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The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

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The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby moira finnie » October 18th, 2016, 12:59 pm

Here's the thread where we can post our questions for our guest, Steve Hayes this weekend. In her earlier announcement, SueSueApplegate posted this description of Steve's background:

The lively Steve Hayes will visit us here at the Silver Screen Oasis on Saturday, October 22, and Sunday, October 23, for a traditional Q & A.

Steve is known as the self-styled king of classic cinema enthusiasm, and has been sharing his love of Hollywood's Golden Era gems on Youtube since 2009 with his "Tired Old Queen of the Movies" series.

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Steve reveals all about Joseph Mankiewicz' s "A Letter To Three Wives" (1949) featuring Ann Sothern, Linda Darnell, Jeanne Crain, Kirk Douglas, Connie Gilchrist, and Thelma Ritter...

In a 2010 interview with Medusamorlock on the TCM website feature The Movie Morlocks, Steve reveals he's an accomplished actor in movies — Trick, The Big Gay Musical — an author and lyricist ("Kiss Me Quick Before the Lava Reaches the Village"), award-winning comedian and cabaret performer, a performing arts educator (Cabaret Convention at Yale, Cazenovia College), a talented musical comedy Renaissance man. He’s also a veteran of NYC’s annual Gayfest theatre festival, and his one-man show Steve Hayes’ Hollywood Reunion was about his relationship, as a gay man, with old movies, a topic that also informs his Tired Old Queen productions.

As Steve shares in the article: '…my dear friend and director Vincent J. Cardinal kept telling me that I should be sharing my love for old movies with a bigger audience. He suggested we set a camera up in my apartment; shoot me talking about old movies just off the top of my head, exactly as I always do everywhere and anywhere. No fuss, no muss. Keep it simple. Then he said: 'Now, what should we call it?' I said; 'STEVE HAYES: Tired Old Queen at the Movies!' I want to 'pass the torch,' so to speak, to the next generation. When I first moved to New York, I learned a lot from the older gay men who loved the movies as I did and shared their views and turned me on to films I’d never experienced before. I’m forever grateful.

“STEVE HAYES: Tired Old Queen at the Movies” is, quite simply, a love letter to the old movies. 'I have been a devout movie addict since I was very young and have never wavered in my adoration and genuine awe of the classic motion pictures I grew up watching. I always say, I know this stuff like straight guys know baseball. Some baseball fan will say to me: 'I know who played in the 1941 World Series!' And my comeback is; 'I know who won Best Supporting Actress in 1941 and who she got it over!' "

Steve was also a guest host on Turner Classic Movies to celebrate TCM's 20th Anniversary in 2014, introducing the sci-fi classic, “Them!" with Robert Osborne...

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Hayes has also appeared as:

Horton in Suessical: The Musical
Pseudolis in A Funny Thing Happened On the Way To The Forum
Mayor Shinn in The Music Man
The Barber in Man Of La Mancha starring Terance Mann
Edna in Hairspray
"Polonious" in Hamlet
And many others...


Steve's Tumblr page: http://toqoffice.tumblr.com/page/2

Steve's Youtube page: https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCdFnabzwv2SGIBX0tApn6EQ

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Come welcome Steve Hayes this weekend at The Silver Screen Oasis for a rousing Q & A!
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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » October 19th, 2016, 9:45 pm

Thanks so much for your help, Moira! It's been a busy week.

Here are a few more of Steve Hayes' videos. Enjoy!

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Auntie Mame (1959)...

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Steve Hayes amazes with his impressions of Bette Davis, and historical research in The Private Lives of Elizabeth and Essex...

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Intriguing back stories and Hayes' best Kate Hepburn impression entice in Suddenly, Last Summer, a tribute to Elizabeth Taylor...

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In Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Hayes shares a delightful Monroe take off and what really happened in the pool with Jane Russell...

