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 Posted:   Jul 29, 2021 - 1:10 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

THE GIRL ON A MOTORCYCLE follows the travels of an ennui-stricken housewife, “Rebecca” (Marianne Faithfull), on the way to her sometime lover “Daniel” (Alain Delon) by way of a fetishized Harley Davidson. As she makes the journey, the film flashes back to her memories of the moments in her life that led her to this place of desperation. André Maranne plays a French Customs Officer in the film.

Jack Cardiff directed the 1968 release. Les Reed’s score was released on a Tetragrammaton LP, which was re-issued on CD by RPM Records in 1996. The British-French production was the first film to receive an [X] rating by the recently implemented U.S. MPAA rating system. The film did little business when it was released in the U.S. by Claridge Pictures, grossing just $600,000.




In 1970, Warner Bros. acquired the U.S. distribution rights to the film. They edited some of the sex scenes so that the film would qualify for an [R] rating, and re-released it under the title NAKED UNDER LEATHER.


 
 
 Posted:   Jul 29, 2021 - 11:34 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

DUFFY (James Coburn) is a cunning aristocrat of criminals hired by “Stefane” (James Fox), a young playboy, to hijack a boat carrying several million dollars of his father's fortune. He succeeds, with help from Stefane's girlfriend “Segolene” (Susannah York), but with an unexpected turn of events. André Maranne played “Inspector Garain” in the film.

Robert Parrish directed the 1968 release. Ernie Freeman provided the unreleased score. The film did average business, with a $2.9 million U.S. gross.


 
 
 Posted:   Jul 30, 2021 - 11:47 AM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

In addition to the Bond films, producer Harry Saltzman hired Guy Hamilton to direct the second of his "Harry Palmer" spy films, FUNERAL IN BERLIN, as well as his 1969 production of BATTLE OF BRITAIN. Set in 1940, the film follows the British Royal Air Force as they fight a desperate battle to prevent the Luftwaffe from gaining air superiority over the English Channel as a prelude to a possible Axis invasion of the U.K. André Maranne played a French NCO in the film.

Despite its historic story and plethora of British stars (Michael Caine, Laurence Olivier, Christopher Plummer), the $17 million film took in only $2 million at the American box office, and all told lost $10 million worldwide. The Ron Goodwin - William Walton score was last released by Varese Sarabande in 2004.


 
 Posted:   Jul 30, 2021 - 3:44 PM   
 By:   Advise & Consent   (Member)

@ Mr. Bob DiMucci; Thanks for making these retrospectives. Not only do they offer well deserved and respectful homages to the recently departed, but they also introduce us to films more obscure films that we would otherwise not be introduced. I've found many a gem through these retrospectives.

Edit: that Battle of Britain poster artwork is awesome. It would make a great cover on a re-issue of the no less awesome score(s).

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 31, 2021 - 12:08 AM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

Julie Andrews and Rock Hudson co-starred in Blake Edwards’ big-budget flop DARLING LILI. This musical-comedy-drama, set during World War I, found Andrews playing “Lili Smith,” a popular singer with London audiences, who also acts as a German agent. Her assignment, relayed by superior “Colonel Kurt von Ruger” (Jeremy Kemp), is to develop a friendship with American officer “Major William Larrabee” (Hudson). André Maranne played “Lieutenant Liggett” in the film.

Jacques Marin, André Maranne, and Jeremy Kemp in DARLING LILI



DARLING LILI was not initially going to be a musical. The film was only planned to have a couple of performance scenes to establish Julie Andrew’s character as an entertainer, but the studio insisted on turning it into a musical. Blake Edwards disowned the final cut, citing that the studio had final say. He was given the opportunity to re-cut the film in the 1990s and he deleted about 29 minutes of footage, including most of the songs.

With a final production cost of over $18 million, 1970’s DARLING LILI was described as one of the most expensive pictures ever made. Despite a roadshow rollout, after more than seven months in release, the 6 January 1971 Variety listed the cumulative box-office rentals as $3.25 million, making DARLING LILI only the thirty-seventh highest-grossing film of 1970. Henry Mancini’s score and Julie Andrews’ songs shared the RCA LP release, which was re-issued on CD by RCA Spain in 1999. The score was most recently released by Legacy in 2014 as part of the box set “Henry Mancini: The Classic Soundtrack Collection.”


