whose ruthlessness in the boardroom was only matched by his sense of style. Douglas is all clean lines in his pinstripe suits, suspenders and slicked-back hair, creating an iconic look that screamed “power” and “go fuck yourself” simultaneously. 2015-06-30-1435707420-9827189-douglasGG

2. Malcolm McDowell/Alex–A Clockwork Orange Stanley Kubrick’s dystopian sci-fi allegory is one of cinema’s great dark satires, with a legendary performance by Malcolm McDowell in the lead as Alex, the leader of a futuristic teenage gang who spends his evenings robbing, fighting and raping with his “droogs.” Also one of the most stylish films ever designed, Alex’s “uniform” in all white, with suspenders, jack boots, codpiece, eyeball cufflinks, derby and single false eyelash remains one of the most iconic and repellent outfits in movie history. His Edwardian jacket with snakeskin highlights, featured just before the film’s notorious high-speed orgy sequence, was also a fashion statement that burned itself into the frontal cortex. 2015-06-30-1435707480-9946188-ACOjacket

3. Steve McQueen/Thomas Crown–The Thomas Crown Affair The original Thomas Crown Affair, released in 1968, is thought by many enthusiasts to be the most stylish film ever made. Steve McQueen reinvented his blue collar, tough guy image as the Boston Brahmin scion of privilege who masterminds the perfect crime, showing up in a different custom-made outfit in virtually every scene. As if McQueen’s/Crown’s fleets of exotic cars wasn’t enough, his tortoise shell Persol sunglasses with blue lenses made sunglasses a high-end item for the first time in the U.S., gaining the Italian company a firm foothold in the States, which it still enjoys, and sparking a renaissance in 2010, when the company released its “Steve McQueen Collection,” a retro set of specs paying tribute to the man and his unique style.

4. Sean Connery/James Bond–Goldfinger Sean Connery became THE leading man of the 1960s as superspy James Bond, and though all of his turns as Bond featured one fashion statement after another, Goldfinger remains the signature example. From Bond’s signature Rolex Submariner wristwatch, to his white dinner jacket (and carnation) worn under his wetsuit, to the sky blue terrycloth pool PJs that only someone as cool as Connery could pull off, to the now-iconic gray glen plaid three-piece suit Connery/Bond rocked at Goldfinger’s Kentucky stud farm (and which Leonardo DiCaprio emulated in Steven Spielberg’s Catch Me if You Can), few heroes in movie history can compare with the effortlessly stylish élan of Connery’s 007.

5. Clark Gable/Peter Warne–It Happened One Night Clark Gable not only looked sharp as a knife edge in Frank Capra’s classic 1934 romantic comedy, he nearly (unintentionally) destroyed an entire industry. While shooting the scene where he undresses, Gable had trouble removing his undershirt while keeping his humorous flow going and took too long. As a result, the undershirt was abandoned altogether. After the film was released and became a runaway hit, it then became cool to not wear an undershirt, which resulted in a large drop in undershirt sales around the country. Legend has it that in response, some underwear manufacturers tried to sue Columbia Pictures.

6. Sidney Poitier/Virgil Tibbs–In the Heat of the Night Sidney Poitier’s Philadelphia police detective (and fish out of water in rural Mississippi) Virgil Tibbs is the portrait of urbane dignity in every frame of director Norman Jewison’s Oscar-winning film, whether it’s crossing swords with Rod Steiger’s bigoted Sheriff Gillespie, slapping blue-blooded racists in their greenhouses or leveling a length of pipe at some less-than-friendly Klan types. Poitier’s suit is always crisp, his Windsor-knotted tie perfectly centered, his button down shirt has nary a wrinkle. And this is the Deep South in the summertime, sugar (although actually filmed in Illinois)! Poitier is, was and always will be THE MAN, with this classic film bearing the evidence forthwith.

