RIP Richard Herd

American actor Richard Herd, best known for his role on Seinfeld, has died. He was 87. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Herd’s wife of 40 years, actor Patricia Crowder Herd, said that the actor died from cancer-related causes at his home in Los Angeles on Tuesday. Herd is best known for playing Mr Wilhelm on the iconic NBC comedy series Seinfeld. The character was the supervisor to George Costanza (Jason Alexander) while he worked for the New York Yankees. His TV credits include Star Trek: Voyager, a regular part on the ABC cop drama T. J. Hooker, and a role in the 1983 alien invasion mini series V.

All the President’s Men and The China Syndrome, were also some of his films. SAG-AFTRA also paid tribute to Herd. The labour union wrote alongside a Variety article announcing his death,”Mourning the loss of #sagaftramember Richard Herd, who entertained us in roles from ‘All the President’s Men’ to Seinfeld. Herd was a national board member for almost 10 years and served a 2-year term as SAG’s 3rd national vice president in 1999.” Herd was also a painter and made his own jewellery, in addition to his career in front of the camera. Herd is also survived by daughter Erica, son Rick, and stepdaughter Alicia.

He was well known in the science fiction community for his role in the 1983 NBC miniseries V and 1984 sequel V: The Final Battle, as John, the Visitors’ Supreme Commander. Other major roles in his career included recurring parts on the NBC series seaQuest DSV as Admiral William Noyce; on Star Trek: Voyager as Admiral Owen Paris, the father of helmsman Tom Paris; and as George Costanza’s boss Mr. Wilhelm on Seinfeld. In two guest appearances on Quantum Leap, he played children’s show host “Captain Galaxy”, a would-be time traveler, and a miner named Ziggy Ziganovich. Herd has appeared at a number of fan conventions on the basis of his science fiction roles.

Star Trek : Strange New Words Announced

We seem to be getting a lot of Star Trek theses days on television even if the movie world has been let without a proper answer (as to will we see another Trek movie any time soon). Star Trek: Strange New Worlds will be a fresh addition to the franchise. CBS All Access has announced a fifth new series called Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, which will star Anson Mount as Captain Christopher Pike, Rebecca Romijn as Number One, and Ethan Peck as Science Officer Spock. The trio originally appeared in said roles on Star Trek: Discovery season 2. Star Trek: Strange New Worlds will be set aboard the famed USS Enterprise a decade before Captain Kirk’s time — a similar starting point as Star Trek: Discovery — and follow the aforementioned three in Spock, Pike, and Number One as “they explore new worlds around the galaxy.”

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds co-creator and executive producer Akiva Goldsman is also the writer on the first episode of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, off a story by Jenny Lumet, Kurtzman, and himself. Lumet, Heather Kadin, Rod Roddenberry, and Trevor Roth also serve as executive producers on Star Trek: Strange New Worlds in addition to Goldsman, Kurtzman, and Alonso Myers. Aaron Baiers, Akela Cooper, and Davy Perez will serve as co-executive producers. Star Trek: Strange New Worlds is a production of CBS Television Studios, Secret Hideout, and Roddenberry Entertainment.

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds joins an ever-growing list of Trek series on CBS All Access, alongside the aforementioned Star Trek: Discovery, which kicked things off in September 2017, followed by Star Trek: Picard in January 2020. Beyond that, we’ve the animated series, Star Trek: Lower Decks, from Mike McMahan (Rick and Morty), and the Michelle Yeoh-led spin-off series from Star Trek: Discovery writing duo Bo Yeon Kim and Erika Lippoldt. And if we’re counting Trek for kids, there’s an animated series in the works at Nickelodeon as well.

There’s no word on a filming start date, let alone a release date, on Star Trek: Strange New Worlds due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. There’s also no word on the international platforms for Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. (CBS All Access is only available in the US, Australia, and Canada). Previous Trek shows are split between Netflix (Discovery) and Amazon Prime Video (Picard) in India.

Both Discovery and Picard share a highly serialized format, however, the new series set on Captain Pike’s U.S.S. Enterprise promises a return to classic Trek storytelling. In the announcement video from yesterday, Strange New Worlds star Anson Mount (Captain Pike) described the new series as a “classic Star Trek show that deals with optimism and the future.”

