Much of what we think we see in a movie is based on what we hear. To this day, much of what we expect of how a movie will sound is because of the indelible impacts made by such legendary composers as Max Steiner and Bernard Hermann. Steven Smith is a prolific documentary filmmaker, an historian, a lecturer and the author of books detailing the lives and careers of these two giants of motion picture music. Steven is also a good friend Phil Leirness AND he is the guest on this week’s installment of YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour!
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!
Phil is back from another emergency trip to Turlock, and Dean is safely ensconced back in Detroit after a trip to Virginia, and after adopting another kitten! Cats get discussed, of course, and in an almost weekly occurrence, “Lord Turlock” issues proclamations. Then your friends in podcasting continue to tackle the appalling, ongoing wave of violence being directed against member of the AAPI community, which somehow leads to a discussion of just one of the problems Phil had with Godzilla vs. Kong. Dean and Phil share a text message from a loyal listener, and celebrate the show business lives of the actor who played “Cousin It”, a country-rock hitmaker, and a prolific country songwriter, and wax rhapsodic about the pedal steel guitar! Friend of show Jon Lawlor has another single out and it inspires a conversation about mental health and the messy business of having feelings. Dean and Phil both have feelings about the death (?) of the Arclight and Pacific movie theater chains, and about the controversy surrounding this year’s Oscar front-runner for Best Picture, Nomadland. Finally, speaking of the Oscars, Dean and Phil close the proceedings with an Oscar-themed edition of their recent (and apparently popular?) vintage movie ad game!
Your friends in podcasting follow up on last week’s conversation about how the response to hatred and violence directed at the AAPI community might shape the current movie awards season and in the second half of the show, they welcome a great friend, journalist and member of the AAPI community, Yoshi Kato, who weighs in on a year of hate crimes, as well as a year of pandemic and the toll it has taken on the music business and on the business of writing about the music business! He also weighs in on Dean’s Doberman, the Paramount Network and both his favorite and least favorite superhero movies! In the show’s first half, Dean discusses a new Korean sci-fi film, and Phil discusses a classic German sci-fi miniseries! There are also 4 vintage movie ads discussed in connection with four “celebrity deaths” as the careers of two great performers, one leading French filmmaker, and a best-selling, award-winning novelist get celebrated.
This week’s toe-tapping, funny bone-tickling, mind-expanding, Atlantic Ocean-crossing epic installment gets started with perhaps the most pleasant surprise surrounding today’s Oscar nominations. From there, it’s onto an amazing email from loyal listener Maurice Terenzio, who instead of focusing on “Celebrity Deaths” inspires Dean and Phil to celebrate the final four performers of the silent era who are still alive! After that, Dean and Phil welcome good friend and intrepid investigative journalist Mark Bennett to discuss his health travails of the last year, Oak Island and Nazi UFOs! In fact, Mark has launched a very cool crowd-sourcing campaign for his proposed documentary Nazi Flying Saucers: Hunting Hitler’s Secret UFOs. The second half of the show is a check-in with Jon Lawlor, who has provided many Chillpak Hollywood Hour theme songs thru the years, as well as the awesome theme song to The Truth Is Out There, and who first lent his vocal talents to a Phil Leirness-directed project in 2002! Jon reveals the hardest part of pandemic life for him, discusses living with depression, describes the changes he would like to see as we emerge from pandemic and discusses his new music. All that, plus he joins Dean in playing the latest round of the vintage movie ad game! If you are looking for the heartfelt, the hilarious, and “exoskeletons of desire”, you have come to the right place!
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!
In the first half of this week’s show, Dean and Phil discuss the latest controversial news surround filmmakers Joss Whedon and Woody Allen and ask how do we separate the art from the artist? And should we? After that, a Motown great, a rap great, the Godfather of salsa, a groundbreaking singer and DJ, and a pioneer of jazz fusion all get remembered in “Celebrity Deaths”. The second half of the show is part 2 of the roundtable discussion that began last week, where special guests Marc Hershon and Suli McCullough compare notes with Dean about pursuing careers in comedy. On this week’s agenda are the topics of the pandemic and how it has and will change professional comedy, and the importance of pain in comedy.
This week’s episode is a grab bag of what you’ve come to expect from YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour. A broadcasting legend, perhaps the greatest record producer ever (though also a convicted murderer), a chart-topping early rock and roll star, and many others get remembered in “Celebrity Deaths”. Phil and Dean discuss a review given to their film The Lady Killers (now available to rent or to own everywhere in the world). Phil once again quizzes Dean on movie ads from the 80s and 90s before they analyze the latest Covid-19 fallout to theatrical movie releases and to theaters themselves. Then, Phil regales with details of his “Drive-In Movie Adventure”, Dean reviews Wonder Woman 1984, and your friends in podcasting close with “What We’re Reading”, including an hilarious and disturbingly relevant book from 15 years ago that arrived to Phil by mistake!
This week’s show gets started with Dean providing an update on his graphic novel and a review of “Star Trek: Discovery” Season 3. Phil then shares a message from a loyal listener about their film The Truth is Out There. This leads to further discussion about such topics as conspiracy theories, cults, fear, how to recognize the truth, and “alienation of affection”. In “Celebrity Deaths”, Dean and Phil remember one of the greatest writers of television mysteries and an iconic voice of the British Invasion. Dean and Phil share a new review of their dark comedy feature film The Lady Killers and celebrate the fact that now everyone in the world can see it! Finally, a whole bunch of movies get discussed and reviewed, including Spike Lee’s critically-acclaimed Da 5 Bloods, Kelly Reichardt’s award-winning First Cow and a disappointing Tom Hanks western from director Paul Greengrass. Graphic novels, sci-fi TV, great new movies, conspiracy theories, celebrity deaths and more, all in one hour!
Dean and Phil discuss holiday decorating, sitting in Santa’s lap, and the importance of celebrating ALL holidays before discussing more hilarious movie ads from the 80’s and 90’s as well as Michael J. Fox’s new memoir. In “Celebrity Deaths”, they remember a brilliant comedic performer, a man who was once upon a time the world’s greatest athlete, a big-screen villain from down under, and a star of TV’s “Falcon Crest”. Then, a new Oscar hopeful from Netflix about the writing of “Citizen of Kane” get analyzed in detail. Movies, holidays, thoughtful insight, irreverence and a lot of laughs – it’s YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour!