Casbah (1948) - News Poster

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The Forgotten: Erik Charell's "The Congress Dances" (1931) and "Caravan" (1934)

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Erik Charell. His credits include script contributions to the Hope-Crosby comedy Road to Morocco and the Tony Martin musical Casbah. To learn this after seeing his only two features as director, The Congress Dances (1931) and Caravan (1934), is like discovering there was a guy called Orson Welles who made Citizen Kane and The Magnificent Ambersons and spent the rest of his career writing gags for Abbott & Costello.Perhaps Charell wasn't an artist of quite Welles' status. But he'd made a big name for himself in operetta, and both his films are in this mode, though the operetta-film is the genre that time forgot. As out-of-vogue as musicals are, despite anything Damien Chazelle can prove to the contrary, they are the height of fashion compared to actual filmed operettas.The Congress Dances is set in Vienna as pre-wwi world leaders meet and get distracted by romance, except Conrad Veidt as master diplomat
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Tony Martin obituary

American entertainer and singer popular in the 1940s and 50s

The American entertainer Tony Martin, who has died aged 98, was once described as a singing tuxedo. Although he was rather a stiff actor, he was handsome and charming, with a winning, dimpled smile. What mattered most, however, was his mellifluous baritone voice, which he used softly in ballads such as To Each His Own and I Get Ideas, and powerfully in Begin the Beguine and There's No Tomorrow, all hit records in the 1940s and 50s.

He was one of the top crooners of the period with Vic Damone, Andy Williams and Dick Haymes, all of them just below Bing Crosby and Frank Sinatra in esteem and popularity. According to Mel Tormé: "Tony Martin was technically the greatest singer of them all, as well as being the classiest guy around, both as an entertainer and a person."

He was
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Singer-Actor Tony Martin Dies at 98

Singer-Actor Tony Martin Dies at 98
Tony Martin, a crooner best known for his roles in Hollywood musicals, has died at 98. Martin passed away of natural causes Friday at his home in West Los Angeles, his friend Beverly Scott told the Associated Press. During his career, Martin appeared in more than 25 films, often as the romantic lead, including Ziegfeld Girl, and Casbah. His popularity spanned from the late 1930s through the 1950s when Martin became synonymous with songs like "Stranger in Paradise," "La Vie en Rose," "Fools Rush In" and more. Martin's first wife, 1937 until their 1940 divorce, was 20th Century Fox musical star Alice Faye. He
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Actress Yvonne De Carlo Dies at 84

Actress Yvonne De Carlo Dies at 84
Actress Yvonne De Carlo, who played two very famous but disparate wives -- to Charlton Heston in movie epic The Ten Commandments and Fred Gwynne in the horror-spoof sitcom The Munsters -- died Monday in Los Angeles of natural causes; she was 84. Born Margaret Yvonne Middleton in Vancouver, Canada, the actress first traveled to Hollywood with her mother at the age of 15, but returned to Canada after finding little success, even though she was named "Miss Venice Beach" in 1938. Upon her return in 1940 at age 18, she found minor success with chorus girl roles and uncredited bit parts, finally securing her first notable role as Princess Wah-Tah in the western The Deerslayer. As a starlet for Universal, she toiled in numerous unmemorable roles before scoring the lead in the box office success Salome Where She Danced (1945), which led to starring roles in movies such as Slave Girl, Casbah, and River Lady. She played a femme fatale alongside Burt Lancaster in the noir classic Criss Cross, the Princess Scheherazade in The Desert Hawk, and the lead opposite a young Rock Hudson in Scarlet Angel. Her two most famous film roles came in the late '50s, when she played wife Sephora to Charlton Heston's Moses in The Ten Commandments, and the female lead opposite Clark Gable in Raoul Walsh's Band of Angels (which also featured the young Sidney Poitier).

By the early '60s, De Carlo was appearing steadily in a number of television series, and in 1964 she was tapped for the role of Lily Munster in the sitcom The Munsters. A show that parodied both horror films and squeaky-clean family sitcoms, where the titular family of monstrous misfits interacted with the regular world at large, it aired on CBS from 1964-66 and became a cultural phenomenon upon going into reruns. Spoofing the Bride of Frankenstein, De Carlo showed off a comic flair that was often missing from her film roles, and though the show lasted for only 70 episodes, Lily Munster became De Carlo's most famous part. (The Munsters debuted in the same year as the similarly-themed The Addams Family, and both were canceled two years later.) Most of De Carlo's film and TV appearances for the rest of her career were in horror movies (or spoofs) or in episodic television, and her last role was in the 1995 TV movie The Barefoot Executive. On Broadway, however, she created the role of Carlotta Campion in Stephen Sondheim's 1972 musical Follies, where she sang the show's signature number, "I'm Still Here," and also published her autobiography in 1987. De Carlo was married to stutman Bob Morgan, whom she divorced in 1968 and with whom she had two sons. --Mark Englehart, IMDb staff

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