Thursday, September 06, 2012

Turner Classic Movies Salutes Mack Sennett

Every Thursday night in September, Turner Classic Movies will present unfettered, unrepentant and wacky movie mayhem produced by the silent era's King Of Comedy, Mr. Mack Sennett, whose studio introduced such icons as Charlie Chaplin, Gloria Swanson and Carole Lombard - among a dizzying roster of comedians, actors and actresses - to the moviegoing world.

Paul E. Gierucki, Brittany Valente and Cine Museum have been hard at work on the restorations of these classic comedies. Here's a short bio of Sennett as well as TCM's Thursday night schedule for September.

My favorite Sennetts tend to either star the brilliant, original and fearless Harry Langdon (love him in both silents and talkies) or be directed by comic genius Del Lord, later the mastermind behind the funniest Three Stooges shorts. In particular, Lord's films starring cross-eyed yet pokerfaced Ben Turpin as a sexy romantic lead a la Rudolph Valentino get me on the floor every time! And the other funmakers from the Sennett Studio - "Madcap Mabel" Normand, Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle, Ford Sterling, The Keystone Kops, Alice Howell, Raymond Griffith, Al St John, Billy Bevan, Andy Clyde, not to mention such supporting players who subsequently became stars elsewhere as Harold Lloyd, Charley Chase and Edgar Kennedy - are not too shabby, either! Like Mack, they deserve all the credit in the world for providing belly laughs for multiple generations in multiple epochs and countries across the globe!

For more info on Mack and his 20+ years of big screen fun, check out film historian Brent Walker's epic, painstakingly researched and very entertaining book, Mack Sennett's Fun Factory.

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