Gordon Willis, Cinematographer, 1931-2014

If he’d only shot The Godfather, Annie Hall and Manhattan, Gordon Willis’s reputation would be secure as one of the visual artists responsible for Hollywood’s last golden age of artisanal filmmaking.  But his other films were equally masterful–this was the man who also did Pennies from Heaven, Woody Allen’s wonderful run of 80s films (Zelig,…

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Film, Television, Theater

Jean Stapleton, Comic Miracle, 1923-2013

What a sweetheart.  Made me laugh out loud in everything from All in the Family (as Edith Bunker) to Klute (in a cameo as anxious secretary).  What versatility-be it musicals (she was in the original cast of Funny Girl and Bells are Ringing) or drama, hers was a career that ranged from Broadway to TV…

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Film, My back pages, Television, Theater, Vespers

Jane White, Actress 1922-2011

“Who is that?” I recalled thinking as a child when I first saw Jane White in a television version of Once Upon a Mattress.  As the imperious Queen Aggravain, her performance was a lesson in comedy and drop-dead stylishness; she was something special, and I looked forward to seeing her again. But sightings were rare—hers…

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