Here is what I want – more episodic and more optimism, Klingons, Vulcans, Andorians, Tellerites & Orions, no changing of cannon, stop messing with the Klingons, introduce new interesting alien races and perhaps bring them as recurring characters, cut out lens flares and finally and more importantly, bring back the excitement & fun elements.

RIP Jerry Stiller

Veteran actor and comedian Jerry Stiller, who found fame on Broadway and later in the smash US show “Seinfeld” has died from natural causes aged 92, his son Ben Stiller said Monday. Stiller and his wife Anne Meara starred on the stage and TV in the 1960s, writing and performing comedy sketches and routines together. He later played George Costanza’s short-tempered father Frank on the smash TV show “Seinfeld”, for which he won the Funniest Male Guest Appearance in a TV Series at the American Comedy Awards in 1989. In 1997 he was nominated for an Emmy award for the same role. He also played Leah Remini’s father in the sitcom “The King of Queens” and starred alongside his son Ben in the “Zoolander” films.

“I’m sad to say that my father, Jerry Stiller, passed away from natural causes,” his son said in a tweet. “He was a great dad and grandfather, and the most dedicated husband to Anne for about 62 years,” Stiller added. “He will be greatly missed. Love you Dad.”  The eldest of four children, Stiller was born at Unity Hospital in Brooklyn, New York, to Bella (née Citron) and William Stiller, a bus driver. His family is Jewish. His paternal grandparents immigrated from Galicia (southeast Poland and western Ukraine), and his mother was born in Poland. He lived in the Williamsburg and East New York neighborhoods before his family moved to the Lower East Side, where he attended Seward Park High School.

Also in 1953, Stiller met actor-comedian Anne Meara, and they married in 1954. Until Stiller suggested it, Meara had never thought of doing comedy. “Jerry started us being a comedy team,” she said. “He always thought I would be a great comedy partner.” They joined the Chicago improvisational company The Compass Players (which later became The Second City), and after leaving, began performing together. In 1961, they were performing in nightclubs in New York, and by the following year were considered a “national phenomenon”, said the New York Times. Stiller played the short-tempered Frank Costanza, the father of George Costanza in the sitcom Seinfeld from 1993 to 1998. He was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series in 1997, and won the American Comedy Award for Funniest Male Guest Appearance in a TV Series for his portrayal of Frank Costanza.

After Seinfeld ended, Stiller had planned on retiring. Kevin James asked him to join the cast of The King of Queens. James, who played the leading role of Doug Heffernan, had told Stiller that he needed him in order to have a successful show. Stiller agreed, and played the role of Arthur Spooner, the father of Carrie Heffernan, from 1998 until 2007. Stiller said this role tested his acting ability more than any others have and that, before being a part of The King of Queens, he only saw himself as a “decent actor.”

Stiller played himself in filmed skits, opening and closing Canadian rock band Rush’s 30th Anniversary Tour concerts in 2004. These appearances are seen on the band’s DVD R30: 30th Anniversary World Tour, released in 2005. Stiller later appeared in cameos in later in-concert films for the band’s 2007–2008 Snakes & Arrows Tour. Stiller appeared on Dick Clark’s $10,000 Pyramid show in the 1970s, and footage of the appearance was edited into an episode of The King of Queens to assist the storyline about his character being a contestant on the show, but that after losing, he was bitter about the experience as he never received his parting gift, a lifetime supply of “Rice-A-Roni, the San Francisco Treat”. He also made several appearances on the game show Tattletales with his wife Anne.

RIP Brian Dennehy

Brian Manion Dennehy (July 9, 1938 – April 15, 2020) was an American actor of film, stage, and television. A winner of one Golden Globe, two Tony Awards and a recipient of six Primetime Emmy Award nominations, he gained initial recognition in film for his role as Sheriff Will Teasle in First Blood (1982). He had roles in numerous films including Gorky Park (1983),  Silverado (1985),  Cocoon (1985),  F/X (1986),  Presumed Innocent (1990), Romeo + Juliet (1996), and Knight of Cups (2015). Dennehy won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Miniseries or Television Film for his role as Willy Loman in the television film Death of a Salesman (2000).

