October 6, 2009

Michael Sheard

Michael Sheard, who is probably best known in the US as Admiral Ozzel from 'The Empire Strikes Back' has appeared in many films, including 'Force Ten from Navarone' 'All Quiet on the Western Front', and a cameo as Hitler in 'Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade'.

Initially, he began appearing in television series, beginning in 1962 with 'Suspense'. He was a regular guest character in the original 'Dr. Who' series.

Of the roughly three dozen cast members of the Star Wars series that I have met Sheard was probably the first.

I took this photo when I met Mr. Sheard; I've always wondered why he was wearing a bow tie (as you can see), since they are not all that common. While researching for this blog I ran across this:

Lou Tambone: One can usually find you at conventions wearing a bow tie and many pins on your jacket. Is there any significance to the tie or is it just your preference. How do you choose what pins to wear and when?

Michael Sheard: This goes back to Grange Hill. Mr. Bronson was a dinosaur and when we were discussing what he would wear, I felt that he would always be smartly dressed and thought that a bow tie would finish off the ensemble. He wore a suit and bow tie throughout the series and it became his "uniform" at conventions. The pins I'm given all over the world and I change them as I move from convention to convention.

"You have failed me for the last time, Admiral."

Mr. Sheard died from cancer August 31 2005.

September 28, 2009

Warwick Davis

Warwick Davis' first claim to fame came at the age of 11 when he was cast in the role of Wicket in 'Return of the Jedi'. Other notable films include 'Willow', the 'Leprechaun' series, 'The Phantom Menace', and several from the 'Harry Potter' series.

September 21, 2009

Phil Brown

Phil Brown was born 4/30/1916 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He first appeared in the 1941 film 'I Wanted Wings'. In 1952 he help found the Actors Laboratory, and although he was not a Communist, he was blacklisted. Former actor Ronald Reagan had a role in that, as did J. Edgar Hoover.

As a result, he and his family moved to England in order to resume his acting career.

In 1977 he was cast as Owen Lars for the original Star Wars movie.

Brown died on 2/9/2006 from pneumonia.

Below is a photo of Mr. Brown that I took in Plano, TX in 1997 (you can see his wife Ginny beside him).

September 3, 2009

Maria De Aragon

Maria De Aragon is best known for her role of Greedo in the original Star Wars movie. Greedo, as you probably know, was one of the bounty hunters hired by Jabba the Hutt to capture Han Solo. Poor Greedo was killed at the cantina in Mos Eisley. Of course, in the original movie (which I got to see first hand in a theater in Houston) Greedo never shot at Han. In the video below he shoots first (Lucas had this done for the re-release so Han would not be a "cold blooded killer").

Prior to that she appeared in several low budget movies in the early 70s.

The Cremators

Blood Mania

Maria and I in Plano, TX

September 1, 2009

Michael Carter

Michael Carter is perhaps best known for his role as Bib Fortuna in 'Return of the Jedi'.

In an interview conducted by the guys at TheForce.net during one of the Dallas Sci-Fi Toy Show conventions Carter had this to say about his dialogue:

"Well somebody said--I don't know if it's true--that it was a Mongolian dialect run backwards. What they were doing in those days was coming across dialects from these obscure parts of the world and sort of running them backwards and writing it out phonetically. So, initially the lines had meant something, but all we got was Huttese. My first line was "Te wanna wanga." I can hardly remember any of them. I tried to create a meaning for them. I had a long scene with Mark Hamill when we walked down the corridor that was cut from the original which was all in Huttese. We each had our lines down, but it was very difficult to tell when the other had stopped speaking, so I'd be craning my neck around to watch his mouth. When he'd stop moving, I'd say my line. He was doing exactly the same thing. I had to shout at him, I remember, and when I shouted all my teeth came out in his face. But the scene we eventually shot was with both of us speaking English on the stairway. I don't think it was my voice but that it was someone impersonating my voice. You don't know what you're going to do in the part until you see yourself made-up."

I'm not sure when I took this photo, but I believe it was sometime around 1997. Big Bib is spanking Little Bib.

August 25, 2009

Joe Carter

Joe Carter began his career in 1983 with the Cubs. The next season he played with the Indians, remaining there until 1989. He continued his career with the Padres, Blue Jays, Orioles, and Giants.

5x All-Star selection (1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995)
2x World Series champion (1992, 1993)
2x Silver Slugger award winner (1991, 1992)

I sent the above card (1990 Topps) to Joe sometime around 1992 or '93. He signed it and sent along the card below, as well.

August 24, 2009

Traci Lords

I met Traci at a Sci-fi convention several years ago when she played Jordan Radcliffe on the television series 'First Wave'.

The first movie that I remember seeing where she was a cast member was 'Cry-Baby', which starred Johnny Depp. A few years later she appeared in the ABC miniseries 'Tommyknockers', based on the book by Stephen King.

She's appeared in a number of other television shows (including 'Melrose Place' and 'Roseanne') and movies...and quite a few others that we won't mention on this PG rated site.

