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Behind the Scenes: Trivia and Other Gossip

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My post wasn't made to discredit or lessen any of the work she's done outside of SVU. It also wasn't meant to imply she was hell to deal with behind the scenes. 

SVU was more of an ensemble before other long running cast members started to leave until viewers were left with Mariska and Ice-T.  When I quit watching a few years ago Ice-T wasn't on the show as much either. 

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OK, since I brought up Arlene Francis (1907-2001) hosting something called The Home Show (1954-1957) in the Gender topic, I thought I'd share one of (at least IMO) funniest behind the scenes stories she shared in her 1978 autobio. Towards the end of the show's run, they had an episode featuring an Amish festival. Now, how they got permission from that community's elders to get it broadcast, I'm not sure (since some of the orders expressly forbid photography). But in any case, they discovered that while the Amish women had prepared loads of sumptuous, home made goodies, there wasn't that much to keep home viewers interested in that festival because the order also forbade singing and dancing. Ah, but someone in the crew heard about one of the elders doing a 'storytelling session' to entertain the children and others which was supposed to be one of their favored forms of entertainment. Hence,    they thought that seeing this grandfatherly old man telling a lively story would keep the viewers tuned in (even though he was speaking Pennsylvania Dutch [German] instead of English). It wasn't too long before a German-speaking technician back in the NYC studio worked out that the old Amish patriarch was on live national television  telling a . .. scatological story. Yep, (not wanting to chance offending any other German-speaking viewers), they quickly switched it to something else but decades after the fact, Miss Francis still couldn't believe that they had considered singing and dancing to have been unacceptable fare but DID approve telling detailed stories for fun about digestion! 

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12 hours ago, Blergh said:

Miss Francis still couldn't believe that they had considered singing and dancing to have been unacceptable fare but DID approve telling detailed stories for fun about digestion! 

Digestion is natural and unavoidable, singing and dancing is not!😉

As a German, I would have been far more interested (and a lot less annoyed for waisting my time) in those stories than singing and dancing Amish people. 

Granted, I don't speak Pennsylvania Dutch and wouldn't understand much of it anyway.

Edited by supposebly
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A long Twitter thread about a woman who faked her way into getting a writing job for the now-cancelled Paramount Network show, 68 Whiskey.

(edit:  looks like the quoted tweet was deleted, so here's a screenshot from Google's cache)

2021-10-01_17-58-31.png.2ca5d5d25644a60cbcebcb30dbfc57d0.png

 

From a later tweet in the thread:

Quote

They tell me about the other veteran they hired—and her resume is, in a word, unparalleled. She’s this Cuban Jewish gay Princeton graduate. She checks all of the boxes. On top of that she’s a former Marine captain with 4 tours under her belt, a bronze star, and a Purple Heart.

Edited by Just Here · Reason: added screenshot
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Never seen The Colbys only that it was a spinoff of Dynasty. I didn't even know one of my faves Barbara Stanwyck was in it until I saw this letter to a college where she explains why she quit after only one season:

 

 

 

Edited by Fool to cry
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Miss Stanwyck wasn't a legend for nothing! She had had to live by her wits from childhood onwards . When  she had been  four her mother died from a miscarriage after being shoved off a moving streetcar by a drunk and her male DNA Donor soon abandoned the motherless family . 

Anyway, both Lee Majors and Linda Evans have gone on record as saying that  she was their best teacher onset in The Big Valley  (1965-1969) instilling in them the need to always know their lines cold AND be punctual. That series would launch both their longterm careers and they would credit Miss Stanwyck for giving them guidance. BTW, shortly after their landmark series ended, she invited them to lunch at a restaurant and Miss Evans arrived one minute late- prompting Miss Stanwyck to immediately snap ,"Audra, you're late!' (Yes, oddly enough, she always addressed her fellow performers on the series by their characters' names instead of their actual given ones).

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I just watched a clip of The Colbys online and she was right. It was cliched and perfunctory soap dialogue with no wit at all. Complete waste of her talents.

