It’s the midst of the holiday season. Travel plans are ramping up and the awards season is starting to heat up! The American Film Institute has revealed its honorees as the top (ten) films of 2021 and a consensus has begun to form through critics Top Ten lists about the best movies of the year as well. Dean and Phil discuss it all. They analyze (and “contextualize”) three new award-hopeful releases from major directors: Guillermo del Toro’s Nightmare Alley, Joel Coen’s The Tragedy of Macbeth and Jane Campion’s The Power of the Dog. They also celebrate foreign films, the Oscars, country rock, The Monkees, the Bronski Beat, New Orleans, The Beasts of the Southern Wild, Interview with the Vampire, telenovelas and more in “Celebrity Deaths”.
You might not know the name Don Phillips, but you will definitely know the names of many the performers whose careers he launched as a casting director, and the films with which he was involved. He is one of four cultural titans that Dean and Phil remember in “Celebrity Deaths” on this week’s show, including a poet and founder of the mythopoetic men’s movement, an iconic Broadway composer, and a trombonist who received the highest honor ever bestowed on jazz musicians. Dean will update us on the latest in his bout with Covid-19, his travel plans, his live ghost hunts and his “Hellacious Renovations”. Phil will regale us with his birthday adventures, his deep dive into historic movie locations, and his exploration of the Manzanar “War Relocation Center”. Several movies will get analyzed as well, including a Kurosawa classic ripe for a modern-day remake, a film noir with a claim to the best dialogue of any movie ever, and a current box office hit that begs the question, “Does bustin’ make Dean & Phil feel good?”
After a funny cold open where Dean tells about another of his haunted house adventures, Dean and Phil kick off this week’s show by sharing what they are thankful for during this Thanksgiving week, Dean battling Covid-19, Phil reflecting on his mother’s death two years ago. The career of Dean Martin, his work with Jerry Lewis, and a terrific TCM documentary “Dean Martin: King of Cool” all get discussed. A great jazz film from the 1980s, Round Midnight, and the “sacred” aspect of cinema get celebrated. The box office success of Ghostbusters: Afterlife and No Time to Die get analyzed through a very optimistic lens. In “Celebrity Deaths”, Dean’s love of funk gets exposed, as two great funk stars get remembered, along with a star of HBO’s “Oz”. And speaking of HBO, Dean and Phil tease an upcoming discussion about HBO’s “Succession” and about Will Ferrell’s considerable behind-the-scenes clout in Hollywood.
Your friends in podcasting are celebrating 100 episodes of broadcasting! That’s right, this is their 100th episode since moving their franchise to Odysy Radio! Dean and Phil celebrate this milestone by sharing personal stories of on-set safety in the wake of the emerging details behind the fatal shooting on the set of Rust. They discuss society’s need for “instant eulogies” in the wake of another friend’s death. They discuss the latest news on the big-screen Dune and review the latest from Wes Anderson. All that, plus the return of the “Live Event of the Week”! Finally, Clint Eastwood is celebrating 50 years as a filmmaker, and Dean and Phil get in on the action by “programming” a “Directed by Clint Eastwood” film festival – 5 double features you might want to watch!
It’s Halloween season, so this week, Dean and Phil will get into the spooky spirit of things by celebrating “All of the Them Witches” – programming a dream film festival of witch-themed double-features! Of course, there is a ton of spooky, unsettling and downright terrifying show biz news for them to cover as well, including the potential resolution of the IATSE conflict with the AMPTP prior to almost all film and television productions getting shut down, the messy publicity slaughterhouse that continues to ensue following Dave Chappelle’s “The Closer” and Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos’ response to it, and a little bit of “inside” info regarding Marvel’s Black Widow. All that, plus really good box office news and a pioneering animator, a chart-topping bassist, and a best-selling YA novelist get remembered in “Celebrity Deaths”.
The show begins this week with a lot of questions for Dean. What is Sci-Fi Valley Con? Who is Julian? There is/was a TV show called “Supernatural”? Is Detroit really Canada’s Tijuana? And a listener wants to know if Dean got bit by a monkey on “The Lone Gunmen”! You will learn the answers to all these and many more, including what Dean and Phil think of the controversy surrounding Dave Chappelle’s latest Netflix special. You will also learn about one of the greatest voices in comedy, about perhaps the greatest Hammond organist of all time, and about one of the most groundbreaking indie filmmakers of all time in “Celebrity Deaths”. After the break, Dean and Phil offer analysis on the new James Bond film’s box office performance in the USA and put that performance into historic context. They will do the same with the film’s quality. Finally, they will reveal what upcoming movies might get them to go back into a movie theater in the coming weeks.
Last week, Dean and Phil ran out of time while discussing a vampire show from Norway that Dean has discovered and is enjoying. They kept recording, however, so this week’s show starts (as a cold open!) with that brief and hilarious discussion. Once the show proper starts, your friends in podcasting send love and best wishes to a dear friend who is having surgery this week. Then, they leap into discussions of the latest show business news, including the IATSE strike authorization vote that might lead to the halt of most television and film production, the resolution of Scarlett Johansson’s lawsuit against Disney, James Bond saving the global box office, Venom: Let There Be Carnage setting the domestic box office ablaze, and the #1 worldwide box office hit of 2021 that neither Dean nor Phil have seen or even heard of! Phil and Dean then discuss Roman Polanski’s Repulsion and the importance of taking the time to do “nothing”, and what “Loki” season 1 might be telling us about the existence of multiverses. Finally, Dean and Phil celebrate the lives of a pioneer of Japanese anime, one of the best funk and soul bandleaders of all time, a character actor beloved on both the small and big screen, a groundbreaking singer-turned-activist, and two very popular comedians.
After their most drunken episode ever, this week’s show finds Dean back in the Detroit suburb of Birmingham and Phil in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles. Thanks to an email from a loyal listener and frequent collaborator, they will be revisiting a discussion of Wu Tang Clan from two weeks ago. And thanks to developing news, they will follow up on last week’s discussion of the movement to remove tributes to D.W. Griffith’s legacy in Hollywood. There will be further analysis on the state of the box office in the U.S. and there will be reviews of two new movies: The comedic DC comic book actioner “The Suicide Squad” and a feature documentary about AND photographed by Val Kilmer. Yet another “Night Court” star will get remembered in “Celebrity Deaths”, along with the actress daughter of an iconic filmmaker, an award-winning folk music star, and a beloved cast member of TV’s “Sherlock”. Plus, we still have many celebrity death memories (of a Clint Eastwood collaborator, a legendary voice actor, and a best-selling sci-fi author) recorded during last week’s red wine bacchanal that we include at the end of this week’s show!
Phil is back from exploring the east coast of the USA. Dean has been in Los Angeles, celebrating his birthday. You can join them poolside atop a certain “historic building in downtown Los Angeles” for big laughs, a lot of wine, and attempted conversations about Dean’s birthday, the joys of Maine, an awesome bookstore, the influence Jack Benny had a on a great law professor, the movement to tear down a possibly racist monument in Hollywood, Dean’s new show about haunted house renovations, Scarlett Johansson’s lawsuit against Disney and “sexy Joe Namath”.
If you have listened to our last few episodes, you know that conversation has really started to focus on great movies, great directors AND on silent film being appreciated as its own art form. On this week’s show, Dean and Phil really drill down into each of these topics by focusing on the careers, artistry and legacies of two formative giants of the motion picture industry: Mack Sennett and Charlie Chaplin. Even if you don’t like silent movies or know much about them, trust us, this episode is a blast!