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Alan Sues: A Funny Man

In 1968, Alan Sues became a household name thanks to his wacky persona on the TV hit “Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In.” But he was hardly an overnight success – he enjoyed a long career on Broadway, in flims, in nightclubs and on television (including a classic “Twilight Zone” episode) before “Laugh-In” came around. On today’s show, our guest is Michael Michaud, author of the new biography “Alan Sues: A Funny Man.” If you recall the “Laugh-In” cut-up or you are just discovering his zany humor, you’ll love this episode.

The episode can be heard here.

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The Bootleg Files: Afrique 50

BOOTLEG FILES 591: “Afrique 50” (1950 French documentary short by René Vautier).

LAST SEEN: It is on YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS:
Never officially released in the U.S.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE:
It would be welcomed.

In 1949, a newly-minted film school graduate named René Vautier received his first big break when the Ligue de l’enseignement commissioned him to create a nonfiction film highlighting its educational mission in France’s West African colonies. Upon arriving in the French African colonies, the 21-year-old Vautier did not find evidence of French benevolence in Africa. Instead, he witnessed a degree of economic exploitation and repressive rule over people who were slowly simmering in their resentment of colonial occupation. As a decorated member of the French Resistance during World War II and a Communist Party member, he was not about to sit back and just tsk-tsk this situation.

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The Bootleg Files: Murder in the Cathedral

BOOTLEG FILES 590: “Murder in the Cathedral” (1951 British feature based on the T.S. Eliot drama).

LAST SEEN: We cannot confirm the last public exhibition of this film.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: Out of circulation in the U.S. since its original theatrical release.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: It is possible.

The 12th century political battle between England’s King Henry II and Archbishop Thomas Becket was the subject of two magnificent dramas: T.S. Eliot’s “Murder in the Cathedral” and Jean Anouilh’s “Becket.” Today, most Americans are familiar with the Academy Award-winning 1964 film version of “Becket,” starring Richard Burton and Peter O’Toole. Sadly, there is much less familiarity on this side of the Atlantic with the 1951 film adaptation of “Murder in the Cathedral.”

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The Paul Lynde Story

During the 1960s and 1970s, Paul Lynde was one of the funniest men in films and television. On this show, we learn about the comic actor’s off-screen world from Cathy Rudolph, a trusted friend of Lynde who recalled his life in the biography “Paul Lynde: A Biography – His Life, His Love(s) and His Laughter,” published by BearManor Media.

The episode can be heard here.

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The Bootleg Files: At Home, 2001

BOOTLEG FILES 589: “At Home, 2001” (1967 television news special hosted by Walter Cronkite.).

LAST SEEN: It is on YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO:
None, although at one time it was made available on 16mm for the educational market.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: CBS News will not make it commercially available.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Not in the immediate future.

Fifty years ago, CBS News debuted “The Twenty-First Century” as a documentary series designed to look ahead to the future. The series replaced “The Twentieth Century,” which set its sight on events and personalities that shaped the first six decades of the then-current century.

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Is Jerry Lewis the Anti-Christ?

The ego! The vulgarity! The love/hate relationship with Dean! Those wonderfully awful telethons! That clown-in-the-concentration-camp movie! Has there ever been a more bizarre, aggravating and (yes) invigorating force of malevolent comedy than Jerry Lewis? Even at 90, he continues to amaze and astonish – usually, for the wrong reasons, but that’s why we can’t get enough of him. Today, the funniest man on Facebook, Anthony “The Kingfish” Vitamia, joins us to discuss all things Jerry.

“The Online Movie Show” is produced at the Platinum Wolfe Studios.

You can listen to the episode here.

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The Bootleg Files: The Gay Nighties

BOOTLEG FILES 588: “The Gay Nighties” (1933 short starring the comedy team of Bobby Clark and Paul McCullough plus James Finlayson).

LAST SEEN: It is on YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: In a public domain label collection of the team’s films.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: A lapsed copyright.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE:
No one is going to restore this orphaned gem.

Unless you are a near-rabid devotee to old-time comedy, you are probably unfamiliar with the team of Bobby Clark and Paul McCullough. They began their careers as circus acrobats before working their way through vaudeville and burlesque until they reached stardom on the New York and London stages during the 1920s. When sound came to movies, Clark and McCullough were recruited by Hollywood to star in a series of two-reelers, first under Fox and then under RKO.

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