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Robert Vaughn, Suave 'Man From U.N.C.L.E.,' Is Dead at 83

Robert Vaughn, Suave 'Man From U.N.C.L.E.,' Is Dead at 83
New York -- Robert Vaughn, the debonair, Oscar-nominated actor whose many film roles were eclipsed by his hugely popular turn in television’s The Man From U.N.C.L.E., has died. He was 83.

Vaughn died Friday morning after a brief battle with acute leukemia, according to his manager, Matthew Sullivan.

The Man From U.N.C.L.E. was an immediate hit, particularly with young people, when it debuted on NBC 1964. It was part of an avalanche of secret agent shows (I Spy, Mission: Impossible, Secret Agent), spoofs (Get Smart), books (The Spy Who Came in From the Cold) and even songs (Secret Agent Man) inspired by the James Bond films.

Vaughn’s urbane superspy Napoleon Solo teamed with Scottish actor David McCallum’s Illya Kuryakin, a soft-spoken, Russian-born agent.

Photos: Stars We've Lost In Recent Years

The pair, who had put aside Cold War differences for a greater good, worked together each week for the mysterious U.N.C.L.E. (United
See full article at Entertainment Tonight »

R.I.P. Christopher Lee – Here Are His Ten Best Roles

The day monster kids have dreaded for some time has arrived. Mournful, nostalgic, and melancholy – it’s the end of an era for more than one generation of horror fans. It seemed like Christopher Lee would live through all eternity, but unlike some of the characters he played, there’s no bringing him back to life this time. He made it to 93 and went out on a high note, appearing in the final Hobbit film just this past winter. He had an amazing career of fantastic performances and remains the greatest villain actor in film history. Rip to the last classic horror star and thank you for all the monster memories.

Christopher Lee was married to his wife Birgit (Gitte) for 54 years.

Here, according to Movie Geeks Jim Batts, Dana Jung, Sam Moffitt, and myself, are Christopher Lee’s ten best roles.

10. Frankenstein

It’s only fitting that The Curse Of Frankenstein,
See full article at WeAreMovieGeeks.com »

Richard Johnson, British Star Of Stage, Screen And Television, Dead At Age 87

  • CinemaRetro
Richard Johnson (far right) in the 1963 supernatural masterpiece "The Haunting" with Claire Bloom, Russ Tamblyn and Julie Harris.

 

By Lee Pfeiffer

Cinema Retro mourns the loss of our friend, actor Richard Johnson, who has passed away at age 87. Johnson was a classically trained actor, having attended Rada and was also one of the founding members of the Royal Shakespeare Company. His acting career was interrupted by service in the Royal Navy during WWII but Johnson resumed his profession at the end of the war. He alternated between playing small parts in feature films and leading roles in stage productions. In 1959, he got his first significant screen role starring with Frank Sinatra and young Steve McQueen and Charles Bronson in the WWII film "Never So Few".  He was initially offered the role of James Bond but turned down the opportunity. He later told Cinema Retro that he had no regrets because
See full article at CinemaRetro »

Actor Richard Johnson Dead at 87 – Starred in The Haunting and Lucio Fulci’s Zombie

R.I.P Dr. Markway. I recently watched British actor Richard Johnson as Bulldog Drummond in Deadlier Than The Male, a tough and stylish Bond pastiche from 1967 with an odd Avengers twist. His Drummond was suave and sophisticated and I wasn’t surprised to read that Johnson was (one of many to be) considered for 007. And I was thinking just last night when I was watching Insidious 3 that I wished I was instead watching a better-crafted, genuinely creepy horror story like The Haunting (1963), which starred also Johnson. The actor had a varied career, starring in diverse roles ranging from Caius Cassius opposite Charlton Heston in Julius Caesar (1970) to Dr. Menard in Lucio Fulci’s unforgettable Zombie in 1979. Richard Johnson died in London yesterday at age 87.

From The BBC News:

British actor Richard Johnson, whose career spanned film, theatre and TV, has died aged 87, his family has said. Johnson made
See full article at WeAreMovieGeeks.com »

Top Ten Tuesday: Christopher Lee – His Ten Best Movie Roles

Article by Jim Batts, Dana Jung, Sam Moffitt, and Tom Stockman

The film career of legendary English actor Sir Christopher Lee began in 1948 and continues to the present day. Lee is best known for his roles in horror films, especially the string of seven Dracula movies he starred in for Hammer Studios between 1958 and 1974, but be may be best known to younger audiences for his roles in the Star Wars, Lord of the Rings and Hobbit films. Almost all of the roles that Lee has played have been villains and here, according to We Are Movie Geeks, are his ten best.

