Tuesday, September 30, 2014

A Word on Westerns part two

Here’s the second half of my talk at the Autry Museum this past June.

Happy 60th Birthday Farris Castleberry

Farris Castleberry was born on September 30, 1954 in Springfield, Massachusetts. Little is known about Farris other than he appeared in the 1984 Euro-western “Man Hunt” starring Ethan Wayne.
Today we celebrate Farris Castleberry’s 60th birthday.

Happy 80th Birthday Udo Jurgens

Udo Jürgen Bockelmann was born on September 30, 1934 in Schloß Ottmanach, Carinthia, Austria. Udo was born into a wealthy family, he grew up in the Austrian Ottmanach Castle in with his brothers John [1931-2006], later a businessman, and Manfred [1943-     ], now a respected painter. He became a composer and singer of popular music, his career spans over fifty years. He has written more than 800 songs and sold over 100 million records. In 2007 he additionally obtained Swiss citizenship.
He is credited with broadening German-language pop music beyond the traditional postwar schlager in the 1960s by infusing it with a modern pop appeal; his exceptionally tuneful compositions and sophisticated arrangements attract fans of all ages, and even in his 70s he continues to fill the largest concert venues in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.
Jurgens composed the music for one Euro-western; 1975’s “Montana Trap”.
Today we celebrate Udo Jürgens 80th birthday.

Monday, September 29, 2014


La guerrillera de Villa – Spanish title
The Warriors of Pancho Villa – English title
A 1966 Spanish, Mexican co-production [Cesáreo González Producciones Cinematográficas(Madrid), Oro Films (Mexico City)]
Producers: Gonzalo Elivra, Jr., Sánchez de Aparicio
Director: Miguel Monrayta (Miguel Martinez)
Story: Fernando Galiana, Miguel Morayta (Miguel Martinez)
Screenplay: Fernando Galiana, Miguel Morayta (Miguel Martinez)
Cinematography: Alex Phillips (Alexander Pelepiok) [Eastmancolor]
Music: Manuel Esperón  (Manuel González)
Songs: “Carmen de Espana”, “La cruz de mayo”, “La adelita”, “Jesusita en Chihuahua” sung by Carmen Sevilla (Maria Galisteo)
Running time: 976 minutes
Reyes Mendoza – Carmen Sevilla (Maria Galisteo)
Ricardo Peñalver - Julio Alemán
Capitán Pablo Márquez – Vicente Parra (Vicente Collado)
General Pancho Villa - José Elías Moreno (José Padilla)
Doncella de Reyes - María Herrero
Capitán - Óscar Morelli (Oscar Mouet)
Colonel Gutiérrez - Jaime Fernández
Villista – ‘Harapos’ (Mario García)
Man in theater - Federico González
Soldadera - Leonor Gómez
Train passenger – ‘La Chichmeca’ (Isabel Vázquez)
With: Ferrusquilla (José Ángel Espinosa), José Baviera, Carlos Bravo, Enrique García Álvarez, Carlos López Figueroa (Carlos Cardán), Roberto Porter, Sergio Virell (Sergio Virel), Salvador Zea, Guillermo Sánchez

Francisco Madero is president of the Mexican Republic, a coup kills him and usurps power. Pancho Villa takes up arms to defend the legality. Reyes Mendoza’s boyfriend, a Spanish tonadillera acting in Mexico, convince her to help the revolutionary Pancho Villa, as no one will suspect a popular singer. During performances of northern Mexico, Reyes falls madly in love with Ricardo Peñalver.

Remembering Georgi Bakhchevanov

Georgi Ivanova Bakhchevanov was born on September 29, 1944 in Grudovo, Bulgaria. Georgi was a film and TV actor who appeared in ten films from 1973-1988. Among those films was one Euro-western, “Death for Zapata” (1976) as Thomas. He died in Hakovo, Bulgaria of cancer in 1992. He was only 47 years-old.
Today we remember Georgi Bakhchevanov on what would have been his 70th birthday.

Remembering Marina Berti

Marina Berti was born Elena Maureen Bertolini on September 29, 1924 in London, England. Berti made her film debut in an uncredited role in 1941's “ La Fuggitiva”. Because of her bilingual abilities she appeared in films shown in the U.S. such as “Quo Vadis” (1951), “Ben Hur” (1959) and “Cleopatra” (1963), “If It's Tuesday, This Must be Belgium” (1969). She would go on to appear in over 100 films in character and lead roles. Her last screen appearance was in the Costa-Gavras film “Amen” (2002). Marina was married to actor Claudio Gorra from 1944 until his death in 1998. She was the mother of actor Andrea Giordana and actress Marina Giordana. Marina appeared in two Euro-westerns “The Stranger Returns” (1967) and “Hate is My God” (1969). Marina died on October 29, 2002.
Today we celebrate what would have been her 90th birthday.