7. James Dean/Jim Stark–Rebel Without a Cause James Dean had already perished in a car accident at age 24 by the time Rebel Without a Cause was released in 1955. But Dean’s wardrobe for his character, Jim Stark, literally rewrote teenage fashion forever. Chinos were replaced with Levi’s blue jeans, button down shirts with plain, white t-shirts. And the jacket, that RED cotton windbreaker that seemed to blaze like a warning to any in its path, became so in-demand that manufacturers were back-ordered for nearly a year in some locations. Go into any Abercrombie & Fitch, Lucky Brand or American Apparel store in any mall in America, and you’ll see at least a dozen outfits that are Rebel inspired.

8. Robert Redford/Jay Gatsby–The Great Gatsby Although director Jack Clayton’s film of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel left most audiences nonplussed, anyone with an eye for style found it mouthwatering. If the film is notable for anything, it’s for introducing the styles of Ralph Lauren to the world. Lauren, who began manufacturing ties in the Bronx during the mid-60s, was a fan of the classic American fashions that made up the Jazz Age, and his work remains eye-popping, and still-classic, today.

2015-06-30-1435708304-5455236-gereAG 9. Richard Gere/Julian Kaye–American Gigolo Often viewed as the first truly iconic film of the ’80s that captured the decadent zeitgeist which the decade came to represent, Gigolo did for Giorgio Armani what Gatsby did for Ralph Lauren. Richard Gere’s male escort had a closet full of Armani, then a relatively unknown Italian designer. In the now-famous sequence when Gere lays out a series of outfits on his bed, trying to decide which is the most seductive, the most fetishistic portrait of male obsession with clothing was committed to film, and new look introduced to the men of the world, one which still endures today.

10. Errol Flynn/Errol Flynn–Any of His Films and in Life Errol Flynn, during his peak from the mid-1930s through the late ’40s, cut the most stylish figure in Hollywood. Flynn’s public persona was often far more colorful, interesting and jaw-dropping than the flamboyant, swashbuckling characters he portrayed on screen. In the end, after succumbing at age 50 to decades of over-indulgence, the greatest character Errol Flynn ever played was himself, and his wardrobe choices always belied a skilled eye for what hung well on his towering frame. Whether clad in a tuxedo, a double-breasted suit, or a simple pair of swimming trunks, Errol Flynn made looking good look so damn easy.

— tassie devil


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winners of Errol Flynn film house EFFIE awards

23 Jun

In celebration of its second birthday, the Errol Flynn Filmhouse announced the winners of this year’s EFFIE Awards at a special ceremony on Saturday.

The event also marked the 106th anniversary of Errol Flynn’s birth. Audience members enjoyed a glass of fizz and some birthday cake, as the results of the public vote were revealed, before settling down to watch a special pre-release screening of the new Western-thriller, Slow West, starring Michael Fassbender.

The award for the Best of the Biggest Selling Films went to the fascinating Stephen Hawking biopic The Theory of Everything, while the Best Classic Film was bagged by the iconic Ridley Scott sci-fi movie Blade Runner: The Final Cut. Scooping Best Documentary was Dior and I, going behind the scenes at the iconic fashion house. Best Live Event was won by Monty Python Live (Mostly), the reunion performance of the cult comedy group.

Best Film not in the English Language went to the animated adventure from Japan, The Tale of Princess Kaguya, from Studio Ghibli. The award for the best film shown in the cinema’s Under The Radar season was won by the uplifting music film Northern Soul. Finally the Audience Choice category of overall Favourite Film, to be picked from any that had been shown during the year, went to The Theory of Everything, starring Eddie Redmayne, giving it its second EFFIE win of the year.

An 88-seat cinema, the Errol Flynn Filmhouse opened adjacent to Royal & Derngate in June 2013, named after one of the Royal Theatre’s most famous alumni.

The cinema screens the very best in world, independent, British and mainstream film, broadening the range of films available in the town centre and providing a first class cinema-going experience.

The cinema launched to rave reviews and quickly developed a loyal following, with its luxurious reclining leather seats and carefully chosen range of snacks and drinks, and has welcomed 45,000 people to its screenings in the last year.

Errol Flynn Filmhouse Chief Executive, Martin Sutherland, said: “It’s great to see the cinema enjoying such popularity. I am really grateful for the dedication and commitment shown by all involved in making the Errol Flynn Filmhouse such a special place.”

