Andy Griffith Trivia!

When I think of Andy Griffith, I think of his classic The Andy Griffith Show.  Mr. Griffith played Andy Taylor, the Sheriff of Mayberry, a small town in the south.  Griffith was joined by a perfect cast in a top-rated show that spawned two spin-off series (Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. and Mayberry, R.F.D.) and ran for eight years (finishing at #1 in it’s last season).

But Andy Griffith was much more than Andy Taylor.  Andy Griffith made comedy records, sang and played on county and gospel albums, appeared on Broadway, starred in feature films, television movies as well as other tv series.

MeTV has 12 surprising things we learned about Andy Griffith.  A lot of these facts were new to me.  Here are my thoughts on three of them…

His favorite snack was peanut butter and mayonnaise on crackers.
(I grew up eating peanut butter and mayonnaise sandwiches.  Not many folks I know have ever tried one and the thought usually grosses them out.  I’ll bet Andy would have given a peanut butter and mayonnaise sandwich a go.  I’d also wager that the crackers he ate were Ritz and after taking a bite he’d say, “Goooood cracker.  Good cracker.”  Most of you probably aren’t old enough to remember his commercials for Ritz crackers where he’d say that after taking a bite of one. – Craig)

He regretted ending The Andy Griffith Show after eight seasons.
(I’ll bet he did.  The Andy Griffith Show was always in the top ten for each season it was on.  It was also one of only three tv series to quit while in the number one spot.  – Craig)

He made $25,000 a week in clubs while The Andy Griffith Show was on break.
(That translates to about $185,000 a week in 2020.  Wow.  Andy was making bank! – Craig)

Click over and check out 12 surprising things we learned about Andy Griffith.

Rambo Franchise Trivia!

Sam Hutchinson at ScreenRant posted Rambo: 10 Things Fans Never Knew About The Franchise.  My guess is most readers here will know most of these facts.  Here are my three favorites with my thoughts.

The Only Rambo To Receive An Oscar Nomination.
(Rambo: First Blood Part II was nominated for Best Effects, Sound Effects Editing.  That’s right, Rambo is an Oscar-nominated film franchise.  – Craig)

Rambo Was Banned In Myanmar.
(Rambo was set in Burma / Myanmar and due to the spotlight the movie brought to the treatment of many in the country, the film was banned. Hopefully some reforms came about due in at least a small part to Rambo. – Craig)

Broken Nose.
(Sly accidentally broke Alf Humphrey’s nose during First Blood filming, which is why his character is seen wearing a bandaid after Rambo’s jailhouse escape. – Craig)

To get all the facts and details click over to Rambo: 10 Things Fans Never Knew About The Franchise.

Bruce Lee Trivia!

Jay Serafino at Mental Floss presents 10 Amazing Facts About Bruce Lee.  Here are my thoughts about three of the best…

BRUCE LEE REFUSED TO LOSE A FIGHT TO ROBIN.
(It’s pretty impressive that Lee took this stand since Batman was one of the most popular shows on tv, and Lee wasn’t the star of Batman or The Green Hornet. – Craig)

ROMAN POLANSKI MAY HAVE (BRIEFLY) THOUGHT BRUCE LEE MURDERED SHARON TATE.
(I was surprised when I first learned of this fact.  What are the odds Lee would lose his glasses around the same time of the murder and that a pair would be found at the scene of the crime?  Coincidences do happen and can get people locked up or worse. – Craig)

BRUCE LEE WAS DEEMED PHYSICALLY UNFIT FOR THE U.S. ARMY.
(This is probably the most surprising fact.  Who’d have guessed that Bruce Lee would be deemed unfit for anything? – Craig)

For more on Bruce Lee please consider checking out…

Jean-Claude Van Damme Trivia!

Jake Rossen at Mental Floss posted 8 Surprising Facts About Jean-Claude Van Damme.  Below are three of my favorite facts and my thoughts. 

