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RIP – John Forsythe. Charlie has passed away.

Posted by LiveFor on April 3, 2010

First Farrah and now Charlie. I remember him best as Bill Murray’s boss in Scrooged. Then again he was also in a couple of Hitchcock movies – The Trouble With Harry and Topaz. This from The Guardian.

John Forsythe, the American actor who starred in the 1980s US soap Dynasty and was the voice of Charlie in the TV series Charlie’s Angels, has died at 92. He died of pneumonia at his home in Santa Ynez, California, after a long battle with cancer.

In a statement last night, his family said he died on Thursday, “as he lived his life … with dignity and grace”. His career in film, theatre and television spanned more than five decades, but he is likely to be best remembered for playing Blake Carrington, the Denver oil tycoon in Dynasty, which ran from 1981-89. Joan Collins and Linda Evans played the women in his life and helped to make the actor a sex symbol in his 60s.

Forsythe won three Emmy nominations for his portrayal of the conniving and debonair Carrington, although he never won the award.

He was also well known as the voice of millionaire private eye Charlie in Charlie’s Angels. Forsythe was heard in each episode but never seen as the boss who instructed three glamorous female detectives on their mission over a speakerphone.

He made his acting debut in the 1940s and went on to appear in Broadway shows, a US sitcom Bachelor Father and a 1955 Alfred Hitchcock film, The Trouble With Harry.

In his personal life, Forsythe was interested in ecology and served as spokesperson and sponsor of the World Wildlife Fund. He is survived by his third wife, Nicole, son, two daughters, grandchildren and great-grandchildren

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RIP: Peter Graves – Oveur

Posted by LiveFor on March 15, 2010

The 83-year-old star – best known for his roles as bumbling airline pilot Clarence Oveur in spoof movie ‘Airplane!’ and special agent Jim Phelps in the ‘Mission: Impossible’ TV series – suffered a suspected heart attack outside his home.

The actor was just days away from his 84th birthday and had been out having brunch with his family to celebrate before collapsing as they returned to his house. One of his children attempted to resuscitate him but he was unresponsive.

Peter – whose real name was Peter Aurness – starred in more than 70 TV shows and movies, including 1953 classic film ‘Stalag 17’, in which he played an undercover Nazi spy, and hit western television series ‘Fury’, where he played a horse rancher who befriended an orphan and which ran for five years until 1960.

Despite his advancing years, Peter – who has also voiced a number of documentary shows – recently insisted he had no plans to retire.

He said: “There has got to be some good parts around for guys my age.”

He is survived by his wife Joan, their three daughters – Kelly, Claudia and Amanda – and six grandchildren.

Source: STV

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RIP: Corey Haim – Lost Boy dead at 38

Posted by LiveFor on March 10, 2010

Eighties teen idol Corey Haim died Wednesday morning of an apparent drug overdose, according to Los Angeles police.

The Canadian-born actor, who starred in “The Lost Boys” but was probably best known for his roles with fellow actor Corey Feldman, was 38.

He was found unresponsive at his Oakwood apartment around 3:30 a.m.,according to KTLA-TV. His mother was at the apartment at the time of his death.

The actor, who has struggled with drug addiction, was pronounced dead at Providence St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Burbank.

Police were called to the hospital just before 4 a.m. to investigate his death.

Police sources told CBS Haim’s death appeared accidental. Haim has been in and out of rehab and starred in a reality show with Feldman in 2007 called “The Two Coreys.”

He talked about his struggle with drugs – specificially prescription drugs.

“I started on the downers which were a hell of a lot better than the uppers because I was a nervous wreck. But one led to two, two led to four, four led to eight, until at the end it was about 85 a day – the doctors could not believe I was taking that much,” he told a reporter in 2007.

“And that was just the Valium – I’m not talking about the other pills I went through.”

Haim’s official website was last updated on Jan. 18 and promotes his upcoming film, a thriller titled “American Sunset.”

Sad news. What are your thoughts on Haim?