Happy 95th Birthday Margot Hielscher

Margot Hielscher was born on September 29, 1919 in Berlin-Charlottenburg, Berlin, Germany. Margot is a German singer and film actress. She appeared in over fifty films between and 1939 and 1994. Among her films was one Euro-western, “Johnny Saves Nebrador” (1953) in the role of Marina.
In 1957, Hielscher was chosen to represent Germany at the Eurovision Song Contest with the song "Telefon, Telefon". The song finished fourth out of ten, with eight points.
Hielscher was chosen again to represent Germany at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1958 with the song "Für Zwei Groschen Musik". The song finished seventh out of ten, with 5 points.
In 1989, she starred in the TV series ‘Rivalen der Rennbahn’.
Today we celebrate Margot Hielscher’s 95th birthday.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

New CD Release

Django Strikes Again
Composer: Gianfranco Plenizio
Director: Nello Rossati
Starring: Franco Nero, Donald Pleasance
Label: Kronos Records
Country: Malta
Limited Edition 500 copies
Tracks 36
Extras: ?
Total time: 54 minutes
Available September 28, 2014
Track Listing:
01.Durango – 3:41
02.Mercy – 1:42
03.Black Vessel – 2:36
04.Alamo's Battle – 1:52
05.Tortillas – 1:35
06.Ambush – 1:33
07.Sad Violins – 1:43
08.Drunk Chorus – 0:14
09.Devil Theme – 1:34
10.Desert People - 2:52
11.Fear And Tension – 1:39
12.Durango (Choral Version) – 1:48
13.Brigands Attack – 1:30
14.Durango (Acoustic Guitar Theme) – 1:50
15.Scottish March  - 1:35
16.Mercy (Choral Fast Verison) – 2:44
17.Durango (Choral and Strings Version) – 1:13
18.Dead Whisper – 0:21
19.Mercy (Alternative Version) – 1:44
20. Inner Terror – 1:31
21.Desert People (Alternative Version) – 1:32
22.Dead Whisper (Alternative Version) – 2:00
23.Alamo's Battle (Alternative Version) – 1:35
24.Mercy (Alternative Choral Version) – 1:47
25.Nightmare – 0:25
26.Durango (Choral Version) – 1:32
27.Dead Walk – 0:53
28.Devil Theme (Alternative Version) – 9:21
29.Two Guitars Attack (Arpeggio) – 3:21
30.Durango (Choral and Strings Version) – 9:07
31.Black Vessel (Alternative Version) – 5:16
32.Wild Bass Drums – 3:07
33.Synthy Up Tempo – 5:31
34.Mercy (Alternative Choral Version) – 0:04 
35.Terror Crescendo – 5:15
36.Crash Sound Effect – 3:36

Spaghetti Western Locations

We continue our search for film locations for “Texas Adios” (aka The Avenger). Staying ahead of Pedro and his men Burt Sullivan reaches Cisco Delgado’s hacienda fortress. We see him ride down the street in front of Delgado’s fortress.

The front of the hacienda is actually the front of the Goyeneche Palace located in Nuevo Baztan and dominates the small town southeast of Madrid on M-204. Founded in 1709 the palace/church and two plazas were set aside as conservation area in 1941 which has been extended to include the entire town. The building is in disrepair and proposals have been made to restore it.
For a more detailed view of this site and other Spaghetti Western locations please visit my friend Yoshi Yasuda’s location site: http://y-yasuda.net/film-location.htm