  • JEAN-CLAUDE VAN DAMME WORKED AS A BOUNCER FOR CHUCK NORRIS. (Can you imagine?  So you make it past JCVD and then you have to take on Chuck. Ha! – Craig)

  • JEAN-CLAUDE VAN DAMME ONCE CHALLENGED STEVEN SEAGAL TO A FIGHT AT SYLVESTER STALLONE’S HOUSE. (Sly Stallone must have the best parties! You should click over to Rossen’s article just to read Sly’s quote about the incident. – Craig)

  • JEAN-CLAUDE VAN DAMME HAS TWO STATUES DEDICATED IN HIS HONOR. (The first statue is located in Brussels, Belgium.  This makes sense since JCVD has been known as the Muscles from Brussels.  The location of the second statue makes even more sense as it is located in the the village of Vandam in the country of Azerbaijan. – Craig)

“40 Years of Rocky: The Birth of a Classic” Narrated by Sly Stallone is Coming!

40 Years of Rocky: The Birth of a Classic is a new documentary premiering on-demand June 9th.  Narrated by Sylvester Stallone and directed by  Derek Wayne Johnson (director of John G. Avildsen: King of the Underdogs), the new film will heavily feature behind-the-scenes footage taken by Alvidsen and Lloyd Kaufman (Rocky production manager).

For more details check out Rocky Making-Of Documentary Narrated By Sylvester Stallone Sets On-Demand Bow by Dade Hayes at Deadline.

Rod Serling’s Night Gallery: The Art of Darkness Book is Coming!

Fans of Rod Serling’s Night Gallery television series are going to be happy to hear about Rod Serling’s Night GalleryThe Art of Darkness by Scott Skelton and Jim Benson.  Every week Rod Serling would introduce each Night Gallery story by talking about a painting representing the tale to be presented.  The book will be a treasure trove for fans…

The nearly 300-page book is brimming with hundreds of rare, behind-the-scenes photos and artwork. It documents each of the paintings, and traces the complicated (and often twisted) tale of how these iconic masterpieces slowly disappeared from view — only to find their way back, lovingly displayed in two gallery exhibits for appreciative connoisseurs 50 years later.

For more details please check out Night Gallery Paintings Will Soon Be Showcased in a Special “Art Gallery” Book at the Shadows & Substance website.

“Demolition Man” Trivia!

Tim Buckler at ScreenRant posted Demolition Man: 10 Things You Didn’t Know About The Cult Classic.  My guess is that you will most, if not all, of the trivia items, but in case you don’t…

And here are my three favs as well a my thoughts on each…

Evil Chan – Wesley Snipes was not the first choice to play the villainous Simon Phoenix. Originally Stallone had his friend and co Planet Hollywood founder Jackie Chan in mind for the role. However, Jackie had never played a baddie before, he decided against the part in order not to alienate or confuse his fans.

Other rumors state that Steven Segal and Jean Claude Van Damme also turned down the part for similar reasons, although both would play villains a few decades later in Machete and The Expendables 2 respectively.

(Craig – Demolition Man would have been a very different movie had someone other than Wesley been selected.  I think with Jackie Chan it would have dipped more into comedy,  With Seagal or Van Damme it would have felt more disjointed unless it went for less comedy.)

Spartan’s Daughter – There is actually an entire subplot in the movie that was cut out of the finished feature. In the final wasteland battle, John is seen protecting a wasteland scrap named Kate. Kate is also seen at the end of the movie standing next to Edger Friendly when Associate Bob introduces himself.

Apparently, in a cut scene Spartan is introduced to Kate where he learns she is his daughter. This, plus other scenes that didn’t make it in the final film were cut because Warner Brothers wanted a much shorter run time.

(Craig – Deleted scenes are usually fun, but deleted for a good reason.  I’d like to see those scenes but don’t imagine they’d add a lot to the movie without slowing it down.)

A New Script – The movie, in its most basic terms, is about a cop and a criminal who fight each other, are frozen for almost 40 years, then keep fighting. However, in Demolition Man‘s original screenplay, the story was set to start straight away in 2032 with no glimpse of the past (which, at the time, was the near future, but nowadays is the past).

Fred Dekker is the man to take credit for changing things up, even though his re-write is uncredited. He gave the film a prologue that showed Spartan and Phoenix in their natural environment. “If you don’t show Kansas, Oz isn’t all that special.”

(Craig – I agree with Dekker.  I also wish that Demolition Man leaned more into the action and less into the comedy.  I thought the opening with Sly jumping from the copter to take down Simon and his crew set the right tone for an all out action fest.)

The MGM 31 Day Movie Challenge

I saw the MGM 31 Day Movie Challenge and thought it would be fun to play along.  Except for days that ask for a very specific movie I’m going to use favorite films that are great but less likely to be chosen.  Here we go…

  • Day 1:  Movie I’ve watched the most – Rocky.  No surprise there.  Also in the running would be some other Stallone films, Enter the Dragon with John Wick and World War Z offering some newer challenges to the throne of most watched.