10. Frankenstein

It’s only fitting that The Curse Of Frankenstein, the film that truly began England’s Hammer Studios’ theatrical run of full color gothic horror epics, should team (well, they’re both in the 1948 Hamlet, but have no scenes together) their greatest stars, Peter Cushing as Baron Victor Frankenstein
See full article at WeAreMovieGeeks.com »

'Game of Thrones' producers on casting Mance Rayder, Lady Olenna

'Game of Thrones' producers on casting Mance Rayder, Lady Olenna
There are two new players on the Game of Thrones board in season three portrayed by a pair of respected actors: Wildling leader Mance Rayder (Ciarán Hinds) and Tyrell matriarch Lady Olenna (Diana Rigg).

When it came to finding Rayder, Thrones producers sought a strong, rugged and charismatic actor. Rayder, a former member of the Night’s Watch, has managed to unite all the disparate tribes of the North. Yet author George R.R. Martin’s saga also subverts readers’ expectations by depicting Rayder as a rather unremarkable-looking man who can pass for an unassuming and wily musician.

“Of all the various kings vying for power,
See full article at EW.com - Inside TV »

What's TV's problem with theatre?

Once upon a time, Ibsen and Chekhov were primetime fare. So why is theatre never on TV any more? Broadcasters are missing a trick

In early 1965 Granada produced Thomas Middleton's Women Beware Women for primetime ITV, starring Diana Rigg. The adaptation, which will be shown at the BFI next week, came less than three years after the Royal Shakespeare Company had staged the play's first professional production in more than four centuries. The Guardian called the broadcast "thundering".

If it's a shock to think of Jacobean drama on primetime, it's just one measure of how seriously television in the 1960s took theatre – and how, today, it fails to. In a recent interview, Nicholas Hytner, artistic director of the National Theatre, singled out the BBC for criticism, suggesting it had a "Downton ratings mentality" when it came to arts broadcasting, and lamenting its lack of engagement with theatres around the UK.
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Daphne Slater obituary

Actor who made her name during the early years of drama on television

As a captivating young ingenue in Shakespeare on stage, and Jane Austen on television, Daphne Slater, who has died aged 84, enjoyed a brilliant career for 10 years, followed by decent television work for the next 10, before withdrawing into family life almost completely by 1975.

At Stratford-upon-Avon in 1947, she appeared as a radical (for those days) young Olivia in Twelfth Night; both mother and daughter (Thaisa and Marina) in Pericles; Juliet in Peter Brook's beautiful Romeo and Juliet set in Verona ("a miracle of masks, mists and sudden grotesquerie," wrote Kenneth Tynan); and Miranda in The Tempest. Her Juliet, said Tynan, was rightly "excitable and impetuous, and she communicates this convulsive ardour until it becomes our panic as well as hers". Her future husband, John Harrison, played Benvolio, and their offstage romance continued during The Tempest, in which Harrison played Ferdinand,
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

George R.R. Martin Talks 'Game of Thrones' Season 3 & Much More

George R.R. Martin Talks 'Game of Thrones' Season 3 & Much More
It's hard to believe that HBO's "Game of Thrones" has only been on the air for two seasons; it feels as though we've been living with the show for much longer.

Of course, the creator of the "Game of Thrones" book series, George R.R. Martin, has been conjuring the world of Westeros for more than two decades. The first book in the series came out 16 years ago, so the long-standing attachment many people have to that world isn't too odd. But there's no denying that the HBO show, which debuted in 2011, brought Martin's saga to a much wider audience.

Why is that saga so resonant, on screen or on the page? What is it about the novels and the TV show that make those Medieval-esque fantasy worlds so compelling to people who live in societies that appear to be very different? What techniques and strategies does Martin use to bring
See full article at Huffington Post »

‘Game of Thrones’ names ‘Political Animals’ Ciarán Hinds as their King Beyond The Wall

If you’ve been watching USA’s Political Animals then you might see why the folks over at HBO’s Game of Thrones thought Ciarán Hinds would nicely as Mance Rayder, the “King Beyond the Wall” who presides over the Free Folk north of the Wall. In Animals, Hinds plays a Bill Clinton-George Bush hybrid womanizer who miraculously spent two terms as president despite his hard-living lifestyle and lack of common sense. But Hinds is not a stranger to leadership roles nor HBO. Fans of Rome may remember him as Gaius Julius Caesar and he’s shown up recently in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, John Carter, and The Debt. EW broke the news earlier today. If you’re not caught up with GoT, then beware of spoilers below.

