If you're a fan of Classic Movies and Television
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 Memphis Film Festival

 

June 12-14, 2014

The 2014 festival will be held at
Sam's Town Resort
Tunica, Mississippi
(Only 30 miles south of Memphis, TN)

 

 

 

 

 

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Latest News Items

June 1st --

Summer brings with it several film festivals and celebrity events!  The "kickoff event" is the Memphis Film Festival (only a few days away!)  But another one of the "don't miss events" of this summer is the Dean Martin Expo - Comedy/Nostalgia/Comic Convention to be held on June 28th in New York City!

The latest changes may be seen here on the show's flyer:

As you can see, the show has grown in recent weeks to include several new stars and events.  

For additional info, go to their website 2nd Childhood Memorabilia show or email to memorylane220@yahoo.com .

These will be "one of the fun film festivals of the summer"!

May 17th --

We have one

more past guest we must pay a final tribute to before this this summer's festival (hopefully, the last).  We recently lost Barbara Knudson who joined us in 2006.  We lost Barbara on May 11.

Barbara had a lot of popular 1950s television shows guest appearances to her credit: Gene Autry, Lone Ranger, Sky King, Hopalong Cassidy, Sergeant Preston of the Yukon, etc. and many other great Westerns.

She also appeared in such films as "Meet Danny Wilson", "The Lady from Texas" and "Union Station".

A special tribute page may be found on the MFF site.  Please note her memories of Fess Parker and Clayton Moore. This is a great testimony from somebody in Hollywood's Golden Era!

Barbara Knudson
(1927 - 2014)

May 10th --

As the 2014 festival gets closer, we must remind everyone about travel arrangements if you need to get from the airport to the festival site.

Festival attendees flying into the Memphis Airport must seek their own transportation to the Sam’s Town Hotel. The trip between the two points is a little over 30 miles.

There’s probably more than one cab company which travels beyond the Memphis city limits, but one that does is Metro Cab of Memphis at 901-323-3333. There is shuttle transportation available by reservation through the following entities: Blues City Tours at 901-522-9229, Unique Travel at 901-848-0436, and ASAP Transportation at 901-531-4322. Call these businesses for pricing and scheduling information.

May 10th --

Sadly we have lost yet another past guest of the Memphis Film Festival.  Recently we lost Efrem Zimbalist Jr. who appeared with us in the summer of 1994.  He was 95.

Mr. Zimbalist made several films early in his career but became a star with his TV series.  He first appeared on our screens as Detective Stuart Bailey on the hit series, "77 Sunset Strip", which costarred this year's MFF guest, Edd "Kookie" Byrnes.

"77 Sunset Strip" ran from 1958 to 1964. During the final year, the studio changed the format from a local detective series centered around a Sunset Boulevard agency and made Stuart a globe-hopping free-lance investigator.

Despite his dislike for the television format, he again found success in hs second stint as Inspecot Louis Erskine on "The F.B.I." which each week presented stories based on real crimes and the agency's role in solving them.

Zimbalist said in an interview four decades later that fans of the show occasionally approached him to say they had joined the FBI or had become police officers because of his portrayal of the calm and authoritative government agent on the series.

"I get more joy from that than anything in my life," he said. "When you learn that you inspired someone, it's a huge honor."

In later years, Zimbalist he had a recurring role as Daniel Chalmers on his daughter Stephanie's TV series "Remington Steele" and played Charles Cabot on "Hotel." In additions, he played Don Alejandro de la Vega in "Zorro" on the Family Channel.

Efrem certainly had a very long and successful carreer in all areas of stardom - stage, film and TV appearances.  His presence will be sorely missed.  Certainly this summer's festival will bring some remembrances from his costar, Edd Byrnes.

Efrem Zimbalist, Jr
(1918 - 2014)

April 15th --

Unfortunately we have had a cancellation from one of out guests. Judy Norton, one of our trio of stars from "The Waltons", will be unable to attend.