Happy 80th Birthday Brigitte Bardot

Brigitte Anne-Marie Bardot was born on September 28, 1934 in Paris, Île de France, France. She studied ballet as a teenager at the National Superior Conservatory of Paris for Music and Dance and appeared on the cover of France's Elle magazine at the age of 15. She was discovered by screenwriter and future filmmaker Roger Vadim, and the two wed in 1952. Bardot made her big-screen debut that year as well, in “Le Trou Normand”. Various roles followed, including as a romantic leading lady in “La Lumiere d'en Face” (1954) and a handmaiden in “Helen of Troy” (1955).
Brigitte Bardot and Vadim divorced in 1957, but maintained a professional relationship, as he directed her 1958 film “The Night Heaven Fell”. Bardot was featured in other projects as well like “The Parisienne” (1958), “La Femme et le Pantin” (1959) and “Come Dance With Me” (1959). During the making of the 1960 film “La Verité”, however, Bardot attempted suicide on her 26th birthday. Decades later the actress would talk about how nightmarish the world of celebrity had become and the pressures inherent in constantly aiming to display a certain image.
Bardot starred in three Euro-westerns: “Viva Maria! (1965) as Maria Fitzgerald O’Malley, “Shalako” (1968 (as Countess Irina Lazer) and  “The Legend of Frenchie King” (1971) as Louise ‘Frenchy’ King.
During the 1960s, Bardot embarked on a career as a musical artist as well, releasing albums like Brigitte Bardot Sings (1960) and Special Bardot (1968). She also recorded hits with French vocalist/songwriter/lounge-man Serge Gainsbourg.
Ultimately having appeared in dozens of films, Bardot retired in 1973 and went to live in St. Tropez. She has subsequently devoted her life to animal activism.
Today we celebrate Brigitte Bardot’s 80th birthday.

Remembering Marcello Mastroianni

Marcello Vincenzo Domenico Mastroianni was born on September 28, 1924 in Fontana, Liri, Italy. Mastroianni grew up in Turin and Rome. He was the son of Ida (née Irolle) and Ottone Mastroianni, who ran a carpentry shop, and the nephew of the Italian sculptor Umberto Mastroianni [1910–1998]. During World War II, after the division into Axis and Allied Italy, he was interned in a loosely guarded German prison camp, from which he escaped to hide in Venice.
His brother Ruggero Mastroianni [1929–1996] was a highly regarded film editor who not only edited a number of his brother's films, but appeared alongside Marcello in Scipione detto anche l'Africano, a spoof of the once popular peplum/sword and sandal film genre released in 1971.
Mastroianni made his onscreen debut as an uncredited extra in “Marionette” (1939) when he was fourteen, and his first big role was in “Atto d'accusa” (1951). Within a decade he became a major international celebrity, starring in “Big Deal on Madonna Street” (1958); and in Federico Fellini's “La Dolce Vita” opposite Anita Ekberg in 1960. He followed “La Dolce Vita” with another signature role in Fellini's “8½” (1963).
Other prominent films include “La Notte” (1961), “Divorce, Italian Style” (1961), “Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow” (1963), “Marriage Italian-Style” (1964), and Robert Altman's “Ready to Wear” (1994); Mario Monicelli's “Casanova 70” (1965); Fellini's “City of Women” (1980) and “Ginger and Fred” (1986); Marco Bellocchio's Henry IV (1984), and Agnès Varda's “One Hundred and One Nights” (1995).
He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor three times: for “Divorce Italian Style”, “A Special Day” and “Dark Eyes”.
Mastroianni appeared in only one Euro-western as General George Armstrong Custer in 1973’s “Don’t Shoot the White Woman” a modern day farce taking place in downtown Paris with 19th century character such as Buffalo Bill and Sitting Bull.
Marcello died from pancreatic cancer on December 19, 1996 in Paris, France. He was 72.
Today we remember one of the great actors of the Italian cinema Marcello Mastroianni on what would have been his 90th birthday.

Remembering Giuseppe Accattino

Giuseppe Accattino was born on September 28, 1914 in Genoa, Liguria, Italy. Giuseppe Accattino studied for a degree in architecture at the Academy of Fine Arts, the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia in Rome. After a making few documentaries that are now considered lost, he founded after the Second World War, the film production company SILA (Società Italiana Lanci Artistici), with which he in 1949 made his only feature film the Euro-western “Buffalo Bill in Rome” which he directed, wrote and produced. The film, in which he used his girlfriend Elly Starr was, but the critics panned his effort. and until 1951 (and again in 1953) awarded. Another planned project failed.
Accattino died in Rome on April 20, 1979.
Today we remember Giuseppe Accattino on what would have been his 100th birthday.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

RIP Jesús Laguna

Retired Spanish actor and stuntman Jesús Laguna has died in Almeria, Spain. Word spread on Facebook that Laguna had died. He was one of the stuntmen that worked during the heyday of the European western craze in Spain. Most of his appearances were uncredited as stuntmen’s names were seldom seen in the closing credits of a film, but it was there daring and nerve that filled these films with thrills and excitement. After the film business died in Southern Spain Laguna worked as a stunt performer at Mini Hollywood and Texas Hollywood in Tabernas putting on shows for the tourist who visited the now tourist attractions and the occasional commercial that may be filmed in the towns. As the years passed he became more of a vagabond, travelling around Tabernas and Almeria in search of work, food and a place to rest. Laguna recently appeared as the town drunk in the award winning "6 Bullets to Hell".