The Ireland native will return to his native birthplace of Belfast, where GoT shoots and sets up its production and
See full article at BuzzFocus.com »

'Game of Thrones' casts Ciaran Hinds as Mance Rayder

  • Hitfix
'Game of Thrones' casts Ciaran Hinds as Mance Rayder
"Game of Thrones" has cast Ciaran Hinds to play Mance Rayder, the King Beyond the Wall, in the fantasy drama's upcoming third season. Hinds, who's finishing up a stint on USA's "Political Animals" playing a very thinly-disguised version of Bill Clinton, has had practice wielding a sword and shield on HBO, as he played Julius Caesar on "Rome."  Mance was discussed frequently in the show's second season, but never seen. Hinds joins a new wave of "GoT" actors, including Diana Rigg and Mackenzie Crook. The third season will premiere on March 31, 2013.
See full article at Hitfix »

Game of Thrones Summons Rome's Ciarán Hinds to Play Mance Rayder

Game of Thrones Summons Rome's Ciarán Hinds to Play Mance Rayder
Belfast native Ciarán Hinds — best known to TV viewers as Rome’s Julius Caesar but currently wrapping a run as Political Animals ex-potus Bud Hammond — has been tapped by HBO’s Game of Thrones to play the pivotal role of Mance Rayder, EW.com reports.

Per the Song of Ice and Fire novels, Mance was a loyal member of the Night’s Watch until he broke his vows and went to live with the wildings. There, he rose to an influential position, ultimately becoming regarded as The King Beyond the Wall.
See full article at TVLine.com »

Hail Caesar! What's Good & Bad About the New Sword & Sandal Movies

I come to praise Sword & Sandal movies -- not to bury them. But with Wrath of the Titans and the Sword & Sandal/sci-fi mash-up John Carter not exactly setting the world on fire -- along with recent disappointments like Immortals and Conan -- it's getting more difficult by the day to believe that the Sword & Sandal movie can survive the recent fumbling of this otherwise great genre. And that's a shame, because the Sword & Sandal movie -- known for its gladiatorial games, pagan orgies, depraved emperors, and the occasional snarling cyclops -- may represent the most colorful and enduring movie genre of all time. So for the uninitiated, what exactly is a Sword & Sandal movie? Like its cousin the Biblical epic, a Sword & Sandal movie -- or 'peplum,' named after a type of ancient Greek garment -- is typically set in the ancient Mediterranean world, and dramatizes the fight for freedom.
See full article at Moviefone »

Blu-ray Disc Association’s Top 10 Blu-ray Discs for Valentine’s Day

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, what better way is there to celebrate than with a cosy night in with your loved one? With this in mind, the Blu-ray Disc Association has selected its top ten romantic films for you to enjoy, which are all available now in stunning high definition.

All these titles could highly recommended for Valentine’s Day viewing;

Romeo and Juliet

(20th Century Fox)

Enjoy a classic love story this year: Baz Luhrmann’s adaption of Shakespeare’s timeless tale of the two star-crossed lovers is a perfect accompaniment to any Valentine’s Day. Leonardo DiCaprio and Clare Danes’ on screen chemistry is electrifying in this commercially and critically lauded film.

Buy it Here.

Mamma Mia

(Universal)

Make a song and dance of your loved ones with the light-hearted classic Mamma Mia. A celebration of family, friends and loves old and new, this film has something for romantics everywhere.
See full article at Obsessed with Film »

Hot Rods & Droids: A George Lucas Profile (Part 5)

Trevor Hogg profiles the career of legendary filmmaker George Lucas in the fifth of a six part feature... read parts one, two, three and four.

