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Topics - Brendan

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Off-Topic Discussion / BASEBALL 2011
« on: January 05, 2011, 03:16:34 PM »
Yes, yes, who woulda thought that I would have started this thread? However... I came home from work just now to see some great news on the TV:

Roberto Alomar has been voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame!

Alomar voted to baseball's Hall of Fame
Last Updated: Wednesday, January 5, 2011 | 3:04 PM ET
The Associated Press

After coming painfully short in the voting a year ago, former Roberto Alomar got the news he wanted to hear Wednesday.

The former Toronto Blue Jays star infielder is headed to Cooperstown.

Alomar and Bert Blyleven were selected for induction into the Hall of Fame by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.

Alomar, a 12-time all-star who helped lead the Blue Jays to World Series titles in 1992 and 1993, was picked on 90 per cent of the ballots. Blyleven was listed on 79.7 per cent, just ahead of the 75 per cent needed for election.

Sluggers Rafael Palmeiro, Mark McGwire, Jeff Bagwell and Juan Gonzalez came nowhere close. Hall voters, for now, seem intent to prevent the cloud of the Steroids Era from covering Cooperstown.

Alomar collected 2,724 hits, 210 homers, 1,134 RBIs, 1,508 runs and 474 steals in 2,379 games. The 10-time Gold Glover had a .300 career average over 17 seasons and was named ALCS MVP in 1992.

Alomar was named on 73.7 per cent of the ballots last year in his first try. Blyleven had come even closer, missing by just five votes while getting 74.2 per cent.

Alomar and Blyleven will be joined by Pat Gillick at the induction ceremonies July 24 in Cooperstown. The longtime executive was picked last month by the Veterans Committee. Gillick helped earn his place with a trade that brought Alomar to Toronto.

Smart and acrobatic on the field, Alomar also was guilty in one of the game's most boorish moments. He spit on umpire John Hirschbeck during a dispute in 1996 and was suspended. They later made up and Hirschbeck supported Alomar's bid for the Hall.

Alomar joins four other former Blue Jays at Cooperstown — Phil Niekro, Dave Winfield, Paul Molitor and Rickey Henderson — but none of them have the team's cap on their plaques. Alomar has the potential to be the first given that many of his best years came in Toronto.

Blyleven, known for his wicked curveball, had 287 wins, 3,701 strikeouts and 60 shutouts. This was his 14th time on the ballot and his career stats have got a boost in recent years by sabermetricians who have new ways to evaluate baseball numbers.

"It's been 14 years of praying and waiting," Blyleven said on a conference call. "I'd like to thank the Baseball Writers of America for, I'd like to say, finally getting it right."

Palmeiro, McGwire, Bagwell and Gonzalez fared poorly in the election, with voters apparently reluctant to choose bulky hitters who posted big numbers in the 1990s and 2000s.

"The writers are saying this was the steroids era, like they've kind of done for Mark McGwire," Blyleven said. "They've made their point. It doesn't surprise me."

Having a player inducted to the Hall as a Blue Jay is one of the few accomplishments the franchise is missing.

Alomar came to the Blue Jays in a transformational Dec. 5, 1990 trade with San Diego. The Blue Jays also got Joe Carter in the deal in exchange for Tony Fernandez and Fred McGriff.

Alomar instantly became an offensive catalyst for Toronto, gaining a reputation among his teammates as a player who could be counted on to deliver the big hit.

The biggest one of his career came in the ninth inning of Game 4 in the 1992 ALCS, and it turned out to be a pivotal moment in franchise history. Oakland closer Dennis Eckersley ended the eighth by striking out Ed Sprague with two runners on, pointed and shouted at him, and then stared down the Blue Jays dugout.

Devon White then led off the ninth with a single and Alomar followed with a game-tying, two-run homer. The Blue Jays won the game 7-6 in 11 innings, took the series in six games and went on to claim their first World Series title.

"We took it personal," Alomar recalled in a 2008 interview. "Everybody wanted to get him, we battled back and that home run was the biggest hit I ever had."

It was also especially meaningful for a franchise that had a history of near-misses in the post-season.