There's a moving clip online of her and William Holden presenting at the Oscars online in 1978. Holden goes off script to say how Stanwyck as his co-star kept him from being fired from his first movie Golden Boy and what a great person she is and Stankwck is so touched. Years later when she got a Lifetime Achievement Award she mentions Holden who had since passed and who always wished she would win an Oscar and through tears Stanwyck said "Now, Golden Boy you have your wish!"

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Barbara Stanwyck has always been a major favorite of mine! William Holden also sent her flowers every year to thank her for saving his fledgling career.

While filming the movie California, the director was picking on a bit-player (his MO was to take out his frustrations on people who couldn’t fight back). Barbara stopped him and told him if he didn’t get up in front of the whole cast and crew and apologize she would walk.

She had a complicated personal life but she had a well-deserved rep as a thorough professional with a generous, protective nature.

Edited by AgathaC
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On 5/24/2021 at 11:09 AM, DearEvette said:

again another reason I am glad I stopped watching because I have an irrational dislike of Amy Acker

Nothing irrational about disliking Amy Acker.  She's a terrible actress.

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1 hour ago, proserpina65 said:

Nothing irrational about disliking Amy Acker.  She's a terrible actress.

She ruined, RUINED! Person of Interest for me.

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I got used to her on POI eventually but wish the role had been cast differently. Every time she pops up in something I'm watching, I groan. Same with Felicia Day. I don't dislike her, I'm just tired of seeing her show up in everything. They're both like the Tracy Scoggins* of their generation.

*Older viewers of genre TV will know what I mean.

Edited by ABay
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Agreed about Amy Acker. I was a fan of Angel back in the day and I could not stand Fred, though I could tell I was supposed to find her adorably irresistible. Um, no. I couldn’t understand why the show runners felt the need to force her on us (and then destroy and eventually dump Cordy, whom I loved). Now, of course, with everything that’s come out over the years about the behind-the-scenes mess, it makes a lot more sense. But still infuriating.

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Okay, you may hate me for it, but I loved Root and I didn't care about Person of Interest until it stopped being a generic case-of-the-week show. And Carter was boring.

And anyone who saw Angel S5 and the way Amy Acker transformed from Fred to Illyria can't seriously agree that she's a bad actress.

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46 minutes ago, FurryFury said:

And anyone who saw Angel S5 and the way Amy Acker transformed from Fred to Illyria can't seriously agree that she's a bad actress.

Oh, I don’t necessarily say she’s a bad actress. As I recall, I thought she was ok. I just didn’t particularly like her or her character. 😉

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On 10/20/2021 at 2:15 PM, ABay said:

Every time she pops up in something I'm watching, I groan. Same with Felicia Day. I don't dislike her, I'm just tired of seeing her show up in everything. They're both like the Tracy Scoggins* of their generation.

Agree on Amy Acker and Felicia Day.   Somehow they come on a show and no matter what happened before the show begins to revolve around them.   Like the previous characters we have come to know and love only existed to introduce them and then serve THEIR story.  

But, I will say I've always like Tracy Scoggins.   Didn't like they cast her in the last season of Babylon 5 because she deserved better than being stuck in that situation.   Although Day of the Dead had some of the finest acting from her I've seen.   When she gives the computer her password, it hit my right in the gut.  In short, I will watch what she is in.   I know it won't suck terribly (but then I like bad scifi).  

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On 10/20/2021 at 5:15 PM, FurryFury said:

And anyone who saw Angel S5 and the way Amy Acker transformed from Fred to Illyria can't seriously agree that she's a bad actress.

I absolutely think she's a terrible actress.  I was not impressed.

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8 hours ago, proserpina65 said:

I absolutely think she's a terrible actress.  I was not impressed.

Ditto. That was just a horrible season all around and Amy Acker was annoying as hell.