She sends her regrets for her many fans!

March 15th --

GREAT NEWS!!!!

We are extremely pleased to announce that Henry Darrow has decided to do only a few show appearances this year and the Memphis show, being one of his favorites, has been selected to be one of the chosen few!  Since Mr. Darrow has cut back on his appearances, you will certainly not want tho miss out on this special opportunity to meet him!

Henry Darrow, of course is the star of "The High Chapparal" and "Zorro" and many other favorites! He has many things more to share with everyone from his days at Hollywood and some of the great westerns in particular!

Plan now on meeting Mr. Darrow and making him feel a warm Memphis welcome!

March 10th --

The Memphis Film Festival is proud to announce the latest in our string of excellent guests for the 2014 show.  He is none other than Edd Byrnes!

Edd returns to the Memphis show after 20 years to reunite with his "Yellowstone Kelly" co-star, Clint Walker, but also to especially to make new friends and meet his many fans at this summers' show.

Edd is looking forward to having both a fun time and an enjoyable one so he has certainly picked the right place to be - the Memphis Film Festival in 2014! The place to be!

February 20th --

The Memphis Film Festival sadly needs to report that we have lost a repeat guest of our festival.  Jeff Connors, son of The Rifleman's Chuck Connors, passed away yesterday.

Jeff always was glad to come to the festival and share memories of his famous dad and the show and even brought along his fathers' famous rifle to enjoy!

We will miss Jeff and the good times we shared together.  He will always be remembered for his kindness and willingness to share memories with the fans.

We wish all the best on the Connors family as well as God's domfort.

Jeff Connors
(1952 - 2014)

February 18th --

BODIE is BACK!!!

Clint Walker, one of the most popular guests the Memphis Film Festival has ever had the pleasure of hosting, has graciously consented to return to this summer's show!

Clint, of course, played the title character on the classic TV western, "Cheyenne", as well as being the star of a long string of Hollywood hits such as "The Dirty Dozen", "Night of the Grizzly", "Yuma", "Kodiak", "Sam Whiskey", "Yellowstone Kelly", "Fort Dobbs" and many. MANY more!  His career reflects the history of Hollywood - both TV and movies - in itself!

This will be one of the most memorable Memphis Film Festivals ever!

February 17th --

The latest rendition of the 2014 Memphis Film Festival flyer is now available!  It has the earliest information - a must to plan ahead for this summers' festival!!

Feel free to download copies and print them out!

Help support the show by giving flyers to friends and family you believe will be interested in attending this exciting, fun-filled festival next summer!

MEMPHIS FILM FESTIVAL FLYER (JPG Format)

MEMPHIS FILM FESTIVAL FLYER (PDF Format)

(Please note that one of these flyers is in PDF format. If you are unable to read it, it may be because your computer is not equipped with a PDF reader program. To download Adobe PDF reader free of charge, please take the following link.)

Download Free Adobe Reader

February 17th --

The Memphis Film Festival sadly remembers Ralph Waite, who is most fondly remembered as being the patriarch of the the TV family, "The Waltons".  Although he never appeared with us at a Memphis festival, his contributions to film-making and westerns will not go unnoticed.

Ralph Waite was most famous for is character, John Walton, on the Depression-era family drama, "The Waltons".  Besides his getting an Emmy nomination for the role, he was recognized as #3 on TV Guide's list of "50 Greatest TV Dads".  But he did much more - he was one of the famous group of gunfighters in the film "The Magnificent Seven Ride" and other great westerns including "Chato's Land" with Charles Bronson and "Lawman" with Burt Lancaster.

This summer will see a Waltons tribute at the Memphis Film Festival with guests Jon Walmsley and Judy Norton.  Both of them were kind enough to share their personal remembrances of Mr. Waite...

"We are all terribly saddened at the loss of our tv father and dear friend Ralph Waite, a consummate actor and exemplary human being. If humor, understanding, and compassion for the human race ever had a face, it was that of Ralph Waite. He will be sorely missed. RIP Ralph..."

