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The Academy Awards? Oh, yeah, them … (yawn)

By Ray Bennett LONDON – For the first time since I was a teenager, the Oscars hold little interest for me, well, aside from last year and the two years before that. I’ve forgotten, did they hold the Oscars last … Continue reading

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John Williams said he never takes Spielberg for granted

By Ray Bennett LONDON – ‘My hope is that I can work with Steven for many years to come,’ composer John Williams told me. That was in 2000 by which time he had written the scores for sixteen Spielberg-directed movies … Continue reading

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Recalling … Lloyd Bridges, famous star of famous sons

By Ray Bennett LONDON – ‘Oh, you shouldn’t bother with Lloyd,’ said Dorothy Bridges, the actor’s wife of nearly forty years. ‘You need to talk to my boys, Jeff and Beau.’ It was 1976 and she had every reason to … Continue reading

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Don’t mistake Anthony Hopkins for roles he plays

By Ray Bennett LONDON – No one expects Anthony Hopkins, who turns 85 today, to be anything like Hannibal Lecter but he told me people do often assume he’s like other roles he’s played.  ‘I get a lot of people … Continue reading

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Bob Dowling gave me the best job in the world

By Ray Bennett LONDON – I shall always be grateful to Robert J.Dowling, the former publisher and editor-in-chief of The Hollywood Reporter who has died aged 83, because it was thanks to him that for several years I had a … Continue reading

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Ted Danson’s epiphany in the African desert

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Ted Danson, who turns 75 today, has had an astonishingly successful career on television but there was a time when he wanted something else. After his sitcom ’Cheers’ became a massive hit in the early … Continue reading

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Mike Hodges: a brilliant filmmaker and great company

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Mike Hodges, who has died aged 90, was one of the greatest British filmmakers but producers often didn’t know what to do with him. He made only nine feature films but they include four splendid … Continue reading

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When Julie Taymor met Paul and Yoko

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Julie Taymor, who turns 70 today, is known best for creating ‘The Lion King’ among a long list of theatrical productionsi but her films are just as fascinating such as ‘Titus’, ‘Frida’, ‘The Tempest’,’ The … Continue reading

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Charlie Rich loved the blues more than country music

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Charlie Rich, who was born on this day ninety years ago, was one of the biggest names in country music. His recordings of ‘Behind Closed Doors’ and ‘Most Beautiful Girl’ made him an international smash on … Continue reading

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Stuart Margolin and James Garner: ‘a perfect friendship’

By Ray Bennett LONDON – Stuart Margolin, who died today aged 82, was one of the great screen sidekicks working regularly with James Garner. Traditionally, in film and on TV, there have been two kinds of heroes – loners and … Continue reading

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