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On 10/20/2021 at 2:49 PM, AgathaC said:

Agreed about Amy Acker. I was a fan of Angel back in the day and I could not stand Fred, though I could tell I was supposed to find her adorably irresistible. Um, no. I couldn’t understand why the show runners felt the need to force her on us (and then destroy and eventually dump Cordy, whom I loved). Now, of course, with everything that’s come out over the years about the behind-the-scenes mess, it makes a lot more sense. But still infuriating.

Long story short, her slender frame made Josh Whedon go "wowee" while Charisma Carpenter dared to weigh over 115 pounds.

Edited by methodwriter85
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On 10/20/2021 at 11:49 AM, AgathaC said:

Agreed about Amy Acker. I was a fan of Angel back in the day and I could not stand Fred, though I could tell I was supposed to find her adorably irresistible. Um, no. I couldn’t understand why the show runners felt the need to force her on us (and then destroy and eventually dump Cordy, whom I loved). Now, of course, with everything that’s come out over the years about the behind-the-scenes mess, it makes a lot more sense. But still infuriating.

 

On 10/27/2021 at 12:02 PM, methodwriter85 said:

Long story short, her slender frame made Josh Whedon go "wowee" while Charisma Carpenter dared to weigh over 115 pounds.

 

I doubt that. I think this new bit of info from James Marsters shed more light on the situation:

https://youtu.be/K4VyMNLJYxs

 

All I can say is, yes she had a kid but so did a lot of people who worked on the show. If it was a matter of the "needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one".

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Fool to cry said:

I doubt that. I think this new bit of info from James Marsters shed more light on the situation:

https://youtu.be/K4VyMNLJYxs

I would take everything he says with a grain of salt. I doubt that having Spike saved Angel from getting cancelled and I am positive that Joss would have gotten Charisma fired anyway. 

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47 minutes ago, JustHereForFood said:

I would take everything he says with a grain of salt. I doubt that having Spike saved Angel from getting cancelled and I am positive that Joss would have gotten Charisma fired anyway. 

 I'm sure though you believe his story of Joss choking him against a wall his first season. Also I just can't see if Cordelia did have a regular human pregnancy(as some fans would prefer) why she would stick around Angel investigation and put her child in danger?

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18 hours ago, Fool to cry said:

 I'm sure though you believe his story of Joss choking him against a wall his first season. 

I didn't think about it that much to be honest. There are plenty of other reasons why Joss sucks, so whether or not James is exaggerating here is not that relevant to me.

18 hours ago, Fool to cry said:

Also I just can't see if Cordelia did have a regular human pregnancy(as some fans would prefer) why she would stick around Angel investigation and put her child in danger?

There are many ways to write that in and Joss is a very good writer, so I'm sure he could have come up with something interesting if they chose to have the character pregnant. Which did not have to be the case at all:

 

 

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23 minutes ago, JustHereForFood said:

I didn't think about it that much to be honest. There are plenty of other reasons why Joss sucks, so whether or not James is exaggerating here is not that relevant to me.

There are many ways to write that in and Joss is a very good writer, so I'm sure he could have come up with something interesting if they chose to have the character pregnant. Which did not have to be the case at all:

 

 

Heck, the pregnancy had already been accounted for on-screen anyway. The decision was made to permanently incapacitate the character (and later kill her off) at the point where the pregnancy ended, not before it became visible. That was a deliberate choice, made not to prevent her being pregnant on-screen, but to punish her for having been pregnant. Charisma's pregnancy was written into the storyline. Cordelia was pregnant on-screen. Making it so the pregnancy killed the character when she gave birth was a choice made by the writer.

20 hours ago, Fool to cry said:

All I can say is, yes she had a kid but so did a lot of people who worked on the show. If it was a matter of the "needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one".

I'm curious to know who else on the show you think was pregnant on-screen, because I watched all five seasons of Angel, and Charisma Carpenter was quite definitely the only one of the regulars to be pregnant while filming. Darla's pregnancy was a storyline, the actress wasn't pregnant, and she wasn't a regular.