  • Day 2: Movie that makes me cry – Saving Private Ryan.  When old man Ryan asks if he is a good man.

  • Day 3: Movie that make me laugh – Steamboat Bill, Jr.  Made over 90 years ago by the great Buster Keaton.  It’s a silent film that still resonates.

  • Day 4: Movie with a number in the title – District B13 (2004).  A little know action film with tons of parkour and fun.  

  • Day 5: Movie with a teacher – Rope directed by Alfred Hitchcock.  Two college men host a dinner party with their murder victim hidden in the same room. James Stewart plays their college professor. 

  • Day 6: Movie from the 90s – Last of the Mohicans.  I’ve been wanting to watch this again… now even more!

  • Day 7: Favorite musical – The Wizard of Oz!  Musicals aren’t my favorite genre, but The Wizard of Oz is one of my all-time favorite movies.

  • Day 8: Movie from the 80s – Nighthawks.  Sly Stallone is ahead of the curve with a buddy movie about terrorism in the United States.  At the time a lot of folks thought and said, “That could never happen here.”

  • Day 9: Movie with a person’s name in the title – Rambo.   Stallone returns to the character with one of the best films of the series.

  • Day 10: Movie that reminds you of your mom – Conan, the Barbarian.  My wife and I took my mom to see it and she spent the last half of the movie in the lobby.  She hated it. 

  • Day 11:  Movie with a color in the title – Black Rain.  Another under-rated film.

  •  Day 12: Your favorite Rom-Com – The Apartment.  I’m not a huge Jack Lemmon or Shirley MacLaine fan, but they are perfect in The Apartment.

  • Day 13: Movie from the year I was born – Elevator to the Gallows.  A man murders his boss who is also the husband of his mistress.  Unexpected events lead the police to his trail…

  • Day 14: Your favorite horror flick – Night of the Living Dead.  George Romero’s movie’s impact is felt to this day.

  • Day 15: A  movie from the 70s – Enter the Dragon.  The best Bruce Lee and martial arts movie of all-time.  Pure perfection.

  • Day 16: Your favorite movie to quote: Rocky Balboa.  “Life ain’t all sunshine and roses… It’s not how hard you can hit. It’s how hard you can be hit and…”

  • Day 17: Movie from the 60’s – Requiem for a Heavyweight.  One of the best boxing movies of all time.  Written by Rod Serling, directed by Ralph Nelson and starring Anthony Quinn, Jackie Gleason and Mickey Rooney.

  • Day 18: Film based on a book – To Kill a Mockingbird.  Classic book and classic movie.

  • Day 19: Favorite Action/Adventure movie: Since I’ve listed Enter the Dragon, Rocky and Rambo and because John Wick is an obvious choice, I’m going with The Adventures of Robin Hood directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Errol Flynn in his greatest role.

  • Day 20: Favorite comedy – The Great Race.  I’ve come to love this movie more with every viewing! (Maybe I’m more of a Jack Lemmon fan than I knew.)

  • Day 21: First movie I saw in a theater – It may have been Goldfinger, Help! or Mary Poppins.  

  • Day 22:  Movie that stars my favorite actor or actress – Cop Land.  Sly held his own with Deniro, Keitel and Liotta.

  • Day 23: Favorite cult classic – From Dusk Till Dawn.  I love this film!

  • Day 24: Favorite film series – Rocky.  No surprise there.

  • Day 25: Favorite remake – Dawn of the Dead directed by Zack Snyder.

  • Day 26: Favorite Holiday Movie – National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. (Yeah, I love A Christmas Story, too.)

  • Day 27: Movie with the Best Soundtrack – Sharkey’s Machine directed and starring Burt Reynolds.  More folks should give that soundtrack a play. 

  • Day 28: Movie made by my Favorite Director – Paradise Alley directed by Sylvester Stallone.  His first directorial effort and it is under-rated.

  • Day 29: Favorite Animated movie – The Incredibles.

  • Day 30: Favorite Childhood movie – The original Planet of the Apes!

  • Day 31: Movie that starts with the first letter of your name: Cabin in the Sky.  Made in 1943 with an all black cast and it is amazing.  One of my all-time favorites.