"That hit pretty much put us in the World Series for the first time," former teammate and current Blue Jays bullpen coach Pat Hentgen said last year. "The team had come so close in '85, '87, '89, '91 — what a run for the organization — and to get put over that hump, that was huge."

The election was quite a climb for Blyleven, who helped pitch Pittsburgh to the 1979 title and Minnesota to the 1987 crown. Many years ago, he drew barely over 14 per cent in the BBWAA voting.

"I could not be happier if it was my own son," Twins Hall of Famer Harmon Killebrew said. "I played in the first game Bert pitched for the Minnesota Twins in 1970. ... I wish it wouldn't have taken so long but now that he is in, it's wonderful."

Palmeiro was listed on just 64 of a record 581 ballots (11 per cent) in his first try despite lofty career numbers -- he is joined by Hank Aaron, Willie Mays and Eddie Murray as the lone players with more than 3,000 hits and 500 home runs.

But Palmeiro failed a drug test and was suspended by Major League Baseball in 2005. The penalty came a few months after he wagged his finger at members of Congress and told them: "I have never used steroids. Period."

Palmeiro recently reiterated the anabolic steroid that caused his positive test came in a vitamin vial given to him by teammate Miguel Tejada.

Bagwell got 41.7 per cent in his first year on the ballot. His career stats are among the best for first basemen since the Second World War — .297 batting average, .408 on-base percentage and .540 slugging percentage. He hit 449 home runs, topped 1,500 RBIs and runs and ran the bases hard. He was Rookie of the Year, NL MVP and a Gold Glove winner.

Bagwell never tested positive, there were no public allegations against him and he was adamant that he never used illegal drugs. Still, many voters and fans aren't sure yet how to assess the big numbers put up by the game's biggest hitters.

McGwire got 19.8 per cent, a drop from 23.7 per cent last year. This was his fifth time on the ballot, and first since the former home run champion admitted he took steroids and human growth hormone.

Juan Gonzalez, a two-time AL MVP implicated by Jose Canseco in steroids use, received 30 votes, just above the 5.0 per cent threshold for remaining on the ballot next year.

Barry Larkin and Tim Raines showed gains in this year's voting. Pete Rose received three write-in votes.

© The Canadian Press, 2011

I remember those early 90's years of the Toronto Blue Jays. That was without a doubt the best roster they've ever had and probably ever will have. Hell that was probably even one of the best rosters to ever be in baseball.  Everything clicked those two years in 1992 and 1993 and unfortunately there's that "what if..." feeling if the 1994 MLB strike hadn't have happened. Regardless... I'm happy Alomar is being inducted as a Blue Jay (though really... why wouldn't he have been?) and I hope Joe Carter can get in one day. Alomar deserves it not only for his work in Toronto but his career as whole too.

Off-Topic Discussion / 2010 Movie Journals - Keeps on rolling...
« on: January 02, 2010, 11:07:32 AM »
Time for another year of movie journals! I don't feel like explaining how it's done so I'll just link you to previous years movie journals. It's pretty easy to figure it out:

2005 Movie Journals

2006 Movie Journals

2007 Movie Journals

2008 Movie Journals

2009 Movie Journals

So with that.... let's begin!

General Discussion / Eastwood movies with love scenes
« on: November 02, 2009, 02:47:29 PM »
I need a list of Eastwood directed and non-directed movies that feature ONLY HIM in love scenes. This includes make out scenes and yes, sex scenes. Not scenes where he just kisses a girl and that's it. Thanks!  O0

Harve Presnell, who played Rotten Luck Willie in Paint Your Wagon and Dave Severance in Flags of our Fathers passed away a few days ago:

Actor Harve Presnell dies of cancer at 75

By MICHAEL KUCHWARA, AP Drama Writer Michael Kuchwara, Ap Drama Writer   – Wed Jul 1, 5:17 pm ET

NEW YORK – Harve Presnell, whose booming baritone graced such Broadway musicals as "The Unsinkable Molly Brown" and "Annie," has died at age 75.

The actor died Tuesday of pancreatic cancer at St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica, Calif., said Gregg Klein, Presnell's agent.

