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Wed Oct 17, 2012, 08:45 PM

TCM Schedule for Friday, October 19 -- What's On Tonight -- American Politics in the Movies

It's a day full of the films of writer/director Richard Brooks, and another evening of American politics in the movies. So, a quick question for fans of political cinema -- who do you think should play President Obama in the inevitable bio-pic to be made in 2017 or so? Enjoy!

6:00 AM -- Crisis (1950)
An American doctor gets caught in the middle of a revolution when he's forced to operate on a South American dictator.
Dir: Richard Brooks
Cast: Cary Grant, Jose Ferrer, Paula Raymond
BW-96 mins, TV-G, CC,

Director Richard Brooks was as the Santa Anita race track where he met Cary Grant and struck up a conversation about this film; Brooks wrote the story but also wanted to direct but none of the studios would let him, but Grant asked for a copy of the script and loved it - so much so that Grant himself went to MGM and said he would love to do the movie but only if Brooks was the director.

7:45 AM -- The Light Touch (1952)
An art thief tries to double cross his gangster boss.
Dir: Richard Brooks
Cast: Stewart Granger, Pier Angeli, George Sanders
BW-93 mins, TV-G, CC,

Filmed on location in Tunis, Tunisa, and Sicily and Rome, Italy.

9:30 AM -- Battle Circus (1953)
A doctor fights for his life during the Korean War.
Dir: Richard Brooks
Cast: Humphrey Bogart, June Allyson, Keenan Wynn
BW-90 mins, TV-PG, CC,

The film originally had a different title but the studio and the director thought that title would mislead audiences, so the title "Battle Circus" was instead chosen. The title that was rejected: "MASH".

11:15 AM -- Take the High Ground! (1953)
A tough drill sergeant prepares green recruits for service in the Korean War.
Dir: Richard Brooks
Cast: Maurice Jara, Robert Arthur, William Hairston
C-101 mins, TV-PG, CC,

Nominated for an Oscar for Best Writing, Story and Screenplay -- Millard Kaufman

Ryan, Holt, and the soldiers and recruits at Ft. Bliss wear the shoulder patch of the 4th Army - a white four-leaf clover on a red diamond. The 4th Army was activated in 1932 as the U.S. Western Defense Command. During World War II, the 4th Army operated the Louisiana maneuver area, and was credited with training about half the combat units that went overseas.

1:00 PM -- Blackboard Jungle (1955)
An idealistic teacher confronts the realities of juvenile delinquency.
Dir: Richard Brooks
Cast: Glenn Ford, Anne Francis, Louis Calhern
BW-101 mins, TV-14, CC, Letterbox Format

Nominated for Oscars for Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, Black-and-White -- Cedric Gibbons, Randall Duell, Edwin B. Willis and Henry Grace, Best Cinematography, Black-and-White -- Russell Harlan, Best Film Editing -- Ferris Webster, and Best Writing, Screenplay -- Richard Brooks

The original novel was based on author Evan Hunter's own experiences as a teacher in South Bronx. Hunter, who found fame as crime writer Ed McBain, said "I thought I was going to give these kids who want to be motor mechanics Shakespeare and they were going to appreciate it and they weren't buying it. I went home in tears night after night".

2:45 PM -- Elmer Gantry (1960)
A young drifter finds success as a traveling preacher until his past catches up with him.
Dir: Richard Brooks
Cast: Burt Lancaster, Jean Simmons, Arthur Kennedy
C-147 mins, TV-PG, CC, Letterbox Format

Won Oscars for Best Actor in a Leading Role -- Burt Lancaster, Best Actress in a Supporting Role -- Shirley Jones, and Best Writing, Screenplay Based on Material from Another Medium -- Richard Brooks

Nominated for Oscars for Best Music, Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture -- André Previn, and Best Picture

Director Richard Brooks did not want Shirley Jones for the role of Lulu Bains, but Burt Lancaster insisted. As a result, Brooks gave Jones no direction in the filming of a very difficult scene. Brooks eventually admitted to her that he couldn't see anyone else in the role.

5:15 PM -- Sweet Bird Of Youth (1962)
A young gigolo returns to his southern hometown in search of the lost love of his youth.
Dir: Richard Brooks
Cast: Paul Newman, Geraldine Page, Shirley Knight
C-120 mins, TV-PG, CC, Letterbox Format

Won an Oscar for Best Actor in a Supporting Role -- Ed Begley

Nominated for Oscars for Best Actress in a Leading Role -- Geraldine Page, and Best Actress in a Supporting Role -- Shirley Knight

Longtime MGM hair stylist Sydney Guilaroff appears uncredited attending to the hair of Geraldine Page. He was extremely well respected, serving as chief hair stylist at MGM from 1934 until the late 1970s. Although he did not receive onscreen credit, he designed Judy Garland's hair styles for The Wizard of Oz and made Lucille Ball's hair red for Du Barry Was a Lady, the color she kept it for the rest of her life.

7:30 PM -- MGM Parade Show #16 (1955)
Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald perform in a clip from "Maytime"; George Murphy introduces a clip from "I'll Cry Tomorrow." Hosted by George Murphy.
BW-26 mins, TV-G,


8:00 PM -- A Face In The Crowd (1957)
A female television executive turns a folk-singing drifter into a powerful media star.
Dir: Elia Kazan
Cast: Andy Griffith, Patricia Neal, Anthony Franciosa
BW-126 mins, TV-PG, CC, Letterbox Format

Keith Olbermann refers to controversial FOX News commentator Glenn Beck as "Lonesome Rhodes" Beck, after Andy Griffith's character in this film.

10:15 PM -- The Glass Key (1942)
A hired gun and his gangster boss fall out over a woman.
Dir: Stuart Heisler
Cast: Brian Donlevy, Veronica Lake, Alan Ladd
BW-85 mins, TV-14, CC,

"The Screen Guild Theater" broadcast a 30 minute radio adaptation of the movie on July 22, 1946 with Alan Ladd reprising his film role.

11:45 PM -- Flamingo Road (1949)
A stranded carnival dancer takes on a corrupt political boss when she marries into small-town society.
Dir: Michael Curtiz
Cast: Joan Crawford, Zachary Scott, Sydney Greenstreet
BW-94 mins, TV-PG, CC,

Originally intended as a vehicle for Ann Sheridan, who turned down role played by Joan Crawford.

1:30 AM -- A Night at the Movies: Hollywood Goes to Washington (2012)
BW-59 mins, TV-PG, CC, Letterbox Format

2:30 AM -- The Super Cops (1974)
Two rogue cops enlist a streetwalker to help them stop a deadly drug ring.
Dir: Gordon Parks
Cast: Ron Leibman, David Selby, Sheila Frazier
C-93 mins, TV-MA, CC,

The two real-life policemen, David Greenberg and Robert Hantz, upon whose exploits this film is based, appear in bit parts as detectives. The New York papers did actually report their story as "The Adventures of Batman and Robin."

4:15 AM -- Cops and Robbers (1973)
Two police officers turn to crime to augment their pensions.
C-89 mins, TV-MA, CC, Letterbox Format

Last completed cinema film of Kent Smith.

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