Monday, 22 June 2009

Barbara Stanwyck

Today Barbara Stanwyck is remembered primarily as the matriarch of the family known as the Barkleys on the TV western "The Big Valley" (1965), wherein she played Victoria, and from the hit drama "The Colbys" (1985).
But she was known to millions of other fans for her movie career, which spanned the period from 1927 until 1964, after which she appeared on television until 1986.
It was a career that lasted for 59 years.
She was born Ruby Stevens on July 16, 1907, in Brooklyn, New York.
She went to work at the local telephone company for $14 a week, but she had the urge (a dream--that was all it was) somehow to enter show business.
When not working, she pounded the pavement in search of dancing jobs.The persistence paid off. Barbara was hired as a chorus girl for the princely sum of $40 a week, much better than the wages she was getting from the phone company.
She was 17, and she was going to make the most of the opportunity that had been given her.
In 1928 Barbara moved to Hollywood, where she was to start one of the most lucrative careers filmdom had ever seen.
She was an extremely versatile actress who could adapt to any role. Barbara was equally at home in all genres, from melodramas, such as Forbidden (1932) and Stella Dallas (1937), to thrillers, such as Double Indemnity (1944),one of her best films, also starring Fred MacMurray (as you have never seen him before).
She also excelled in comedies such as Remember the Night (1940) and The Lady Eve (1941). Another genre she excelled in was westerns, Union Pacific (1939) being one of her first and TV's "The Big Valley" (1965) (her most memorable role) being her last.
In 1983, she played in the ABC hit mini-series "The Thorn Birds" (1983), which did much to keep her in the eye of the public.
She turned in an outstanding performance as Mary Carson.Barbara was considered a gem to work with for her serious but easygoing attitude on the set.
She worked hard at being an actress,and she never allowed her star quality to go to her head. She was nominated for four Academy Awards, though she never won.
She turned in magnificent performances for all the roles she was nominated for, but the "powers that be" always awarded the Oscar to someone else.
However, in 1982 she was awarded an honorary Academy Award for "superlative creativity and unique contribution to the art of screen acting."Sadly, Barbara died on January 20, 1990, leaving 93 movies and a host of TV appearances as her legacy to us.

Saturday, 13 June 2009

The Best Follower Award

I would like to thank for this beautiful award & would like to pass it on to the people who have commented & been kind enough to follow my blog,please copy & paste the award & link back to my blog.Thanks blue.

Monday, 8 June 2009

Henry Fonda

Henry Fonda (1905-1982), American actor, best known for his convincing portrayals of characters of integrity.
Born in Grand Island, Nebraska, and raised in Omaha, Fonda attended the University of Minnesota for two years.
In 1925 he began to work in an Omaha community theater company, with which he remained for three years, serving for a time as its assistant business manager.
In 1928, while performing in summer stock theater in New England, Fonda met a group of young performers who had assembled their own theater company, the University Players.
He joined the group, which included such future luminaries as Josh Logan, Mildred Natwick, Margaret Sullavan (to whom Fonda was later briefly married), and James Stewart, and remained in it for seven years.

In 1934 Fonda made his Broadway debut in New Faces, soon followed by the title role in The Farmer Takes a Wife.
When the latter play was adapted as a motion picture in 1935, Fonda went to Hollywood, California, to repeat his performance and was placed under contract by producer Walter Wanger.
A string of films followed that rapidly made Fonda an established star: The Trail of the Lonesome Pine (1936), You Only Live Once (1937; with Sylvia Sidney), The Mad Miss Manton (1938; with Barbara Stanwyck), and Jezebel (1938; with Bette Davis).

In 1939 Fonda signed a contract with the 20th Century-Fox film studio, where in his first two years he flourished under the influence of director John Ford,
for whom he made three of his most acclaimed motion pictures: Drums Along the Mohawk (1939), Young Mr. Lincoln (1939; title role),
and The Grapes of Wrath (1940), in which, as the dustbowl refugee Tom Joad, he gave what many critics consider to be his greatest performance.
His other notable films of the early 1940s include the comedies The Lady Eve (1941) and The Male Animal (1942) and the classic Western The Ox-Bow Incident (1943). In late 1942 Fonda enlisted in the United States Navy.
He served in World War II (1939-1945) as an intelligence officer and received a Bronze Star Medal and a presidential citation.
When he returned from the war, he resumed his motion-picture partnership with John Ford, making three Ford films in three years: My Darling Clementine (1946; as Wyatt Earp), The Fugitive (1947), and Fort Apache (1948).

