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Added by classic movie buff on 17 Jul 2008 09:59


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People who added this item 56 Average listal rating (36 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.2
Warlock (1959)
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People who added this item 472 Average listal rating (337 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 6.5
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People who added this item 32 Average listal rating (19 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 6.3
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People who added this item 4176 Average listal rating (2803 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 8
12 Monkeys (1996)
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People who added this item 17 Average listal rating (13 ratings) 6.2 IMDB Rating 6.6
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FRANK GORSHIN was probably my best friend in Hollywood and I spent many happy times with him. Of all the stars I met in Hollywood doing our Tours over the past 22 years I suppose I was more friendly with Frank and knew him better than any of the others. He used to phone me here at home in England from America and give me his schedule and updates about the shows he was doing and also sent me video tapes of his act, photographs and other items. Frank is usually best remembered for his portrayal of "The Riddler" in the extremely popular BATMAN TV series back in the 60's. However, I also recall his many big screen appearances - notably in the classic Western "Warlock" (1959) in which he played Richard Widmark's younger brother Billy Gannon - who was shot by Henry Fonda in a gunfight! When I mentioned this film to Frank he told me how much he had enjoyed working with Richard Widmark and how helpful the actor had been to him during the making of the film. Frank made over 80 films in total including "The Proud and Profane" (1956), "The True Story of Jesse James" (1957), "The Delicate Delinquent" (1957), "The Bells are Ringing" (1960), "Where the Boys Are" (1960), "Ring of Fire" (1961), "The George Raft Story" (1961), "The Great Imposter" (1961) and "Twelve Monkeys" (1995). He was also much in demand on American television as apart from the above mentioned "Riddler" in many episodes of "Batman" he appeared as an actor in "The Alfred Hitchcock Hour", "The Defenders", "The Untouchables", "The Munsters", "The Virginian", "Police Woman", "Murder She Wrote", "The Fall Guy", "Ironside", "Charlie's Angels", "The High Chaparral", "Wonder Woman", "The New Adventures of Superman" and many others. He appeared as himself in "The Dean Martin Show", "The Andy Williams Show", "The Jackie Gleason Show", "Rowan and Martin's Laugh In", "The Johnny Carson Tonight Show", "The Toast of the Town", "The Carol Burnett Show", "The Mike Douglas Show", and "The Ed Sullivan Show". This is just a small selection of his many TV appearances over the years. Apart from his acting roles in numerous films and on television Frank was also an outstanding singer, comedian and a brilliant impressionist. His talent as an impressionist brought him world wide fame and he appeared regularly as a headliner in Las Vegas' main showrooms and on television. His first Las Vegas appearance was at the Flamingo as opening act for Bobby Darin. He was the first impressionist to headline at the prestigious Empire Room of New York's Waldorf Astoria Hotel. In 1974 he was delighted to be invited to appear on the "American Film Institute Salute to James Cagney". He was introduced by none other than Frank Sinatra which must have been a very exciting moment for him. As part of his act he did an impression of Cagney during which he was assisted on stage by Kirk Douglas and George Segal. I have a video of this very rare show in my collection which is now unavailable in the shops. I also have the actual programme for the evening which has been signed for me personally by A.C. Lyles. (He helped to produce the event). I first met Frank Gorshin at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel back in October 1993. I had long been an admirer of this talented entertainer having followed his career on television and in the movies but at that time I had never seen him performing "live" much to my regret. I was therefore delighted to meet him in person and welcomed the opportunity to talk to him. He was at the Roosevelt for over a week so we had many interesting conversations - he told me he was in town to do a "one man show" at the Normandie Casino so I was able to take some of our group along to see it. We had front row seats and he gave amazingly accurate impressions of Kirk Douglas, Burt Lancaster, Humphrey Bogart, Marlon Brando etc and then much to my surprise (and the group) - he did an impression of me! (He phoned me the next day to ask what I thought about it). In 1995 Frank was starring as Nathan Detroit in "Guys and Dolls" at the Desert Inn, Las Vegas so I went over in April specially to see him and stayed at the Desert Inn for a week. The show ran for about three months. Jack Jones was also in the show as Sky Masterson. I was with Frank every day and we spent hours together so it was a very enjoyable time. I had the opportunity to discuss with him many of the films he had made - he was a bit dismissive about some of them but he was appreciative when I told him how much I had enjoyed "Warlock" and "The Bells are Ringing". It was very interesting to discover what he thought about some of the major stars he had worked with over the years. He got on well with most of them but he told me about one or two who were a pain! We used to go into the restaurant or the bar together and I found it quite amusing when members of the public came up to ask for an autograph or to take his picture. He was always most approachable and friendly and patient with his fans. He often tried out his impressions on me to get my reaction which was great fun. The last time I saw Frank was at the "Hollywood Collectors and Celebrities Show" in 1998. I spent most of the day with him during his breaks when he wasn't busy signing photos. As we walked over to the restaurant for lunch one of his fans called out to him: "Hey Frank, do Kirk Douglas!". He was happy to oblige much to the fan's delight and then continued his conversation with me in the voice of BURT LANCASTER!! Frank Gorshin will be sadly missed but I am fortunate to have so many happy personal memories of him.

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