For more information about the cinema and films coming up in near future, visit… or call Box Office on 01604 624811.

Read more:…
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— tassie devil


The Cabot Guy

08 Oct


Dear fellow Flynn fans,

Gentleman Tim has come up, yet again, with a major find:  https: //

As you can see in the pictures above, Errol and archer enemy Bruce Cabot appeared on the same show. Seems to me that our scolars skipped school on that one. To my understanding the two former buddies avoided meeting each other. In his MWWW memoir Errol stated their relationship as follows:

Cabot went up and down Rome`s Via Veneto boasting about what he had done. No real man strikes at another through his helpless family, especially after being friends for twenty years.

My assistant said: “Why don`t you go and see him?”

“No, I am afraid.”

”What, you afraid of Cabot?”

“ Yes, I am afraid…..of what I might do to him if I saw him.”

I had to watch myself.

“This is no time for a murder charge.”

Cabot defended his Brutus demeanor in public in 1970:

Errol Flynn- I shared his house, his fights, his liquor and his girls. He was a real man with terrific looks. What happened to him, of course, was that he took to the dope – in fact, he was registered over here in England as an addict – and that destroyed him.”

So, did they make up at Bruce`s Bar or have a wild west showdown that TV night?

Who knows more!?

— shangheinz


The Missing Swashbucklers

21 Nov

From 1940’s “The Sea Hawk” until 1949’s “Adventures of Don Juan”, Errol Flynn did not make a swashbuckler. That’s like saying John Wayne did not make a western for 9 years. Or Laurel & Hardy did not make a comedy. The possibilities for Flynn swashbucklers during those  years are endless. So here’s my first imaginary Flynn swashbuckler; “The Adventures of Sir Francis Drake” which, in a better world, might have debuted at Christmas of 1943. Flynn-Poster2

— zacal

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The Essentials: 5 Of Michael Curtiz’s Greatest Films, On The 50th Anniversary Of His Death

15 Apr



With the arrival of the auteur theory, filmmakers like Michael Curtiz no longer get as much sway among the current generation of directors. Curtiz (born Kertész Kaminer Manó in Hungary in 1886), was a journeyman, a man who flourished in the studio system after being picked out by Jack Warner for his Austrian Biblical epic “Moon of Israel” in 1924. He stayed at the studio for nearly 20 years, taking on whatever he was assigned at a terrifyingly prolific rate — he made over 100 Hollywood movies up to “The Comancheros” in 1961. And some of them are terrible, as you might expect.

But Curtiz was also responsible for some of the greatest films of the era, and those who diminish his abilities (including the director himself, who once said “Who cares about character? I make it go so fast nobody notices”) are ignoring his enormous skill behind the camera, and his undeniable capacity for getting great performances out of some of the biggest stars in history. And slowly, his reputation has been restored over time — Steven Soderbergh (who, coincidentally, joins Curtiz as one of only two filmmakers to pick up two Best Director Oscar nominations in the same year; Curtiz for “Angels With Dirty Faces” and “Four Daughters,” Soderbergh for “Traffic” and “Erin Brockovich“)  has praised his work, and the younger filmmaker’s “The Good German” is in many ways a tribute to his forerunner.

Curtiz died fifty years ago today, on April 10th 1962, and to commemorate the anniversary, we’ve picked out five of the director’s finest works as a starting point for those who want to dig into his wider career. There’s plenty more gems where these came from — the filmmaker was incredibly versatile, ranging from action-adventure to musicals, comedies to melodrama — but these are the five highlights of a colossal output.

