Cary Grant

The 8 People You Meet in a Screwball Comedy

This week, the Criterion Collection released a sparkling new Blu-ray and DVD edition of Frank Capra’s It Happened One Night, best known as one of only three movies (along with One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and Silence of the Lambs) to win all of the Big Five Oscars: Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director, Best Screenplay. And it swept those awards for good reason: it’s a zippy, fast-talking, sexy gem. But the 1934 smash is also widely acknowledged as the first true “screwball comedy,” a subgenre that would dominate studio comedy for the better part of a decade. And it features an assortment of colorful characters that would be replicated, repurposed, and supplemented throughout the genre’s dominance, and in scores of subsequent homages and tributes. Here’s a brief introduction. … Read More

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Cool Illustrations Pair Hollywood Icons with Famous Architects

Illustrator Federico Babina has carved out an impressive niche documenting and interpreting popular culture through the lens of architecture, fusing building design with music, modern art, and film. Now, he’s used his unique sensibility to combine iconic architects and celebrities with the series Archilife, with each illustration placing a Hollywood star in a home designed by the appropriate draftsman. Check out the entire series on his website; our favorites are collected after the jump. … Read More

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Eva Marie Saint on Kissing Cary Grant

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The 30 Harshest Actor-on-Actor Insults in History

In the current ultra-managed, publicist-controlled, sound-byte-driven media atmosphere, you don’t get to hear stars really speaking their minds anymore — at least, not about anything fun, like how they really feel about their fellow stars. But occasionally a little something sneaks through the PR wall, both now and back in Hollywood’s golden age, sometimes as whispers, sometimes as gossip, sometimes long after the fact. And thus, we present another, long-overdue installment of our ongoing series (following authors, filmmakers, and musicians) of really famous people really cutting each other… Read More

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The 10 Best Hitchcock Movies Alfred Hitchcock Didn’t Direct

This week marks the standalone Blu-ray debut of Torn Curtain, one of the last of the Alfred Hitchcock films that were previously only available as part of the expensive Masterpiece Collection box set. Those films, ranging from black comedy to quiet mystery to all-out horror, show the wide range of genres that can fall into the overall (and often overused) classification of “Hitchcockian.” After the jump, we’ll take a look at a few classic and modern films that bear the earmark of Hitchcock’s profound influence. … Read More

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When Celebrities Sue Celebrities: A History

The news that Donald Trump is dropping — for now, anyway! — his monumentally stupid (even for him) lawsuit against Bill Maher may be good for the humorless blowhard and reality TV star, but it’s disappointing for late-night comedy writers and celeb jurisprudence fans. C’mon, admit it: that would’ve been a fun trial, if for nothing else than Maher’s testimony. At any rate, while we’re waiting to see if Trump holds true on his threat to return to the matter at a later date, here’s a look back at other instances of celebrities — real and C-list — who’ve taken each other to court. … Read More

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A Beginner’s Guide to Hitchcock

It’s a very big fall for fans of Alfred Hitchcock. First and foremost, Universal has released Alfred Hitchcock: The Masterpiece Collection, a fabulous 15-disc limited edition Blu-ray set featuring several of Hitch’s masterpieces (including Vertigo, Rear Window, Psycho, and North by Northwest) in gorgeous HD transfers, with copious bonus features. And while his work is available for fresh consumption, there are a pair of new biography treatments as well — on the small screen, we have HBO’s The Girl (with Toby Jones as a rather skeevy Hitch and Sienna Miller as ‘Tippi’ Hedrin), while next week brings the theatrical release of a marvelous new big-screen biopic, Hitchcock (focusing on the production of Psycho, with Anthony Hopkins as Hitchcock, Helen Mirren as wife Alma, and Scarlett Johannson as Janet Leigh).

That’s a lot of Mr. Hitchcock to take in at once, but we’re here to help. If your knowledge of Hitch is confined to a shower scene and a flock of diving seagulls, you’re in luck; we’ve put together a Beginner’s Guide to Hitchcock, earmarking his major motifs, significant films, and relevant facts. Check it out after the jump. … Read More

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10 Fantastic Comedies Based on True Stories

You wouldn’t think that the cold-blooded murder of a defenseless old woman would make for big laughs, but that’s just one of the surprises found in Bernie, Richard Linklater’s wickedly enjoyable Texas comedy, out today on DVD and Blu-ray. And it’s all true — or, as the opening title card notes, “What you’re fixin’ to see is a true story.”

As the old saw goes, truth is stranger than fiction, and in ruminating about the pleasures of Bernie, we discovered that several of our favorite comedies were, in fact, based on real events. After the jump, a few thoughts on that film, and nine others based on (varying degrees of) true stories. … Read More

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Rare, Behind-the-Scenes Stills Featuring Hollywood’s Icons

Joel W. Finler’s Hollywood Movie Stills — Titan Books’ newest behind-the-scenes film compendium that hits stores tomorrow, June 5 — delivers far more than its title suggests. Indeed, the new filmic chronicle is a gorgeous gallery of never-before-seen cinematic stills, photographs, production artwork, and more from the author’s personal collection. However, Finler’s book also “traces the origin of stills photography during the silent era and the early development of the star system, through to the rise of the giant studios in the 1930s and their eventual decline. Finler focuses on the photographers, on the stars they photographed, and on many key films and filmmakers.” It’s a fascinating look at Hollywood’s elite like we’ve never seen them before. Head past the break for a preview of Hollywood Movie Stills, and see Marlon Brando, Cary Grant, and your other favorite film icons in our gallery. Then, pick up a copy of the book over here. … Read More

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Our All-Time Favorite Actor/Director Movie Teams

Dark Shadows opens this week, whether we like it or not, but it does give us cause to pause for numerical consideration. No, we’re not talking about the amount of time since Tim Burton’s last film that was based on an original idea — that would be seven years, since Corpse Bride. Before that, you have to go clear back to 1990’s Edward Scissorhands, which was also (coincidentally enough) his first time working with Dark Shadows star Johnny Depp. Dark Shadows marks their eighth collaboration, which got us thinking about some of our favorite (and most productive, with a minimum of four pairings) actor/director teams. After the jump, we’ve compiled a dozen of the best from movie history; add your own in the comments, won’t you? … Read More

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