Your Questions On Jerry Lewis Classics And More Answered

Movie Questions Answered: This week movie questions about Jerry Lewis classicsQ: I recently saw a Jerry Lewis documentary on TV and saw clips from films I wasn’t familiar with. Any chance we’ll see more of Jerry’s films on DVD in the future?

A: If you are a fan of “The Total Filmmaker,” you’re in luck. Two of Mr. Lewis’s collaborations with former Warner animation wizard Frank Tashlin are on their way. It’s Only Money (1962) stars Jerry as a TV repairman with a hankering to become a detective. He gets his chance when he teams with a P.I. (Jesse White) to investigate schemers trying to get their hands on a disputed will. Joan O’Brien is the nurse Jerry falls for in this film that may best be known for a scene in which the star encounters a batch of runaway lawnmowers.  Also on the way is Who’s Minding the Store? (1963), showcasing Jerry as a dog walker given a job at a department store by owner Agnes Moorehead. Her intention is to prove Jerry’s a doofus to her elevator operator daughter (Jill St. John), who happens to be his fiancée. In what has become one of Lewis’s best-known bits, he attempts to fix a vacuum cleaner in the department store with little success (but lots of plugs for Hoover). For the record, Jerry Lewis and Frank Tashlin made eight films together.

Q: I was wondering if they will come out with a DVD called The 60′s? It’s a movie about…an epic blend of music, drama and real-life events that bring the decade’s most explosive events to life. Two American families-one white, one black-are torn apart by the war in Vietnam and the war the streets. Only their love for each other can help bring them back together. The actors in it are the following: Josh Hamilton, Julia Stiles, Jerry O’Connell. I have the VHS copy but would like a DVD copy. Please let me know where or if I can get the DVD copy of the movie.

A: Unfortunately, this 1999 TV film has not been put on DVD yet. It is owned by NBC/Universal, and has become a favorite on the classic rock cable stations. It was available on VHS from Trimark (later Lionsgate), but that company’s license has lapsed. It’s unlikely that Universal will put it out, but perhaps an independent company will make a deal to release it on DVD. One problem will likely be the music rights, however: Such songs as “The Weight” (The Band), “I Want to Hold Your Hand” (The Beatles) and “My Girl” (The Temptations) don’t come cheaply. A scene in the original TV broadcast, that showed The Beatles on ”The Ed Sullivan Show,” had already been excised by the time the film hit VHS.

Q: How about The Story of Louis Pasteur, Anthony Adverse, The Farmer’s Daughter, Coquette, Disraeli? All of these won Oscars for acting, but none are on DVD.

A: Frustrating, isn’t it? We’ve received requests for all of these titles and, in some cases, we understand the elements to make good transfers just aren’t there. The Farmer’s Daughter is a Fox title, but all of the others are likely future candidates for Warner’s Archives. All but Anthony Adverse had been on VHS before.

Movie Questions AnsweredQ:  I’d love to see the 1957 movie The Bachelor Party on a DVD. I recently found a video of it after much searching.

A: This United Artists release was co-produced by Burt Lancaster, and its rights now belong to MGM and Fox, who will likely put it out eventually as one of their MOD titles. The creative forces behind the Oscar-winning Marty—director Delbert Mann, writer Paddy Chayefsky and Lancaster’s company—were reunited on this story of a bachelor party attended by a group of accountants who eventually come to terms with crises in their lives. The cast included Don Murray, E.G. Marshall, Phillip Abbott and Carolyn Jones.  It was based on a TV production.

Q:   I watched a few of those Monogram Westerns on the TCM broadcasts.  They all were very sharp in picture and very clear in sound.  It puzzles me, then, that the far more popular Bela Lugosi Monogram movies always show up in rotten condition.  Why were/have Lugosi’s Monogram films never been restored to their original theatrical crispness and clarity? Some bright spark out there, with the money and proper resources, ought to consider undergoing the task of cleaning up and restoring these films (there are 10 of them; 11 if you count the British import, THE HUMAN MONSTER) to their original glory for the existing fans and future film historians and filmmakers.