RIP Michael McCarty

Veteran stage and film actor Michael McCarty died in Santa Barbara on Friday September 27th, 2014. He was 68. Born on September 7, 1946 in Evansville, Indiana, McCarty was appearing in a stage play of Amadeus when he collapsed earlier in the week. McCarty appeared on TV in ER, 3rd Rock from the Sun, Murder One and over 200 TV commercials. Michael appeared in a small role as a Makah villager in the Euro-western Dead Man in 1994 starring Johnny Depp.


Wanted Sabata – International title
Kataziteitai o Sabata – Greek title
A 1970 Italian production [Three Star Films (Rome)]
Producer: Walter Brandi, Ralph Zucker
Director: Robert Johnson/Morris (Roberto Mauri)
Story: Roberto Mauri, Ambrogio Molteni (Palmambrogio Molteni)
Screenplay: Roberto Mauri, Ambrogio Molteni (Palmambrogio Molteni)
Cinematography: Mario Mancini [Telecolor, CinemaScope]
Music: Vassili Kojucharov
Running time: 88 minutes
Sabata – Brad Harris (Bradford Harris)
Jim Sparrow – Vassili Karis (Vassili Karamesinis)
Willy – Sergio Testori
Mexicans – Giovanni Cianfrigilia, Artemio Antonini
With: Elena Pedemonte, Gino Lavagetto (Luigi Lavagetto), Paul Carter (Paolo Magalotti), Maria Luisa Sala, Emilio Messina, Roberto Messina, Pietro Fumelli, Gino Turini (Giulio Turini), Irio Fantini (Eirio Fantini), Elena Marchiani (Eleanora Marchiani), Cesar Ojinaga, Claudio Trionfi, Ezio Vergari, Emilio Zago
At a ranch, Jim Sparrow a professional bounty killer, kills the owner's brother, Willy, and puts the blame on Sabata. Four witnesses paid for by Jim accuse Sabata and he is sentenced to be hanged. But an unknown savior send through the window of the jail a weapon in which Sabata, is able to escape injuring the jailer, who is killed by another’s hand. The public prosecutor finds Sabata guilty of this murder also, and a bounty is placed on his head. While the posse is hunting for Sabata during the night a man who resembles him is killed by one of his accusers. The size of the bounty is increased to eight thousand dollars. During the search, Sabata is able to convince the sheriff of his innocence. Together they capture Jim Sparrow and force him to confess. Now it is Jim who is imprisoned and forced to face the gallows.

Happy 80th Birthday Wilford Brimley

Anthony Wilford Brimley was born on September 27, 1934 in Salt Lake City, Utah. His father worked as a real estate broker. Prior to his career in acting, Brimley dropped out of high school to serve in the United States Marine Corps, where he served in the Aleutian Islands for three years. He also worked as a bodyguard (for Howard Hughes), ranch hand, wrangler, and blacksmith. He then began shoeing horses for film and television. He began acting in the 1960s as a riding extra in Westerns as a stunt man at the urging of his friend, actor Robert Duvall. Brimley has appeared in over 75 films since his first uncredited role in 1969’s “True Grit”. His only Euro-western was 1971’s “Lawman” in the role of Marc Corman where he was credited as Bill Brimley.
Today we celebrate Wilford Brimley’s 80th birthday.

Remembering Enrico Luzi

Enrico Cucuzza was born on September 27, 1919 in Trieste, Friuli Venezia, Giulia, Italy. Henry entered the film industry as a character actor, he was most active in B-movies, plays, musicals but also appeared in crime films and television between the 1940s to the 1980s. He became famous to radio audiences in the early 1950s, in the showRosso e nero’.  

On television, he was part of the Quartetto Cetra, billed as Henry Luzi seen in the cast ofBiblioteca di Studio Uno’ in the episode ‘A Fistful of Songs’, a parody of the novel by Margaret Mitchell “Gone with the Wind” and participated in several episodes of the television series ‘Le inchieste del commissario Maigret’ and those on ‘tenente Sheridan’ and gastronome-detective ‘Nero Wolfe’. He also participated in the filming of the seriesIl giornalino di Gian Burrasca’, with Rita Pavone.
As a voice actor, lent his voice to many cartoons, including ‘Kimba, il leone bianco’, ‘L'orsetto Mysha’ Kimba, and ‘Napo orso capo’. He was the voice of Uncle Fester (the original starring Jackie Coogan ), in the Italian version of the TV series ‘The Addams Family’.
Enrico Luzi died on October 18, 2011 in Rome, Italy.
Today we remember Enrico Luzi on what would have been his 95th birthday.