Although he was best known for his roles in musical theater, Presnell also is remembered as William H. Macy's father-in-law in the Coen brothers' 1996 film "Fargo."

Among his other movies were "When the Boys Meet the Girls" (1965), "The Glory Guys" (1965) and "Paint Your Wagon" (1969) as well as the TV series "The Pretender" (1997-2000).

Yet it was in "The Unsinkable Molly Brown" (1960) that the rugged, 6-foot-4 Presnell was first noticed by Broadway audiences. In the Meredith Willson musical, he played lucky mining prospector "Leadville" Johnny Brown opposite Tammy Grimes' feisty Molly. Presnell repeated his role in the 1964 film version which starred Debbie Reynolds as the buoyant title character.

Presnell even played the dashing Rhett Butler in a musical version of "Gone with the Wind" (adapted by Horton Foote and with a score by Harold Rome) that was seen in London in 1972.

For a good part of his career, Presnell portrayed the wealthy, follicle-challenged Daddy Warbucks in various incarnations of "Annie." The actor was first offered the role in a tour of "Annie" and thought the title was a show business abbreviation for "Annie, Get Your Gun," the musical in which he had once played sharpshooter Frank Butler.

Then he attended "Annie" and saw a bald, older man instead of a dashing, romantic lead.

It was a big shock, he told The Associated Press in an interview in 1993: "I thought, `What's this? I'm a leading man!'"

But the reality was good for him, Presnell said, adding: "It was a question of saying, `I'm no longer Frank Butler or Rhett Butler or 'Leadville' Johnny Brown. And they were paying good money."

After Presnell did the two-year "Annie" tour (1979-81) he went into "Annie" on Broadway and was still Daddy Warbucks on closing night, Jan. 2, 1983, in New York. In 1990, he played Warbucks in "Annie 2: Miss Hannigan's Revenge," the ill-fated sequel to "Annie" that folded during its Washington tryout and never got to New York.

Another version, titled "Annie Warbucks," surfaced off-Broadway in 1993 for a four-month run with Presnell again portraying Annie's wealthy benefactor.

The actor was born George Harvey Presnell on Sept. 14, 1933, in Modesto, Calif. He went to the University of Southern California on a sports scholarship. After three weeks, the head of the music school heard him sing and offered him the same scholarship for music. He soon quit school and spent three seasons singing in Europe. And it was in Berlin that Willson, the composer of "Molly Brown," first heard him sing.

Off-Topic Discussion / The Celebrity Obituary Thread
« on: June 27, 2009, 06:20:21 PM »
This thread has been created to keep news of celebrity passings all in one place. Rather than create a new thread for each of them, we'll just post all that news here. Obviously, news of celebrities who have died who were co-stars or production members for a Clint Eastwood movie can be posted in the Eastwood News Forum.

Sometimes celebrities pass during the year without anyone posting the news here. There is a page here which keeps track of those who have left us:

** The existing threads for Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett will be left open for discussion/memories **


Have fun!  8)

Took me quite awhile to get all of them*.

* - assistance was used

Off-Topic Discussion / Natasha Richardson has died.
« on: March 18, 2009, 07:04:11 PM »

Natasha Richardson dies after ski fall

NEW YORK (CNN)  -- Natasha Richardson, a film star, Tony-winning stage actress and member of the famed Redgrave acting family, died Wednesday after suffering injuries in a ski accident, according to a family statement. She was 45.

 Richardson, wife of actor Liam Neeson, was injured Monday in a fall on a ski slope at a Quebec resort about 80 miles northwest of Montreal.

Richardson's family released a statement saying, "Liam Neeson, his sons, and the entire family are shocked and devastated by the tragic death of their beloved Natasha. They are profoundly grateful for the support, love and prayers of everyone, and ask for privacy during this very difficult time."

According to a statement from Mont Tremblant Ski Resort, Richardson fell during a lesson on a beginners' trail.

 "She did not show any visible sign of injury, but the ski patrol followed strict procedures and brought her back to the bottom of the slope and insisted she should see a doctor," the statement said.