Can't wait to "chat up" Steve Hayes? Drop by this weekend to connect with a classic film treasure trove!
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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby moira finnie » October 22nd, 2016, 7:04 am

Welcome to our guest, Steve Hayes. Here's a couple of questions from our member Vienna to get the conversation going:

Vienna wrote:Many thanks for joining the Oasis. Do you have a favorite film which you wish more folk knew about.
And who's your favorite actor/actress.
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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Steve Hayes » October 22nd, 2016, 7:46 am

Hi Vienna; yes, there are several movies that I wish more people knew about. One is particular is a British film called "Went The Day Well"(1942) by director Alberto Cavalcanti. It 's a propanganda film put out by the British with a script by Graham Greene about a town small town on the coast of England that is taken over in a secret Nazi invasion. It's a powerful basisi of the story is how the townspeople finally gather together and fight back with whatever they can lay their hands on. Incredibly exciting, it seems amazingly real. The pace is taut ,the acting superb and it's really frightening. Dame Thora Hird, always adorable, is terrific and Leslie Banks,( "The Most Dangerous Game" )is so sinister. It's a fabulous film and you'll be riveted! My favorite actor in classic films is Cary Grant because he was so versatile and could "do it all" and my favorite actress is Susan Hayward because as a child growing up watching movies from the 1950's on TV's "NBC Staurday Night at the Movies", she played the feisty heroines of those spectacular 20th Century Fox cinemascope epic I loveds...and she looked and acted like my mother...who acted all the time in real life and never made a movie! Ha!

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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Mrs. Osborne » October 22nd, 2016, 8:22 am

Dear Mr. Steven Hayes:

Didn't you know the great Geraldine Page?

Best,
Mrs. Osborne

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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Steve Hayes » October 22nd, 2016, 10:34 am

Yes, as a matter of fact, though not well. I'm an actor and there were only two peope I ever wanted to study with Kim Stanley and Geraldine Page. I started auditing her classes when she was with The Mirror Rep. This was also when she was up for the Oscar, her eighth nomination, for "The Trip To Bountiful". She would show up for class looking like a rag-a muffin with hair askew and dirt under nails because she'd been working in her garden. She was such a subtle and incisive teacher. Her comments were always right and though eloquently put, she was direct and didn't mince words, which could leave her students trembling a bit. Anyway, the week before the Oscars, she said: 'We won't be having class next week, because I've got to go and get my "Academy Award". We all applauded and her eyes twinkled mischeviously.


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Angelica Page and her mother, Geraldine Page...Angelica, whose father was actor Rip Torn, does a one-woman stage tribute to her mother.

Sure enough, at the Oscars that weekend, F. Murray Abraham read off the nominees and, in a bit of Oscar irony,and to Anne Bancroft's somewhat visible consternation,she'd been nominated for "Agnes Of God" in a part Gerry had created om Broadway ...Abraham sighed and said "I consider this woman the greatest actress in the English speaking language" or something of the sort; "Geraldine Page". Gerry took forever to get to her feet and the stage and she accepted it graciously. The following week in class; someone asked her what took her so long and she demurely said; 'Well, we got there and they sat us next to that poor dying John Huston who was on the aisle with his oxygen tank. And I said:" Well, it's obvious I didn't win, so I took off my shoes and relaxed. And when it was announced that I'd actually won, I couldn't find them and they were under Jon Voight's seat!" She discontinued class after that because she suddenly got lucrative film offers and then she died within' a year. I went to her memorial service in New York, which was like a who's who on stage and in the audience. Richard Chamberlain, whom she was starring with in "Blythe Spirit" on Broadways said he thought the most tragic thing about her death was that films, TV and the theatre had lost the next great character actress, which of course was so true. Her daughter Angelica is a lovely actress by the way.

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Actress Geraldine Page...

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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Mrs. Osborne » October 22nd, 2016, 12:15 pm

Steve:

Will you talk about Barbara Stanwyck - no competitive Oscars (damn them!). Is she underrated? And what about Miriam Hopkins? Also underrated?

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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » October 22nd, 2016, 12:32 pm

Great question, Mrs. Osborne!

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And Steve, I'd love to hear about your devotion to those bad girls of film noir! :D
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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby moira finnie » October 22nd, 2016, 12:32 pm

Hi Steve--
Thanks so much for coming by. It's so good to read of another person who loves Cavalcanti films too (I wish more people were aware of his uncredited The Halfway House (1944), which was like a sketch for his work in parts of the later, more famed omnibus film, Dead of Night (1945).

I am trying to restrain myself since there are so many questions to ask...here's two or three:

1.) How did you start making the videos on YouTube? Were they really filmed in your apartment? I love the way the memorabilia (books, DVDs, dolls, posters and whatnots) are arranged in the background of your videos. Are all of those your own keepsakes?