A: Practically all of the films Bela Lugosi made for Monogram Pictures are now public domain, so any company is free to duplicate them. A few titles from the studio may yet be protected so only licensed companies are able to duplicate them. Monogram eventually morphed into Allied Artists, but only a portion of those titles are protected. We’re not sure which westerns ran on the cable channel, but more than likely they were not public domain. Getting clean transfers and/or a great master from a company that’s long been gone—Monogram closed its doors in 1953—is difficult. We don’t believe that anyone has been keeping track of their archives too closely.

Q: I keep looking for Casbah, Centennial Summer and Come to the Stable—to no avail. Also would like the Randolph Scott version of The Last of the Mohicans.

A: It doesn’t look like anyone is going to “ze Casbah” soon except Pepe Le Pew. The 1948 film you are referring to—starring Tony Martin as the jewel thief earlier played by Jean Gabin in 1937’s Pepe Le Moko and Charles Boyer in 1938’s Algiers—is not on the DVD horizon. Centennial Summer, a 1946 period romance/musical set in 1800s Philadelphia, and starring Cornel Wilde, Jeanne Crain and Linda Darnell, is not on Fox’s radar. Come to the Stable (1948), boasting Loretta Young and Celeste Holm as nuns from France who have plans to build a children’s hospital in New England, would be a great holiday offering if only Fox would let people check it out on DVD. Not in their current release plans, we’re told. Happily, we can tell you that, YES!, Randolph Scott in the 1936 version of The Last of the Mohicans is on its way. Set during the French and Indian War, the film stars Scott as Hawkeye, the scout who is joined by Mohican Indians Chincachgook (Robert Barrat) and Uncas (Phillip Reed) to help guide the British commanding officer and his two daughters back to Fort William Henry while being sought by the fierce Huron Indians led by the spy Magua (Bruce Cabot).  Romance, adventure and action ensue against the backdrop of James Fenimore Cooper’s mid-18th century world.

Movie Questions AnsweredQ: I’ve been waiting a long time for the DVD and even the TV broadcasting of Bird of Paradise with Debra Paget.  Will Desert Fury ever be remastered and released?  Two Jane Fonda movies have just been released, Period of Adjustment and In the Cool of the Day, but what about Walk on the Wild Side?

A: The 1951 Bird of Paradise with Debra Paget, Louis Jourdan and Jeff Chandler is owned by Fox, who seems to have really slowed down their classics output. Walk on the Wild Side was available on DVD at one time, but is now off the market. It is a Columbia Picture from Sony and will likely be reintroduced at some point this year, according to a source. The film arguably featured the first explicit depiction of lesbianism on screen, with Barbara Stanwyck playing the head of a New Orleans brothel. Laurence Harvey and Capucine, then the girlfriend of producer Charles K. Feldman, also star in what is now considered a camp classic because of its lurid elements. It’s got a fantastic Saul Bass credit sequence as well. Desert Fury, while made by Paramount, is currently owned by Universal; unless another company gets a license, it is unlikely to be out on DVD soon. Too bad. This Technicolor noir filled with sex and savagery stars Burt Lancaster as the sheriff of a small Southwest town with a casino owned by Mary Astor. Into town comes her sexy daughter Lizabeth Scott, who attracts the attention of racketeer John Hodiak, who may have killed his wife. There seems to be lots of interest in this film, so why not put it out? Lewis Allen (Suddenly) directed.

Q:  I’ve been looking for ages for DVDs of The Lady in the Iron Mask with Louis Hayward and Bird of Paradise, the Fox remake with Debra Paget.

A: Unfortunately, your looking will likely continue as Fox has its paws on the 1953 movie that features Alexander Dumas’ d’Artganan (Louis Hayward) and The Three Musketeers, as well as Patricia Medina in dual roles as two princesses. The film is rarely shown and we’re not even sure if the folks at Fox know that they own it. A shame, because swashbuckler fans really want a copy. Non guard! See above for Bird of Paradise info.

Q: I have inquired from the Hallmark Hall of Fame regarding a movie they produced in the late 1950′s called Little Moon of Alban. I am seeking a DVD copy and so would be interested to know if there was a copy available. Hallmark told me that they had not secured the rights to many of their TV movies, and this film was not one of them. I would be grateful for any information you could give me. Thank you.

