Her roles were largely stereotypical, yet her charm and goofiness made her memorable. Here’s a look at her work beyond Gone With the Wind.

DESIGN IN FILM: THE MODERN HOUSEAn eight-minute video montage of modern homes—real and fake—as seen on the silver screen.

An examination of the lengthy career of the Chinese-American character actor, from Charlie Chan to Woody Allen.

70MMThirty visually stunning films that illustrate the grandeur of large-format filmmaking.

Our look at the Texas actor’s 43-year film career, including an ill-advised Oscar campaign. 

A look at the professional life of an actress who proved to be much more than just the Wicked Witch of the West.

NEBRASKANSA look at some of the memorable talentsfrom Astaire to Zanuck—to come from the Cornhusker State.

Twenty-five cool photos reveal what goes on outside of movie camera range.

Our list of at least a dozen silent film performers that are happily still with us.

12 GREAT MOVIE SONGSElvis, The Beatles and The Supremes join our list of favorite movie themes of the 1960s.

WILHELM SCREAMWe trace the history of one of the most famous and beloved sound effects in movies.

LOST HORIZONA dud receives its due as we explore the elements that made this 1973 musical so preposterously memorable.

One hundred films whose final words of dialogue make indelible lasting impressions.

25 GREAT SILENT MOVIE POSTERSOur selection of artwork from the early days of motion pictures that expertly illustrate the tone and tale of the films they represent.

RAVES AND RASPBERRIES We select some choice bits from reviews by the late Roger Ebert.

ERROL FLYNN GETS WHACKEDThe actor recalls an unforgettable moment with Bette Davis on the set of The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex.

CINEMATIC RIDESTen films where carnival attractions add to the plot and give their protagonists a cheap thrill.

Three overwrought cautionary tales from the 1930s examine the perils of smoking marijuana in polite society.

20 DIRECTORS / 20 FILMSSome of the world’s best moviemakers from Hollywood’s Golden Era provide a behind-the-scenes look at their creations.

LOS ANGELES IN THE 1920SVintage clips offer a look at famous boulevards, studios, theaters, eateries and more.

BILLY WILDEROur favorite lines of dialogue from the Oscar-winning writer/director.

WOODY ALLENChoice lines of dialogue, from Take the Money and Run to Midnight in Paris.

KATHARINE HEPBURNTen authoritative moments when Kate's movie character speaks her mind.

UFA MOVIE POSTERSA look at the early one sheets from the longest standing film studio in Germany.

THE LANGUAGE OF NOIRWe celebrate tough talk from the best of Hollywood’s gritty crime dramas.


Aerial shots of Hollywood in 1958 includes Griffith Observatory, Grauman’s Chinese Theater and major studios.

AMERICAWe celebrate one of the most exuberant dance numbers committed to film, a thrilling showcase for freakishly talented folks with music in their bones.

HOLLYWOOD POSTCARDSTen vintage postcards revealing the glories of Southern California's movie mecca.

MAJOR FILMS, MINOR GAFFESTwenty-five mistakes in some of the greatest movies ever made.

GEORGE GERSHWINTen classic songs as seen on the silver screen.

GREAT ENDINGSA memorable tussle in Death Valley caps Erich von Stroheim’s broken classic.

10 GREAT POSTERSOur look at striking works of art that just happen to sell movie tickets.

MUST READMGM: Hollywood's Greatest Backlot provides a fascinating look at a lost treasure.

IN THE COOL, COOL, COOL OF THE EVENINGJane Wyman and Bing Crosby charm with the Oscar-winning song from Here Comes the Groom (1951).

PLUNDER ROADFilm noir at its best—and most economical. No backstory, a lean look and just 72 minutes long.

W.C. FIELDSTen of his most memorable character names.

Aliens and mutants take center stage in twenty-five spectacular movie posters from the 1950s.

Our list of ten must-see films—ten artful depictions of the human condition—by one of the world’s most influential directors.

Accomplished directors from the past 50 years talk about their triumphs and challenges in bringing a story to the big screen.

We single out five films that display the talent and range of the Warner Bros. character actor.

AL HIRSCHFELDWe select our ten favorite movie posters by the famed caricaturist.

Five films that best represent the fluttery voiced character actress’s charms.