Fonda returned to the stage in 1948 for his greatest theatrical success, in the comedy Mister Roberts, the title role of which he played for three years and later reprised in the film version in 1955. After the mid-1950s he alternated between the theater and motion pictures.
Fonda also worked in two television series and performed in numerous specials and television movies—notably The Red Pony (1973) and Gideon's Trumpet (1980).
He made three films in 1957— 12 Angry Men,The Wrong Man (under director Alfred Hitchcock), and The Tin Star. Among the best of his later performances are those in Advise and Consent (1962), The Best Man (1964), Fail Safe (1964), Yours, Mine and Ours (1968; with Lucille Ball), Once Upon a Time in the West (1968), and There Was a Crooked Man (1970).
His memorable final film, On Golden Pond (1981; with Katharine Hepburn), was produced by his daughter, Jane Fonda, who also acted in it.
Henry Fonda won an Academy Award for best actor for this performance. Previously, at the 1981 Academy Award ceremonies,
Fonda had been honored with a special award saluting “his brilliant accomplishments and enduring contribution to the art of motion pictures.”
Three years earlier, in 1978, he had received the American Film Institute's Life Achievement Award. He wrote an autobiography, My Life (1981).

Monday, 1 June 2009

Joan Fontaine

Born Joan de Beauvoir de Havilland on October 22, 1917, in Tokyo, Japan, in what was known as the International Settlement.
Her father was a British patent attorney with a lucrative practice in Japan, but due to Joan and older sister Olivia de Havilland's recurring ailments the family moved to California in the hopes of improving their health.
Mrs. de Havilland and the two girls settled in Saratoga while their father went back to his practice in Japan.
Joan's parents did not get along well and divorced soon afterward. Mrs. de Havilland had a desire to be an actress but her dreams were curtailed when she married, but now she hoped to pass on her dream to Olivia and Joan.
While Olivia pursued a stage career, Joan went back to Tokyo, where she attended the American School. In 1934 she came back to California, where her sister was already making a name for herself on the stage.
Joan likewise joined a theater group in San Jose and then Los Angeles to try her luck there. After moving to L.A., Joan adopted the name of Joan Burfield because she didn't want to infringe upon Olivia, who was using the family surname.
She tested at MGM and gained a small role in No More Ladies (1935), but she was scarcely noticed and Joan was idle for a year and a half.
During this time she roomed with Olivia, who was having much more success in films. In 1937, this time calling herself Joan Fontaine, she landed a better role as Trudy Olson in You Can't Beat Love (1937) and then an uncredited part in Quality Street (1937).
Although the next two years saw her in better roles, she still yearned for something better. In 1940 she garnered her first Academy Award nomination for Rebecca (1940).
Although she thought she should have won, (she lost out to Ginger Rogers in Kitty Foyle: The Natural History of a Woman (1940)), she was now an established member of the Hollywood set. She would again be Oscar-nominated for her role as Lina McLaidlaw Aysgarth in Suspicion (1941), and this time she won.
Joan was making one film a year but choosing her roles well.
In 1942 she starred in the well-received This Above All (1942). The following year she appeared in The Constant Nymph (1943).
Once again she was nominated for the Oscar, she lost out to Jennifer Jones in The Song of Bernadette (1943).
By now it was safe to say she was more famous than her older sister and more fine films followed.
In 1948, she accepted second billing to Bing Crosby in The Emperor Waltz (1948).
Joan took the year of 1949 off before coming back in 1950 with September Affair (1950) and Born to Be Bad (1950).
In 1951 she starred in Paramount's Darling, How Could You! (1951), which turned out badly for both her and the studio and more weak productions followed.
Absent from the big screen for a while, she took parts in television and dinner theaters.
She also starred in many well-produced Broadway plays such as Forty Carats and The Lion in Winter. Her last appearance on the big screen was The Witches (1966) and her final appearance before the cameras was Good King Wenceslas (1994) (TV).
Joan, today, still appears on stage and the lecture circuit while traveling and writing in her spare time. She is, without a doubt, a lasting movie icon.