History, Legacy & Showmanship

History, Legacy & Showmanship

West Side Story stands as a prime example of successfully rendering a stage musical in cinematic terms.” – Matthew Kennedy, author of Roadshow!

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 60th anniversary of the release of West Side Story, Robert Wise (The Sound of Music, Star!) and Jerome Robbins’ (The King and I, Gypsy) screen adaptation of the popular musical stage production inspired by Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and starring Natalie Wood (Rebel Without a Cause, Brainstorm) as Maria and Richard Beymer (The Diary of Anne Frank, Twin Peaks) as Tony.

The winner of ten Academy Awards including Best Picture, the most popular movie of 1961 and one of the most popular musicals ever also featured Russ Tamblyn (Seven Brides for Seven Brothers) as Riff, Rita Moreno (The King and I) as Anita, and George Chakiris (The Young Girls of Rochefort) as Bernardo. [Read on here...]

“If you are the rare person who has never seen a Clint Eastwood film and wonder what all the fuss is about, Dirty Harry would be a good place to start.” – Patrick McGilligan, author of Clint: The Life and Legend

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the golden anniversary of the release of Dirty Harry, the popular action-thriller about San Francisco Police Department Inspector “Dirty” Harry Callahan and his quest to apprehend a psychopath. Starring Clint Eastwood (Unforgiven, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly) in the titular role, the film was inspired by the Zodiac Killer case and spawned a series of Dirty Harry films.

Directed by Don Siegel (Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Escape from Alcatraz), the film also starred Andy Robinson (Hellraiser, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine), Harry Guardino (Pork Chop Hill, Rollercoaster), Reni Santoni (Bad Boys, Cobra), and John Vernon (The Outlaw Josey Wales, Animal House). [Read on here...]

“With excellent performances from an ensemble cast, moody and insightful direction by Peter Bogdanovich, and a lovely melancholy that will stay with you long after viewing it, The Last Picture Show is one of my favorite movies.” – Raymond Benson, Cinema Retro

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this multi-page retrospective commemorating the golden anniversary of the release of The Last Picture Show, Peter Bogdanovich’s (Targets, What’s Up, Doc?) critically acclaimed film based upon Larry McMurtry’s 1966 novel set in a small Texas town during the early 1950s.

The Last Picture Show starred Timothy Bottoms (Johnny Got His Gun), Jeff Bridges (The Big Lebowski), Ellen Burstyn (The Exorcist), Ben Johnson (The Wild Bunch), Cloris Leachman (The Mary Tyler Moore Show), and Cybill Shepherd (Moonlighting), and was nominated for eight Academy Awards (including Best Picture) and was the winner of two (supporting nods for Johnson and Leachman). [Read on here...]

Duel showed us that art could be produced on a television budget and on a television schedule. — Gary Gerani, co-author of Fantastic Television

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the golden anniversary of the original broadcast of Duel, the acclaimed television film adapted from Richard Matheson’s short story about a man menaced on the highway by the unseen driver of a truck.

Duel featured Dennis Weaver (Gunsmoke, Gentle Ben) and originally aired as a part of the ABC Movie of the Week in autumn 1971 before being expanded into a theatrical release.

Directed by a 24-year-old Steven Spielberg, Duel marked Spielberg’s transition into the production of feature-length motion pictures following two years of directing episodic television. [Read on here...]

It's a Wonderful Life is truly the platinum standard in Christmas movies; the benchmark by which all other entries in the genre are judged.” — Thomas A. Christie, author of The Christmas Movie Book

The Digital Bits and History, Legacy & Showmanship are pleased to present this retrospective commemorating the 75th anniversary of the release of It’s a Wonderful Life, the Christmas classic directed by Frank Capra (It Happened One Night, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington) and starring James Stewart (The Philadelphia Story, Vertigo) and Donna Reed (From Here to Eternity, The Donna Reed Show).

In 1990 the Library of Congress selected It’s a Wonderful Life for preservation in the National Film Registry as being “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant” and in 1998 the American Film Institute (AFI) recognized the film as the 11th greatest movie ever made. The film has been released countless times on home media formats with its most recent release (on 4K UHD) in 2019 (and reviewed here). [Read on here...]

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