Showing posts with label Screen Guild Theater. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Screen Guild Theater. Show all posts

Saturday, January 3, 2015

January 3: Happy Birthday, Ray Milland



Ray Milland won an Oscar in 1946 for his work in Billy Wilder's The Lost Weekend.  He also starred in Dial M For Murder, Close To My Heart, and Reap the Wild Wind.

But who are we kidding?  You and I love Ray for his role in the CBS blockbuster radio program Meet Mr. McNutley.  The series ran from '53-'54, and starred Ray Milland and Phyllis Avery.  Mr. McNutley was, as his name might imply, a warm-hearted, perhaps absent-minded professor at Lynnhaven College for Women.  The show ran simultaneously on the airwaves and the tube.

Plots include Peg buying a new outboard motor for Ray; Ray trying to divine the gender of a new parakeet; and an O. Henryesque miscue involving a mink coat.

Milland appeared as a guest on Lux Radio Theatre, Safari, Camel Screen Guild Theatre, and Suspense.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

October 22: Happy Birthday, Joan Fontaine



The lovely Joan Fontaine led a colorful and unusual childhood, alternately living in California and Japan.

As soon as she struck adulthood she began auditioning for Hollywood film roles, racking up a spree of parts in B-movies.  A breakthrough role was in Hitchcock's Rebecca, in which she co-starred with Laurence Olivier.

The radio producers new she even sounded pretty, and snapped her up for parts in adaptations of contemporary dramas.  In this capacity, she appeared on Lux Radio Theater, Screen Guild Theater, and Theater Guild on the Air.

Born in 1917, Fontaine is now an American treasure.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

August 2: Happy Birthday, Myrna Loy!



Happy Birthday to Myrna Loy today!

Born today in 1905, the film actress was known for her many film roles including opposite William Powell in "The Thin Man" and with Cary Grant in "Mr Blandings."

During the Golden Age of Radio, Myrna Loy also appeared in such radio shows as "Good News", "Lux Radio Theater", "Screen Guild Theater", and "Suspense!"

Saturday, April 5, 2014

April 5: Happy Birthday, Gregory Peck


Lux Radio Theatre and Suspense gave Peck a chance to shine in productions of "The Yearling," "Gentleman's Agreement," and "Murder Through the Looking Glass." He also appeared in a rendering of Anna Karenina on Screen Guild Theater.

Peck was born in La Jolla, CA, and schooled first at St. John's Military Academy and then at the University of California, Berkeley. Without really knowing why, the English major took a role in a stage production of Moby Dick, and a promising career was born. Happy Birthday, Gregory Peck!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

September 3: Happy Birthday Alan Ladd!

Sept 3: Happy Birthday, Alan Ladd



Alan Ladd (born Alan Walbridge Ladd) debut as a lead in a major motion picture was in 1942 in This Gun for Hire. This collection includes his radio version of This Gun for Hire from Lux Radio TheaterAlan Ladd with Daughter Alana
Alan Ladd with daughter, Alana
Other films that he starred in include, The Great Gatsby, The Blue Dahlia, and The Glass Key. He continued to star in major roles such as the critically acclaimed Shane in the 1950s and until his death in 1964. Remembered both on screen and on the radio as a top-rate performer.

This collection hopes to honor the work of Alan Ladd on radio. The second volumes contains the complete collection of Box 13, his most memorable role on radio as Dan Holiday. On the first volume there are also examples of some of his best work on the radio from shows such as Burns and AllenCommand PerformanceJerry at Fair OaksLux Radio TheaterScreen Director's TheaterScreen Guild Theater, and Suspense.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

August 29: Happy Birthday, Ingrid Bergman

The winsome Ingrid Bergman was born on this day in 1915. In the world of classic radio, she entertained listeners while entertaining troops on the patriotic program "Everything For The Boys," hosted by Ronald Colman

Early in its life, the program was like other radio programs in adapting stories by contemporary writers and bringing in top-notch actors. Here's where Bergman came in, starring in "Death Takes a Holiday."

The Swedish actress also played her way into America's hearts in episodes of Lux Radio Theater such as "A Man's Castle," "For Whom the Bell Tolls," and "Gaslight." She played the title role in a production of Anna Karenina on Screen Guild Theater and the role of Isla Lund on a rendering of Casablanca on the same classic program.

The three-time Oscar winner is just one of many examples of all the top talent making its way to the world of radio back in the golden days.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

August 15: Happy Birthday, Ethel Barrymore

Born (in 1879) into a world with no movies or television or radio, Ethel Barrymore still had something in her genetic code predisposing her to a career in the performing arts. Both of her parents were stage actors, and her brothers Lionel and John would choose that craft as well.