--Jon Walmsley ("Jason Walton")

"Ralph Waite was so much more than a co-worker, he was an incredibly gifted actor, a friend and my second dad. I feel so fortunate to have known him and had him in my life for 40 years. Everyone wanted John Walton as their father because of Ralph's portrayal. He created a man of strength, integrity, compassion and loyalty. I loved him very much and am so pleased that his legacy will live on for countess generations to come. "

--Judy Norton ("Mary Ellen Walton")

Ralph Waite will be sorely missed for his personality and characters he brought to life.  May God richly bless his family for their loss.

January 31st --

The Memphis Film Festival sadly announces the passing of one of the best friends of the festival.  Fred Davis passed away early this morning and will be buried tomorrow afternoon in Bradford, TN.


Fred Davis along with Toni at the 2012 Memphis Film Festival.

Fred was a tireless supporter of the Memphis Film Festival for many years.  He served as treasurer for many years and continued to support the festival as a dealer thereafter.  He was a big-time western fan who was a member of a movie club that shared showing westerns each month since he 1970s.

His contributions to the organization cannot be minimized and his presnece will be sorely missed!  We wish God's comfort on his family and his friends!

Fred Davis
(R.I.P - 2014)

January 17th --

The Memphis Film Festival would like to make you aware of another fine show out there!  

It is the 3rd edition of the 2nd Childhood Memorabilia Show. This year they will be highlighting the talent and career of entertainer Dean Martin!

The show will be held on June 28th at the Holiday Inn in New York City!  Many guests will be present including Deana Martin (Dean's daughter), Ruth Buzzi, Regis Philbin and TV director James Sheldon!

The show is organized by MFF vendor Jerry Nolan and has in the past brought together such notables as Will Hutchins, William Smith, Ed Nelson, James Stacy and Rex Reason!

For additional info, go to their website 2nd Childhood Memorabilia show or email to memorylane220@yahoo.com .

January 3rd--

A fine guest has been added to the line-up next year.  He is Dennis Devine, son of the legendary western actor, Andy Devine!

Dennis will bring many memories to the festival including stories about growing up in the Devine household.   The Memphis festival always strives to bring you people who can give you some intimate look at the personal lives of your favorite stars and this is no exception!


Dennis Devine is shown on the right side of the photo!

Dennis will also be bringing copies of his new book, "Your Friend and Mine, Andy Devine", on the personal life of one of Hollywood's favorite actors, his father, Andy Devine!  Let's welcome him to Memphis next year!

January 3rd --

Sadly, we recently lost one of our guests from a previous Memphis Film Festival.  Ms. Audrey Totter was gracious enough to join us in 1995.

Ms. Totter was comfortable in westerns as well as in film noir roles where she excelled and became a star.  She appeared in many westerns including "Bonanza", "Gunsmoke", "Rawhide", "The Virginian". "Wagon Train", "Cheyenne", "Zane Grey Theatre" as well as being a regular on the George Montgomery series, "Cimarron City".

She made a number of feature film including westerns as well including "Woman They Almost Lynched" with John Lund and Brian Donlevy.  Among her more popular film noir classics were "The Postman Always Rings Twice", "The Set-Up" and "Lady in the Lake".

We were honored to have a lady like Ms. Totter with us and pray the best for all her family and friends.

Audrey Totter
(1917 - 2013)

December 9th --

The sock hop that is held to open up the Memphis Film Festival is organized by Memphis DJ Alex Ward.  Now you can enjoy Alex's special blend of music every Saturday night on Sirius Satellite Radio.

Alex brings you music, stories and interviews with the personalities of the '50s Memphis music scene, including Sam Phillips, Rufus Thomas and more.

To join in and enjoy the program, look to this link!

November 4th--

Want to revisit the past?

Jimmie Covington has found in his archives an interview with Kirby Grant, "Sky King", that was made when Mr. Grant visited the MFF in 1973.  This informative interview has been put on the website for all to enjoy and is free to all!

