Archive for October, 2023

Whiteoaks of Jalna

Can anyone help with this – I seem to remember seeing a Television series on the Jalna books way back in the early / mid seventies screened I think on ITV in the early afternoon titled ‘Whiteoaks of Jalna’

There were apparently 16 Jalna books featuring the Whiteoaks family over a century and for whatever reason the books didn’t necessariy follow on in any sort of date order.

The Author of these hugely successful books was Mazo de la Roche and in many ways the stories seemed like a TV screen writer’s dream – several generations of colourful characters living under one roof, lots of action, intrigue and humour, in a story spanning decades.

Film or TV Companies should have been able to turn this into another Forsyte Saga – maybe still could

The 16-novel soap-opera series about a nineteenth-century Ontario family, the Whiteoaks, and their home, Jalna, has sold over 11 million copies.

Has anyone got a video or DVD of this please.

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Dad’s Army – The New one 2016

This film was on ITV3 a few Sundays ago , and we watched it again.

What a scene this is – a German UBoat surfaces near Warmington On Sea

ABOVE – One of my own pictures – and I love it – so dramatic

The film seems to divide opinions but for me I was very happy with it – Toby Jones as Captain Mainwaring and Bill Naghy as Sergeant Wilson were just about perfect in their well known roles.

Tom Courtenay was quite good as Corporal Jones as was Michael Gambon playing Godfrey – and the lovely Catherine Zeta Jones added a new dimension

In many ways, it was a brave move even to take on these parts which were so much identified with their predecessors but nevertheless they did and the results in my view were extremely good.

What a rousing end it was as Mainwaring led his men on a march through Warmington-on-Sea with cheering crowds as Three Spitfires swooped down above them. I couldn’t stop cheering !!

Captain Mainwaring and Sergeant Wilson head the parade through Walmington On Sea

Walmington On Sea – Bridlington Old Town

Walmington On Sea – Bridlington Old Town

Three Spitfires swoop overhead

A couple of the original cast members appeared in this 2016 film – Frank Williams who played the vicar Reverend Timothy Farthing – and does so again here and Ian Lavender who as a very young man was Private Pike, here he plays Brigadier Pritchard

The film did well at the Box Office

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Montana Territory 1952

Saturday afternoon and I scanned through the Film Channels to find what I think was called GreatMovies and settling on that I watched ‘Montana Territory’ from 1952 in Technicolor but with a running time of just 64 minutes.

However those minutes were packed with Western Action and I have to say it was a film I thoroughly enjoyed

Pretty impressive supporting cast with Jack Elam, Clayton Moore and Myron Healey – I didnt know much about Lon McCallister but he proved good in this leading role

Enter Wanda Hendrix who seems to misunderstand what is going on early in the film
Lon McCallister tries to explain

Much of the location filing was done at the Iverson Ranch just outside Hollywood – used in many Westerns – and others including the Jungle Jim series. Famous Film Director William Witney used this a lot and said that he was not fully at ease there because it was inhabited by quite a few Rattlesnakes

ABOVE – Preston Foster plays the Sheriff – but is he all seems seems to be ?

ABOVE – Wanda Handrix is captured and dragged back into the Ranch House

Lon McCallister is injured be is OK in the arms of Wanda Hendrix

Back to Wanda Hendrix – she had married Audie Murphy in February of 1949 but in 1950 she filed for divorce although I think she always loved him. When he remarried in April 1951 she went off to New York for as she says ‘heartache’ reasons on hearing this news.

She had many escorts until she later married Robert Stack’s brother – that marriage also ended in divorce.

When Audie Murphy died a lot of years later in 1971 she attended his funeral and was weeping throughout.

A decade later, at the age of 52, she died

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Steven Blakeley of Heartbeat and George Formby

‘Its Turned out Nice Again’ was shown on Television very recently – a film I know so well and just love with George Formby – this time married – but living with his dragon of a mother.

George works at a ladies underwear factory – an old traditional company whose products seem woefully out of date with modern design. Hence the cue for George to sing ‘You can’t go wrong in these’ at this very plush exhibition

Geore here with his wife played by Peggy Bryan
Peggy with George’s mother
George sings ‘You can’t go wrong in these
Aunty Maggie’s Remedy

I have often thought that there would be an opportunity to make a film of George’s life or even a remake of one of his films. If that ever happened then I would put forward the former Heartbeat actor Steven Blakeley to star as George. In many ways he looks very similar, and the role he played as PC Geoff Younger is very much on the style of George Formby in his films

I personally think that he would be brilliant

BELOW a scene from Heartbeat

BELOW – Anyone wishing to see Steven act again will be able to go the The Theatre Royal at Windsor where in a few weeks he will appear in Aladdin

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Janet Munro – a really pretty girl

Born September 28, 1934:

Actress Janet Munro was born in Blackpool. She starred in the live-action Disney films “Swiss Family Robinson” (portraying the “cabin boy” Bertie), “Third Man on the Mountain” (as Lizbeth Hempel), and “Darby O’Gill and the Little People” (as Katie O’Gill).

