I’m a bit late with this entry given November is two days old already (where does the time go?) so I’ll get right to my TCM highlights for the month.
There’s a particularly interesting article by Robert Osborne in the November issue of TCM‘s ‘Now Playing’ guide. As each month’s featured write-up Mr. Osborne dedicates an entry to the Star of Month and November’s dedicated star is Norma Shearer. Rather than discussing the movies scheduled to air starring Shearer Osborne’s article discusses the fact that the actress was an important star, debunking the claim championed by rival Joan Crawford that stated that Shearer got important roles at MGM because she was sleeping with the boss. As Osborne notes, Norma Shearer was offered prime roles by the mega studio because the camera and audiences loved her. And with good reason as she proved to be not only a star of great magnitude, but an affecting actor. If you’re not a Norma Shearer fan already tune in to TCM on Tuesday nights this month and find out for yourself why hers is such an unforgettable presence on the screen. There will be 22 examples of her work offered.
OK, so you have your assignment for Tuesday nights, but TCM is offering lots more to look forward to. On Wednesdays the network will air 15 movies based on Southern American Literature, a series hosted by popular author John Grisham who has seen nine of his own books adapted to the big screen. Although I haven’t read a I’m a Grisham book in quite some time I went through my ‘Grisham period’ so I’m looking forward to his commentary. As part of the Southern Writers series you can expect such classics as Richard Thorpe’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1939), Richard Brooks’ In Cold Blood (1967), one of my all-time favorite movies, Charles Laughton’s The Night of the Hunter (1955) and of course standards Richard Mulligan’s To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), which is an ‘Essentials’ pick, and Victor Fleming’s Gone With the Wind (1939). Incidentally, the ‘Scorsese Screens’ article in this month’s ‘Now Playing’ guide is an interesting discussion of the ‘Southern Writers’ themes in film so you might want to check it out.
I can’t possibly mention all that’s airing on TCM in November so be sure to check out the schedule. The usual birthday spotlights alone are enough to keep everyone busy. But I am looking forward to a few other special events aside from the Norma Shearer movies and the ‘Southern Writers’ series like the Greg Proops stint as Guest Programmer on November 5th. The hilarious comedian is sure to be entertaining as he introduces his choice of four favorite films, which results in a surprisingly eclectic mix. My final special mention goes to the November 9th schedule dedicated to TCM’s third partnership with Bonhams Auction house with “Treasures from the Dream Factory,” which will take place on November 23rd in New York. The movies to air during the auction tribute on the 9th will include Mervyn LeRoy’s Gypsy (1962), Charlie Chaplin’s Limelight (1953) and Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). I’m afraid I’ll likely nap during the last one as is always the case.
You can watch the “Treasures from the Dream Factory” promotional video, during which Ben Mankiewicz spoils the ending to Citizen Kane by clicking on the following image…
And that’s…Oh – wait – there’s also a 5-film tribute to Hepburn and Tracy scheduled for November 26th. That’s newsworthy, right?
…and a few other TCM-rated November happenings…
- Well, this is not actually a ‘happening,’ but still…Since the holidays are practically upon us I am letting everyone know I would like a subscription to the recently announced TCM Wine Club. I’ve always wanted to learn more about wine so this club of classic movie related offerings seems tailor-made for me.
- Passes for the 2016 TCM Classic Film Festival go on sale on November 19. Get ready for the frenzy!
- TCM remembers the great Maureen O’Hara who passed on October 24 with a 24-hour, 12-film retrospective on November 20th. The death of Ms. O’Hara broke many hearts. The fan favorite, classic beauty and talented actress will be sorely missed and I’ve no doubt we will be on Twitter and Facebook in great numbers on the 20th to celebrate her life and career. Take a look at the TCM Remembers video here and have a tissue handy.
“Maureen O’Hara is one of the people I love the most out all the people I know.” – Lucille Ball
“There’s only one woman who has been my friend over the years and by that I mean a real friend, like a man would be. That woman is Maureen O’Hara. She’s big, lusty, and absolutely marvelous, definitely my kind of woman. She’s a great guy. I’ve had many friends and I prefer the company of men. Except for Maureen O’Hara.” – John Wayne
- Finally, there’s this special screening to look forward to…. (click on the image for ticket information)
There you have my TCM highlights for the month. I’ll see you online!
Before I go I want to extend a THANK YOU to Noralil Fores who handles the Entertainment Marketing and Social Media for TCM. Noralil extended a courtesy that resulted in this post and it is much appreciated. At the very least I owe her a long debate on “art vs. entertainment.”