Richardson, accompanied by her instructor, returned to her hotel, but about an hour after the fall was "not feeling good," the statement said. An ambulance was called, and Richardson was taken to a local hospital before being transferred to Hopital du Sacre-Coeur in Montreal. From there she was transferred to Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City.

Richardson was practically born to perform. Her grandfather, Sir Michael Redgrave, was a famed British actor. Her mother, Vanessa Redgrave, is an Oscar-winning actress, and her father, the late director Tony Richardson, helmed such films as "Look Back in Anger," "The Entertainer" and the Oscar-winning "Tom Jones."

Natasha Richardson's uncle Corin Redgrave, aunt Lynn Redgrave, and sister Joely Richardson are also noted performers.

But being part of a family of actors wasn't always easy for Richardson. Her parents divorced when she was 4 and her mother, involved in controversial political causes, gave away a lot of money, putting the family in financial straits, according to the BBC.

Then there was the family heritage, of which Richardson once said, "Though my name opened doors it didn't get me work, and a lot of pressure comes from having a mother who is considered one of the greatest actresses of her generation," the BBC reported. Video Watch Richardson talk about working with her mom »

Richardson's first film role was a bit part in her father's "The Charge of the Light Brigade" (1968), made when she was 4. After a handful of roles through her teens and early 20s, she broke through as Mary Shelley in Ken Russell's film "Gothic," and followed that up as Patty Hearst in Paul Schrader's 1988 film of the same name.

Richardson's other notable films included "The Handmaid's Tale" (1990); the TV movie "Zelda" (1993); "Nell" (1994), alongside Neeson, whom she married in 1994; the 1998 remake of "The Parent Trap"; and "Wild Child" (2008).

But some of Richardson's greatest successes were on the stage. At 22, she played opposite her mother and Jonathan Pryce in a London production of Anton Chekhov's "The Seagull"; the performance earned her the London Drama Critics' most promising newcomer award.

She won a Tony for her performance as Sally Bowles in the 1998 revival of "Cabaret" and earned raves for her Blanche DuBois in a 2005 production of "A Streetcar Named Desire." She was scheduled to perform in a revival of Stephen Sondheim's "A Little Night Music" this year, following a January benefit performance of the show.

She and Neeson have two children, Michael and Daniel. Richardson was married to Robert Fox from 1990 to 1994.

Off-Topic Discussion / Actor Ron Silver has died
« on: March 17, 2009, 04:15:58 PM »

A great character actor. Sorry to see him go. Loved him in everything I've seen him in especially the never-picked-up TV show "Heat Vision and Jack" and as Muhammad Ali's trainer, Angelo Dundee, in Ali. You can look over his work here:

This was the third film in the Dirty Harry series. What do you think of Eastwood’s performance in this film? Was there anything different in this performance that you noticed from the first two films?

Previous Film Discussions / THE ENFORCER: Acting 2: Tyne Daly's Performance
« on: February 15, 2009, 11:30:50 PM »
“I wanted to cast her very much.” “ To me she looked like a cop, not like a starlet popping in to give a performance.”
Clint Eastwood, from Neil Sinyard’s book, Clint Eastwood, p. 40.

Tyne Daly told reporter Todd Coleman she turned the role down three times: “I thought the woman was just there to be made fun of, to be the butt of all the jokes.”
Quoted in Todd Coleman, “Clint’s Women,” unpublished article, January 1996.
From Richard Schickel’s book, Clint Eastwood: A Biography, p. 343.

What do you think of Tyne Daly’s performance in the film? Was she a good choice for the role?

Previous Film Discussions / THE ENFORCER: Acting 3: The Co-Stars
« on: February 15, 2009, 11:30:28 PM »
What do you think of the casting and performances of DeVeren Bookwalter as Bobby Maxwell, Bradford Dillman as Captain McKay and Albert Popwell as Big Ed Mustapha? Discuss any other performances that you particularly liked or disliked that have not yet been mentioned.

Since there was already a film known as The Enforcer made in 1951 starring Humphrey Bogart, do you think it was wise for this film to have the same title?
Would you have preferred it to be called Dirty Harry III or something else?