Remembering Josef Stöckel

Josef Stöckel was born on September 27, 1894 in Munich, Bavaria, Germany. Josef was the son of a Munich architect and at 16 years of age attended the State Drama School - even though his father only wanted him to learn a "decent trade". After a apprenticeship at the Munich Court Theatre he had his first engagements in Bayreuth and Landshut. Then became a comic operetta specialist and performed as a comedian in the Gärtner-seat Theater.
In the 1920s he founded his own film company in which he produced the then known internationally film series “Joe Marco, der Mann der Kraft”. Stöckel played the lead role as Joe, who had had ​​the most sensational adventures. He transformed the river Isar in Munich to a Wild West setting and Americanized his first name Joseph. From then on he was called Joe.
He belongs alongside Karl Valentin, White Ferdl, Josef Eichheim and Beppo Brem as pioneers of Munich film.
Joe Stöckel's main claim to fame was, however, to having brought the comedy to Bavarian film. He adapted stage classics such asDie drei Dorfheiligen”, “Das sündige Dorf”, “Der scheinheilige Florian” and worked as a screenwriter or director on these films. He was probably the first to use the contrast between Bavaria and other German ethnic groups, especially as "Prussia", used for comedy.
Joe reached the peak of his career after the Second World War, he worked on a total of about 170 films, of which he himself was the director on about 30 times.
Joe appeared as an actor, screenwriter and director on over a half-dozen Euro-westerns in 1919-1921.
Josef Stöckel  died in Munich, Germany on June 14, 1959.
Today we remember Joe Stöckel on what would have been his 120th birthday.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Guess Who I Am

I was born in 1928.
I appeared in over 150 films and TV appearances.
I was once jailed for drug possession and my wife died in jail.
I made over 20 Euro-westerns.
I died in 1993.
Guess who I am.
il dottore correctly named William Berger as this week's photo.

Game of Thrones Theme - Western Cover

YouTube link:

Who Are Those Gals? - Delia Boccardo

Delia Boccardo was born in Genoa, Liguria, Italy on January 29, 1948. The sister of actress Gabriella Grimaldi, Delia spent her childhood and adolescence in Nervi, then studied in a Swiss College, in the Poggio Imperiale girl's school and, for about three years, in a College in Sussex. In 1965 she moved in Rome where she attended the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia. Boccardo made her stage debut in 1967, alongside Raf Vallone in “Uno sguardo dal ponte”, shortly after she made her film debuted in 1967 with an appearance as Mady in the Euro-western “Death Walks in Laredo”. She went on to routinely provide diverting and seductive decoration in numerous tales of intrigue and other outdoor adventure. In her third film she made her first English-speaking appearance as leading lady to Alan Arkin in the misguided comedy “Inspector Clouseau” (1968) with Arkin briefly replacing Peter Sellers as the thoroughly inept French detective. Additional European-filmed appearances by Boccardo include co-star to some of Europe's most virile and handsome actors of the 1970s: Franco Nero in “Un detective” (1969), Bekim Fehmiu in the US-produced epic “The Adventurers” (1970), Lou Castel in “Stress” (1971), and even found herself a co-star to skier Jean-Claude Killy in “Snow Job” (1972). Continuing into the early 1980s, Delia proved an entrancing Athena in the Italian-made “Hercules” (1983), starring Lou Ferrigno and portrayed Mary Magdalene in the TV-movie ‘The Day Christ Died’ (1980). From the mid-1980s she focused on a stage career, where she worked intensively with Luca Ronconi, and on television.

BOCCARDO, Delia [1/29/1948, Genoa, Liguria, Italy -     ] – stage, TV actress, sister of actress Gabriella Grimaldi.
Death Walks in Laredo - 1966 (Mady)
Panandle Calibre .38 – 1971 (Connie Connors/Briscott)