The interview was taken on 8/7/13 and can be found on the Festival Highlights page.  Please take some time to enjoy it!  Thanks very much, Jimmie, for sharing this!

October 27th--

It is time for us to announce another giest to next years' Memphis Film Festival and we are pleased to do so!

We will welcome the multi-talented Ruta Lee to the festival!  Ruta will be joining us to share her many, many memories of her wide Hollywood experiences, whether that involves her multiple guest appearances in TV westerns or her many other performances in Hollywood musicals, situation comedies or dramas!

She could be seen in many of the early TV westerns but went on to classic film roles and much more!

She is looking forward to next year's festival and meeting her many fans!  Hopefully these "posters" will give you an idea of the classic actress you will be having the opportunity ro meet and greet next year!

Be sure to check the Guests page for a more extensive list of her Hollywood work!

October 21st--

It seems that many things happen in three's and unfortunately in recent days, we have had three celebrity guest passings.

The first of these was the passing of A.C. Lyles, a guest who visited us in 1986!

A. C. Lyles worked as a producer for Paramount Pictures, who is best known for producing a variety of westerns in the 1950s and 1960s.  Among his works were "Arizona Bushwackers", "Waco", "Johnny Reno" and many others.

This still (taken from the set of "Red Tomahawk") shows A. C. Lyles being honored with an award alongside Howard Keel, Scott Brady, Broderick Crawford and Joan Caulfield.

A. C. Lyles was no stranger to awards. Besides being honored with this Walk of Fame star on Hollywood, he was also honored with a Golden Boot Award among many others.  A truly likeable executive in the Hollywood machinery whose contribitions can not be overstated.

A. C Lyles
(1918 - 2013)

 

We also recently lost Tommy Scott who visited us in 1991. He was also known as "Ramblin'" Tommy Scott and "Doc" Tommy Scott.  He was an American country and rockabilly musician.

Tommy Scott was the last of the ol' time medicine show barkers.  He combined his pitch for his medicine show ware with his unique hillabilly music.  While all the others have long gone, he continued his show until this year.  

Tommy Scott took over the medicine show from Dr. M. F. Chamberlain who founded it in 1890.  He retired and Scott took it over in 1935.  Tommy has run the medicine show ever since - never having another job.  Over the years, he has had many a western star and performer work with him and his show including Tim McCoy, Al "Fuzzy" St. John, Sunset Carson, Monte Hale, Junior Samples and Johnny Mack Brown.

In the world of nusic, he certainly left his mark, including writing and performing such hits as "Rosebuds and You", "Rollin' In My Sweet Baby's Arms", "Mule Train" and many more!

But there is no better tribute than we can present to this multi-talented performer than to show a couple of his performances. So seen here in two different stages of his career - both early to very recent - is the great Ramblin' Tommy Scott!

 

To learn more about his medicine show and his music, check out this web site!  It is certainly a view into a new world - one that is simpler and more fun - than what we have today. One that has Tommy Scott at home in it!

Ramblin' Tommy Scott
(1917 - 2013)

 

Finally, we bid farewell to another western star - Jon Locke - who entertained us with his cowboy performances and visited with us in 2001.

Over the years, Jon made over 250 western TV appearances and films including such classics as "Gunsmoke", "The Texan", "Cimarron City", "Westward Ho, The Women", "26 Men", Walt Disney's "Texas John Slaughter", "Bonanza", "Tales of Wells Fargo", "Riverboat", "Laramie", "Wagon Train", "A Man Called Shenandoah", "The Virginian" and many, many more - the list just goes on and on!

While in the Air Force, he costarred for 11 months in the play "Flame Out" under the drection of Alan Mowbray.  After his honorable discharge, he recreated his tole of "Tex", a F-86 fighter pilt in the Broadway production also directed by Mowbray and produced by John Wayne!  He then went on to be a regular on "Highway Patrol" opposite Broderick Crawford.  And the rest, as they say, is history.