“One of the exercises I wanted to do after Jedi [1983] was to see if the companies I had built could survive not having Star Wars in their life,” stated American filmmaker George Lucas. “So we went fifteen years, and the companies not only survived but they prospered and we were now able to finance a $120 million movie.” The prequel trilogy chronicles the early Jedi Knight life of Obi-Wan Kenobi and the emergence of his pupil Anakin Skywalker as a lethal adversary. “That backstory was sketched out in a rudimentary fashion when I wrote the first trilogy, and there were certain things I knew even then. I knew for example, that there was a character known as Anakin Skywalker who grew up on a small planet,
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

Good Night, Alfred: Michael Gough Passes Away

Michael Gough, the actor who portrayed Bruce Wayne's servant and confidant Alfred Pennyworth in four Batman films, passed away Thursday at 94 years of age. While most of us knew Gough for his key roles in Batman, Batman Returns, Batman Forever and Batman and Robin, the British actor was a Tony and BAFTA award winning performer who also lent his talents to well-known films like The Boys From Brazil, Top Secret, Out of Africa and versions of The Phantom of the Opera, Alice in Wonderland, Julius Caesar and many more. He'd been acting since the late 1940s right into this decade. Gough was one of the most prolific actors out there and he'll surely be missed.
See full article at Slash Film »

Michael Gough RIP

Michael Gough RIP
Michael Gough, the man known around the world as the most recognisable cinematic incarnation of Batman’s loyal butler Alfred Pennyworth during the 1980s and ‘90s, has died at the age of 94. But beyond his time spent cocking a disapproving yet paternal eyebrow at the likes of Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer and George Clooney, Gough was an accomplished actor on the stage and screen.Born in Malaysia in 1916, Gough launched his career on television, starring in BBC TV movie Androcles and the Lion. He then made the leap to the big screen with two films, both in 1948 – Anna Karenina and Blanche Fury.His time on screen saw him tackle everything from Shakespeare plays (Richard III, Julius Caesar and more) to Dh Lawrence adaptations (Women in Love) to epics such as Out of Africa. He also tapped his comedy side as Dr Paul Flammond in Top Secret!But when Tim Burton
See full article at EmpireOnline »

Tom Fleming obituary

A renowned Scottish actor and director, he regularly commentated on state occasions for BBC television

Tom Fleming, who has died of cancer aged 82, was an outstanding figure in the Scottish theatre of the second half of the 20th century, the first television "face" of Jesus of Nazareth in a 1953 mini-series, and well known as a BBC television and radio commentator at many royal and ceremonial occasions since he first broadcast, for the BBC, during the Queen's coronation in 1953.

He was a Baptist lay preacher, a deeply private man of great moral integrity and stature. This much was clear not only on stage but also as he spoke in his flawless, rich and velvety baritone voice at the funerals of Diana, Princess of Wales, and the Queen Mother. So assiduous was he in his properly felt sense of duty that he declined the invitation to appear in a play by Mikhail Bulgakov
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Tom Fleming obituary

A renowned Scottish actor and director, he regularly commentated on state occasions for BBC television

Tom Fleming, who has died of cancer aged 82, was an outstanding figure in the Scottish theatre of the second half of the 20th century, the first television "face" of Jesus of Nazareth in a 1953 mini-series, and well known as a BBC television and radio commentator at many royal and ceremonial occasions since he first broadcast, for the BBC, during the Queen's coronation in 1953.

He was a Baptist lay preacher, a deeply private man of great moral integrity and stature. This much was clear not only on stage but also as he spoke in his flawless, rich and velvety baritone voice at the funerals of Diana, Princess of Wales, and the Queen Mother. So assiduous was he in his properly felt sense of duty that he declined the invitation to appear in a play by Mikhail Bulgakov
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Christopher Cazenove: Another 'Dynasty' death

  • Pop2it
After battling septicemia since the end of February, actor Christopher Cazenove has passed away. His girlfriend Isobel Davis, agent Lesley Duff, and family released a statement in confirmation.

"Christopher died peacefully on April 7 surrounded by his loved ones," the statement said. "Despite a valiant fight and the untiring efforts of the wonderful team at St Thomas's, he was overwhelmed. All who knew and loved him will be devastated by the loss of this incredible man who touched so many lives.

Cazenove's career as a British screen actor began with his role as a servant in "Julius Caesar" in 1970 and spanned nearly 40 years. Cazenove is best known for his role as Ben Carrington on the long-running soap "Dynasty." John Forsythe, who played Ben's brother Blake Carrington, passed away earlier this month.

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