 
 
 Posted:   Jul 31, 2021 - 10:33 AM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

Producer Hal Wallis had long been involved in the production of films that dramatized chapters from England’s history, going all the way back to his 1936 production of THE CHARGE OF THE LIGHT BRIGADE. That film was followed by Wallis’ THE PRIVATE LIVES OF ELIZABETH AND ESSEX (1939), BECKET (1964), ANNE OF THE THOUSAND DAYS (1969), and MARY, QUEEN OF SCOTS (1972). Thus, it was no surprise when Wallis decided to film the story of Lord Horatio Nelson and Lady Emma Hamilton in 1973’s BEQUEST TO THE NATION.

Lord Nelson, the greatest naval hero in British history, was known for his bold action in battle during the Napoleonic Wars, and met Emma Hamilton while posted in Naples. Married at the time to Sir William Hamilton, British Envoy to Naples, Emma was a celebrated artist’s model when she and Nelson fell in love. The couple pursued their romance openly, and when the humiliated Lady Nelson demanded her husband give up his mistress, Nelson moved out of Lady Nelson’s home, never to see her again. Although most aristocratic men of the era kept mistresses, Nelson was the first well-known man to leave his wife for one, and the affair scandalized Britain. Before Nelson set sail to wage the Battle of Trafalgar, he signed a document bequesting that his King and country provide Emma with ample provision to maintain her station in life. On October 19, 1805, Nelson died in battle. The film ends with the written epilogue: “Horatio, First Viscount Nelson, Duke of Bronte, was buried with full Naval Honours in St. Paul’s Cathedral. Nelson’s bequests were never carried out, and as a result, Emma, Lady Hamilton, after two spells in debtors’ prison, left England forever. She died in Calais on 15th January 1815, in abject poverty.”

The film is based on a Terence Rattigan play, which was originally produced on BBC television on 14 March 1966, where it was titled “Nelson: A Portrait in Miniature.” Revised for the stage as “A Bequest to the Nation,” the play opened in London on 23 September 1970, directed by Peter Glenville, and starring Zoe Caldwell as Lady Hamilton and Ian Holm as Lord Nelson” Although a considerable success in Britain, at the time of the film’s production, the play had not been staged in the U.S.




To direct the film, Hal Wallis chose James Cellan Jones, who gained prominence as a television director in England, where he directed, among other things, the highly successful BBC series “The Forsyte Saga” (1967). BEQUEST TO THE NATION marked the feature directing debut of Jones. Terence Rattigan did the adaptation of his play for the screen.

Starring in the film were Glenda Jackson as Emma Hamilton, Peter Finch as Lord Nelson, Michael Jayston as Captain Hardy, and Anthony Quayle as Lord Minto. The supporting cast included Margaret Leighton, Nigel Stock, and Barbara Leigh-Hunt. André Maranne played Admiral Villeneuve, the French naval officer who was in command of the French and the Spanish fleets that were defeated by Nelson at the Battle of Trafalgar.

The film’s score was composed by Michel Legrand. In his review of the film, Kevin Thomas of the Los Angeles Times noted that “Michel Legrand’s Haydn-seeking music, actually very much in the tradition of Handel’s Royal Fireworks Music and other works from his English period, is a departure from Legrand’s customary style, but is singularly appropriate and effective.” But apparently, the film and score are so little known that Soundtrack Collector does not even include BEQUEST TO THE NATION among Legrand’s filmography.

For the U.S. market, Universal decided to retitle the film, apparently concluding that Nelson hadn’t made any bequest to this nation. Under the title THE NELSON AFFAIR, the film grossed just $700,000 in the U.S.


 
 
 Posted:   Jul 31, 2021 - 12:34 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

Between Bond films, Roger Moore starred with Susannah York in the 1974 action-drama GOLD. Moore played “Rod Slater,” the newly appointed general manager of the Sonderditch gold mine, who stumbles across an ingenious plot to flood the mine by a syndicate looking to increase the price of gold. André Maranne played one of the syndicate members.

André Maranne (second from right) in GOLD



In addition to directing ON HER MAJESTY’S SECRET SERVICE, GOLD director Peter Hunt had filmed an episode of Moore’s “The Persuaders!”. GOLD was budgeted at about $2.5 million. In the U.S., the film was handled by minor distributor Allied Artists, and generally played as part of a double bill. It earned about $1 million in rentals. Elmer Bernstein’s score was released on an ABC Records LP, which was reissued on CD by Intrada in 2009.