Previous Film Discussions / THE ENFORCER: The Story 2: The Humor
« on: February 15, 2009, 11:29:40 PM »
”The original Dirty Harry and Magnum Force were very serious, very dramatic. The other thing we were trying to do in this movie, we injected a lot of humor into this one, and I mean, actually the critics picked up on it.”
James Fargo, from the audio commentary on The Enforcer Ultimate Collector’s Edition DVD.

What is your opinion of the change of direction this film took from the first two Dirty Harry films? Would you have preferred a more serious drama?

Previous Film Discussions / THE ENFORCER: The Story 3: Harry & Kate
« on: February 15, 2009, 11:28:40 PM »
This was the first time Harry Callahan had been partnered with a female. What do you think of their working relationship? Were they a good team or would you have preferred Harry to be partnered with a male again? Would you like to have seen Harry and Kate get romantically involved?

MUSTAPHA: Callahan, you're on the wrong side.

HARRY: How do you figure that?

MUSTAPHA: You go out there and put your ass on the line for a bunch of dudes who wouldn’t let you in the front door any more than they would me.

HARRY: I don’t do it for them.

MUSTAPHA: Who then?

HARRY: You wouldn’t believe me if I told you.

Who do you think Harry was referring to?

Previous Film Discussions / THE ENFORCER: The Story 5: Kate’s Death
« on: February 15, 2009, 11:27:20 PM »
”One of the problems we had from the beginning of this thing, when we had the script and they didn’t want Harry to have a female partner was what do you do with the partner at the end. A male partner, you can kill them off at the end, the audience will accept that. Will they accept this, and I said Yeah. She’s proven herself throughout the whole movie and given up her life for Harry.”
James Fargo, from the audio commentary on The Enforcer Ultimate Collectors Edition DVD.

Would you have preferred Kate to survive at the end of the film rather than be killed?

Previous Film Discussions / THE ENFORCER: The Story 6: Themes
« on: February 15, 2009, 11:26:57 PM »
According to Ira Konigsberg's The Complete Film Dictionary, a theme is "a general subject, topic, message, concept, social attitude, or mood that runs throughout a work of art."

What are the important themes in The Enforcer? Discuss how any one is expressed and developed in the movie.

"On the first day, I was nervous," he admitted, "but I got over it right away. Obviously, I know Clint pretty well. He is a decisive person who won't vacillate once he decides on a shot. He gets nervous and upset if you can't make up your mind."
"I made darn sure I knew what I wanted. I had the final decision on the set. But when you get to the cutting room, I could only overrule Clint for so long, after all, he is the executive producer."
James Fargo, from the website
Original text appeared in Oakland Tribune, Jan. 9, 1977.

This was James Fargo’s first film as a director. He had previously worked on five Eastwood films as assistant director. (Joe Kidd, High Plains Drifter, Breezy, The Eiger Sanction and The Outlaw Josey Wales)
What do you think of Fargo’s direction of The Enforcer? List the strengths and any weaknesses, including anything you find particularly striking about the film's visual style: camera placement, lighting, point of view, length of shots, etc.

Cinematographer Charles.W. Short also worked as an assistant on previous Eastwood films before taking the helm behind the camera for this film. What do you think of the cinematography in The Enforcer?

Off-Topic Discussion / 81st Annual Academy Award Nominations
« on: January 22, 2009, 01:39:51 PM »

Best Picture

The Reader
Slumdog Millionaire
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Best Actor

Richard Jenkins, The Visitor
Frank Langella, Frost/Nixon
Sean Penn, Milk
Brad Pitt, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Mickey Rourke, The Wrestler

Best Actress

Anne Hathaway, Rachel Getting Married
Angelina Jolie, The Changeling
Melissa Leo, Frozen River
Meryl Streep, Doubt
Kate Winslet, The Reader

Best Director

David Fincher, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Ron Howard, Frost/Nixon
Gus Van Sant, Milk
Stephen Daldry, The Reader
Danny Boyle, Slumdog Millionaire