Source: NY Daily News

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Oscars 2010 – 82nd Academy Awards – In Memoriam and John Hughes tribute

Posted by LiveFor on March 8, 2010

The Oscar tribute to those who passed away over the past year. Looks like Bea Arthur & Farrah Fawcett were left off the list.

The also had a special tribute for filmmaker John Hughes.

Check out the 2010 Oscar Winners.

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RIP Lionel Jefferies – Farewell Grandfather Potts

Posted by LiveFor on February 22, 2010

You will no doubt remember the fine Lionel Jeffries as I do from First Men in the Moon or Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. In the latter he played Dick Van Dyke’s father despite being six months younger than him. He also directed and starred in The Railway Children and The Water Babies amongst others. Sadly he passed away at the age of 83 on 19th February.

The Telegraph had more on the story:

Lionel Charles Jeffries was born in London on June 10 1926; both his parents were social workers with the Salvation Army.

He was educated at Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School, Wimborne, Dorset. In 1945 he was commissioned into the Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry, serving first in Burma (where he worked for the Rangoon radio station) and later as a captain in the Royal West African Frontier Force.

After leaving the Army, Jeffries went to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, where he was, he said, “the only bald student”. He had lost all his hair by the age of 19, later remarking: “Of course I was upset. Tried a toupee once, but it looked like a dead moth on a boiled egg.”

Despite this disadvantage, he won Rada’s Kendal Award in 1947, then spent two years in rep at Lichfield.

Jeffries quickly won his first West End engagement, as Major ATM Broke-Smith in Dorothy and Campbell Christie’s Carrington VC (1953), with Alec Clunes in the title role. The following season saw him on the London stage as The Father in Peter Hall’s production of Lorca’s Blood Wedding and The Doctor in Jean Giraudoux’s The Enchanted, both at the Arts Theatre.

Jeffries was soon attracted to the cinema, starting his film career in Alfred Hitchcock’s Stage Fright (1949). But he made his first real impression as one of the prisoners-of-war in Guy Hamilton’s The Colditz Story (1954). Jeffries later recalled: “I went to the cast meeting with holes in my shoes, but I was given the third lead to Eric Portman and John Mills.”

Offers of work poured in, and in one year alone he acted in nine different films. In 1955 he was a great success in Windfall, and there followed a plethora of successful cameo roles in which he proved capable of summoning up both dry comedy and menace. Among them were an inquisitive reporter in the Quatermass Xperiment (1955); Gelignite Joe, a diamond robber whose schoolgirl niece contrived for him to impersonate a new headmistress in Blue Murder at St Trinian’s (1957); and a sailor charged with trying to prevent the ship’s captain from knowing about all the livestock being carried on board in Up the Creek (1958).

Other parts included Major Proudfoot in Law and Disorder (1958); an army adjutant trying to impose regulations on Anthony Newley’s conscripted pop singer in Idol on Parade (1959); and a prison officer attempting to discipline Peter Sellers and Bernard Cribbins in Two-Way Stretch (1960).

Jeffries continued in this vein for another two decades, samples being The Hellions (1961); The Wrong Arm of the Law (1963); First Men in the Moon (1964); You Must be Joking! (1965); Rocket to the Moon (1967); Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968), in which he played Grandpa Potts; and The Prisoner of Zenda (1978). In all he appeared in 70 films between 1949 and 1988.

His television credits included the title role in Father Charlie, about an eccentric priest assigned as spiritual adviser to a convent; the sitcom Tom, Dick and Harriet; and the series All for Love, Shillingbury Tales, and (opposite Peggy Ashcroft) Cream in my Coffee.

Lionel Jeffries married, in 1951, Eileen Mary Walsh, who survives him with their son and two daughters.

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RIP Brittany Murphy – Dead at 32

Posted by LiveFor on December 20, 2009

Brittany Murphy, the actress who got her start in the sleeper hit “Clueless” and rose to stardom in “8 Mile,” died Sunday in Los Angeles. She was 32.

Andy M sent me the news while I was sat in the cinema watching Avatar.

AP report that Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Spokeswoman Sally Stewart said Murphy died at 10:04 a.m. She would not provide a cause of death or any other information.