Frequent Memphis guest and star of "The Virginian", James Drury, was a longtime friend of Jon's. Above you see both Jon Locke and Mr. Drury at different points in their career.  (In this first group photo, you see James Drury front and center with Jon to his left.  Also in the photo (from left to right) are the Sons of the Pioneers...Pat Brady, Dale Warren, Roy Lanham, Rusty Richards, a gentleman we are unsure of in the back, lady circus performer, James Drury, Jon Locke and John Mitchum (brother of Robert Mitchum)).  And finally in the second photo, you see the two of them about a year ago at a celebration of "The Virginian".

James and many others have left their condolences on the Facebook web page of Katie West, a longtime close friend and companion of Jon Locke's.

Jon Locke
(1927 - 2013)

Each of these stars have left a special legacy and will be missed in their own special way!
We thank them for their contribution to our world and our entertainment.  May God bless each of them and their families!

September 28th--

We must announce the sad passing of another past guest of the Memphis Film Festival!

We have lost John Calvert at the amazing age of 103!  John was an announced guest in 2004 but was a surprise guest when he visited in 1987!

John was an accomplished actor but was at the same time a famous magician!  In fact, he even brought out his magic talents in some of his great acting performances!

He was most famous for his three performances as The Falcon in that dramatic film series.  The series included "Devil's Cargo", "Appointment with Danger" and "Search for Danger".  He also starred in a couple of Charles Starrett westerns, "Lawlwss Empire" and "Return of the Durango Kid"!

One of the highlights of his 2004 appearance was that he performed his magic act (along with assistance from his wife, Tammy) for all who attended free of charge!

Our prayers go out to her and all their family!  His kindness and enjoyment of life will be missed!

John Calvert
(1910 - 2013)

September 26th--

Another new guest has been announced for the 2014 Memphis Film Festival and he is a great addition!

We are excited to announce Robert Conrad, the star of "The Wild Wild West" and many other fabulous TV shows will be graciously appearing with us next summer!

This ultra-rare appearance by Mr. Conrad will not want to be missed!  Plan your plans now to attend!

September 16th--

We are proid to announce that a new addition has been made to the 2014 guest list - and it is one we have wanted to get for some time - Clu Gulager, the exciting star of the TV western, The Tall Man and many other western roles.

Clu is also the veteran of many other TV westerns and shows.  Besides starring in The Tall Man where he portrayed BillyThe Kid, he was a regular on The Virginian.  Help us welcome Mr. Gulager to Memphis with a hearty western howdy-do!!

September 16th--

We sadly announce the passing of a previous guest of the Memphis Film Festival - Louise Currie - who appeared at the festival in 1981. She was 100 years old when she passed on September 8th.

Her Hollywood career spanned the decade of the 1940s, initially doing bit parts and supporting roles at RKO (she can be seen briefly in Orson Welles' "Citizen Kane").  She was the last surviving "Citizen Kane" cast member.

Billed as the "Katherine Hepburn of Monogram" by Sam Katzman, Louise Currie started her career at PRC appearing in "Billy the Kid Outlawed" (1940) and "Billy the Kid's Gun Justice" (1940) with Larry "Buster" Crabbe. Her first serial was Republic's "The Adventures of Captain Marvel" (1941). She helped Billy Batson and his super powered alter ego to keep the Scorpion from completing his deadly Scorpion Atom Smasher.

Currie's next serial was the WWII oriented "The Masked Marvel" (1943). The spunky Currie worked with five investigators, one of them sometimes disguises himself as the Masked Marvel, to stop the sabotage attempts of Japanese spy Sakima.

It was at this point that Currie began working at Monogram. among her films were "The Ape Man" (1943), "Voodoo Man" (1944); both with Bela Lugosi, and the Charlie Chan mystery "The Chinese Ring" (1947) with Roland Winters as the inscrutable detective. As the forties closed Currie retired from films to devote more time to her family.

