The heartfelt and the hilarious are both in abundant supply this week. For Phil Leirness and Dean Haglund, one of the best things about co-hosting YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour these past (almost) 14 years has been the friendships they have enjoyed because of the show. And these friendships are very much on their minds. Sure, there is the latest show biz-related Covid-19 news, a great joke about people’s reaction this past week to Dr. Seuss books, reviews of movies both recent and classic, fun with movie ads from the year 1986, “Celebrity Deaths” featuring two great reggae artists, and the return of “What We’re Reading”, but there will also be special birthday wishes, the celebration of a good friend’s new music, tales from a friend’s memoir, lessons learned from a friend’s work as a podcaster, and more. Dean will also discuss the show he did this past week with his good friend Gary Jones, and Phil will preview the two new podcast series he will be producing!
After a week of travel and creative work, Phil is back in Turlock and ready to discuss both with Dean! Phil then asks Dean about one of Dean’s all-time favorite movie directors. This leads into a discussion of two great movies, and the desperate plight of movie theaters in the wake of both the pandemic and the overturning of the Paramount Consent Decrees. From there, Dean and Phil shift gears to discuss the recent Emmy nominations for Best Drama Series, and at least one really fun new television series on HBO. Of course, there are also “Celebrity Deaths” wherein two great character actors, one chart-topping pianist, a legendary ballerina, and a jazz great all get remembered.
Phil Leirness is joined by music journalist (and friend of the show) Yoshi Kato, who briefly fills in for a tardy Dean Haglund, to discuss the lives and legacies of six notables from the world of music in “Celebrity Deaths”, as well as to set the table concerning a later discussion of Asian Pacific American Heritage month and the 1961 film Flower Drum Song. Dean then arrives just in time to remember a prolific character actor, the decorated police officer who played Eddie Haskell on TV’s “Leave it to Beaver”, and the great Fred Willard. Dean and Phil then answer an email from a loyal listener about an upcoming Michael Bay film set in the world of Covid-19. This leads to a fascinating discussion and argument before attention is turned to the ramping up of film and TV production and the announcement that the Venice Film Festival will go ahead as planned this September. Dean then sings the praises of two different television series, Phil sings the praises of two classic movies about gambling. Then the conversation turns to the careers of Sessue Hayakawa, one of the first heartthrobs of the silver screen, the hilarious and brilliant Jack Soo, and the tragically overlooked Reiko Sato.
From the inner space of quiet, self-quarantine lockdowns, to the outer space of “Star Trek: Picard”, Dean Haglund and Phil Leirness take you on quite the journey this week! It starts with their latest observations about themselves and others in the wake of another week of isolation. Sadness, quiet and dehumanization are on the thematic menu! They then compare notes on their respective Easter celebrations, which leads to a discussion of a couple of classic musicals: 1934’s Fred Astaire-Ginger Rogers vehicle The Gay Divorcee and 1948’s seasonal staple Easter Parade, starring Astaire and Judy Garland. The recent, modern classic, Uncut Gems gets championed by Phil, who tries to get Dean to overcome his trepidation surrounding Adam Sandler performances (and yet, Dean once championed You Don’t Mess With the Zohan, so go figure!). The second half of the show consists of Dean and Phil comparing the years in cinema 1973 and 1974, discussing all the notable films from those two halcyon years, in hopes of determining which year might challenge 1962 as the greatest year in cinema. Finally, your friends in podcasting beam up to the La Sirena to discuss and debate what went right and what went wrong in season one of “Star Trek: Picard”, a show so successful that a big-screen movie version is already in the planning stages.
The sad, the irritating, the hilarious, the ridiculous and the sublime – It’s all fair game on YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour in the age of Covid-19! On this week’s show, Dean discusses the steam room he is building, and Phil explains why the pandemic is making him sad and how people’s under-reaction and over-reaction to the pandemic along with bad puns in jokey emails by elected officials are pissing him off! Phil went down a rabbit hole, researching what in 1952 were considered the greatest movies ever made and in so doing, he discovered an amazing, and long-since forgotten, horror: Louisiana Story. Then, Phil poses the question in honor of what would have been the late Toshiro Mifune’s 100th birthday: Was Mifune the greatest movie actor of all time? The discuss that ensues is terrific. Dean and Phil then weigh in on how movie theaters and movie release schedules will be altered once there ARE movie theaters and movie releases again. Finally, Dean and Phil preview next week’s discussion of “Star Trek: Picard” and the year in cinema 1973 before paying tribute to several notable figures in “Celebrity Deaths”, including a jazz giant, a country music great, a soul legend, a popular sitcom actor from the 90s, a soap opera star, and a much beloved children’s book author.