A: Scripted by James Costigan, the 1958 TV presentation with Julie Harris as a woman who loses her family during the Irish Rebellion and turns to religion is not on DVD and, unfortunately, is unlikely to be in the near future. From what we can tell it is owned by NBC/Universal. The company rarely lets out its old TV specials or any Hallmark Hall of Fame shows, and this may be a case where the original’s picture quality is not up to today’s DVD and Blu-ray standards. George Peppard and Christopher Plummer also starred in the production.



  • Larry Wiseman

    I’ve just finished reading you fan updates, and finally A Jerry Lewis Classic coming out, who’s minding the store! I was wondering if any of Rory Calhoun’s westerns will be released; SUCH AS; “YOUNG FURY” – “BLACK SPURS” – “APACHE UPRISING” PLUS ANY OTHER WESTERNS PRODUCED BY A.C. LYLES!! I REALLY WOULD LIKE TO SEE THEM AGAIN! PLEASE CHECK, THANK YOU! LARRY W.

  • Jackie

    Does anyone out there remember ” Three on a Couch ” starring Lewis and Janet Leigh? It was hilarious and one of my favorites!

    • Kassiana

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  • William (Bill) Lieberman

    Where can I purchase a CD or DVD of

    Preston Sturges’ The Great McGinty

    The Candidate with Robert Redford

    I would like to own these two disks personally but I am also interested in using them with the film group in the retirement home where I live.

    Thank you!


    • Timothy Kaier

      “The Great McGinty” is on DVD as part of the Preston Sturges collection put out by Universal a few years back.

      • Jackeline

        You are cptmleoely right. If you are going to blog you might as well do it right. And since this is a personal mode of communication a call to action is very important. Great post!

      • Foen

        aniptuszd on October 20, 2011 how about The One starring Jet Li. Gameplay would be RPG story would be similar to actual movie. Semi-Super cop chasing a criminal who is trying to go around killing himself in different dimensions to power himself up and he ends up being the character you play etc etc etc

    • masterofoneinchpunch

      The Candidate DVD is currently OOP, but you can find overly expensive copies of it on Amazon both new and used. TCM states that it is not available, so no idea when this will be rereleased.

      I would get the Preston Sturges collection. I’ve really enjoyed it (though some of the movies are released in better versions).

      • Amrita

        I do not even know how I ended up here, but I thoguht this post was good. I do not know who you are but certainly you’re going to a famous blogger if you aren’t already Cheers!

  • Timothy Kaier

    To follow up on an earlier question to Ask Filmfare regarding several titles, “Anthony Adverse” was on VHS from MGM quite some time ago. I believe it was in the mid or late 80s. The Ask Filmfare reply that it never was on VHS, was incorrect.

  • Blair Kramer.

    You mention the Jerry Lewis film “It’s Only Money.” How about “Visit to A Small Planet?” It’s never been released on DVD. Any news on that one, Irv?

  • Susan

    Dear Irv, or Irv Dear if it will get me further, I’m still hoping for some more of my long long list of films to materialize. Any info available is GREATLY APPRECIATED! The President’s Lady, Hold Back the Dawn, Red Sky at Morning, The Uninvited, Dark at the Top of the Stairs, Frenchman’s Creek, a Certain Smile, My Foolish Heart, Rockabye Baby, The Blue Veil, State Fair (1962), Beyond the Forest, No Down Payment, The Heartbreak Kid (1972), Machine Gun Kelly, Baby Face Nelson (Mickey Rooney), Margie, Harriet Craig, The Bonnie Parker Story, The Mating Season, Down to the Sea in Ships, Blue Denim, The Devil and Miss Jones, are among my favorites.

    • Debbie

      Many of the you movies you listed have been played on TCM. Margie was just on. Invest in a recorder of some sort and you can grab them when they show up.