Dennehy a decades long relationship with Chicago’s Goodman Theatre where much of his playwright Eugene O’Neill work’s originated and was in several of them. He also regularly played Canada’s Stratford Festival, especially in works by William Shakespeare and Samuel Beckett. One of his most well-known roles came in the 1995 Chris Farley-David Spade comedy Tommy Boy as Big Tom Callahan, where also was reunited with his 10 co-star Bo Derek. Dennehy began his professional acting career in small guest roles in such 1970s and 1980s series as Kojak, Lou Grant, Dallas, Dynasty, and Hunter. He also appeared in an episode of Miami Vice during the 1987–88 season. n 1992, he was nominated for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or TV Movie for his performance as John Wayne Gacy in To Catch a Killer, and was nominated that same year in a different category, Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Miniseries or TV Movie, for The Burden of Proof.

Other Emmy nominations were for his work in A Killing in a Small TownMurder in the Heartland (1993) and for the Showtime cable TV movie Our Fathers (2005), which was about the Roman Catholic Church sex abuse scandal. In 2000, Dennehy was nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Miniseries or TV Movie for a television presentation of his performance as Willy Loman in Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman which he had performed on Broadway. The performance did, however, precipitate a Golden Globe Award. More recently Dennehy has several appearances as Elizabeth Keen’s grandfather on the NBC series The Blacklist.

Dennehy enlisted in the United States Marine Corps from 1958 to 1963, including a brief stint on Okinawa. He married twice and had five children including actress Elizabeth Dennehy. Dennehy died on April 15 2020, of cardiac arrest due to sepsis during a hospital stay in New Haven, Connecticut.

RIP Kirk Douglas

Kirk Douglas (born Issur Danielovitch; December 9, 1916 – February 5, 2020) whose Hollywood career spanned seven decades, has died aged 103. He was an American actor, producer, director, philanthropist and writer. His parents were Jewish immigrants from Chavusy, Mogilev Region, in the Russian Empire (present-day Belarus), and the family spoke Yiddish at home. Douglas grew up as Izzy Demsky and legally changed his name to Kirk Douglas before entering the United States Navy during World War II. The stage and screen actor was well-known for a range of roles, including the loans in 1960 classic Spartacus, in which he played the titular character.

Douglas was prolific as a film actor, with more than 90 credits to his name – ranging from the 1940s to the 2000s. After an impoverished childhood with immigrant parents and six sisters, he made his film debut in The Strange Love of Martha Ivers (1946) with Barbara Stanwyck. Douglas soon developed into a leading box-office star throughout the 1950s, known for serious dramas, including westerns and war films. During his career, he appeared in more than 90 films. Douglas was known for his explosive acting style, which he displayed as a criminal defense attorney in Town Without Pity (1961).

Douglas became an international star through positive reception for his leading role as an unscrupulous boxing hero in Champion (1949), which brought him his first nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actor. His other early films include Young Man with a Horn (1950), playing opposite Lauren Bacall and Doris Day, Ace in the Hole opposite Jan Sterling (1951), and Detective Story (1951), for which he received a Golden Globe nomination as Best Actor in a Drama. He received a second Oscar nomination for his dramatic role in The Bad and the Beautiful (1952), opposite Lana Turner, and his third nomination for portraying Vincent van Gogh in Lust for Life (1956), which landed him a second Golden Globe nomination.

In 1955, he payday loans on line established Bryna Productions, which began producing films as varied as Paths of Glory (1957) and Spartacus (1960). In those two films, he collaborated with the then-relatively-unknown director Stanley Kubrick, taking lead roles in both films. Douglas has been praised for helping to break the Hollywood blacklist by having Dalton Trumbo write Spartacus with an official on-screen credit.[2] He produced and starred in Lonely Are the Brave (1962), considered a classic, and Seven Days in May (1964), opposite Burt Lancaster, with whom he made seven films. In 1963, he starred in the Broadway play One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, a story that he purchased and later gave to his son Michael Douglas, who turned it into an Oscar-winning film. He lived with his second wife (of 65 years), Anne Buydens, a producer, until his death. With his first wife he had two sons, actor Michael Douglas and producer Joel Douglas, before divorcing in 1951.

My meories of Kirk Douglas is in his movies The Villain (with Arnold Schwarzenegger & Ann-Margret), Saturn 3 and the Tales From The Crypt episode “Yellow” – which I though was phenomenal acting.