Movie World Loses 2 Luminaries

Just a short note about the loss this week of two major figures in American cinema.

Tony Curtis‘s pretty-boy looks opened a lot of Hollywood doors for him, but he proved his talent with strong performances on the big screen. Curtis is probably most famous for three movies from 1958-60: The Defiant Ones, Some Like It Hot and Spartacus. He scored an Oscar nomination for his performance in The Defiant Ones. Many also know him as father of one very talented actress, Jamie Lee Curtis. Born Bernard Schwartz in 1925 in New York, he died of cardiac arrest yesterday at his home in Nevada.

Arthur Penn, born in 1922 in Philadelphia, won a Tony Award in 1960 for directing The Miracle Worker on Broadway and then directed the 1962 film version. For that he earned the first of three Oscar nominations. His other Oscar nods were for the groundbreaking Bonnie and Clyde (1967) and Alice’s Restaurant (1969). He died Tuesday in New York one day after his 88th birthday.

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Posted by on September 30, 2010. Filed under Commentary. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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6 Responses to Movie World Loses 2 Luminaries

  1. Stimpson

    September 30, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    A recent book, Star: How Warren Beatty Seduced America, gives details on how Bonnie and Clyde was groundbreaking. For one thing, editor Dede Allen “prelapped the sound, that is, began the sound before the cut” in transitions from one scene to the next. That practice was common in European film but virtually never used in American movies, until Bonnie and Clyde made it fashionable.

  2. fourdinners

    September 30, 2010 at 5:21 pm

    Tony Curtis starred alongside Roger Moore in the British ‘Comedy thriller’ TV series ‘The Pursuaders’. Joan Collins once guest starred and, according to her memoirs, Curtis called her a ‘c*nt’.

    Clearly he was a man who recognised a person’s characteristics quickly…;-)


  3. osori

    September 30, 2010 at 6:56 pm

    “Yondah lies the castle of my foddah”
    I remember hearing about Tony Curtis’s thick bronx accent at the start of his career. Loved him and Perry Lopez as the brothers in Taras Bulba.

    Arthur Penn, I only knew the name. Sounds like he was a pioneer.

    Greg Giraldo just passed as well, he was only 44.

    • Stimpson

      September 30, 2010 at 7:49 pm

      Yeah, Giraldo freakin’ killed in Comedy Central Roasts and Lewis Black’s The Root of All Evil. What a sad event, his passing.

  4. Will "take no prisoners" Hart

    September 30, 2010 at 11:50 pm

    While “Spartacus”, “Some Like it Hot”, and “The Defiant Ones” were probably his three most famous movies, his best performance (as the slime-ball agent, Sidney Falco), IMO, was in “Sweet Smell of Success”. Those back-and-forths between him and Burt Lancaster were flat-out spine-tingling. Hell, folks, I should probably put it in the player tonight.

  5. SJ

    October 1, 2010 at 2:39 pm

    Mycue had dinner with Arthur Penn a couple of years back. He said he was just a great guy.