The Los Angeles Fire Department responded to a call at 8 a.m. Sunday at the home Murphy shared with her husband, British screenwriter Simon Monjack, in West Hollywood hills. Murphy was transported to the hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

Los Angeles police have opened an investigation into Murphy’s death, Officer Norma Eisenman said. Detectives and coroner’s officials were at Murphy and Monjack’s home Sunday afternoon but did not talk to reporters. Paparazzi were camped outside.

Messages left for Murphy’s manager, agent and publicist by The Associated Press weren’t immediately returned.

Neighbor Clare Staples said she saw firefighters working to resuscitate the actress Sunday morning. She said Murphy was on a stretcher and “looked as though she was dead at the scene.”

Murphy’s husband, wearing pajama bottoms and no shoes, appeared “dazed” as firefighters tried to save her, Staples said.

“It’s just tragic,” she said.

Born Nov. 10, 1977, in Atlanta, Murphy grew up in New Jersey and later moved with her mother to Los Angeles to pursue acting.

Her career started in the early 1990s with small roles in television series, commercials and movies. She is best known for parts in “Girl, Interrupted,” “Clueless” and “8 Mile.”

Her on-screen roles declined in recent years, but Murphy’s voice gave life to numerous animated characters, including Luanne Platter on more than 200 episodes of Fox’s “King of the Hill” and Gloria the penguin in the 2006 feature “Happy Feet.”

She is due to appear in Sylvester Stallone’s upcoming film, “The Expendables,” set for release next year.

Her role in “8 Mile” led to more recognition, Murphy said told AP in 2003. “That changed a lot,” she said. “That was the difference between people knowing my first and last name as opposed to not.”

Murphy credited her mother, Sharon, with being a key to her success.

“When I asked my mom to move to California, she sold everything and moved out here for me,” Murphy said. “I was really grateful to have grown up in an environment that was conducive to creating and didn’t stifle any of that. She always believed in me.”

Sad news indeed when anyway that young passes away.

I remember her in Sin City and a film called Drive with Mark Dacascos. She was never one of those actresses on my radar and I find it sad that she will probably not get the huge outpouring of grief that Heath Ledger received. The way of the world I suppose.

What are your memories of Murphy?

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RIP Dan O’Bannon 1946 – 2009 Screenwriter of Alien, Dark Star and so much more has passed away

Posted by LiveFor on December 18, 2009

Dan O’Bannon is a true sci-fi / horror legend. He wrote so many excellent screenplays you have no doubt seen some of the films based on his work.

He wrote the screenplay Star Beast (written with Richard Shusset) that was turned into Alien by Ridley Scott. He wrote the screenplay for John Carpenter’s directorial debut, Dark Star (he also played Sgt Pinback in the film).

Want more? How do the screenplays for Blue Thunder, Lifeforce (naked space vampires), Total Recall, Dead and Buried, Heavy Metal and Screamers grab you? He also directed The Return of the Living Dead and, get this, he did special effects work on Star Wars – the good ones.

Basically the man is a legend, yet sadly, he has been taken from us at the tender age of 63. Who knows what other flights of fancy he had in store for us, but no more. AICN are reporting that he had been in hospital for the past week but had lost the good fight.

He liked sci-fi, horror, H P Lovecraft, film and he could write up a storm. He will be missed.

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RIP Richard Todd

Posted by LiveFor on December 4, 2009

Richard Todd, best known for his role in classic war film The Dam Busters, has died at the age of 90, after a battle with cancer.

Todd, a war hero in his own right, was also known for playing dashing heroes like Robin Hood and Rob Roy.

Born in Dublin in 1919, Todd was one of the first British soldiers to parachute into France on D-Day.

A spokesman for his family said he died peacefully in his sleep on Thursday at his home near Grantham in Lincolnshire.

Earlier this year, he celebrated his 90th birthday with a quiet gathering near his home.

A spokesman said he “had been suffering from cancer, an illness that he bore with his habitual courage and dignity. His family were with him throughout.”

Director Michael Winner, who worked with Todd in 1978 thriller The Big Sleep described him as “a splendid person and a very, very good actor.”

