This week’s Canadian Thanksgiving installment features follow-ups on several topics from past episodes: Are the most important pop culture figures of the last quarter of the 20th century all named “David”? Why is contemporary art so abundant with creativity and so full of joy? What are some of the most thrilling aspects of Bonaventure Cemetery in Savannah, Georgia? And speaking of Savannah, why is The Pirate House so darn haunting? In addition to those follow-ups, Phil has been researching “Trainee” programs offered by the Writer’s Guild in the wake of their (tentative) deal with the producers. And a loyal listener has thoughts about the best/worst actors to play Hercule Poirot on the big screen. This last leads into Dean’s thoughts about Kenneth Branagh’s A Haunting in Venice before three films starring the great Dirk Bogarde, the soulfulness of Oliver Reed and a brilliant, unheralded masterpiece by the late William Friedkin all get discussed. Finally, in “Celebrity Deaths”, a beloved star of “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.” (and “NCIS”) gets remembered.
Pop quiz: What show features discussions about the great Motown artist Barrett strong, founding member of The Eagles Randy Meisner, Tony Bennett, Pee-wee Herman, the director of The Exorcist and The French Connection, a rock musical parody of The Exorcist, Dean’s final (?) “X-Files” improv (at a forthcoming “X-Files” convention), and the classic comedy films of Jacques Tati? Answer: This week’s brand new Season 3 Episode 81 of YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour!
Their cross-country holiday travels behind them, Dean is back in Michigan, Phil is back in Los Angeles, and they will regale you with stories of Hollywood parties, catch you up on awards season news, analyze the merits of two award hopefuls (the disastrous Babylon and the controversial The Whale) and one indie horror film franchise. They will also remember an award-winning cinematographer, an iconic journalist, a revolutionary fashion designer, and one of the most famous athletes of all time in “Celebrity Deaths”.
There may be tricks aplenty, but we can assure you, this week’s Season 2 Episode 99 will definitely be a treat for the listener! Before Dean and Phil can fully celebrate the spooky (like Dean’s live exploration this weekend of the haunted Wheeler Mansion), they have to discuss the truly horrifying – a real-life horror story ending in tragedy on the set of an independent film western that claimed the life of a talented young cinematographer. Dean shares a story from “The Lone Gunmen” of how he was almost killed on set! That will lead to remembrances of other talented individuals who died recently, including a beloved actor from TV and stage, the 7th friend on “Friends”, a longtime star of “The Andy Griffith Show” and the drummer for both Elvis Presley and Jerry Garcia! Then, it’s off to the movies, where your friends in podcasting discuss a handful of Halloween-appropriate classics before discussing the box office performance of Dune and review the film as well. Finally, it’s the return of the “Vintage Movie Ad” game, where Dean will try to guess the titles (3 remakes of horror classics and 3 sequels to modern horror classics) just from their ad copy!
The USA celebrated its independence this weekend, but the fireworks continue on this brand new installment of YOUR Chillpak Hollywood Hour! Dean shares a hysterical story about the making of a film he did many years back. Then he and Phil discuss in detail a wide array of movies, including a silent classic from Hitchcock, a current horror sequel, a masterpiece of surrealism from a Swedish filmmaker who has emerged as a titan of world cinema, and a low-budget sci-fi film from last year that was among 2020’s best. Plus, Phil wants to talk about a new TCM neo-noir series and a classic from 1967 starring Lee Marvin, but even more than that, he wants to talk about a conversation he had with longtime TCM host Ben Mankiewicz at a memorial for 106 year old legend Norman Lloyd. Phil also shares anecdotes involving many of the notables in attendance, including an Oscar-winning director, and the great grandson of one the most famous artists of all time, and Elliot Gould! All that, plus Dean is doing a show about haunted houses?!
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.
A true prodigy, singer-songwriter EmiSunshine earned national attention before she was ten years old. Now, still shy of her sixteenth birthday, EmiSunshine is a skillful and soulful purveyor of the music genre known as Americana. After playing one of her brand new tunes, Dean Haglund interviews her in the first half of this week’s show and she even shares a ghost story! In the second half of the show, Dean reviews Leigh Whannell’s The Invisible Man and Phil shares with Dean a hilarious story about a mutual friend’s adventures in screenwriting. Finally, Dean and Phil celebrate the peerless cinematic legacy of the great Max Von Sydow. Something for everyone? We like to think so!