, American author, journalist, critic and expert on Japan, dies at 88.
Smilingly excluded here in Japan, politely stigmatised, I can from my angle attempt only objectivity, since my subjective self will not fit the space I am allotted . . . how fortunate I am to occupy this niche with its lateral view. In America I would be denied this place. I would live on the flat surface of a plain. In Japan, from where I am sitting, the light falls just right – I can see the peaks and valleys, the crags and crevasses.
-- from The Japan Journals, 1947-2004 [more inside]
posted by Ice Cream Socialist
on Feb 19, 2013 -
'TV historians will tell you that “Felix the Cat” was one of the first images ever broadcast on television (when RCA broadcast a Felix doll in 1928 on experimental station W2XBS) — but it wasn’t until the late ’40s that the first animated character was created expressly for TV. Crusader Rabbit
appeared for the very first time on KNBH (Los Angeles) on August 1, 1950, and featured a Don Quixote-like title character aided by his friend Ragland T. “Rags” Tiger as they pursued adventures in serial (i.e. cliffhanger) installments.' On November 8th, the voice of Crusader Rabbit, Lucille Bliss, passed away
at the age of 96. Ms. Bliss may be more familiar to younger fans as the voice of Smurfette
, from The Smurfs
, or as Ms. Bitters
on Invader ZIM. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Nov 15, 2012 -
Zdeněk Miler, the animator of the beloved Krtek ("Little Mole") animations died today.
Conceived in 1954 after stumbling on a mole's burrow on his evening walk, Krtek appeared in about fifty films all drawn by Miler. The first Krtek film ("How Krtek Got His Pants
"), originally an educational video about the manufacture of linen, won first prize at the Venice Film Festival in 1957. The Krtek films have been aired in about eighty countries. Miler's young daughters did the uber-cute vocalizations for Krtek, and were the films' test audience as Miler tweaked the films per their suggestions. Here are some perennial favorites: Krtek and the Radio
, Krtek and the Green Star
, Krtek at Christmas
, Krtek and the Robot
, like most film buffs, was surprised that Krtek had remained largely unknown in the United States. "Pretty much the whole world knows Krtek," Mr. Miler said. "America, which is usually first in everything, is last in this. I always look at American history," he said, "and it is a very hard one. People came. They conquered a continent. They suffered hardships, and that hardship is reflected in its movies. I look at children there and think what they are watching is a reflection of that hardness. If you look at America, it is epic. Whereas here, it is more poetic. I feel here there is more lyricism."
posted by Atrahasis
on Nov 30, 2011 -
When "Proto-Pop" artist Larry Rivers
' died in 2002
, he left behind extensive archives of his letters, paperwork, photographs and film documenting the New York artistic and literary scene from the 1940s through the 1980s. They chronicle his friendships and relationships with dozens of artists, musicians and writers, from Willem de Kooning and Andy Warhol to Frank O’Hara. Also included: films and videos of his two adolescent daughters, naked or topless, being interviewed by their father about their developing breasts. Now, one daughter, who says she was pressured to participate beginning when she was 11, is demanding that material be removed from the archive and returned to her and her sister. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Jul 8, 2010 -
What are you doing? Stop it! Stop it! Give me those pictures. You can't photograph people like that. Who says I can't? I'm only doing my job. Some people are bullfighters, some people are politicians. I'm a photographer.
, 1912 - 2007
posted by feelinglistless
on Jul 31, 2007 -
"Porky's was about anti-Semitism, about racism, it's not just about boys with erections," claims Clark. He then adds, pun intended, "It was a seminal film." Bob Clark
, Director of two iconic
1980's films that profoundly impacted some of your childhoods (no doubt in decidedly different ways), and his 22 year-old son were in a fatal car crash
on PCH this morning. This was set to be a promising year
for the man who brought Ralphie and his bunny suit
to the world. R.I.P.
posted by miss lynnster
on Apr 4, 2007 -
Sven Nykvist leaves us.
A master at the subtle manipulation of light, the multiple academy award winner and longtime Ingmar Bergman collaborator (including Persona, and the Through a Glass Darkly/Winter Light/The Silence trilogy) has passed away at 83.
more obits  
more about him  
posted by juv3nal
on Sep 21, 2006 -
Hollywood loses another giant.
Billy Wilder passes on at 95. Just the quick list of movies at the top of the article gives me pause..Stalag 17, Some Like it Hot, The Seven-Year Itch
. Damn, this is definitely a sad week in the entertainment business.
posted by PeteyStock
on Mar 28, 2002 -
Film, TV Director Ted Demme Dies
"Demme was participating in a celebrity basketball game at the private Crossroads School when he was stricken Sunday, said Ted Braun, a spokesman for Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center.
Paramedics rushed Demme to the hospital's emergency room in full cardiac arrest. He was pronounced dead 20 minutes later.
Demme, a nephew of director Jonathan Demme, directed Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz in last year's "Blow." The film was based on the true story of George Jung, who was the American connection to the Colombian cocaine cartel in the late 1970s and early '80s when the drug became hip. "
posted by dgeiser13
on Jan 14, 2002 -
The man behind Woman in the Dunes has passed away.
Filmmaker Hiroshi Teshigahara died on Saturday with nary a press announcement. I haven't been this pissed off about a media blackout since Sam Fuller passed on (or, to some extent, the recent death of Joey Ramone). Is the only way for an obscure artist to gain that long-neglected recognition for their works to kick the bucket? It would seem that, even then, there are no guarantees.
posted by ed
on Apr 18, 2001 -