Selected by Walt Disney himself out of 300 candidates for the female lead in “Darby O’Gill” (the film was shot in Hollywood but cast out of London), Janet Munro later won a Golden Globe for her performance.

Sadly, she passed at only age 38 in 1972.

Janet Munro

She admitted to being an alcoholic something that led to her tragic and early death although according to one Film Director who knew her well, she never touched alcohol at all until she met and later married Ian Hendry

She married British actor Ian Hendry in a wedding ceremony at Bayswater Presbyterian Church in London in February 1963. He was 32 and she was 28. They had a brief 24 hour honeymoon due to the fact that Hendry was due to start work on a new film Double Twist at Twickenham film studios.

They had two daughters.

Janet Munro with her daughter Sally ABOVE

Sean Conner singing in ‘Darby O’Gill and the Little People. Made in Hollywood

ABOVE – One of Janet Munro’s most successful films – for Walt Disneyand BELOW Another very good one again from Walt Disney

BELOW – A thrilling action shot from the film with Janet Munro leaping across a ravine – Wonderful

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Football Stars meet Film Stars at Pinewood

Jimmy Greaves and his friend Bobby Moore meet Sean Connery on the set of ‘You Only Live Twice’ and Yul Brynner filming at Pinewood Film Studios.

This is just days before the 1966 World Cup began

Not sure what film Yul Brynner was involved with here – maybe ‘The Long Duel’ directed by Ken Annakinbut I am by no means sure of this

Zebradelic: Charlotte Rampling in The Long Duel
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Glynis Johns is 100 Years Old

Film and Stage actress Glynis Johns is now retired and lives in a residential care home in Beverly Hills, California,

She celebrated her 100th birthday on October 5, 2023 – she was actually born in South Africa, where her parents were on tour, but she was soon back in England and made her stage debut as a babe in arms along with her Grand Parents

I recall her as the mermaid in ‘Miranda’ and later in ‘The Card’ with quite a lot of that film shot in Llandudno


For Walt Disney she was in ‘The Sword and the Rose’ and after that came Rob Roy.

She met members of The Royal Family many times, including Queen Elizabeth 11 at the premiere for Rob Roy The Highland Rogue’ in October 1953 – a film that the Queen, we later heard, did not much like

She was married to Anthony Forwood and had a son Gareth who died in 2007 . I saw Anthony Forwood, a few days ago, in one of the Colonel March episodes on Talking Pictures but he is best remembered as being Will Scarlet in Walt Disney’s The Story of Robin Hood and His Merrie Men’ released in 1952

In 1949 Anthony Forwood gained his first acting role when he starred in Ralph Thomas’ Traveller’s Joy. That same year he appeared in the thriller Man in Black with Sid James. Some time later, in 1952, he received a number of roles including Appointment in London with Dirk Bogarde, One year later he acted in the Oscar-nominated Knights of the Round Table, a film starring such high-profile actors as Robert Taylor, Ava Gardner and Stanley Baker, and in Terence Fisher’s Mantrap (1953). His last role came in 1956 in Colonel March of Scotland Yard.

Gareth Forwood had quite a good film and stage career although he never made the big time. He had a son

Anthony Forwood was divorced from Glynis Johns and became the partner of Dirk Bogarde for the remainder of his life

Dirk Bogarde and Anthony Forwood

Bogarde always publicly denied he was a homosexual, though later in life he did confess that he and his manager, Anthony Forwood, had a long-term relationship. When Bogarde met him in 1939, Forwood was a theatrical manager, who eventually married and divorced Glynis Johns. Forwood became Bogarde’s friend and subsequently his life partner, and the two moved to France together in 1968. They bought a 15th-century farmhouse near Grasse in Provence in the early 1970s, which they restored. Bogarde and Forwood lived in the house until 1983, when they returned to London so that Anthony Forwood could be treated for cancer, from which he eventually died in 1988. Bogarde nursed him in the last few months of his life.

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‘The Quick Gun’ and ‘Apache Uprising’ – Audie Murphy and Merry Anders

This is a pairing that I think is on DVD / Blu Ray as opposed to a cinema release

Both Audie Murphy films

It would seem that in Britain Arizona Raiders went out as the supporting film – and again BELOW the same with ‘The Quick Gun’.

Looking at the Poster, I cannot recall either ‘A Jolly Bad Fellow’ or ‘The Quick Gun’

‘Arizona Raiders’. was filmed in Techniscope – and here BELOW we see, none other than Elvis looking throught the lens of a Techniscope Camera on the set of his film ‘Clambake’

In ‘The Quick Gun’ – Audie Murphy’s leading lady is Merry Anders a very nice looking girl as can be seen by this photograph from the film

ABOVE – Merry Anders from the film ‘The Quick Gun’

Merry Anders, like so many, started out as a model and was quickly ‘spotted’ and given a film contract with 20th Century Fox, which resulted in quite a few appearances. Then out of that and into a new contract with Warner Brothers which went quite well for a time – then she was dropped. She cried for a couple of days after this and then decided to offer herself as a freelance actress with quite a lot of success in films and on Television.

When this dried up quite a few years later around 1968 she finished with acting and became a receptionist with a large company in Los Angeles

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