2.) Do you have a favorite genre? Is there a relatively unsung director from the studio era whom you wish people were more aware of today?
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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Steve Hayes » October 22nd, 2016, 2:13 pm

Dear Mrs. O- Barbara Stanwyck...(Sing) "Where do I begin, to tell the story...?" I ADORE her. Feisty, gutsy, sexy, bold and deliciously funny. There is always a wry humor even behind her most murdereous Film Noir gals that's hard to beat. Everyone credits her as being the ultimate film noir temptress and even at the AFI Tribute to her she credited Billy Wilder as "teaching her how to kill". But, actually, she knew how to use a gun as far back as her first movie. Granted, she didn't always plan on cold blooded murder but in such films as "Forbidden"('32), she's not afraid of defending herself and if it involves shooting to kill, she knows how to do it and is not afraid to do so. She could surmount and survive almost any obsticle...especially that nasty wig in "Double Indeminty" that makes her look like a sheep in heat. No matter which way she turns her head, the wig seems to stay stationary. They even used it again, but tied it back in a pony tail for "The Furies", to me, the greatest of the Film Noir westerns. I love that film because it combines two of the genres she loved and worked in best, Noir and the westerns. Yes, she was underrated because she was also delightful in comedies, as directors Preston Sturges, Mitchell Leisen Howard Hawks and Peter Godfrey discovered. Her performances in "The Mad Miss Manton", "The Lady Eve", "Ball Of Fire", 'Remember the Night", "Lady Of Burlesque" and "Christmas in Connecticut" are funny, touching and terrific. In short, I can watch her in anything. Miriam Hopkins, was wonderful and refreshing in the 30's. In "Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde", she breaks my heart. She's breathtakingly vulnerable, sympathetic and frightend. I love "These Three" and "Design for Living" and "The Story Of Temple Drake". As she got older and became more frustrated at how her career was going, or wasn't, she got in her own way and became more and more tempermental and difficult to work with. Too bad. It happens to a lot of actors, but then, show business often breeds that kind of disappointment.

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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Steve Hayes » October 22nd, 2016, 2:35 pm

Dear Moira; Thanks for asking, "STEVE HAYES: Tired Old Queen at the MOvies" started when my friend/director & mentor Vincent J. Cardinal said one day; "You know Steve Hayes"...he always addresses me by my full name..." You should be a household name and I think I know how to do it. We'll bring a camera into your crazy apartment, sit you down, hand you a DVD of a classic movie and have you talk off the top of your head about, like you do at every dinner party. We'll post them on YouTube. What do you want to call it?" Without missing a beat, I said; "Let's call it what it is, "Steve Hayes: Tired Old Queen at the Movies". And so, we got my friend /actor Johnny Bixler who's handsome, warm and funny to introduce each episode...he's so cute, it lures them in..and then I talk about whatever movie it is from my livingroom/bedroom with all my memorabilia in the background and we post one a month. My philosphy is: "These are entertainments. That's why they were made. To entertain. They still do and here's why. Now, check it out!" I dont critique the films. I simply try to build up enough enthusiasm to get the audience interested in seeing them and searching them out. I've always looked at the movies with the same excitement and wonder I had when I first saw them as a boy, and I try and let that lead me. Not all the films will be to everyone's taste. But if I like it, I like it. And then I say why. I back up the episode with as many anecdotes about the stars, directors and the shooting of the film as I can. I'll also admit that being Gay and a former stand-up comedian, influences my take on a film at times, but that's who I am. I have a stupendous man Thomas Meacham who photographs and brilliantly edits the episodes, we work together to find clips that compliment my take on the film. He comes up with something from the film that will be a reaction to something I've just said, often with hilarious results. His husband Dale Edwards has been in the promoting area of show biz for years and he helps get my episodes to the right blogs, so they will be seen and reposted. All in all, I have a stupendous team. We shoot about eight or nine episoeds at a time, and usually only twice. They are never scripted, so as to keep them as improvisational as possible. The most important thing is, they are all soooo funny and we laugh our heads off when we shoot the episodes, and Thommie always finds a funny take from my outtakes to use at the end. Aren't you sorry you asked! LOL!

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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Mrs. Osborne » October 22nd, 2016, 2:49 pm

Steve:

As an actor, would you talk about the difference - in your opinion - between stage acting and cinema acting? And can you give us an example of an actor/actress who was great on the stage who was not so great onscreen?