Thursday, September 25, 2014


Johnny Texas – Italian title
Wanted – etsintakuulutettu - ? title
Matena Johnny Texas – Spanish title
Intikam Hirsi - Turkish title
Wanted Ringo – English title
Wanted Johnny Texas – English title
A 1967 Italian production [Film Kontor (Rome)]
Producers: Mario Bertini, Enzo Corvino
Director: Emimmo Salvi (Domenico Salvi)
Story: Emimmo Salvi (Domenico Salvi)
Screenplay: Emimmo Salvi (Domenico Salvi)
Dialogue: Gloria Donadoni [Italian]
Cinematography: Emilio Varriano [Eastmancolor, Totalscope]
Music: Marcello Gigante
Running time: 89 minutes
Johnny Texas – James Newman (Willy Colombini)
O’Connor – Howard Ross (Renato Rossini)
Lucia Cansino – Monika Brugger (Monica Braucher)
Colonel Steward – Fernando Sancho (Fernando Les)
Ranger Sergeant Mills – Isarco Ravaioli
Rosita – Rosalba Neri
Dancer – Rosella D’Aquino
Sam/Pecos – Dante Maggio
O’Connor henchman – Fortunato Arena
Blonde girl – Erna Schurer (Emma Constantino)
With: Bruno Arie, Fausto Signoretti (Faustone Signoretti), Mirella Panfili (Mirella Pamphili), Richard Kent, Agostino De Simone, Nerio Bernardi (Nerino Bernardi), Omero Capanna
A colonel in the Texas Rangers recruits Johnny Texas to exterminate the outlaw gang of the fierce O'Connor using dynamite to blow up his hideout. The man, who is violent and unreliable, makes a lot of enemies before he completes his assignment. Johnny risks his life several times, but finally eliminates the equally heinous members of the notorious gang.

Remembering Delia Scala

Delia Scala was born Odette Bedogni on September 25, 1929 in Bracciano, Lazio, Italy. As a young girl the family moved to Milan where she studied ballet at "La Scala" Ballet School for seven years. She performed in numerous ballets until World War II, after which she began appearing in motion pictures using the stage name, Delia Scala. In 1956, she began a career in television, an industry that at the time in Italy was still in its infancy. She starred in several variety shows during the 1950s and 1960s, and became one of her country's most beloved TV showgirls. Delia appeared in two Euro-westerns: “The Dream of Zorro” (1951) as Gloria/ Estrella/Dolores and “The Terror of Arizona” in 1959 as Bethsabee/Betsabea.
Although Scala achieved great fame and success, her life was plagued by misfortune and sorrowful losses. She married a Greek military officer at age 15 (in 1944), but separated from him two years later, and got the marriage annulled in 1956. During the mid-1950s she gained much publicity for her relationship with Formula One race car driver Eugenio Castellotti. He died in 1957 when his Ferrari crashed while attempting a speed record at the Modena race track.
She married in 1967 to Piero Giannotti, but was widowed when he died in 1982 of a heart attack while bicycling along the beach in Viareggio. She married a third time in 1985 with industrialist Arturo Fremura, but this marriage too ended sadly with her husband's death of liver cancer in 2001.
In 1970 Scala was diagnosed with breast cancer, and underwent a radical mastectomy. Although she appeared to have healed completely, in 2002 she was struck again with the same illness. After two more years battling her cancer, Delia Scala died on January 15, 2004 in Livorno, Tuscany. With the news of her death, Italian President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi called her a "model of vivaciousness and rigorous professionalism" and said she ranked among "the most beloved and popular artists in the history of Italian entertainment".
Today we remember Delia Scala on what would have been her 85th birthday.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Happy 70th Birthday Diana Körner

Diana Körner was born on September 24, 1944 in Wolmirsleben, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. Diana studied at the Westphalian Drama School in Bochum. She received her first exposure to acting during the 1964-65 season at the Theatre Oberhausen. From 1966 to 1969 she was part of the ensemble of the Schiller Theater in Berlin. Later, she performed as a freelance actress in numerous theaters, including 1979 at the Schauspielhaus Hamburg and from 1981 to 1983 at the Würzburg Festival. She appeared in films and especially in television in numerous productions, such as her appearance in the TV series ‘Liebling Kreuzberg’, there she played the prosecutor Rosemarie Monk and was the girlfriend of lawyer Robert Liebling.
Körner appeared in only one Euro-western: “Montana Trap” (1975).
Today we celebrate Diana Körner’s 70th birthday.