 
 
 Posted:   Aug 1, 2021 - 1:00 AM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

André Maranne returned as "Sgt. François Chevalier" in 1975's THE RETURN OF THE PINK PANTHER. When the legendary diamond “The Pink Panther” is stolen from a museum in the Middle Eastern country of Lugash, “Inspector Clouseau” (Peter Sellers) identifies the white leather glove left behind by the thief as the calling card of “Sir Charles Litton” (Christopher Plummer), also known as “The Phantom,” the man who stole the Pink Panther once before.

André Maranne in THE RETURN OF THE PINK PANTHER



Blake Edwards directed. Henry Mancini's score was most recently released by Legacy in 2014 as part of the box set “Henry Mancini: The Classic Soundtrack Collection.” The $18 million production was #13 at the U.S. box office for the year, with a $41.8 million gross.


 
 
 Posted:   Aug 1, 2021 - 12:55 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

André Maranne 's third time out as "Francois" was in THE PINK PANTHER STRIKES AGAIN. In this installment of the series, “Charles Dreyfus” (Herbert Lom), who has finally cracked over “Inspector Jacques Clouseau”'s (Peter Sellers') antics, escapes from a mental institution and launches an elaborate plan to get rid of Clouseau once and for all.

André Maranne in THE PINK PANTHER STRIKES AGAIN



Blake Edwards directed the 1976 film, and Henry Mancini's score was most recently released by Quartet in 2014. The picture was the #8 film at the U.S. box office for the year, with a gross of $60.8 million.


 
 
 Posted:   Aug 1, 2021 - 2:55 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

The fourth appearance of " Sgt. François Chevalier" came in 1978's REVENGE OF THE PINK PANTHER. This was the last film in the series to feature original footage of Peter Sellers. A multinational conglomerate and the mob all want “Inspector Clouseau” (Sellers) dead, and they think they have succeeded in killing him, so he teams with the company's boss' former secretary “Simone Legree” (Dyan Cannon) to catch the bad guys in Hong Kong. Douglas Wilmer plays the police commissioner.

Douglas Wilmer and André Maranne in REVENGE OF THE PINK PANTHER



Blake Edwards directed, and the Grammy-nominated score by Henry Mancini was most recently released by Quartet in 2012. The $12 million production was another success at the box office, ranking #8 in the U.S., with a $56.5 million gross.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 2, 2021 - 12:45 AM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

In the made-for-television film S.O.S. TITANIC, Ian Holm played J. Bruce Ismay, the chairman and managing director of the White Star Line, who became the highest-ranking White Star official to survive the sinking of the company's brand-new flagship RMS Titanic. David Janssen starred in the film as John Jacob Astor, who perished on the voyage. Other survivors were English science teacher, journalist and author Lawrence Beesley (David Warner), and the “unsinkable” Molly Brown (Cloris Leachman).

One passenger who didn’t survive was Frenchman Michel Navratil (played by André Maranne). But his two children did survive. In fact, Michel Marcel Navratil, Jr. was one of the last survivors of the sinking of the Titanic, finally passing away in 2001. He, along with his brother Edmond, were the only children rescued without a parent or guardian. Since they were toddlers traveling with their father, and spoke no English, they could not identify themselves and were soon referred to as the "Titanic Orphans". French-speaking first-class passenger Margaret Hays cared for them at her house until their mother could be located, which occurred as a result of newspaper articles which included their photographs. She sailed to New York City and was reunited with them on 16 May 1912. She took them back to France aboard the Oceanic.

William Hale directed S.O.S. TITANIC, which was the first feature-length Titanic movie made in color. The film aired on ABC on 29 September 1979, then, shortened by about half an hour, it played in theatrical release in many foreign countries. Howard Blake’s score was released by Silva Screen in 2013.


 
 
 Posted:   Aug 2, 2021 - 11:45 AM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

Peter Sellers had passed away, but both he and André Maranne’s “Sergeant Francois Duval” reappeared in 1982's TRAIL OF THE PINK PANTHER, which director Blake Edwards cobbled together from outtakes of all but one of the previous Pink Panther films. (Sir Lew Grade had destroyed all of the unused footage from 1975’s RETURN OF THE PINK PANTHER.) Only one-third of TRAIL OF THE PINK PANTHER was comprised of new footage.

