Archive for Hollywood Forever

Estelle Getty

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , , on October 10, 2018 by Cade

July 25, 1923 – July 22, 2008

All you need is one role.

For 10 years, Estelle Getty portrayed the wise-cracking octogenarian Sophia Petrillo over the course of four television shows: The Golden Palace, Empty Nest, Nurses and The Golden Girls.  It was, of course, on The Golden Girls where audiences met and fell in love with the irascible Sicilian mother of Bea Arthur’s Dorothy. Getty won an Emmy and a Golden Globe for her performance and was nominated many other times. Continue reading

Rudolph Valentino

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , on October 5, 2018 by Cade

May 6, 1895 – August 23, 1926

Before Michael Jackson. Before Elvis. Before Marilyn. There was Valentino.

Rodolfo Alfonso Raffaello Pierre Filibert Guglielmi di Valentina d’Antonguella, known to the world as “Rudolph Valentino” was an Italian-born silent film actor who was an international sex symbol and one of the first Hollywood superstars. And his life and career had all the trappings of a Hollywood superstar: getting caught up in a murder in New York, fleeing to Los Angeles and stumbling into the motion picture industry, marrying too many women at the same time. You know, the standard tropes. His exotic good looks and dancing ability enabled him to play a range of characters from a sheik in 1921’s The Sheik to a Spanish bullfighter in 1922’s Blood and Sand. Continue reading

Eleanor Powell

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , on October 1, 2018 by Cade

November 21, 1912 – February 11, 1982

Once – and perhaps always – the greatest tap dancer in the world, Eleanor Powell shuffled and clicked her way from Broadway to Hollywood. Her transition from stage to screen wasn’t idyllic. She initially disliked the the film-making culture and process and when MGM came calling, she made unreasonably high demands to avoid being signed. MGM did not care. They met her demands and she went on to shine in many of the studio’s golden age musicals alongside the likes of Fred Astaire, Nelson Eddy and Jimmy Stewart. Continue reading

Don Adams

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , on September 25, 2018 by Cade

April 13, 1923 – September 25, 2005

“Missed it by THAT much.”

Don Adams (Donald Yarmy) gave life to one of the most memorable and imitated television characters of all time. In 1965, Adams was under contract with NBC, who decided he should play the role of Maxwell Smart on their new show, the Mel Brooks-created spy spoof, Get Smart. Adams took bits and catchphrases from his early stand-up days and wrapped them in a distinct speaking style to bring Agent 86 to the small screen for 5 seasons. Continue reading

Carl “Alfalfa” Switzer

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , , , on September 20, 2018 by Cade

August 7, 1927 – January 21, 1959

The same day that renowned director Cecil B. DeMille died, a fight broke out in a Mission Hills, California home. The fight was over $50 and left a 31 year-old former child star dead of a gunshot wound. The newspapers the next day were all about DeMille, but if one looked hard enough, they would see that Carl Switzer – “Alfalfa” from the Our Gang (Little Rascals) shorts of the 1940s – had been killed.

Alfalfa was arguably the most famous character of the film series which saw dozens of children come and go over its 22 year run.Along with other members like “Spanky,” “Darla” and “Buckwheat,” Switzer’s cowlick’d, off-key prankster helped define what many consider the “classic” line up.

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Johnny Ramone

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , , , on September 12, 2018 by Cade

October 8, 1948 – September 15, 2004

Guitarist for the pioneer punk group the Ramones, Johnny Ramone (John William Cummings) was the downstroke/bar chord king. Formed in 1974 in Forest Hills, Queens, Johnny, Joey, Dee Dee and Tommy Ramone (all adopted pseudonyms) exploded onto the New York City club scene with their “wall of sound” and lightning fast songs. Their performances at storied venues GBGB and Max’s Kansas City drew massive attention and helped usher in a new genre of rock-and-roll: Punk. Johnny’s no-nonsense playing style was the rhythmic driving force behind the band’s massive hits like “Rockaway Beach”, “I Wanna Be Sedated” and “Blitzkrieg Bop.” Continue reading

Dee Dee Ramone

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , , on September 11, 2018 by Cade

September 18, 1951 – June 5, 2002

1-2-3-4…

Douglas Colvin, aka Dee Dee Ramone, was the bass player and most prominent songwriter for the legendary punk rock band, the Ramones. Colvin was the first to adopt a “Ramone” pseudonym after urging the rest of the band to do the same and call themselves the Ramones. Early on, Dee Dee was the main singer, but eventually opted to just play, leading to former-drummer Joey taking over lead vocals. After recording 11 albums with the Ramones, Dee Dee left the band in 1989 to pursue other solo projects – including, but certainly not limited to, a critically-panned hip hop album. Continue reading

Victor Fleming

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , , , on September 4, 2018 by Cade

February 23, 1889 – January 6, 1949

Legendary Hollywood producer, director and cinematographer, Victor Fleming’s entire career could have only lasted one year…and he still would be considered one of the greatest of all time. The year in question was 1939 when Fleming directed TWO classic films ranked among the best or most beloved ever: The Wizard of Oz (released in August) and Gone with the Wind (December). He literally could have just quit there. Fortunately for all of us, there were 38 other years where Fleming worked in the movie business. His movies earned several Academy Award nominations including a Best Director nod for Gone with the Wind, which he won. Continue reading

Chris Cornell

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , , on August 31, 2018 by Cade

July 20, 1964 – May 18, 2017

An enormous talent and an unmistakable voice, Chris Cornell not only soared from the early 1990’s grunge-rock movement, but helped define and shape it. Cornell’s first success was found with the Seattle-based grunge-pioneer band, Soundgarden, which he fronted from the mid-80s until the band dissolved in 1997. Soundgarden shot through the charts and their seminal 1994 release, Superunknown – the band’s 4th – remains one of the most successful and influential albums of that decade. Following Soundgarden, Cornell joined members of Rage Against the Machine to form the supergroup, Audioslave, which went on to release 3 albums and the gold-single “Like a Stone.” Continue reading

Mickey Rooney

Posted in Hollywood Forever Cemetery with tags , on August 22, 2018 by Cade

September 23, 1920 – April 6, 2014

Mickey Rooney was one of the most enduring figures of the classic age of Hollywood. He got his start as a child in vaudeville and quickly found success in film. By the age of 25, he was one of MGM’s biggest and most successful stars. He starred in 14 Andy Hardy movies and began working with another young star on the rise by the name of Judy Garland. Together, Mickey and Judy made 10 films together and both careers were catapulted. After serving in the Special Services during World War II, Mickey’s career waned…if you can call 60 more years of being loved by millions “waning.” As an adult, he remained short of stature, so he never made the transition to leading man roles. But, that didn’t stop the Mick. Continue reading