The mammoth complete DVD collection of The Man From U.N.C.L.E. contains ten hours of extras.
The Wall Street Journal reports that sales are booming for vintage TV series released as complete collections. Get Smart and The Man From U.N.C.L.E. have performed particularly well. In other cases, however, the studio's decision to release some series by season or half-season has drawn the ire of fans- especially when sales don't merit the release of future episodes, thus leaving collectors "stranded". The article also talks about the rise of the web site Hulu, where fans can stream entire episodes of their favorite shows. For more click here
The ultra-rare 1938 first edition of Action Comics has fetched $317,000 at auction. The comic is an iconic part of American pop culture because it marked the first appearance of Superman. Only 100 copies are known to exist and they rarely come up for auction. The owner had purchased the second hand issue for 35 cents in the 1950s. For more click here
Mary Tyler Moore and best friend Bernadette Peters with Mary's forthcoming book "Growing Up Again". (Photo copyright Lee Pfeiffer/Cinema Retro)
The comedy genius, 95 year-old Prof. Irwin Corey drops by our table to inform us that he's just learned that his blood type is now extinct. Irwin's fellow conspiracy theorists will be happy to know that his political paranoia didn't end with the Bush administration - he's now convinced Obama is also up to no good. ("Even though I voted for him!") (Photo copyright: Lee Pfeiffer/Cinema Retro)
By Lee Pfeiffer
Last Sunday, Mary Tyler Moore was honored with a special ceremony at The Players, the legendary club for the arts at New York's Gramercy Park. Miss Moore, who looked as stunning as ever, was obviously delighted to be among her friends and colleagues at the black tie event. She mingled during the cocktail hour, then laughed during the post-dinner on-stage tributes from Elaine Stritch, Bernadette Peters (who sang an impromptu song about her friendship with Moore) and sitcom director and writer Bill Persky (who wrote some of the best episodes of The Dick Van Dyke Show.) Persky pointed out that he had admired Moore long before he even knew what she looked like, as she was the sexy "legs" protruding from a dancing pack of cigarettes in a TV commercial. Persky also related that Moore had tested for the part of Danny Thomas' daughter in his sitcom, but Thomas turned her down because no one would believe the cute actress with the button nose could have been the off-spring of a man with a protuding schnozzola. A couple of years later, when casting for the role of Laura Petrie in The Dick Van Dyke Show, Thomas, who was producing the series, remembered Moore and said "Get me the girl without the nose!"
Dick Cavett chats with friends in the club's Great Hall. (Photo copyright: Lee Pfeiffer/Cinema Retro)
Haunted by his past: Tony Bennett is reminded of his role in The Oscar by Cinema Retro editor-in-chief Lee Pfeiffer. (Photo copyright: Barbara Sciangula/Cinema Retro)
Following a gourmet dinner, Miss Moore was treated to a remarkable compilation of video clips from her career. The club's executive director John Martello, who created the video tribute, correctly observed that Moore's Mary Richards on The Mary Tyler Moore Show was the first "liberated" woman on TV - and became a role model for a generation of young girls.The clips also included Moore guest starring opposite Steve McQueen in Wanted: Dead or Alive and her extraordinary, Oscar-nominated performance in Robert Redford's Ordinary People.In her remarks on stage, Miss Moore spoke about her long battle against diabetes and announced her forthcoming book, which was written to help others cope with the disease. At the conclusion of the event, many attendees retired to the famous Grill Room where once the likes of Cagney and Sinatra held court. I was introduced to the seemingly ageless Tony Bennett and couldn't help but remind him of his performance as the immortal "Hymie Kelly" in the 1966 guilty pleasure The Oscar. "Oh God!", he exclaimed, "Why would anyone want to remember that!" I did assure him that, compared to Stephen Boyd's over-the-top performance, he came across looking like Olivier, which elicited a big laugh.Also in attendance was the great TV talk show host Dick Cavett, whose 1970s chat show won critical acclaim but fell victim to Johnny Carson's ratings juggernaut. When I told Cavett I used to watch the program regularly he joked, "So you were the one!"
In all, another memorable night on the town in good old Gotham.