Remembering Nuria Torray

Nuria Torray was born Nuria Torrà Resplandi on September 24, 1934 in Barcelona, Cataluna, Spain. She combined her studies in Philosophy and Letters with amateur performances at Teatro Universitario Spanish. Soon the stage manager José Tamayo noticed her and she began her professional career, and interprets “The Crucible” in the Spanish Theatre in Madrid and later becomes the main character in “Irma la Douce”. A highlight is Doña Inés in “Tenorio” made ​​by Tamayo in 1960 and participation in the assembly “¿Quién quiere una copla del Arcipreste de Hita?” (1965) of Joseph Martin, “Los siete infantes de Lara” (1966), by Lope de Vega and “Lope de Vega” and “Águila de blasón” (1966) by Valle-Inclán, all carried out by Adolfo Marsillach .
Shortly after she began her professional relationship with who would become her husband, director Juan Guerrero Zamora , who directed her in "The Gioconda Smile" (1951) by Aldous Huxley from which she becomes one of the most assiduous faces on Spanish TV in the 1960s and 1970s, starring in the seriesUn mito llamado’ (1979) ‘La Celestina’ (1983).
She made her film debut in 1956, but despite their excellent acting never had a substantive film career, abandoning the medium in 1971 after her appearance in “La casa de las muertas vivientes”. During this time she appeared in five Euro-westerns from “Apache Fury” in 1963 to “Django and Sartana are Coming” in 1970.
In 1991 she played the main character of Lysistrata at the Festival of Classical Theatre of Merida. Her retirement from the stage came in 1995 with the work “My Dear Family, by Neil Simon, which earned her the Ercilla Award.
Nuria died of colon cancer on June 7, 2004 in Madrid, Spain.
Today we remember Nuria Torray on what would have been her 80th birthday.

Remembering Douglas Gamley

Douglas Gamley was born on September 24, 1924 in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Douglas was an Australian film composer, who worked on British and American films.
Gamley's early teachers included Waldemar Seidel in Melbourne. He was particularly influenced by Modest Mussorgsky, creating a full orchestral version of his “Pictures at an Exhibition”, and adapting his Night on Bald Mountain for his score for “Asylum” (1972). He adapted Gabriel Fauré's Pavane for “The Monster Club” (1980).
Gamley created many vocal arrangements for Dame Joan Sutherland and Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, both for performing and recordings. He also made orchestral arrangements of songs for Luciano Pavarotti and Victoria de los Ángeles. He was associated for many years with the Australian Pops Orchestra as conductor and arranger.
Gamley’s only Euro-western score was for the 1961 film “The Canadians”.
Douglas died in London, England on February 5, 1998.
Today we remember Douglas Gamley on what would have been his 90th birthday.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

First Day of Autumn 2014


Se busca – Spanish title
Wanted – English title
A 2013 Spanish production
Producer: David Hebrero, Miguel Ángel Postigo (Miguel Palacios)
Director: David Hebrero, Miguel Ángel Postigo (Miguel Palacios)
Story: David Hebrero, Miguel Ángel Postigo (Miguel Palacios)
Screenplay: David Hebrero, Miguel Ángel Postigo (Miguel Palacios)
Cinematography: Miguel A. Postigo (Miguel Ángel Palacios) [color]
Music: Tito Barbeito (Luis Barbeito)
Running time: 16 minutes
Saloon girl - Bea Urzaiz (Beatriz Ramírez de Haro)
Bartender - Rubén Arcas (Rubén Olivera)
John - Luis Motola (Luis Mottola García),
Smith - José Luis Díaz (José Rupérez)
Hired killer - Alex Rico
Boy - Guillermo Estrella
Saloon girl Susana Garrote
With: Roman Reyes, Juan Gregori, Antonio Postigo
John and Sarah are two outlaws who are being chased by Smith and his hired killer. They will all meet at a saloon to finish what was started a long time ago

Happy 55th Birthday Frank Cottrell Boyce

Frank Cottrell Boyce was born on September 23, 1959 in Liverpool, Merseyside, England. Boyce is a British screenwriter, novelist and occasional actor, known for his children's fiction and for his collaborations with film director Michael Winterbottom. He recently achieved fame as the writer for the 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony and for sequels to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang: The Magical Car, a children's classic by Ian Fleming.
Boyce has won two major British awards for children's books, the 2004 Carnegie Medal for Millions, which originated as a film script, and the 2012 Guardian Prize for The Unforgotten Coat, which was commissioned by a charity.
Boyce wrote the screenplay for the Euro-western “The Claim” in 1999.
Today we celebrate Frank Cottrell Boyce’s 55th birthday.

