David Bruce: The Funniest People in Movies — Education, Fans


• Often, geniuses are not satisfied even with works of genius. Frank Capra once visited a film class taught by Professor Jeanine Basinger of Wesleyan College. In the class she showed Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, which of course starred Jimmy Stewart and which Mr. Capra had directed. He strolled the college grounds for most of the film but returned in time to see the end, including the scene in which Mr. Stewart’s character breaks down. Although this scene (and the entire film) is a classic, Mr. Capra became upset. Ms. Basinger asked him what was wrong, and Mr. Capra explained, “I shouldn’t have done it that way. It could have been better.”

• Will Rogers was once asked to be toastmaster at a Jewish charitable club and he surprised everybody, including comedian Eddie Cantor, by speaking Yiddish. According to Mr. Cantor, “It seems the minute he was asked to be toastmaster, he got hold of a young student who in six weeks taught him enough of the language so that he could conduct the program.”

• Phyllis Diller’s first movie starred Bob Hope: Boy, Did I Get a Wrong Number! On the set, Mr. Hope noticed Ms. Diller looking around. After asking, he found out that she was looking for the cue cards. “Phyllis, we don’t use cue cards in movies,” Mr. Hope explained. “That’s only in television.” Ms. Diller was surprised: “Oh? Then I’d better learn my lines.”


• Professional golfer Peter Jacobsen has seen actor Samuel L. Jackson at many celebrity golf tournaments, and he knows that Mr. Jackson often goes across the rope separating the golfers from the crowd of fans so he can mingle with the fans. Of course, many celebrities are leery of doing that — sometimes with good reason — so Mr. Jacobsen asked Mr. Jackson why he did that. Mr. Jackson explained, “Because, Peter, these are the people who allow me to be playing here. They go see my movies, they buy the DVDs, they make me who I am. And I greatly appreciate their support of me and my work.” Mr. Jacobsen observes with admiration, “How impressive is that?”

• While actor Paul Newman was in Kansas City to film Mr. and Mrs. Bridge, he went into an ice cream shop, where he met one of the local citizens, who was flustered to see a big movie star. The woman paid for her ice cream, then left the ice cream shop. A few moments later, she realized that she didn’t have her ice cream in her hand, so she returned to the shop. Mr. Newman asked her, “Are you looking for your ice cream?” Still flustered, the woman could only nod. Mr. Newman then told her, “You put it in your purse with your change.”

• Beautiful actress/model June Wilkinson made a movie in Mexico titled The Rage Within. Her male co-star was in love with her, and his house was filled with her photographs. The night before they were to film a big scene, they went on a date, and he tried to kiss her. However, Ms. Wilkinson declined to be kissed, and the leading man grew angry and told her, “Your pictures are sexier than you are!” The next day, the director asked her, “Are you ready for your big love scene? How was your date?” She replied, “I think we’re in trouble.”

• Andy Robinson played a psycho killer in Dirty Harry. No, he did not play Dirty Harry — he played the other psycho killer. This movie has a famous scene at the end in which Dirty Harry holds a gun that may or may not contain a bullet on Mr. Robinson’s character and asks him, “Do you feel lucky? Well, do you, punk?” In real life Mr. Robinson is a committed pacifist, and unfortunately in real life strangers sometimes recognize him and say to him, “Do you feel lucky? Well, do you, punk?”


Copyright by Bruce D. Bruce; All Rights Reserved


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Music Recommendation: The Moan — “You Got It”


Music: “You Got It”


Artist: The Moan

Location: Long Beach, California

lnfo: “A lil vintage sound to make your world go ’round.”

Songwriters: Lux & Julio Chavez 

Vocals: Mandie Bee & Carina Vitolo 
Guitar: Jesus Nunez 
Bass: Julio Chavez 
Drum: Chris Lane

Price: $5 (USD) for 6-track EP

Genre: Girl Group. Pop.




The Moan on Bandcamp