Readers enjoyed our first tribute issue (#576, Jan. 5), but expressed concern over the presentation of the memorials. ”Steve Reeves should have been given more than a mention,” says Mike Panigrosso of Fords, N.J., on the famous Hercules. And Cynthia Sofranac of Danville, Calif., didn’t appreciate our Loretta Young obit, complaining that ”to devote a third to her affair with Clark Gable … belittles her splendid career.” Finally, Scott Ruisch of Bayville, N.J., reminded us of Charles Gray’s role as The Rocky Horror Picture Show‘s stuffy narrator. ”He introduced generations of moviegoers to the wonder that is the Time Warp,” writes Ruisch. And for that, we’re forever grateful. Now … just a jump to the left.
Thank you for your tribute to some greats who left us in 2000 (”The Late Greats”). I will particularly miss Jean-Pierre Rampal, who could move an audience in a mystical way, and Steve Allen, who was an amazing guy. Meeting of Minds, a program in which Allen interviewed famous historical figures (played by actors), showed his love of history and philosophy. What a talent. MARK BUNNER
Bravo to your wonderful stories of the passing of such greats as Gielgud, Guinness, and Matthau. However, you left out Marceline Day, whose luminous beauty lit up such movies as Lon Chaney’s London After Midnight and Buster Keaton’s The Cameraman. True, after ”talkies” came into being her career faded into obscurity, but she’s still remembered by silent film aficionados like myself. PATRICIA K. BOWEN
Thank you for recognizing the often unsung character actors who passed away, especially by printing the faces of such greats as Fran Ryan and David Dukes. My only quibble is your not mentioning the late Charles Gray’s most recognized movie presence: the narrator in The Rocky Horror Picture Show. JEFF PALMER
Thanks for your tribute issue. But you missed one talent whose work has entertained millions. Edward Bernds was a writer/director in the days when there weren’t a lot of writer/directors in Hollywood. Most of his work was in comedy shorts before he moved into features, including Bowery Boys comedies (1954’s Jungle Gents), 1950s teen exploitation (Reform School Girl), and horror (1959’s Vincent Price sequel Return of the Fly). Bernds died on May 20, 2000, but his work remains as alive today as it did when he created it. MIKE VALERIO
Van Nuys, Calif.
How could you not include Kirsty MacColl in your memorial package (her death was noted in the Monitor section)? The most talented female pop songwriter and performer of the past 20 years, she will be sorely missed by those of us who prefer our pop music with a bit more brains than Britney. TORR LEONARD
EDITOR’S NOTE: Due to deadline constraints, we were unable to include Kirsty MacColl in our ”The Late Greats” feature. She’ll certainly be missed.
After seeing your layout on the many pj stylings of Meg Ryan (Scout), I thought I’d point out the many shower scenes in Matthew Broderick movies. We see Broderick cleaning himself in films like Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, The Road to Wellville, The Cable Guy, and Election, and that’s just off the top of my head. MICK KAYLER
Story of ‘O’
It seems like Owen Gleiberman has lost his objectivity regarding Coen brothers films. I thought O Brother, Where Art Thou? (Movies) was a funny, loving, wildly entertaining tale, and I had a good laugh reading your out-of-touch review of the movie and the big fat F you gave it. ”Misanthropic flimflam”? This movie was all heart, and it was obvious that the filmmakers loved everything about what they were doing. JON L. RISHI
Aliso Viejo, Calif.
Power of 1
What’s the big mystery? The Beatles’ 1 is an international chart topper for one simple reason (News & Notes) — the music. You can write all you want about slick marketing or great timing. The bottom line is offer up an album with 27 No. 1 songs from the greatest band in history and people are going to buy it. Talk about your no-brainers. PHIL KLEINMAN
CORRECTIONS: Clayton Moore died on December 28, 1999. Fran Ryan joined Gunsmoke as a regular in 1974. Harold Nicholas’ most recent film was 1995’s Funny Bones (”The Late Greats”).
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