Best Supporting Actor

Josh Brolin, Milk
Robert Downey, Jr., Tropic Thunder
Philip Seymour Hoffman, Doubt
Michael Shannon, Revolutionary Road
Heath Ledger, The Dark Knight

Best Supporting Actress

Amy Adams, Doubt
Penelope Cruz, Vicky Christina Barcelona
Viola Davis, Doubt
Taraji P. Henson, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Marisa Tomei, The Wrestler

Best Screenplay

Courtney Hunt, Frozen River
Mike Leigh, Happy-Go-Lucky
Martin McDonagh, In Bruges
Dustin Lance Black, Milk
Andrew Stanton, Pete Docter, Jim Reardon, Wall-E

Best Screenplay (Adapted)

Eric Roth, Robin Swicord, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
John Patrick Shanley, Doubt
Peter Morgan, Frost/Nixon
David Hare, The Reader
Simon Beaufoy, Slumdog Millionaire

Best Art Direction

James J. Murakami, Gary Fettis, Changeling
Donald Graham Burt, Victor J. Zolfo, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Nathan Crowley, Peter Lando, The Dark Knight
Michael Carlin, Rebecca Alleway, The Duchess
Kristi Zea, Debra Schutt, Revolutionary Road

Best Cinematography

Tom Stern, Changeling
Claudio Miranda, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Wally Pfister, The Dark Knight
Chris Menges, Roger Deakins, The Reader
Anthony Dod Mantle, Slumdog Millionarie

Best Costume Design

Catherine Martin, Australia
Jacqueline West, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Michael O'Connor, The Duchess
Danny Glicker, Milk
Albert Wolsky, Revolutionary Road

Best Documentary

The Betrayal (Nerakhoon)
Encounters at the End of the World
The Garden
Man on Wire
Trouble the Water

Best Documentary - Short Feature

The Conscience of Nhem En
The Final Inch
Smile Pinki
The Witness - From the Balcony of Room 306

Best Editing

Kirk Baxter, Angus Wall, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Lee Smith, The Dark Knight
Mike Hill, Dan Hanley, Frost/Nixon
Elliot Graham, Milk
Chris Dickens, Slumdog Millionaire

Best Foreign Film

The Baader Meinhof Complex
The Class
Waltz with Bashir

Best Makeup

Greg Cannom, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
John Caglione, Jr., Conor O'Sullivan, The Dark Knight
Mike Elizalde, Thom Floutz, Hellboy II: The Golden Army

Best Original Score

Alexandre Desplat, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
James Newton Howard, Defiance
Danny Elfman, Milk
A.R. Rahman, Slumdog Millionaire
Thomas Newman, WALL-E

Best Original Song

"Down to Earth", WALL-E
"Jai Ho", Slumdog Millionaire
"O Saya", Slumdog Millionaire

Best Animated Feature

Kung Fu Panda

Best Animated Short Film

La Maison de Petits Cubes
Lavatory - Lovestory
This Way Up

Best Live Action Short Film

Auf der Strecke (On the Line)
Manon on the Asphalt
New Boy
The Pig
Spielzeugland (Toyland)

Best Sound Editing

Richard King, The Dark Knight
Frank Eulner, Christopher Boyes, Iron Man
Tom Sayers, Slumdog Millionaire
Ben Burtt, Matthew Wood, WALL-E
Wylie Stateman, Wanted

Best Sound Mixing

David Parker, Michael Semanick, Ren Klyce, Mark Weingarten, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Lora Hirschberg, Gary Rizzo, Ed Novick, The Dark Knight
Ian Tapp, Richard Pryke, Resul Pookutty, Slumdog Millionaire
Tom Myers, Michael Semanick, Ben Burtt, WALL-E
Chris Jenkins, Frank A. Montaño, Petr Forejt, Wanted

Best Visual Effects

Eric Barba, Steve Preeg, Burt Dalton, Craig Barron, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Nick Davis, Chris Corbould, Tim Webber, Paul Franklin, The Dark Knight
John Nelson, Ben Snow, Dan Sudick, Shane Mahan, Iron Man


The Dark Knight
brought home 8 nominations. It's cool seeing Wally Pfister up for Best Cinematography. He was previously nominated for The Prestige and Batman Begins; both Nolan films... hmmmm.... and of course Heath Ledger securing a Best Supporting Actor nomination. What confuses me is Robert Downey Jr getting a nod. Ok, I liked him in Tropic Thunder (notsomuch the movie itself) but really? A nomination? As far as I'm concerned this is a Best Actor nod for Iron Man.

