Rest In Peace, Dear Shirley.

Rest in Peace, Shirley Temple Black, 1928-2014

Shirley Temple in Captain January, 1936

Shirley Temple was very important to my mother, Dorothy, who grew up in the Depression, and so much so, she tried to remake me in Shirley’s image many nights until I was 5 or 6 because she would roll my hair in pin curls, and I would sleep with bobby pins affixed to my crown to ensure that I was adorable. I also remember performing “On The Good Ship Lollipop” after I had listened to my 45 of Temple’s most famous song, and being asked to perform it in front of adults. In Child Star, Temple’s autobiography, she recalled that she didn’t much care for performing on demand, claiming it was like being a “wind-up toy.” I certainly wasn’t in demand as much as Miss Temple, but I definitely felt the same way about requests for a song or a dance. Of Shirley’s earlier films, I enjoyed Wee Willie Winkie and The Little Princess the most.

An excerpt from an article about Shirley Temple Black written by Norma Welty:
“Many girls, like myself, who grew up extremely poor in the Dust Bowl during the 1930s Great Depression revered Shirley Temple. We knew about her through listening to the girls from the more well-off families whose parents took them to see the young actress’s movies. These more fortunate girls often brought pictures of Shirley Temple to school and talked profusely about her and her movies.”

“Ms. Temple Black ran for Congress when the majority of voters weren’t yet prepared to vote for a woman rather than a male opponent—and was defeated. But she hadn’t put all her eggs in one basket. Later, she was appointed to represent the United States in the United Nations, was the first woman appointed US Chief of Protocol and she later served as US Ambassador to Ghana and US Ambassador to Czechoslovakia. She did it all without fanfare, and to name but a few, she may have paved the way for Madeleine Albright, Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Rodham Clinton.”

Shirley Temple Black was an inspiration to all women because she moved on. She didn’t dwell on her past films, or her past accomplishments, but she moved on from a childhood screen career, an unsuccessful marriage, and a debilitating bout with cancer, and her film legacy still inspires people all over the world.

Shirley sings “Auld Lang Syne” to Victor McLaglen in Wee Willie Winkie: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=pMr5oU3uDSs

For the entire article by Norma Welty from the website History and Women, I have provided the link: http://www.historyandwomen.com/2013/02/shirley-temple-black-depression-era.html

Official Shirley Temple Black Website with an updated rememberance: http://www.shirleytemple.com/
Shirley Temple Black Filmography: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000073/

Why Jerry?

When Turner Classic Movies recently announced that Jerry Lewis would be a special guest at the TCMFF 2014 for a special screening of The Nutty Professor and Footprint Ceremony at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre Forecourt (add TCL to the title of the movie house if you haven’t refused to change), the reaction was a visceral one among prospective passholders to the festival, and Jerry Lewis has always had that effect.

People usually either revile him or adore him, but it is now time to honor Lewis as an icon of Classic Hollywood before it is too late. Lewis, rumored to be part of an all-star cast of 2015’s Big Finish with Debbie Reynolds, Mary Tyler Moore, Tim Conway, Garret Morris, Don Rickles, and Bob Newhart, will certainly have a symbolic ‘big finish’ to his entertainment career once his footprints and handprints are enshrined in Grauman’s forecourt.

Why Jerry, then?

Well, for one reason, he will do just about anything for a laugh.

And he’s Classic Hollywood, for another…

He also has two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and if there is one activity that marks every TCM Film Festival pass holder, it’s the admiration of Hollywood icons memorialized on the tourist stroll through t-shirt heaven, Hollywood Boulevard. Film fanatics from all over the world converge at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel to pay homage and bask in cinematic glory of the bygone days and halcyon havens of the 20s to the 2000’s while viewing classic film and listening to panel experts extoll the virtues of the rapidly vanishing members of what may be deemed the classic era of Hollywood production. Travelers from Texas to Topeka stoop, stroll, walk and stare at the tiles on the Boulevard while flashes from iPhones light up the night as festival goers head home from an evening screening at a nearby theatre, but exhausted as they are, these visitors just have to have one more photo of someone’s star on the Walk of Fame.

Lewis’ accomplishments are also part of the machinations of his choice as an TCMFF honoree, and his veneration by the Europeans is probably part of his attraction. The Venice Film Festival’s Career Golden Lion in 1999, The Golden Camera for Lifetime Achievement in 2005 from Germany, a BAFTA nomination for his supporting role in The King of Comedy, and many lifetime achievement awards for his contributions to comedy might have something to do with it, as well as his humanitarian causes which led to his 2009 Jean Herscholt award from the Academy. He has writing, producting, acting, and directing credits, and he is still here.

When 19-year-old Jerome Levitch teamed up with one of his 29-year-old acquaintances named Dino Crocetti, some sort of magic happened, becoming known to the world as Martin and Lewis.

They became BFFs and supernovas, but ended up not talking for years until Frank Sinatra invited Dean on stage at a Muscular Dystrophy Telethon. It was historic when they teamed up, it was historic when they broke up, and it was historic when they reunited…
http://tinyurl.com/mtz3bpw
But despite pleas and attempts from Jerry, the relationship didn’t ever completely mend. When Martin’s son died in a plane crash, Jerry called to offer his condolences and a series of sporadic phone calls helped to end some of the possible pain of the breakup of Martin and Lewis.

Honoring Jerry Lewis for all of his comedic talents, his film credits, and his philanthropic gestures is the right choice to make. He’s tenacious, some say he grates on their nerves, and probably evokes everyone’s idea of the wacky, unruly kid in the cafeteria who is willing to put french fries up his nose to make everyone at his table guffaw. While some people are called to be policemen, accountants, or educators, some people seek the limelight for the attention so they can make us laugh. Jerry, I am sure, liked the attention, but he also has created more smiles for the general public of his times than say, someone like Nikita Kruschev or Robert Q. Lewis. Jerry Lewis has also inspired countless comedians who followed in his wake like Eddie Murphy and Robin Williams.

When I first heard that Jerry Lewis was chosen to be honored with a footprint ceremony, I never envisioned me writing about it, but he has certainly earned our respect and shown us new pathways to humor and philanthropy. He deserves our applause.

The Official Jerry Lewis Comedy Museum and Store: http://www.jerrylewiscomedy.com/
Jerry’ Departure from the MDA Telethon: http://articles.latimes.com/2011/aug/05/entertainment/la-et-jerry-lewis-20110805
A 2005 review of Dean and Me: A Love Story by Shawn Levy: http://www.theguardian.com/film/2005/oct/21/1
Jerry Lewis Filmography: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001471/

Why will we never see The Day the Clown Cried? Thanks to Facebook Friend Elise Crane Derby for the link: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xD-BYt8KiwA&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DxD-BYt8KiwA

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