Archive for Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills

Jerry Maren

Posted in Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills with tags , , on June 26, 2019 by Cade

maren1January 24, 1920 – May 24, 2018

Gerard Marenghi, aka Jerry Maren, was an actor who was notable as the last surviving adult munchkin from the 1939 MGM classic film, The Wizard of Oz. Maren appeared as a member of the memorable “Lollipop Guild” during Dorothy’s introduction to the land of Oz. At the time of his death at the age of 98, he was also the last surviving actor with a speaking part in the movie. Continue reading

Garry Marshall

Posted in Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills with tags , , , on December 19, 2018 by Cade

November 13, 1934 – July 19, 2016

Garry Marshall was an immensely successful producer, director and writer whose contributions to American television could hardly be missed for much of the 1970s and ’80s. After coming up as a joke writer on shows like The Joey Bishop Show, Make Room for Daddy and The Dick Van Dyke Show, Marshall created and produced a string of hits of his own, including Happy Days, Laverne and Shirley, The Odd Couple and Mork and Mindy. He wrote, acted, directed and just about everything in between. His career as a feature film director found notable success, as well, with box office smashes like Pretty Woman, Overboard, Beaches and The Princess Diaries. Continue reading

Al Jarreau

Posted in Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills with tags , , on December 10, 2018 by Cade

March 12, 1940 – February 12, 2017

Jazz singer Al Jarreau walked by night. And he flew by day. Nothing could change him. Set and sure of the way. Originally from Wisconsin, Jarreau got his professional start in night clubs in the San Francisco area. L.A. would soon call and with it came TV appearances, recording contracts, Grammys and acclaim. With hits like “We’re in This Love Together” and “After All”, Jarreau’s smooth vocals resonated with audiences. Later in his career he focused on live shows and even appeared on Broadway in the 1996 revival of Grease. His biggest hit (at least in my house) was the theme song to the late-80s television show, Moonlighting. Continue reading

Dick Van Patten

Posted in Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills with tags , on November 28, 2018 by Cade

December 9, 1928 – June 23, 2015

Whether you remember Dick Van Patten as the infinitely-understanding father in the hit TV show Eight is Enough, from his many appearances in Mel Brooks’ comedies like Spaceballs, High Anxiety and Robin Hood: Men in Tights, or from any number of his scores of other screen credits, his was a face (and persona) not soon forgotten. Richard Vincent Van Patten grew up in New York. He appeared on stage from an early age and made no hesitation to transition to Hollywood. His 60+ year career found him appearing on dozens of hit TV shows and films. His most iconic role, that of Tom Bradford on the 1977-1981 NBC dramedy Eight is Enough, taught audiences everything they would need to know about the man behind the role. Continue reading

Scatman Crothers

Posted in Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills with tags , , on October 26, 2018 by Cade

May 23, 1910 – November 22, 1986

Benjamin Sherman “Scatman” Crothers was a multi-instrumentalist jazz musician whose extensive filmography would be the envy of any aspiring actor. Crothers began his performance career as a teenager when he played drums in a speakeasy in his home state of Indiana. He eventually moved west with his own band before landing in Los Angeles and falling into the whole Hollywood thing. He went on to appear in more than 50 films and nearly as many television shows. His distinctive voice and cadence made him a popular pick for guest spots and voice over roles. Continue reading

Paul Walker

Posted in Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills with tags , on October 16, 2018 by Cade

September 12, 1973 – November 30, 2013

Look. I’m not above “low-hanging-fruit” jokes. It would be EASY to make a The Fast and the Furious joke at the expense of Paul Walker. The fact that he was most widely-known for his starring role in the drift-happy street racing film franchise AND happened to die in a souped-up Porsche on a curve well known for high-speed drifting is RIFE with irony. It wouldn’t be right, mind you. But, it WOULD be obvious and lazy. Continue reading

Bill Paxton

Posted in Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills with tags , on September 24, 2018 by Cade

May 17, 1955 – February 25, 2017

In the year and a half or so since his abrupt and untimely death at the age of 61, it’s still hard to imagine a world without Bill Paxton. The actor turned up so often for so long that one can be forgiven for still expecting to see him show up in some new movie or TV show today. Working often with director James Cameron, Paxton graced the screen in dozens of the most popular movies in the world for the better part of 3 decades. Small but memorable roles in the 1980s (Alien, Weird Science) led to blockbuster roles in the ’90s (Titanic, Tombstone, Twister) and lucrative TV roles in the 2000s (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Big Love – the latter of which earned him a number of Golden Globe and Emmy nominations.) He was literally everywhere. He even started a new wave band in 1982 because why not? Continue reading

Ub Iwerks

Posted in Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills with tags , , , on September 17, 2018 by Cade

March 24, 1901 – July 7, 1971

Here’s a simple question: Would there be a Walt Disney without Ub Iwerks?

Here’s a complicated answer: Yes…but probably not the Disney we know today.

Ubbe Eert “Ub” Iwerks was close friends with Walt dating back to their days in Kansas City as struggling artists. Iwerks was at Disney’s side through ALL of the early milestones: Laugh-O-Gram, the financial struggles, the move to Los Angeles, the creation of Oswald the Lucky Rabbit…the LOSS of Oswald the Lucky Rabbit to Universal, and the creation of a mouse by the name of “Mickey.” Iwerks served as the chief animator for Disney. His ability to draw and animate quickly coupled with his quirky sense of humor made him an invaluable asset to the fledgling entertainment empire. Ub’s style can be prominently displayed in the legendary Mickey short, Steamboat Willie, which he animated in its entirety. Continue reading

Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds

Posted in Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills with tags , , on January 17, 2017 by Cade

October 21, 1956 – December 27, 2016
April 1, 1932 – December 28, 2016

Carrie Fisher was born into Hollywood royalty. Her father was crooner Eddie Fisher and her mother was actress and iconic girl-next-door, Debbie Reynolds. Onstage from the very beginning, she enjoyed a very successful career. She will forever be linked to her most indelible character, Princess Leia from the blockbuster Star Wars film franchise. But, she was more than a strong, rebellious princess. Fisher was a fearless comedic actor and writer. She wrote critically-acclaimed screenplays and novels and was for a time, the go-to “script doctor” in the industry. She overcame personal demons stemming from drug abuse and bi-polar disorder and always, always, kept her wit. Continue reading

Rod Steiger

Posted in Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills with tags , on December 17, 2013 by Cade

steiger1April 14, 1925 – July 9, 2002

Appearing in over 100 movies, Academy Award winner Rod Steiger was about as powerful of a screen presence and you could find. His turns in such classics as Oklahoma!, On the Waterfront, In the Heat of the Night and Doctor Zhivago are woven into the fabric of the history of film. In an attempt to escape his alcoholic mother, a young Steiger joined the Navy and served in World War II. Following the war, he broke into show business via stage and live television and embarked on a 50 year career that saw him do everything from channel Napoleon Bonaparte (Waterloo) to fight off comic alien invaders (Mars Attacks!). Continue reading