Louise Currie
(1913 - 2013)

September 16th --

"Geronimo - Life on the Reservation" is the one-man show by Rudy Ramos, a guest for the 2013 festival.  It chronicles Geronimo's final years as a POW in Fort Sill, OK.  This exciting and informative program will be presented at various spots along New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

For nore information, please go the Geronimo show site to learn more.

August 21th--

The room rates and the reservation information for the 2014 Festival have been announced!!

The new location is the same as last year - Sam's Town in Tunica, Mississippi!  It is only a few minutes south of the old location in Olive Branch!

Further details concerning the airport shuttle service that will be available, etc. will be announced soon but rest assured there will be plenty of room at the hotel for everyone - we will not have to be split over several hotels as we have been in the past!

That being said, if you wish to go ahead and make your reservations, go ahead and do so by using the following number: 1-800-946-0711 .

Please note that the reservation code for next year's Memphis Film Festival is MEMF14A. You MUST be sure the reservationist gets this code in order for you to get the best rate and for the festival to get credit for your reservation!

And, also another set of great news! There is no increase in the room rates from 2013!!

The nightly rates may not be consistent from night-to-night but that is because you are staying at a facility that also hosts a casino meaning the weekend rate will be higher than the weekday rate!  You WILL find that if you are staying for the entire festival that your hotel bill will be cheaper than the old facility!  The room rate for Sunday through Thursday will be only $39!  For Friday and Saturday only the weekend rate of $109 will apply.  But as mentioned, it is cheaper for the entire festival run! If you enjoyed your stay at the 2013 festival, you already know what a great facility this hotel is!!

But the better food, the much-larger room facilties, a dealers' area that allows for larger tables and makes room for more dealers - all this makes for a better film festival going experience and enjoyment for all!

Yes, as mentioned, there is a casino "under the same roof" - but the two are separate and there is no problem with having kids at this facility.  Not only are children under 21 not admitted into the casino but the they will not be allowed to simply roam into a gambling area unnoticed! 

The Memphis Film Festival just keeps growing and getting bigger and much of that success is thanks to you, the fan!  We are glad to continue to serve you and look forward to 2014 being one of te best Memphis Film Festivals ever!

July 13th--

Looking for a LARGE selection of autographed memorabila on the web while waithing for the next Memphis Film Festival?

Well, we have an interesting site for you - HollywoodMemorabilia.com ! This is your first and only stop for Hollywood collectibles and memorablia!

Take a look today and enjoy their HUGE selection - We hope you will enjoy it!

June 20th --

Now that the 2013 festival is now history, the fine remembrances are starting to surface!

Dawn Moore, the daughter of Clayton Moore, THE Lone Ranger, wasted no time to write about her experiences at this years' Memphis Film Festival!

To see her exciting post about her experences, please refer to her article in The Huffington Post.

The Memphis Film Festival thanks her for her kind words and appreciates the pleasure it was to host her appearance at this year's festival.

May 28th --

Orders are now beinf taken for T-shirts comemorating the Gathering of Guns 5 celebration at the Memphis Film Festival!!

To find out all the information including style, color and sizes, please take a moment and check out a special website set up for ordering your T-shirts!  Order yours here!

They will be be in demand so get yours early!!

May 27th --

There have been many, many guests who have appeared at the Memphis festival over the past 35 years.  In fact, there have been over 300 guests making over 450 appearances.

Want to relive some memories of those shows?

Or, if you haven't been attending these shows for long, you may want to be surprised by the very impressive list of guests the festival has hosted over the years?

You can do that now - by checking out our new "Past Guests" page.  You can review the list of past guests by festival date or by an alphabetic last name.

Check out this page here - you will be impressed!

 

For more information on the Memphis Film Festival send a S.A.S.E to:
P.O. Box 87
Conway, AR    72033

or email: raynielsen@windstream.net

Last modified: 6/1/14

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