Singer/actress Constance Towers, Ernie Kovacs estate director Josh Mills, and authors Douglas Howard and David Bianculli will join us this weekend on TV CONFIDENTIAL, airing Jan. 18-20 at the following times and venues:
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Viewers of daytime television know Constance Towers as Helena Cassadine, the charismatic villainess that she has played on ABC’s General Hospital on a recurring basis since 1997. Prior to General Hospital, of course, Connie appeared in such films and TV series as The Horse Soldiers, Sergeant Rutledge, Shock Corridor, Perry Mason, Designing Women, L.A. Law, Criminal Minds, Cold Case, A Perfect Murder, 1600 Penn and 11.22.63, while her musical credits include the national tour of The King and I as well as productions as The Sound of Music, Carousel, Oklahoma, Camelot and Mame.
The American Cinematheque will honor Constance Towers at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood on Sunday, January 27 as part of a special evening that will include a screening of The Naked Kiss, the iconic film by Samuel Fuller that sparked controversy when it was originally released in 1964, but which has grown in stature ever since—in large part due to the performance of Constance Towers. Constance Towers will join us in our second hour.
Constance Towers will appear at the Eqyptian Theater in Hollywood, California on Sunday, January 27. Connie will be interviewed that night by film historian Foster Hirsch following a special screening of The Naked Kiss. The evening begins at 5:30pm. For more information, go to AmericanCinemathequeCalendar.com. Constance Towers will also appear at the annual Beverly Hills Theater Guild luncheon, which will take place on Sunday, March 17 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills. Honorees at this year’s luncheon will include Oscar winner Eva Marie Saint and her late husband, television director Jeffrey Hayden; longtime television writer/director Howard Storm; and legendary Hollywood agent Budd Burton Moss. The program will also include a tribute to the films and television series of Garry Marshall. For more information, call (310) 765-1605 or go to BeverlyHillsTheaterGuild.com.
Josh Mills joins us in the studio this week as we mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of Ernie Kovacs—Television’s Original Genius, and a man whose utterly unique sensibility influenced two generations of comedians and comedy institutions, including Saturday Night Live, Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In, Monty Python, David Letterman, Harry Shearer, Mr. Bean and many others too numerous to mention. The son of singer/actress Edie Adams, and the director of the estates of Ernie Kovacs and Edie Adams, Josh will talk about some of the many events on tap throughout 2019 that will commemorate the Kovacs centennial, including the upcoming two-night event at the UCLA Film and Television Archive and the special mini marathon of Kovacs programming that Turner Classic Movies will air on Wednesday, January 23 (Ernie’s actual 100th birthday). Josh Mills joins us in our first hour.
Ernie Kovacs: The Centennial Edition, a newly released nine-DVD configuration, features twenty-two hours of the very best of Kovacs, including episodes from Ernie’s NBC prime time show, five of his iconic specials for ABC, the rarely seen color version of his legendary silent show, Eugene (originally broadcast on NBC), and the only existing filmed solo interview of Ernie Kovacs, which aired on Canadian television just a few weeks before Ernie’s untimely death in January 1962. Ernie Kovacs: The Centennial Edition is available through Shout! Factory.
Also this week: We’ll take a look at notable TV series finales along with Tony Figueroa and Donna Allen. A phenomenon pioneered, in many respects, by the final episodes of The Fugitive and The Mary Tyler Moore Show, series finales have since become a cultural touchstone that has fed water cooler fodder and, more recently, Twitter memes for three generations of TV viewers.
Joining Tony and Donna will be Douglas Howard, editor of such books as Dexter: Investigating Cutting Edge Television, and David Bianculli, longtime television critic and contributor to NPR’s Fresh Air, and the author of such books as Dangerously Funny: The Uncensored Story of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour. Doug and David are the co-editors of Television Finales: From Howdy Doody to Girls, a new book that explores seventy-one of the most notable series finales over the past five decades: why they are important (to critics and viewers alike) and what they mean to the audience. Douglas Howard and David Bianculli will join us in our first hour.
TV CONFIDENTIAL: A radio talk show about television
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