The Adventures of Robin Hood” (1938)
In 1935, Curtiz had helped popularize and legitimize the cinematic swashbuckler with “Captain Blood,” a thrilling pirate tale that picked up a Best Picture Oscar nomination, and saw Curtiz come second in the director category, despite not having been nominated (write-in votes still held some power back then…) Three years later, Curtiz returned to the big screen, along with his ‘Blood’ stars Errol Flynn (who would become a favorite of the filmmaker: this was their second of twelve collaborations) and Olivia De Haviland, having refined and perfected the formula, with “The Adventures of Robin Hood.” In fact, Flynn wasn’t the first choice: Jimmy Cagney had originally been targeted for the part, but left Warners, causing a huge delay until Flynn eventually took over. And it’s hard to imagine anyone else in the part: Flynn’s roguish charm and sheer pleasure in his adventures (a far cry from the joyless takes by Kevin Costner or Russell Crowe) has defined Robin Hood for generations to come. And his supporting cast are absolutely his match — de Havilland is sweet as Marion, and having Basil Rathbone and Claude Rains as the pair of sniveling villains is pretty much an unmatchable combination (it’s like having Gary Oldman and Alan Rickman playing a duo of evildoers today). Despite the attempts of Costner and Ridley Scott over the years, this is still the definitive cinematic take on the British outlaw who robs from the rich to give to the poor, with genuinely glorious Technicolor (the film was only the studio’s second experiment with color at the time), and action sequences as thrilling as anything that’s ever been seen on screen — principally because so much is done for real, right down to the famous scene of the arrow being split in two (albeit aided by bamboo arrows and wires). It’s perhaps too sincere and irony-free for contemporary audiences, but it remains one of best action-adventure movies in cinematic history.

Angels With Dirty Faces” (1938)
The dawning of the Production Code era meant that, however popular the gangster picture was, it would always end the same way: the antihero would meet his demise, normally through a hail of bullets, to demonstrate to the audience that crime didn’t pay. But that ending’s rarely been pulled off with as much a sense of genuine tragedy as Curtiz managed with “Angels With Dirty Faces.” It’s a familiar tale by now, following two kids from the wrong side of the tracks who take divergent paths. After Rocky (James Cagney) takes the fall for a streetcar robbery pulled with his pal Jerry (the actor’s great friend Pat O’Brien, who would co-star in nine films across nearly forty-five years, up to 1981’s “Ragtime“), the former would grow up to be a powerful mobster, the latter a priest, trying to keep kids — played by the young actors who would go on to be the Dead End Kids/Bowery Boys — on the straight-and-narrow. But Jerry’s drawn back in when Rocky comes up against a pair of sinister businessmen, Frazier (Humphrey Bogart) and Keefer (George Bancroft); Rocky kills them when they target Jerry, who’s about to expose their corruption, and is sentenced to death. To stop his death becoming a martyrdom to the kids, Jerry persuades Rocky to go the electric chair as a coward, and he dies screaming. It’s undoubtedly moralistic, but the relationship between Cagney and O’Brien feels so etched in truth that it carries a weight and heft that’s rare for even the golden era of gangster movies. Curtiz is in fine, noirish form, particular in the climactic shootout, and the rat-a-tat script (thanks in part to a polish from Ben Hecht andCharles MacArthur) remains eminently quotable.

The Sea Wolf” (1941)
Never released on DVD in the U.S., and mostly forgotten by this point, surviving principally through rare TV airings, Curtiz’s adaptation of Jack London‘s sea-set adventure is probably the best candidate for the hidden gem of the director’s filmography. The story follows a writer (Alexander Knox) and an escaped convict (Ida Lupino, excellent as a character invented for the screen by writer Robert Rossen of “All The King’s Men” and “The Hustler” fame), who are caught in a shipwreck, and retrieved by the tyrannical Captain Wolf Larsen (Edward G. Robinson), who faces mutiny from his cabin boy, George Leach (John Garfield). Rossen’s script is a model of great adaptation, departing from London’s text to make it more cinematic while still capturing its spirit and its characters, and given it was released as the Second World War was underway, Larsen’s near-fascistic figurehead has a resonance that still rings today. It’s one of Curtiz’s most complex works — a world away from another Flynn vehicle, swashbuckler “The Sea Hawk,” which landed the year before — with a psychological realism that would pave the way towards the likes of “Mildred Pierce.” And once more, there’s a titanic star performance at its center. Edward G. Robinson was best known for gangster movies like his star turn in “Little Caesar,” but he gives arguably his finest performance here as Larsen, a complex monster who isn’t without his moments of sympathy; his final scene, blind and raging, going down with the boat, is staggeringly brilliant work. The film suffers a little from a rather bland protagonist in Alexander Knox, but for the most part it’s a forgotten classic that we hope turns up on the Warner Archive sooner rather than later.