Because this show was recorded early Sunday morning, before America awoke to the horrific news of a 2nd mass shooting in a handful of hours, your friends in podcasting only address their thoughts concerning the El Paso shooting – thoughts that concern conspiracy theories, their film The Truth is Out There and more. 12 years ago, Dean and Phil were discussing the “dog days” of summer, “slow news weeks”, the stars that Entertainment Weekly were in love with, a true-life nightmare plane flight, and great sci-fi movies. All those topics get revisited, and a clip of CHH #14 gets shared, in an hilarious segment. Dean and Phil finally answer two emails from listeners, one about an interesting documentary and the other about the lost (?) art of long-form conversation on TV as well as the “rebirth” of Detroit, and the rebuild of one of that city’s icons. All that, plus a great voice performer and a Broadway legend (perhaps THE Broadway legend) get remembered in “Celebrity Deaths”.
Although this show is 85 minutes long, there’s no truth to the rumor that we will be changing our name to YOUR “Chillpak Hollywood Hour AND A HALF!” Celebrities just keep on dying and your friends in podcasting keep right on remembering them! On this week’s show, music legend João Gilberto, Disney star Cameron Boyce, “Laugh-In” comic Arte Johnson, and automotive icon Lee Iacocca have their lives and accomplishments celebrated. Then, Dean and Phil dig into the archives to sample what they were talking about 12 years ago this week. Roswell, UFOs and an ill-fated “sister” podcast all get discussed. After that, Dean and Phil share an email from a loyal listener like you (yes, YOU!) involving the best ways to ensure a television series’ quality during its entire run. This leads to a conversation about the best TV finales, the worst TV finales and how lucky we are when some awesome shows don’t even GET finales! Oh, yeah, and Phil has eye surgery and post-op procedure stories to share!
Dean previews this weekend’s X-Fest convention all about “The X-Files”, and discusses the latest on his streaming comedy series “Gravity Hole”. In “Celebrity Deaths”, Dean and Phil celebrate the great singer Leon Redbone, the last of the Mohawk code talkers from World War II, and the socialite whose conviction and subsequent acquittal of murder formed the basis of the Oscar-winning Reversal of Fortune. Phil hips Dean to the breaking news about the Canadian genocide of indigenous women, and they commiserate over the latest mass shooting in the USA. They share an email about the (non-existent) Bowling Green Massacre. They assess the current state of movies in theaters, on HBO, via Netflix, and more, especially through the prism of reviewing two new comedies, a western revival, and one of the longest-developing projects in recent Hollywood history. Because next week’s show might be a mostly a pre-recorded interview, this week’s show is an extra 12 minutes long, offers something for almost everyone, and is jam-packed full of podcasty goodness!
As many of you know, our ten most recent shows are now available on iTunes and on our newly re-launched website. We would not have made it this far without a lot of hard work without support from several loyal listeners. If you would like to pitch in with a donation to help your friends in podcasting as they continue the time-consuming effort of re-building, please drop us a line (chillpakhollywood at yahoo dot com). The gents will be back on Monday with another brand new episode where they will be discussing some amazing good news to come out of the Notre Dame fire, a preview of their forthcoming trip to Rhode Island, what TV shows Dean is watching now that he resides in the USA again, the breakdown in negotiations between the Writers Guild of America and the talent agents, and three recent movies, including two superhero films! All that plus an Oscar-nominated director fights for life, a brilliant television comedienne is remembered in “Celebrity Deaths”, Roman Polanski returns in a “Lawsuit of the Week” and the yet-to-launch Disney + streaming service announces what film won’t be available and what classic will be edited before it is available. YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour. Back and better than ever. Monday at 5 pm Pacific. Wherever good podcasts can be found!
Dean starts off this week’s show with a full report of his Detroit adventures. Then Phil weighs in on all of this weekend’s sad happenings in his beloved City of Angels. Then, your friends in podcasting roll up their sleeves to remember one of the most famous disc jockeys of all time, and to weigh in on the ever-evolving controversy surround Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn. Then it’s back to the big screen as Dean and Phil discuss a silent masterpiece, a black and white musical, another comedy from India, the poster for and the CGI on display in Ant-Man and the Wasp and another sequel, Sicario: Day of the Soldado.
All in all, this week’s episode is 70 minutes of big, globetrotting fun, so buckle up.