DIAMOND SETTINGSWe take a look at five of our favorite baseball movies of the ‘40s and ‘50s.


A dozen books that became publishing phenomena and, at times, well-made and popular films.

SCREEN TESTSAudition footage from Monroe, Dean, Brando and others.

MOVIE MOMENTS THAT MAKE LIFE WORTH LIVINGOur collection of ten little moments of breathtaking beauty, expert craftsmanship and happy accidents that rank as our favorites.

A tribute to a character actress who’s made aunts and spinsters her specialty.

STARS ON STARS: 30 CANDID OPINIONSA collection of favorite quotes from movie folk discussing their peers.

We take a good look at the work of MGM’s legendary art director.

JOHN QUALENFive of our favorite performances from the character actor’s lengthy career.

We select three movie musicals we deeply wish the sunny singer/actress would have made.

Twelve examples of what made the late actor such an enduring movie star.

Ten artful, playful and downright silly shots from some of the most famous movies in existence.

JEFFREY HUNTERWe tip our hat to the underrated (and very pretty) actor best known for going toe-to-toe with John Wayne in The Searchers and hanging on the cross in Nicholas Ray’s King of Kings.

ELVIS PRESLEYFive essential films for the Elvis movie fan.

We take a closer look and listen at Johnny Mercer’s witty ditty about the coming of the season.

BILL GOLD’S MOVIE POSTERSOur salute to the legendary graphic artist, including 25 of his posters for some of the most famous movies ever made.

BEAUTIFUL MENFilm giants Cary Grant and his ilk will have to wait. Here we look at ten not-so-obvious choices—actors blessed with incredible good looks, if not legendary status.

BEAUTIFUL WOMENTen of the most physically stunning females to grace the silver screen.

FOOTBALLFive classic films where gridiron shenanigans drive the plot. 

THE 43 FACES OF JOHNNY DEPPWe review the wide variety of characters the actor has played, from early teenager roles to larger-than-life eccentrics.

FRED ASTAIREFive lively numbers from the peerless hoofer.

THE ROAD TO HELEN LAWSONJudy Garland, Susan Hayward and the bumpy road Valley of the Dolls producers experienced in casting an important role in a truly lousy film.

 AMERICAN LANDMARKS ON FILM From the Empire State Building to the Golden Gate Bridge, we take a look at ten famous sights that added drama to the movies.

THE GIRL HUNT BALLETWe revisit the stylish Fred Astaire dream ballet from The Band Wagon (1953).

IOWA FILMS & STARSTen contributions the Hawkeye State has made to motion picture history.

FOX THEATEROur fond look back at one of San Francisco’s grandest movie palaces.

AUTOBIOGRAPHIESTen great titles penned by industry legends.

THE BAND WAGONNanette Fabray recalls a glaring mistake in the 1953 classic musical.

TRIGGERWe celebrate the life and somewhat creepy afterlife of Roy Rogers's favorite mount.

CHARACTERS: AGNES GOOCHPeggy Cass's memorable turn as a plain Jane coaxed into living a little in Auntie Mame (1958).

DESIGNS ON FILMA handsome volume by author and designer Cathy Whitlock chronicles the history of Hollywood set design.

REBECCAFive screen tests for Hitchock’s 1940 classic, with comments by David O. Selznick.

CHARACTERS: BABY ROSALIEIn a daffy send-up of Shirley Temple, June Preisser plays an aging child star in MGM's let's-put-on-a-show musical, Babes in Arms (1939).

PRESTON STURGESSnippets of dialogue from six of the writer/director’s best films.

ANSELMO BALLESTEROur gallery of ten striking one sheets from the Italian poster artist.

GREAT MOVIESCelebrating the cool jazz short, Jammin’ the Blues (1944).

BETTY HUTTONTwelve films that exemplify the charms of this freakishly energetic performer.

JOSEPH L. MANKIEWICZSmart dialogue from the Oscar-winning screenwriter.

DESERT NOIROur report from this year’s Arthur Lyons Film Noir Festival in Palm Springs.

RED DREAM FACTORYWe profile eight films from a unique Russian-German film studio of the twenties and thirties.