We're not talking about actors who have kids. We're talking about how a show accommodates an actor who becomes pregnant while filming.

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I meant the crew and everyone behind the scenes who had families to support who would be out of work when the show got cancelled. If bringing Spike on board and paying him what he wanted would keep the show on another season then that's what they had to do.

My feeling is Joss was an asshole but not in the way people think. I don't think he fired Charisma out of revenge of dislike. Like he didn't have Black Widow and Bruce be in a relationship and have her reveal she couldnt have kids because he didn't like the actors. It's what he wanted to write. I think he wanted to take the show somewhere in season 5 and Cordelia just didn't fit those plans. "Sorry but I now have a new vision and they don't include you anymore. What? You need to support a child now? Well them's the breaks". He just strikes me as "my art is more important than people's feelings" types like Kubrick haranguing Shelly Duvall not because of animosity but so she'd give the performance he wanted.

Edited by Fool to cry
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On 11/10/2021 at 7:29 PM, Fool to cry said:

He just strikes me as "my art is more important than people's feelings" types like Kubrick haranguing Shelly Duvall not because of animosity but so she'd give the performance he wanted.

Well, that's another self-absorbed asshole, so the comparison seems fitting.

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I guess because this is likely the best place to mention it. I think I've made a discovery the origin of the name of Harriet Nelson (1909-1994).

Yes the iconic wife and mother/straight woman (though with spunk and unexpected zaniness) of The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952-1966!) had   a bit of an unexpected backstory re her own name.

 

To begin with she was born Peggy Lou Snyder in 1909- the only child of performers Roy Hilliard   and Hazel McNutt Snyder. Well, it seems she early on had had her original given name changed to Harriet and none of the bios covering the Nelson Family seem to have had any insights as to why but I think I may have uncovered what may have happened. In 1911, a Harriett McNutt   passed away at age 22. This Miss McNutt was the twin sister of Hazel McNutt Snyder so it seems almost certain that Mrs. Snyder insisted that their young daughter be renamed after her own twin sister (albeit with one instead of two t's). 

Anyway, Roy Snyder had long since performed under the name of Hilliard and, it seems he separated from Hazel when their daughter was young but it's unclear whether they ever divorced or just stayed  separated until his 1953 death . However, the renamed Harriet started working in showbiz from her early teens to help support her mother- and billed herself as 'Harriet Hilliard'. She had a brief marriage  to an abusive comedian (one Roy Sedley 1901-1989) before Ozzie (1907-1975) came into the picture  but he was able to use his legal skills to get that ended so they had no impediment to their own marriage in 1935.  Of course, they went on to have their two sons, David  Oswald and Eric Hiliard - and Harriet would perform in movies as Harriet Hilliard long after their marriage. It was only when they started the radio show in the mid 1940's, then made the  pilot movie  before the iconic sitcom that she'd be billed as 'Harriet Nelson' . Meantime, Hazel would live to 1971 and Tracy Nelson has said that Hazel was her father Rick's favorite person! Interestingly enough, she would be buried under the name of 'Hazel D. Hilliard' while Roy was buried under the name of 'Roy H. Snyder' but it's unclear whether she (or, for that matter, Harriet) had actually legally changed the surname from Snyder to Hilliard or just used the latter enough for everyone to assume that that was their actual surname.  It's also unclear what kind of  dealings Roy had had with his son-in-law and grandsons (or even if he had any dealings)  before his 1953 death. 

Edited by Blergh
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Is there any dirt to spill about The Good Doctor on ABC? I have never seen a show with such a heavy cast turnover before the end of a 5th season.

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1 hour ago, methodwriter85 said:

Is there any dirt to spill about The Good Doctor on ABC? I have never seen a show with such a heavy cast turnover before the end of a 5th season.

I don’t know anything about the show specifically but Disney issued a vaccination mandate for actors.  I know one actor on General Hospital was let go because he wouldn’t be vaccinated.  Maybe that’s a factor.   

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