  • Susan

    And it would be a shame not to include: The Lusty Men Abandon Ship, Goodbye, Columbus, Wuthering Heights (1939), I’d Climb the Highest Mountain, The Comic, 10 North Frederick, Full of Life and Dear Heart. I know that I’ve asked about these before, but I haven’t seen some of them for so long. Do you remember a made for tv drama starring Desi Arnaz Jr, and Cristopher Norris (sp), called Mr. And Mrs. BoJo Jones? That one sticks in my head, but I haven’t seen it since it was made in about 1973. What can I tell you I’m old, but I do remember. Thanks, SP

    • Debbie

      I am also old and remember that movie with Desi Arnaz well. He gets the girl pregnant. They get married and move into a tiny house. She loses the baby. Divorced or anulled they each go their separate ways.

      • Terry

        Well…I guess I must be ready for the nursing home! I fondly remember this movies as part of the ABC Movie of the Week. Desi Arnaz Jr. was adorable! I loved getting to see the classic stars like Dan Dailey playing one of the parents. I have two friends who laugh whenever I bring up this movie as they too remember it well- I loved those TV movies of the 70′s and my favorite was ‘She Lives’ also with Desi and Season Hubley and some great songs by Jim Croce. Wish that they would take these movies and put them in boxed sets, I would buy them all!!

      • Claudia

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      • Juana

        hmoaoli on August 30, 2011 one thing that I love about myself is that Im Asian American. Being both Asian and American is that I get the best of both worlds.

  • Susan

    Of course The Lusty Men and Abandon Ship are two separate movies here mentioned with the need of a comma.

  • Gord Jackson

    I am wondering if Universal even released “The Borgia Stick”, an excellent tv movie with Don Murray, Inger Stevens and Fritz Weaver on either VHS or DVD. I would love to get a copy of it.

  • Gord Jackson

    As for Fox, given the way they are still keeping so many classics locked up, referring to them as Twentieth Penitentiary Fox may not be out of line.

  • maxfrabien

    PLEASE!!! Warner Brothers, release “Beyond the Forest” on DVD!!! PLEASE!!

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  • Michelle Malkin

    The only two Jerry Lewis films I have any interest in are “Visit to a Small Planet”
    and “The Delicate Delinquent”. I’d like to
    have dvd

    Here’s a request that I doubt anyone can help
    with. I’d like to find a copy of a show called
    “The Moon Calf” starring Robert Blake who was
    either in his late teens or early 20s. It may
    have been an episode of a show. I’m also
    looking for a show in which Rip Torn played
    both a nasty scientist and his android
    look-alike. It was titled “Murder and the
    Android” and was from a story by Alfred Bester.
    Last request is another tv episode called
    “Rider On A Pale Horse” in which, I think, Dick
    Powell played Death. I saw these shows when I
    was in my late teens in the early 60s.

  • mrmovie

    hell on frisco bay, twigh lights last gleaming, black tuesday and ty susan for mentioning baby face nelson, bonnie parker story. throw in machine gun kelly and guns don’t argue.

  • arline esser

    I would like to buy White Cargo starring Hedy Lamarr and Robert Taylor on DVD. I have only seen it offered on VHS. My VCR isn’t working and I cannot buy another. Any suggestions?

  • May

    I have always been a great fan of Jeff Chandler movies and am always hoping some of his movies will be released. There have only been a few released in Australia so I have purchased many on the internet (these are not proper/legitimate movies and some are appalling quality and even have bits missing, but at least they are better than nothing. The sad thing is that some have cost quite a lot of money – will they ever be released by legitimate companies. On my ‘Bucket List’ I wish to have all his movies one way or the other!

  • Don H.

    Does anyone remember the TV series, “Search for the Nile?” I’d love to see this again! Any chance it will be on DVD?

  • Luigi Of NYC

    Someone’s NOT doing their HOMEWORK !

    ( Loretta Young & Celeste Holm )
    IS available on DVD !

    TO: Susan –
    DATED: 01/27/2012 –

    ( I’D CLIMB THE HIGHEST MOUNTAIN ) has been shown a few times on TCM during 2011 !

    I am waiting for THE MIRACLE — ( Warner Bros )
    with Carroll Baker & Roger Moore –

    What’s wrong with Warner Brothers ? ?

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