Casablanca” (1942)
Based on a play that was, by all accounts, pretty terrible, and made under a frantic production that had a well-documented casting back-and-forth, few expected “Casablanca” to be anything but a forgettable programmer, a cash-in on the now-overshadowed 1938 box office hit “Algiers.” That it became a Best Picture winner (and responsible for Curtiz’s only directing Oscar), and one of the greatest American movies ever made, is a case of how, every so often, the stars align just in the right way. Because “Casablanca” is perfect across the board: a rich, gripping story, told through a script that never puts a foot wrong forward (thanks to the Epstein Brothers,Howard Koch and an uncredited Casey Robinson), helmed with uncanny sense of pace and tone by Curtiz and performed by a colorful, charismatic cast that once more showed the director’s capacity for picking the right face for a part (has any supporting cast ever matched the likes of Claude Rains, Conrad Veidt, Sydney Greenstreet and Peter Lorre here?). And the film is a tricky balancing act, because it has everything that you could want in a movie — comedy, thrills, a great love story — but it takes a craftsman in the best sense of the word to make the elements work in harmony, and one can only wonder what would have happened if original choice, William Wyler, had helmed the film instead. Technically, it’s superb too: DoPArthur Edeson, who was also behind “The Maltese Falcon” and “Frankenstein,” was perhaps the finest cinematographer working at the time, and he lights Ingrid Bergman perhaps better than anyone’s ever lit a star, while giving the North African setting an unforgettable noirish tinge. If you’ve somehow never seen it, drop whatever you’re doing and fix that.

Mildred Pierce” (1945)
By 1945, Joan Crawford had been a star for twenty years, but wasn’t exactly at the peak of her career: she’d been labeled as box office poison in 1937, and was bought out of her contract by MGM for $100,000. She went across town to Warner Bros in 1943, wanting to star in a movie version of “Ethan Frome,” but when that film didn’t happen, she stepped in for nemesis Bette Davis on an adaptation of James M. Cain‘s “Mildred Pierce,” despite the initial objections of Curtiz, who had to be convinced by a screen test. But the gamble paid off in a big way in the film that sees Crawford play a self-made woman, the owner of a chain of restaurants, tormented by her horrible little shit of a social-climbing daughter. It proved to be a major hit, and Crawford won a Best Actress Academy Award, putting her right back on top again. And even in light of Todd Haynes‘ five-hour HBOminiseries last year, an excellent, religiously faithful take on the same material that dumps the noirish murder subplot, Curtiz’s film holds up today in a big way. The director’s expressionistic experiments in light and shadow reach their apex here, with a flashback structure that feels like a knowing nod at “Citizen Kane,” and as ever, the cast is immaculate, and the pacing moves along at a neat clip. But ultimately, it’s Crawford’s show, and she’s phenomenal in the film. Her hunger to get back on top is almost palpable, but there’s little ego to the performance, with a maternal love that had rarely been seen from the actress before, and a true heartbreak when she sees how little gratitude her little monster Veda (Ann Blyth) has for her. As superb as Kate Winslet was in Haynes’ version, it’s always going to be Crawford that’s associated with the role.

Honorable Mentions: Most of his pictures with Flynn, including the aforementioned “Captain Blood,” “Charge of the Light Brigade,” “Dodge City,” “The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex” and “Sante Fe Trail,” are worth checking out, while his Oscar nominated work on musical “Four Daughters” is pleasant entertainment (as are “White Christmas” and “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” the latter of which has dated a little, but features a brilliant performance from James Cagney). He also virtually invented the sitcom, in big-screen form, with William Powell in “Life With Father” and helmed one of Elvis Presley‘s best films, “King Creole.”

— tassie devil


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