Mrs. O

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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » October 22nd, 2016, 2:57 pm

My philosphy is: "These are entertainments. That's why they were made. To entertain.


And what a marvelous attitude to have about your segments!

I often wonder how you feel when the pseudo intellectuals start spouting auteur theory and begin analyzing the lighting techniques, along with the camera angles. Do you think that kind of approach turns off younger audiences?

How do you think director Douglas Sirk would respond to a dismissal of the characters or the lush scenery or the lavishly intricate set design in lieu of more technical achievements on the screen?
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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Steve Hayes » October 22nd, 2016, 3:06 pm

Dear Sue, Sue; My devotion...actually, obession...with the Bad Girls of Film Noir is only natural...I ALWAYS WANTED TO BE ONE!. I mean, what's better than being in complete control of everything, the one every man wants and then "taking them out" when your through with 'em? IThere's an old saying; "People die and men leave"...Well, in Film Noir, if the gal has guts and a gun, they tend to leave a little faster. It strikes me that the general philosphy of most Film Noir Femme Fatales is "Life is short and so are most men." I admit, it's my favorite genre as well as the place where some truely remarkable actresses made their marks. I love the fact that the women are tougher than most of the men, along with the plot twists and the lighting, courtesy of the talented refugees Hollywood inhertited from UFA studios in Berlin during the war. Of course there are favorites: Stanwyck ( "Double Indemnity", "The Strange Love Of Martha Ivers", "Cry Wolf", "No Man Of Her Own", "The File On Thelma Jordan" and on and on), Gene Tierney and her work with Otto Preminger, Linda Darnell in "Fallen Angel", No Way Out" and "Hangover Square", Claire Trevor in "Born To Kill", "Murder My Sweet", "Key Largo", Jane Greer in "Out Of The Past" and of course Gloria Grahame in anything. But it's those "other women" who fascinate me. Not quite the stars, gowned to the hilt, coiffed to the nines and jeweled to the eyeballs, who stuck around just long enough to cheat on the wrong man, squeal on the syndicate and wind up taking a bullet long for their troubles. Granted, they weren't nessessarily the female stars of the picture, but they were the ones I couldn't get out of my mind once it was over. Here are a few; Doris Dowling in "The Blue Dahlia", in a gold lame pantsuit by Edith Head with shoulders that resembled a green Bay Packer, Hazel Brooks in "Sleep My Love" and "Body and Soul", insolent, redheaded and coldly determined, wide eyed and treacherous Marie Windsor in "Narrow Margin", "The Sniper" and "The Killing", driving some poor sap like Elisha Cook Jr. to do anything to keep her, not knowing he never had her to begin with. Then there is Janis Carter, statuesque, sly and seductivly ruthless in "Framed' and "The Woman On Pier 13". One of my favorites is Rita Johnson, smart, versatile, sophiticated and scheming. Her murder at the hands of Charles Laughton in "The Big Clock is absoluetly electrifying. As is Agnes Moorehead, who stepped into noir bad girl country with her breathtakingly, seductive, electric and ruthless portrayl of Madge Rapf confronting Humphrey Bogart and mysteriously falling to her death in "Dark Passge". LOVE 'EM all!!!!

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Re: The Q & A with Steve Hayes, Tired Old Queen of the Movies 10-22 10-23

Postby Steve Hayes » October 22nd, 2016, 3:17 pm

Dear Sue Sue: Thanks for the loaded question. O-KAY. Film criticism: I think that in every art form critics are important and serve a function to help the audience form an opinion on what's is or isn't better than average and why? However, it's only the critic's opinion. I've read several books where directors are asked about and given reasons for why they did this and that and in the end, the director sits amused and a bit bewildered, because he probably never actually conciously thought of these theories when he was making the movies. His subconcious, artistic nature/talent simply did it the way it was done and he didn't over anaylze it. It's just there.There are exceptions of course, Hitchcock being the most famous, but even then, film historians often put their own takes on the films adding to his own and he would answer often and frankly, that that wasn't the case at all. In film, as in any art form, there's room for countless interpretations and there will always be. My personal take is to simply to take them as entertainments, get the full effect of what everyone concerned in making them wanted you to get and try not read too much about them until later, in order to savor the entertainment value and the reason they were made to begin with. To entertain. Just sayin'...


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