Henry Mancini's London-recorded score was last released by Intrada in 2011. After figuring in advertising and promotional costs, the $9 million production lost money at the U.S. box office, with a $9.1 million gross. Nevertheless, the series would continue, because the next film, CURSE OF THE PINK PANTHER was already in the can, having been filmed concurrently with TRAIL.


 
 
 Posted:   Aug 2, 2021 - 11:10 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

Writer-director Blake Edwards was offered the opportunity to continue the “Pink Panther” series, and decided to introduce the blundering detective “Officer Clifton Sleigh,” a well-meaning but inept New York City policeman, as its new protagonist, rather than recast “Inspector Clouseau,” the character created by the late actor Peter Sellers. Although Edwards considered British actor Rowan Atkinson, as well as Dudley Moore, he chose Ted Wass based on his performances in the American television comedy series, “Soap.” Edwards collaborated with his son, Geoffrey, on the screenplay for CURSE OF THE PINK PANTHER, which was written at the same time as TRAIL OF THE PINK PANTHER, to create a seamless transition between “Clouseau” and “Sleigh.” The two films were made sharing many of the same sets, the same locations, and several cast members, in an effort to contain expenses. The sets were to be placed in storage for future “Pink Panther” sequels, which Edwards intended to make “every three years.”

André Maranne made his final appearance as “Sergeant Francois Duval” in the 1983 film. Quartet released Henry Mancini's score in 2010. The $8 million production was a flop at the U.S. box office, grossing just $4.8 million. The film’s poor performance generated several lawsuits between Blake Edwards and distributor MGM/UA.


 
 
 Posted:   Aug 3, 2021 - 12:53 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

In the second filming of the W. Somerset Maugham novel THE RAZOR'S EDGE, Bill Murray plays “Larry Darrell,” a laid-back college baseball star who, along with classmate “Gray Maturin” (James Keach), volunteers to drive an ambulance on the front lines before the United States has officially entered World War I. He leaves behind sweetheart “Isabel Bradley” (Catherine Hicks) and married friends “Bob” (Joris Stuyck) & “Sophie MacDonald” (Theresa Russell). He comes back confused and dissatisfied with the gilded life awaiting him back in America, deciding to spend a year in Paris - and not the classy enclave Isabel's uncle “Elliott Templeton” (Denholm Elliott) picks out for him. André Maranne plays “Joseph,” Templeton’s butler in the film.

Denholm Elliott, André Maranne, and Bill Murray in THE RAZOR’S EDGE



John Byrum directed this 1984 remake of the 1946 Tyrone Power film. Jack Nitzsche's score was released on a Southern Cross LP in 1984 and a Preamble CD in 2001. The $12 million film had below-average domestic grosses of $6.6 million.


 
 
 Posted:   Aug 3, 2021 - 11:07 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

In the British sci-fi comedy MORONS FROM OUTER SPACE, four aliens crash-land on the M1 motorway, get adopted by “Graham Sweetley” (Griff Rhys Jones), and become chat-show personalities and pop stars. André Maranne played “Prof. Trousseau” in the film. Mike Hodges directed the 1985 film, which made only $441,000 at the U.S. box office. Peter Brewis provided the unreleased score.

 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2021 - 1:28 AM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

In the 1985 film PLENTY, Meryl Streep played a young Englishwoman who spends twenty years to make a life for herself, at the expense of others around her, in post-World War II England." André Maranne played “Villon” in the film. Fred Schepisi directed the drama. Bruce Smeaton's score has not been released.


 
 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2021 - 12:28 PM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

PLENTY was André Maranne’s final feature film. He spent six more years in television, before retiring from the screen in 1991at the age of 65. Farewell, André.

in “Remington Steele”



 
 Posted:   Aug 5, 2021 - 2:13 PM   
 By:   litefoot   (Member)

Thanks for that thread Bob. Very interesting reading.

Only two of the four episodes of his Doctor Who story 'The Moonbase' survive. The missing episodes were animated a few years ago but unfortunately he wasn't involved in all the extras that were on the DVD. I've often wondered why. Maybe he just wanted to enjoy his retirement!

 
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