Entries in the ten commandments (4)


January 21

Peggy Lee dies of a heart attack in Los Angeles, 2002. Movie-wise, 1955 was a banner year for the singer/actress. She would receive critical acclaim—and eventually an Oscar nomination—as a boozy, washed-up jazz singer in Pete Kelly’s Blues. A month prior to that film’s release, audiences enjoyed a different side of Peggy Lee in Lady and the Tramp, Walt Disney’s animated romantic adventure about dogs from opposite ends of the social spectrum. With Sonny Burke, Lee wrote six songs for the film, including “He’s a Tramp” and “The Siamese Cat Song.” She also provided the voice of four characters, one of which was named after her. “Mamie Eisenhower was our First Lady at the time, and she always wore bangs,” Lee said. “The little dog has bangs and her name in the script was Mamie, so Walt was afraid someone might think we were being a little less than polite about the First Lady. That's why I have the honor of having the character named after me.” Besides Peg (formerly Mamie), Lee gave voice to Darling, the lady of the house who received Lady as a gift from her husband, and Si and Am, the fiendish Siamese cats. 

Cecil B. DeMille dies of a heart ailment in Hollywood, 1959. As a director, he was king of the biblical epics, such as The Ten Commandments (1923), The King of Kings (1927), The Crusades (1935)  and, again, The Ten Commandments (1956). Throughout his career he fully expected his performers to perform risky stunts, an attitude that ran counter to what actor Victor Mature was willing to do on the set of DeMille’s 1949 potboiler Samson and Delilah. Strong wind gusts during a battle scene saw a spooked Mature fleeing the set and heading for his dressing room. For the lion-killing scene, a tame, toothless beast was brought in to wrestle with the actor, who refused to go anywhere near it. In the finished film, a stuntman grapples with the big cat while close-ups show Mature manufacturing conflict with a lion pelt. "I have met a few men in my time,” DeMille remarked loudly for all cast and crew to hear. “Some have been afraid of heights, some have been afraid of water, some have been afraid of fire, some have been afraid of closed places. Some have even been afraid of open spaces—or themselves. But in all my thirty-five years of picture-making, Mr. Mature, I have not met a man who was 100% yellow."


Dual Yul

Yul Brynner steps out of his Mercedes-Benz 300SL Roadster to attend the premiere of Cecil B. DeMille’s The Ten Commandments, which became the top grossing film of 1956. Another of Brynner’s releases that year, The King and I, would end up in fifth place on that list of top moneymakers and earn the actor the Academy Award for Best Actor.


March 22

Mike Todd is killed in a plane crash near Grants, New Mexico, 1958. Though he was a producer of 17 Broadway shows, husband to Joan Blondell and lover of Gypsy Rose Lee, he is primarily known for three things. One is Todd-AO, a widescreen 70mm format for motion pictures born from his frustration with the three-panel Cinerama he was helping develop. Todd-AO made its debut with Oklahoma! (1955) and was used throughout the 1960s. In 1956, Todd produced the epic Around the World in 80 Days (filmed in Todd-AO, naturally), a box office hit that eclipsed Friendly Persuasion, Giant, The King and I and The Ten Commandments to receive the Oscar for Best Picture. And, in 1957, Todd became Elizabeth Taylor’s third husband, and the only one not to divorce her. On the day of the crash, Taylor intended to board The Liz, as Todd’s plane was known, but she was talked out of it by her husband and otherwise grounded by a bad cold. A combination of blizzard conditions, engine failure and a too-heavy load caused the plane to lose control and crash, killing Todd, the pilot, the co-pilot and Art Cohn, Todd’s biographer.


December 12

Anne Baxter dies of a brain aneurysm in New York City, 1985. Though she was lovely in The Magnificent Ambersons (1942), heartbreaking in The Razor’s Edge (1946) and wickedly conniving in All About Eve (1950), we will always love her for “Oh Moses, Moses, you stubborn, splendid, adorable fool!” Baxter’s utterance in The Ten Commandments (1956) is one of the most howlingly bad lines of dialogue in any of Cecil B. DeMille’s movies (which is saying quite a bit). Appearing opposite Charlton Heston as Moses and Yul Brynner as Ramses, the actress throws herself into the role of Egyptian queen Nefertiri, a part for which Audrey Hepburn was initially considered, but passed over because of her waifish figure. If you’ve never seen the biblical epic, simply wait for Easter and then turn on the TV.