|Eli Wallach and Robert Osbourne Photo Courtesy of Turner Classic Movies|
Eli Wallach's passing was such sad news. I've said it many times, but each time we lose one of these film legends, it feels like a priceless family heirloom has been destroyed. They are impossible to replace and their loss is so much more than monetary or emotional. They connect us to a time we have no other way to experience. They are our thread and without them goes all of that.
I have been lucky to get to see many great film legends at the TCM Film Festival for the last five years and Eli has been there a few times. The first year I heard him be interviewed by Robert Osbourne (pictured above). In the above picture Eli is sharing a birthday card that Clint Eastwood sent him that plays the music from THE GOOD THE BAD AND THE UGLY.
Below is some video I took of the interview, where Eli talks about when he will leave the acting profession and how he ended up not being in FROM HERE TO ETERNITY.
I hope that his family find some comfort in what a huge impression this talented man left on his fans. Yesterday, when he passed away, someone reposted a tweet of mine from December 17th 2013. TCM had been airing Eli Wallach's film THE HOLIDAY and this is what I shared.
"Is it wrong that I would definitely pick a week w/ Eli Wallach over Jude Law? #TCMParty I knew you'd understand. #TheHoliday"
I stand by it even more today!
TCM will be airing a whole day of Eli's films June 30th.
9 a.m. – Kisses for My President (1964) – The first female president has to deal with her husband's bruised ego. Starring Fred MacMurray, Polly Bergen and Eli Wallach. Directed by Curtis Bernhardt.
11 a.m. – Act One (1963) – George Hamilton stars in the true story of playwright Moss Hart, a poor Brooklyn boy who joins forces with an experienced playwright to conquer Broadway and Hollywood. Also starring Jason Robards Jr., Jack Klugman and Eli Wallash. Directed by Dore Schary.
1 p.m. – How the West Was Won (1962) – This epic film follows three generations of pioneers as they take part in the forging of the American West. Starring Carroll Baker, Henry Fonda, Gregory Peck, George Peppard, Carolyn Jones, Eli Wallach, Robert Preston, Debbie Reynolds, James Stewart, John Wayne, Richard Widmark and Spencer Tracy. Directed by John Ford, George Marshall and Henry Hathaway.
3:45 p.m. – The Misfits (1961) – A sensitive divorcee gets mixed up with modern cowboys roping mustangs in the desert. Starring Clark Gable, Marilyn Monroe, Montgomery Clift, Thelma Ritter and Eli Wallach. Directed by John Huston.
6 p.m. – Baby Doll (1956) – A child bride holds her husband at bay while flirting with a sexy Italian farmer. Starring Karl Malden, Carroll Baker and Eli Wallach. Directed by Elia Kazan.