Here's the opening scene from Blade, where Traci plays a vampire:

August 19, 2009

Amanda Connor and Jimmy Palmiotti

I met Amanda Connor and Jimmy Palmiotti at the Dallas Comicon October 12, 2002. Amanda is best known for her work on the Vampirella comic books produded by Harris (not the original Vampirella from the '70s).

Jimmy has worked on quite a few different comics, too, including one of my favorites, Ghost Rider.

August 17, 2009

Rhett Bomar

I recently bought several Rhett Bomar cards from various eBay vendors. Bomar played three seasons at my alma mater, Sam Houston State University.

This is the first card I bought, the 2009 Press Pass.

I liked it so much I bought four more (one to send off for a signature and others to give out to friends). I've got a lot of cards; if I had to guess I would say I own somewhere around 100,000 cards. But this one is right up there in the top ten favorites...or maybe the top five.

This was the first card in my collection with the Bearkat logo proudly displayed. This was also the first card I owned that showed a field I've spent some time on. I've run several miles on that orange track and have walked up and down those bleachers many times since 1989.

I'm also pretty sure I was at this game, which was against our biggest rival, the Stephen F. Austin State University Lumberjacks.

Here are the other cards:

2009 Upper Deck #143

2009 Bowman #150

2009 Playoff Prestige #195

2009 Topps Magic #245

The Magic cards featur veterans and rookies in the college uniforms and is based on the 1951 Magic set.

2009 Score 390

2009 Topps #423

Here's an interview where Bomar is presented with his first Topps card:

Here are two pictures I took at a game against SFA (pictures were taken from the home side). These were taken at the Lumberjack's Homecoming. We dominated those poor 'Jacks 45-17.

If you click on this next picture look in the stands above the 'Kats' #33 and you'll see a guy painted white from head to toe. This guy should have his own card. Weird...

Here's one I found on the internet (taken from the visitor's side). It's pretty cool for the simple fact that I'm right there on the third row, behind the guy with the towel on his head (above the large E); I'm also the only guy with orange on, surrounded by a sea of purple. I doubt I was very popular that day.

August 13, 2009

Brad Dourif

Since the last post tied in with The Exorcist I decided to go with something somewhat related. Brad Dourif, known by many as the voice of Chucky from the Child's Play series and who has appeared in many movies over the years, including Lord of the Rings, also appeared in Exorcist III. So there ya go!

Who could forget his role in Dune?

Or the other movie he did with a couple of his Dune buddies, where he got to play with a knife, just like sweet little Chucky did a few years later. Yeah, I'm talking about Blue Velvet...

My favorite Brad Dourif movie, though, has to be One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

However, playing with sharp objects in that one had a nasty result for him.

In person Brad was a pretty nice guy, unlike some of the villains and sociopaths he played on the big screen. Here we are in Plano, Texas nearly ten years ago:

August 12, 2009

Linda Blair

Linda Blair started out doing commercials on television as a young child. But, by 1973 she starred in one of the greatest horror films ever released:

Who can forget Blair in the role of Regan, a young girl possessed by the devil, with green projectile vomiting and a head that turns around?

These days Linda is active in various projects concerning animals; she's well known for her efforts in rescuing pit bulls. The Linda Blair Worldheart Foundation (http://www.lindablairworldheart.com/)was started several years ago to help abused, neglected, and abandoned pits. When I met Linda she was promoting a book she recently had written about this project of hers. I believe all proceeds obtained by selling signed pictures and books went to this project.

August 9, 2009

R. Lee Ermey

I figured since I've posted one celeb signing from the 2005 NRA convention I might as well post another.

R. Lee Ermey, AKA 'The Gunny', was born 3/24/44 in Emporia, Kansas. As a teen, he had a few problems with the law; a judge gave him his two choices: jail or the military. Ermey wisely chose the military. The Marine Corps was the choice he made and a few years later he wound up in Viet Nam. Later, using the benefits of the GI Bill, he enrolled in college in the Philippines. While attending school there he had a part in The Boys of Company "C". Soon after he was in one of my favorites, Apocalypse Now (although it was a small role).

Ermey has been in more than 60 movies, but is probably best known for his role as Gunnery Sergeant Hartmann in Full Metal Jacket. His History Channel show Mail Call is another show he's well known for.

[Naughty Word Warning!]

Ermey was at the NRA convention as a representative for Glock. He's also a rep for, of all things, Tupperware. Can you imagine attending a Tupperware party with this guy?

August 8, 2009

Ted Nugent

I met Ted "The Motor City Madman" Nugent at the NRA Convention when it was held in Houston in April of 2005. Before meeting him he gave a speech and a mini-concert. Prior to this I had seen him perform twice (once opening for KISS).

Here he is performing on stage at the convention:

I took a copy of his book "God, Guns, & Rock 'n' Roll" for him to sign.

It's a great book, one that I would recommend to anyone. Ted signed it and we had a brief conversation. Here's the Nuge handing the book back to me; his wife and daughter are also in the pic.

I also had the chance to meet Big Jim. If you've ever watched any of Ted's VH1 specials (or any other TV shows) you know who Big Jim is.