“Richard Todd was the most wonderful type of British stiff upper lip acting,” he said. “He was a good friend and wonderful to work with, utterly professional, very quiet, just got on with it.”

Made in 1955, The Dam Busters told of the development of the bouncing bomb used during World War II to destroy the Ruhr dams in Germany.

Todd played Wing Commander Guy Gibson, leader of the 1943 mission codenamed Operation Chastise.

The actor, who was made an OBE in 1993, was last seen on screen in a 2007 episode of ITV drama Heartbeat.

In later life, he experienced personal tragedy when two of his sons committed suicide.

Todd’s other movies include the Alfred Hitchcock thriller Stage Fright and the 1962 war film The Longest Day.

He also appeared in four episodes of Doctor Who in the 1980s, opposite Peter Davison’s Doctor.

In 1950, he was nominated for the best actor Oscar for his work opposite future US president Ronald Reagan in The Hasty Heart.

It was around this time that he first worked for the Disney studio, an association that led him to be named a “Disney Legend” in 2002.

Todd would later make light of his roles in The Story of Robin Hood and His Merrie Men, The Sword and the Rose and Rob Roy, the Highland Rogue – selected as the Royal Film in 1953.

“My image was all daring deeds, until my swash began to buckle a bit,” he remembered.

The actor, whose full name was Richard Andrew Palethorpe-Todd, began acting on stage in 1937.

With the outbreak of World War II, however, he volunteered for duty, serving with distinction in the Army, the Infantry and the Parachute Regiment.

Source: BBC

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Edward Woodward has passed away. No more Ewar Woowar

Posted by LiveFor on November 16, 2009

edward-woodwardVeteran actor Edward Woodward has died aged 79, his agent has confirmed.

The Croydon-born star had been suffering from various illnesses, including pneumonia, and died in hospital, said Janet Glass.

Woodward is most famous for his roles in the cult 1973 horror film The Wicker Man, alongside Sir Christopher Lee, and TV series The Equalizer and Callan.

Sir Christopher described Woodward as “a very good friend and a splendid actor”.

Ms Glass said he had been ill for several months and passed away surrounded by members of his family.

The actor, who lived in Hawker’s Cove near Padstow, died at the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro.

“I knew him a very long time and he was a superb human being,” she said.

“That integrity shone through in the roles he played. I can’t ever remember, in all the productions he undertook, anyone having a bad word to say about him and he never had anything bad to say about anyone else either.”

Ms Glass added: “Universally loved and admired through his unforgettable roles in classic productions, he was equally fine and courageous in real life, never losing his brave spirit and wonderful humour throughout his illness.

“His passing will leave a huge gap in many lives,” she said.

He was last seen on screen in BBC One soap EastEnders as Tommy Clifford earlier this year.

Barbara Windsor said she was “deeply saddened” at the news.

“I have such fond memories of our time working together,” she added.

Diederick Santer, executive producer of EastEnders, said: “All of us at EastEnders are very sad to learn that Edward has passed away.

“We were thrilled when he joined us for a stint of six episodes earlier this year. He was a delight to work with, and delivered a characteristically touching and layered performance. Our thoughts are with his family.”

Robin Hardy, who directed The Wicker Man, said of Woodward: “He was one of the greatest actors of his generation, without any question, with a broad career on American television as well as British film.

“He was the absolute star of The Wicker Man. He was an extremely nice human being.”

Film critic Barry Norman described Woodward was a “very fine” actor.

“He made about three dozen movies but he was rarely given the chance to star in a movie, ” he told BBC News.

“The two films that do stand out are obviously The Wicker Man and Breaker Morant, about three British soldiers in the Boer War. In both he gave excellent performances.”

Actor Simon Pegg, who was a big fan of Woodward and cast him in his 2007 film Hot Fuzz, said on Twitter: “So sorry to hear we have lost the great Edward Woodward. Feel lucky to have worked with him.”

He later released a statement, saying that Hot Fuzz rehearsals “were often gleefully tossed aside just to hear him (Woodward) recount stories from his life and career.

