Holy liver spots, Batman! I can't believe that baby brother Corey will turn 40 next Monday. To say I knew him when he was a pup is an understatement. It's always a great moment when someone you really care about reaches a new achievement. And now the race to 50 begins! Happy Birthday!
POP CULTURE: A DEFINITION
I'm hoping you agree with me when I say that anyone whose career has encompassed encounters with: Planet of the Apes, the Academy Awards, the Wild Wild West, the Muppets, Burt Reynolds, Brian de Palma, Barbra Streisand and The Love Boat is definitely an icon of pop culture. If so, then you will be as pleased as I am to have just interviewed Paul Williams for an upcoming issue of PCR. He was pleased to learn that PCR readers considered Phantom of the Paradise, a film he not only starred in, but wrote the music for as well, one of the greatest cult films ever. It was an honor speaking with Mr. Williams and I hope everyone enjoys reading his musings on his career.
TRICK OR TREAT
I have always been the popular house on the block for the kids to come to for candy. Each year at the annual Sho-East film convention, there are various candy companies represented at the trade show. Make friends with the reps, and the day the show ends, you can get cases of samples to take home. So while the guy next door is giving out little Tootsie Rolls, I'm giving out big boxes of Raisinets and Goobers! No toilet paper in my trees, thank you very much!
LIFE IS NOT A CABARET, OLD CHUM!
David Gest has filed a law suit against his estranged wife, Liza Minnelli, accusing her of beating him during drunken rages. Come on now. You never heard stories about Judy Garland kicking Vincent Minnelli's ass.
GET WELL SOON
To two of my favorite actors:
Robert De Niro, who was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer. Because of the early detection and the fact that De Niro takes care of himself, doctors are very positive.
Alan Alda, who underwent an emergency appendectomy while filming in South America.
As a true sports fan, I find I am able to hate a team but appreciate their players. I've always hated the Dallas Cowboys, mostly because that's all Matt ever talked about in high school. However, I wasn't blind and grew to appreciate their many talented players, among them Roger Staubach and Tony Dorsett. As a Baltimore Oriole fan, I am required to hate the Yankees. And I do. But I can tell you now that I would jump at the chance to have Jeter on the O's. And I can tell you that I curse the day the O's turned down Steinbrenner's offer of Donnie Baseball for Larry Sheets, straight up, at the end of the 1987 season. So as a true sports fan, I'm taking the time to say good-bye to #22, Roger Clemens. A sure first ballot hall of famer, Clemens leaves the game with 310 victories and almost 4100 strike outs. And hats off to 65,000 of my fellow Floridians who rose as one and gave Clemens a great ovation when he came out of the game Wednesday night. Thanks, Rocket. See you in Cooperstown.
For reasons I can't begin to understand, Universal Studios has announced that Jim Carrey will don the sweatsuit of Steve Austin and portray "The Six Million Dollar Man" on the big screen. The comedy (yes, I said comedy) will be written and directed by Todd Phillips, recent helmer of "Old School" and the upcoming "Starsky and Hutch" film. I can see it now...........Austin bending over and talking out of his bionic ass.
Well, after a week, we're back on the celebrity obituary page:
JACK ELAM: Popular character actor who's limp left eye was a trademark. Mr. Elam passed away at his home in Oregon from an unspecified illness. He was 84. Born in Arizona, his first job was picking cotton to earn extra money. A graduate of Santa Monica Junior College, he found work out of school as an accountant. While working as a bookkeeper for cowboy star William Boyd, Elam traded some work for a small on screen part and his career began. With a grizzled face and a left eye that was made useless during a fight during a Boy Scout meeting with a fellow scout at the age of 12, he cut a path in such films as "Gunfight at the OK Corral," "Cat Ballou," "Once Upon a Time in the West" and "Cannonball Run." He also starred with young unknowns Mark Hamill and Gary Busey in the television series "The Texas Wheelers".
FRED BERRY: Best known to television fans as the always happy Rerun on "What's Happening!!," Berry was recognizable to his public by the red beret and suspenders he always wore. Though no cause of death was given, he had for some time struggled with diabetes. His most recent work was a cameo in the David Spade film, "Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star." He was 52.
ELLIOT SMITH: Oscar nominated songwriter died Tuesday from an apparent suicide in his Los Angeles home. He was 34. Cause of death was a self inflicted stab wound to the chest. Among his work were songs for the films "American Beauty" and "The Royal Tannenbaums." In 1997, he was nominated for an Academy Award for his song, "Miss Misery" from "Good Will Hunting."
Well, that's it for now. Have a great week. See ya!
"Mike's Rant" is ©2003 by Michael A. Smith. Webpage design and all graphics herein are creations of Nolan B. Canova. All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2003 by Nolan B. Canova.