Not seeing Bruce Springsteen get a nomination for "The Wrestler" for Best Song is weird. I figured that was a for sure lock. One nomination I'm really happy to see is Richard Jenkins for The Visitor. Such a fantastic performance. If it came down to seeing him or Clint sneaking in for the fifth nomination, I'd easily give it to Jenkins. He was great in Burn After Reading too and had some funny moments in Step Brothers.

I haven't seen The Wrestler but not seeing Darren Aronofsky nominated for Best Director hurts. This man needs some love!

Off-Topic Discussion / Ricardo Montalban, RIP
« on: January 14, 2009, 04:01:58 PM »
Another long time Hollywood player has left us...

'Fantasy Island' actor Ricardo Montalban dead at 88

LOS ANGELES, California (CNN) -- Actor Ricardo Montalban, star of the hit TV series "Fantasy Island," died Wednesday in Los Angeles, a family spokesman said.

Montalban, 88, was in deteriorating health over the past several days but "died peacefully" at 6:30 a.m. at his home, son-in-law Gilbert Smith said.

He understood "it was his time," Smith said. The cause of death was not given.

Montalban rose to prominence as one of the most visible Hispanic actors in post-war Hollywood in the 1950s and 1960s. But his star grew as he took on television roles as the mysterious host Mr. Roarke on the hit drama "Fantasy Island" and as Captain Kirk's archnemesis Khan Noonien Singh in "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan."

Born in Mexico City, Mexico, on November 25, 1920, Montalban knew at an early age that he wanted to be an actor. He moved to Hollywood as a teenager, and his first big break came when he was cast in a small part in a 1941 play, Tallulah Bankhead's "Her Cardboard Lover."

After starring in 13 Spanish-language films in Mexico, Montalban made his American feature film debut in 1947 in "Fiesta."

Montalban became a member of the MGM stable and was often cast in the role of the steamy Latin lover opposite such female stars as Lana Turner and Esther Williams.

While working on "Across the Wide Missouri" with MGM's biggest star, Clark Gable, Montalban suffered an injury to his spinal cord that, despite surgery, would plague him for decades to come, according to Turner Classic Movies.

It was during this early stage in his career that Montalban dedicated himself to changing Hollywood's stereotypes of Latinos.

"When I first came to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer under contract in 1945, that's when the image was at its worst," Montalban said. "They didn't realize that by trying to be colorful, they were very insulting."

Montalban played a wide range of film roles over the years, often relishing the chance to play in comedies.

As he approached midlife in the 1960s, Montalban made numerous guest appearances on television shows including "The Untouchables" and "The Lieutenant," eventually landing a recurring role as Damon West on the popular medical drama "Dr. Kildare."

During this period, Montalban secured his place in science-fiction history playing the evil but charismatic Khan in the first season of "Star Trek."

Montalban's dignified demeanor and rich accent added flair to the small screen on a number of television shows. It also established him as a popular pitchman for Maxwell House Coffee and Chrysler.

It was the role of the wise and benevolent Mr. Roarke on the 1970's hit TV series "Fantasy Island" that perhaps earned Montalban his greatest number of fans, something he called "very rewarding."

But he said he tired of hearing fans shouting "Zee plane, zee plane" when they saw him. The line was featured in the show's opening credits by another character, Tattoo.

"They think they are the only ones that thought of saying that," he told CNN during the 1990s. "People mean well, but the joke gets a little tired at times."

Montalban never tired of fighting for the rights of Latinos in Hollywood. For almost 20 years, he served as president of Nosotros, an organization he founded for the advancement of Hispanics in the entertainment industry.

"The ideals of Nosotros continue. As our community of Latinos in show business increases, so will our participation in all of the many aspects of our industry," he said in 1987.

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