“Edgar Wright and myself sought him out because we were fans of his work, by the time the cameras stopped rolling, we were devoted fans of the man. My love and sympathy goes out to Michelle and his family.”

Woodward is survived by his second wife, the actress Michele Dotrice, and four children, three of whom he had during his first marriage.

Source: BBC

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Swamp Thing has died – RIP Dick Durock

Posted by LiveFor on September 25, 2009

swampthingBorn in South Bend in the late 1930s, Richard “Dick” Durock survived an early family tragedy to become a minor Hollywood player and fanboy idol for his role as Swamp Thing in the two feature films and television series of the same name.

Despite his success, he remained a humble Midwesterner at heart.

“He didn’t get a big head. He was down-to-earth, very natural,” Frank Varrichione, Durock’s brother-in-law, said.

Durock, a journeyman actor and stuntman who appeared in more than 700 films and television shows, died last week at his home in Oak Park, Calif., after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 72.

Durock was born in South Bend on Jan. 18, 1937, the fourth of five children of David and Sadie Durock. The family lived on the city’s south side, in the 3100 block of South Michigan Street, Richard Durock’s older sister, Judy Schenk, said. David Durock worked for Studebaker and Sadie Durock was a homemaker.

When Dick Durock was 9, Schenk said, Sadie Durock suffered a cerebral hemorrhage and died, leaving David Durock to care for the couple’s children on his own.

“Our childhood was not the best,” Schenk said.

Dick Durock remained in South Bend until the age of 13 or 14, his sister said, when he moved with his father and younger sister to New Jersey. There, he finished high school, she said, and then enrolled in the Marines. Later, he moved to Massachusetts, where he stayed for a time with his older sister, Mitzi Varrichione, and her husband, Frank Varrichione, a Notre Dame graduate and member of the Pittsburgh Steelers football team.

In the early 1960s, Frank Varrichione was traded to the Los Angeles Rams, Schenk said, and he and Mitzi Varrichione moved west. Dick Durock soon followed, she said, and before long began getting work as a Hollywood stuntman.

In a 2008 interview to promote the release of the “Swamp Thing” television series on DVD, Dick Durock talked about how he found work in the stunt business through old-fashioned networking.

“I came out to California,” he said, “met a guy that knew a guy that knew another guy that knew a stuntman, he introduced me to the stuntman, and he told me about a gym in Santa Monica where … a lot of the professional stuntmen worked out.”

Schenk said her brother never expressed an interest in acting or stunt work, but she was never surprised by his chosen profession. He was always handsome, she said, and at 6 feet 5 inches tall and about 225 pounds, he had the physique to withstand the physical abuses inflicted upon stunt professionals.

He also had an amazing drive, his brother-in-law said.

“He was single-minded,” Frank Varrichione said, “and when he went after and pursued something, he expected success.”

Dick Durock’s early work included stunts for “The Beverly Hillbillies” and a bit part as “Guard #1” in an episode of “Star Trek.” He would go on to do stunt work in hundreds of films and television shows, including “The Poseidon Adventure” and “A-Team,” and act in hundreds more, including “The Rockford Files,” “The Incredible Hulk,” “Married with Children” and “Stand by Me.”

But Dick Durock’s most memorable work was as the DC Comics character Swamp Thing, a plant-like humanoid charged with protecting the natural world from the abuses of man.

He played the character in two feature films, “Swamp Thing” (1982) and “The Return of Swamp Thing” (1989), and in a subsequent television series, also called “Swamp Thing,” that ran for 71 episodes in the early 1990s.

Dick Durock was practically unrecognizable in the physically taxing role, which required him to don a heavy body suit and endure hours of makeup.

“At the end of the day you’re wearing 80 pounds of wet latex,” Dick Durock said in a 2008 interview for the Web site, “plus all the chemicals on your face. It sure isn’t sunglasses and autographs, I’ll tell ya.”

But he enjoyed the work, Schenk said.

“He loved it,” she said. “He loved doing those crazy things.”

Source: South Bend Tribune via Topless Robot

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