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The Bootleg Files: Salute to Sir Lew – The Master Showman

BOOTLEG FILES 732: “Salute to Sir Lew – The Master Showman” (1975 TV special with John Lennon, Tom Jones, Peter Sellers and Julie Andrews).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: Music clearance issues are keeping it out of release.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Not likely.

John Lennon fans know that the ex-Beatle’s last live performance took place in a 1975 television special honoring Sir Lew Grade, the British television executive. Oddly, Lennon’s time on stage seemed strangely out of place in a show that offered an overripe line-up of 1970s kitsch.
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The Bootleg Files: Jane Russell Playtex Commercials

BOOTLEG FILES 728: “Jane Russell Playtex Commercials” (series of television advertisement featuring the buxom star selling bras and girdles).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: All old-time commercials get bootlegged.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Not likely.

Jane Russell became a movie star in the 1940s thanks to producer Howard Hughes’ infantile preoccupation with bosoms. But she maintained her stardom as a result of her droll talent for light comedy and a tough-broad-with-a-heart-of-gold persona that captivated audiences.
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The Bootleg Files: 120 Music Masterpieces

BOOTLEG FILES 722: “120 Music Masterpieces” (long-running TV commercial for a mail-order set of classical music recordings).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO:
None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: TV commercials have no reissue value after they ran their course.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE:
Unlikely.

If you were watching American television in the 1970s and the early 1980s, there is an excellent chance that you will recall a rather unusual commercial that popped up primarily on local independent stations. It featured a distinguished older British gentleman offering an erudite pitch for the purchase of a mail-order collection of classical music recordings.

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I Got You Babe: The Best of Sonny & Cher (DVD)

During the early 1970s, “The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour” was a bright spot on the television schedule. The eponymous couple would team up with a stellar guest line-up (including Jerry Lewis, Jimmy Durante and Tony Curtis) and a rather voluminous supporting ensemble (including then-unknowns Steve Martin and Teri Garr) for comedy sketches and musical numbers.
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The Bootleg Files: The Vivian Vance and Margaret Hamilton Maxwell House Coffee Commercials

BOOTLEG FILES 715: “The Vivian Vance and Margaret Hamilton Maxwell House Coffee Commercials” (series of 1970s television commercials).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: No perceived commercial reissue value for television commercials highlighting a specific brand.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Not likely.

For an actor, being typecast in a particular role can be both a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, it offers the opportunity to enjoy a high-profile part in a popular production that, with luck, can be leveraged into fame and fortune. On the other hand, however, it locks the performer into a specific character and makes it nearly impossible for that individual to be accepted in other roles, thus severely limiting a career.
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The Bootleg Files: Uncle Croc’s Block

BOOTLEG FILES 692: “Uncle Croc’s Block” (1975-76 television series with Charles Nelson Reilly and Jonathan Harris).

LAST SEEN: Bits and pieces are on YouTube.

AMERICAN HOME VIDEO: None.

REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: It was considered a bomb in its time.

CHANCES OF SEEING A COMMERCIAL DVD RELEASE: Unlikely.

I genuinely feel sorry for today’s children, as their television viewing choices are too safe and too benign for their own good. Back in the 1970s when I was a kid, television aimed at the school-age crowd was delightfully weird and funky. But even by the standards of that excessive era, there was nothing as truly bizarre as a 1975-76 ABC show called “Uncle Croc’s Block.”
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The Films of Paul Mazursky

Paul Mazursky was one of the most prolific and versatile filmmakers, creating such classics as “Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice,” “Harry and Tonto,” “Next Stop, Greenwich Village,” “An Unmarried Woman” and “Moscow on the Hudson.” Film scholar Nat Segaloff is our guest on this episode of “The Online Movie Show,” which highlights Mazursky’s directing career plus his little-known work as an actor in Stanley Kramer’s first feature “Fear and Desire” and his role in creating “The Monkees” television series.

The episode can be heard here.

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Mae West in Sextette

85-year-old Mae West marries 32-year-old Timothy Dalton while swatting away the carnal pangs of Tony Curtis, George Hamilton, Ringo Starr and a gym full of musclemen in this seriously warped musical comedy, which is widely regarded as one of the strangest flicks of the 1970s. On this episode, Facebook funnyman Anthony “The Kingfish” Vitamia offers his distinctive insight on this bizarre celebration of geriatric eroticism.

The whole crazy episode is now online!

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