Happy 55th Birthday Tini Cansino

Tini Cansino was born Photina Lappa on September 23, 1959 in Volos, Magnisia, Greece. She studied classical ballet, and at 19 years old, during a vacation in Italy, she was noticed by Alberto Tarallo, a manager who introduced her to the world of entertainment. The same manager suggested the name of Tini Cansino, noting its resemblance to the actress Rita Hayworth as the real name of the actress was just Cansino, in order to invent a fake relationship with the American actress, all to increase her fame. Because of her stage name, for years mistakenly considered to be the granddaughter of Hayworth.
She made ​​her debut on television in the sexy show ‘Playgirl’, with Minnie Minoprio, but her big breakthrough came in 1983 with the role of "ragazza fast food" in the popular television show Drive In . Switching to film came as a result. Her first role as Scella Pezzata in the cult Euro-western by Ciro Ippolito “Arrapaho” (1984), inspired by the self-titled album of Squallor the previous year. She then participated the following year in the comedy “Carabinieri si nasce” by Mariano Laurenti, the television film “Doppio misto” (1986) and “Provare per credere” (1987) by Sergio Martino, and the erotic film “Delizia” of Joe D'Amato (1987), “A un passo dall'aurora” by Mario Bianchi and “Arabella l'angelo nero” by Stelvio Massi (1989).
In 1989, after joining the program on Italy 1 ‘Trisitors’, she retired from acting to devote herself fully to her family. In 2006 with a heartfelt appeal she aska in the newspapers to be a part of the cast of  “L'isola dei famosi” because of her financial straits, but her direct appeal to the presenter Simona Ventura falls on deaf ears. In January 2012 she joined as a commentator for the transmission of Channel 5 ‘Uomini e Donne’, dedicated to meetings between ultra-forties.
Today we celebrate Tini Cansino’s 55th birthday.

Monday, September 22, 2014

A Word on Westerns - Spaghetti Western Luncheon

I was asked to participate in a lunch presentation at the Autry Museum on June 18th of this year. Producer Rob Word holds a monthly meeting for his group the Algonquin Cowboys, former members of the Golden Boot, of which I am a member. The luncheons are free and open to the public and are held every third Wednesday of the month. June’s subject was Spaghetti Westerns and Rob had asked me to help put the program together. We invited Brett Halsey, Robert Woods, Marty Kove and Bill Lustig as speakers. He asked me if I would speak a bit on the music and the Westerns… All’Italian! fanzine. I said sure. The links below will take you to You Tube clips of parts of Brett’s Robert and my presentations.

Happy 80th Birthay Ornella Vanoni

Ornella Vanoni was born on September 22, 1934 in Milan, Lombardy, Italy. She started her artistic career in 1960 as a theatrical actress of Bertolt Brecht works, under the direction of Giorgio Strehler in his Piccolo Teatro of Milan. At the same time, she started singing, recording for a high-class public. The folklore and popular songs she reinvented in her recordings of this period, especially the ones connected with organized crime, gave her the nickname cantante della mala ("Underworld Singer").
Owing to the songs "Senza fine" and "Che cosa c'è" written for her by Gino Paoli, her popularity rose in 1963. Next year, she won the Festival of Neapolitan song with "Tu si na cosa grande".
In the following years, she took part in a series of Festivals of Italian Song in Sanremo, which resulted in great successes with the songs; "Abbracciami forte" (1965), "Io ti darò di più" (1966), "La musica è finita" (1967), "Casa bianca" (1968), and "Eternità" (1970). "Casa Bianca", which came second, was the subject of a copyright dispute between the composer Don Backy and the Clan Celentano label.
Later in the period, Vanoni released the hits "Una ragione di più", "Un'ora sola ti vorrei", and "L'appuntamento". The Swinging Blue Jeans carried Vanoni's song "Non Dirmi Niente" to the U.K. chart under the English title "Don't Make Me Over". "L'appuntamento", which was composed in 1970, is a cover of the Brazilian song "Sentado à Beira do Caminho" (Sitting by the Roadside) by Erasmo Carlos and Roberto Carlos.
In 1976, Vanoni cooperated with Vinicius de Moraes and Toquinho releasing the hit "La voglia, la pazzia, l'incoscienza e l'allegria". During the 1980s, she released "Ricetta di donna", "Uomini", and "Ti lascio una canzone" (a duet with Gino Paoli). In 1989, she returned to Sanremo Festival with the song "Io come farò". In 1999, she recorded "Alberi", a duet with Enzo Gragnaniello. She was mostly active performing live and as a guest singer in recordings. In 2004, she released a duo album with Gino Paoli to celebrate her 70th birthday.
In addition to her singing career, Ornella Vanoni was active in other arts, starring in stage and TV shows, movies, and posing nude for the Italian edition of Playboy magazine. The inclusion of her former hit "L'Appuntamento" (1970) on the Ocean's Twelve soundtrack sparked a worldwide renewal of interest in Ornella Vanoni.
Ornella appeared in only one Euro-western; “A Fistful of Songs”, (1966) as a singer.
Today we celebrate Ornella Vanoni’s 80th birthday.