Before her 1959 death, the theater star was able to make some high-quality appearances on radio. She managed to log time on quite a few of the big-name shows, including Screen Guild Theater, Suspense, Big Show, and Suspense. On the latter, she played a woman frightened by a psychotic handyman.

One of the first generation of the Barrymore dynasty, Ethel Barrymore gets today's birthday wish!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

August 6: Happy Birthday, Lucille Ball



Bios of Lucille Ball abound, and most people know at least a little bit about the famed comedienne. But on the occasion of her birthday, we get a chance to look at her contributions to oldtime radio.

Her first big break was the chance to star in the radio program My Favorite Husband along with Richard Denning. The two played a Minneapolis couple, with Lucille's character Liz, being a goofball housewife. She signed each time with a cordial "Jell-O, everybody," to plug the sponsor, General Foods' Jell-O. The show would later make the jump to television.

But what a lot of people may not realize is that she also made the rounds as a guest on just about any radio show you can name: The Kraft Music Hall, Screen Guild Theatre, Mail Call, The Campbell Playhouse, and The Gulf Screen Guild Theatre to name a few.

Many things to many people, Lucille Ball was a giant of old time radio. Happy birthday, Lucille!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

July 16: Happy Birthday, Ginger Rogers


The Rogers of Astaire and Rogers was born July 16, 1911. The lovely Ginger Rogers was a  captivating dancer and actress would perform more than 10 movies with Fred Astaire and be a romantic focus of his as well. Born Virginia Katherine McMath in Independence Missouri, Ginger would grow up with her grandparents in Kansas City. During this time her mother worked in Hollywood writing scripts. Due to the fact one of her cousins could not properly pronounce her first name, she took on the nickname of “Ginga’.” “Ginga’” moved to Texas where where her mother was working as a theatre critic for a Fort Worth newspaper. During this time, Miss Rogers became fascinated with the stage and started to learn to sing and dance. She became involved vaudeville and the stage, performing in a number of productions. One of her most memorable was Girl Crazy, where she met the choreographer, Fred Astaire, for the first time. By 1929 she had moved onto Hollywood and became a film performer. During the years of 33-39 she made a number of films with Astaire as her dancing partner. Rogers made a number of guest appearances on radio. her academy award winning Kitty Foyle was a showpiece on Lux Radio Theatre. She also made appearances on Command Performance, Screen Guild Theatre, G.I. Journal and Suspense. Ginger Rogers had as much presence on-air as she did on the motion picture screen. She was married five times, but never to Fred Astaire. She loved to perform, be involved in civics and enjoyed people. She left this world in 1995 of a heart attack. She had danced her last earthly dance.

Monday, July 1, 2013

July 1: Happy Birthday, James M. Cain

Fans of old-time radio have no doubt enjoyed adaptations of the gritty fiction of James M. Cain. Cain, whose 1892 birthday we commemorate today, wrote Mildred Pierce, Double Indemnity, and The Postman Always Rings Twice. These classics were adapted into bracing radio dramas by such programs as Screen Guild Theater and Lux Radio Theater

Cain was a tough customer whose contribution to the "hard-boiled" noir genre was a bit different from those of writers like Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler, since he wrote about the criminal rather than the detective. He also explored human depravity, applying keen psychological insight. He was drawn to the unsympathetic character and often featured one manipulative criminal seducing another into a web of evil. No wonder radio producers were drawn to his work. We salute, thee, James M. Cain.

Monday, May 20, 2013

May 20: Happy Birthday, Jimmy Stewart

It's only natural that a man with a voice as distinctive as Jimmy Stewart's would have a good time with radio. Of course he's known as a huge movie star, but he spent more than his share of time in front of a radio microphone as well.

Stewart, whose birthday we celebrate today, made frequent appearances on classic radio mainstays such as Screen Guild Theater, Lux Radio Theater, and Silver Theater. He also starred in Six Shooter from 1952-'54.

Some of the productions to which Stewart lent his talents on air include "It's a Wonderful Life," "Winchester '73," and "Destry Rides Again."

Later he would host a show called "Good News," a promotional venture for MGM. On this show, he'd interview MGM stars with upcoming films. So next time the name Jimmy Stewart comes up, remember his radio career and that he wasn't just a movie star.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

May 7: Happy Birthday, Gary Cooper


Lux Radio Theater was one of the chief homes of the radio work of Western film star Gary Cooper. On the legendary program, he starred in adaptations of his hit films "The Virginian," "The Pride of the Yankees," and "Mr. Deeds Goes to Washington."

Mr. Cooper lent his talents to Screen Guild Theater with adaptations of "Sergeant York," "A Farewell to Arms," and "Along Came Jones."

In 1947, the actor appeared on The Charlie McCarthy Show. In the same year, he also graced Philco Radio Time, hosted by Bing Crosby. The debonair screen star showed that he could shine on more than one medium. Let's give props to the star, born on this day in 1901.