A lot of news in this installment of News From the Lake. We’ll discuss an upcoming Hollywood biopic, some TCM news, a few Universal films to be on the watch for, and FOX revealing some more manufactured on demand DVDs.
Rock Hudson is set to receive the red carpet treatment with a Hollywood biopic. Via Deadline Hollywood, Maven Pictures is set to film The Making of Rock Hudson. The script, written by Tyler Ruggeri will follow the character of Henry Willson who represented Hudson throughout his career. The movie will focus on the struggles to create a persona for Hudson by keeping his homosexuality a secret. There’s no casting announcements or a mention of when shooting will begin. I’ve heard that there was a 1990s television movie about Hudson’s life, but sadly I’ve been unable to ascertain a copy. Considering how Hollywood is still leery about homosexuality in its leading men, I think a biopic about Hudson could open an important dialogue, or be totally exploitative. I’ll keep an eye on any further developments with this one.
I reviewed TCM’s airing of Kim Novak: Live From the TCM Classic Film Festival and thought it was a candid, and compelling view into a film star’s life; a succinct autobiography in a place where Hollywood royalty is vaunted. Well, TCM has decided to make this a recurring feature and have announced the next star to get a sit-down interview aired on the channel. TCM Classic Film Festival alum Eva Marie Saint will be getting her interview aired in 2014. Eva Marie Saint: Live From the TCM Classic Film Festival will air next spring, and will be taped at this year’s fest at the Avalon Hollywood (so if anyone goes to see her this year, let me know!). Saint is already set to be a special guest at this year’s festival, introducing a restored copy of On the Waterfront, so it makes sense she’d sit down for an interview. I know next to nothing about Saint’s life, as I did with Novak’s, so I’m excited to see this next year. The TCM Classic Film Festival runs this year from April 25th-28th.
An additional perk of the TCM Classic Film Festival is Club TCM, which is the central gathering-point for the fest itself. As they did last year, TCM has teamed up with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to show home movies of Hollywood’s legends from the Academy Film Archives with special guest Mitzi Gaynor in attendance; there will also be a special exhibition of art from the Margaret Herrick Library. Other special events include conversations with guests Max Von Sydow and Tippi Hedren, a trivia contest hosted by the Alex Trebek (REALLY JEALOUS), an auction of Hollywood memorabilia, and TCM Stage where hosts Ben Mankiewicz and Robert Osborne will film on-air introductions to air on the TCM channel. Again, if you get the chance to go please tell me how awesome it is!
In DVD release news, NBC Universal has announced a collection of Alfred Hitchcock films to be released on Blu-Ray. Alfred Hitchcock: The Essentials Collection is a five disc set that includes the director’s iconic works including Psycho, The Birds, Vertigo, North by Northwest, and Rear Window. A slew of bonus content is included. If you don’t already have these on Blu-Ray I’d recommend picking this up. If you have them in another box set, or only like a few than you might want to avoid. Either way, Alfred Hitchcock: The Essentials Collection hits shelves June 4th.
And finally, 20th Century Fox has released a new slate of manufactured-on-demand (MOD) DVDs that you can now purchase. I have a few of these to review, and I can’t stress enough buying these as it shows that classic film fans exist and more movies should be put out. Fox has scheduled these to hit the streets April 8th. I won’t name all the titles, but here’s a few that caught my eye: Betty Grable continues to have her films be put out via Fox. You can get Call Me Mister and Meet Me After the Show. Alice Faye is also getting quite a few of her films put out including Wake Up and Live and Sally, Irene, and Mary. The full list can be found at the Cinema Archives site.
That’s all for now. Keep checking for more News From the Lake!
A freelance film critic whose work fuels the Rotten Tomatoes meter. I've been published on The Hollywood Reporter, Remezcla, and The Daily Beast. I've been featured in the L.A. Times. I currently run two podcasts, Citizen Dame and Ticklish Business.