Elizabeth Bryant - Rondo Hatton’s Australian Connection

In the history of cinema there has rarely, if ever, been a man more suited to horror films than Rondo Hatton. Hatton’s impact came not from his acting ability, which was dubious at best, but rather his looks. Hatton suffered from a rare physical disorder called acromegaly, a disorder that distorted and disfigured Hatton’s head and face, turning him from a young man once described as the Handsomest Boy in his class to an incredibly unique and wildly ugly man.   Hatton’s early life was spent in journalism, where he worked for newspapers as a sportswriter, but after being noticed by film director Henry King, who cast him in a bit part in Hell Harbor (1930), he was convinced to move to Hollywood where his looks were exploited, appearing in bit parts or as an uncredited, but instantly recognisable extra. Hatton toiled away, coming to the Australian publics notice in Moon Over Burma (1940), which, when released in 1941, he was name checked in ads. The presence of Basil Rathbone, a favour

Disney & Marvel vs Ditko, Heck, Colan, Rico and Lieber

None of this should have come as any surprise to anybody really. It was always going to happen once Disney acquired Marvel Comics, lawsuits would be flying all over the place. Disney is one of the most litigious publishers in existence. It protects it's characters, trademarks and copyrights with a zeal that is rarely seen with any other company. And once it Marvel, those same rules of litigation would be applied to the characters it bought. After all, you don't spend $4,000,000,000 for a company and it's assets only to let creators and their heirs come back and claim them for peanuts. Well, Disney doesn't.   It all kicked off on the 24th of September 2021 when Marvel Characters, Inc., which is owned by Disney, filed multiple lawsuits against the heirs of various Marvel artists. Marvel have already fought Joe Simon over Captain American and settled, and they famously fought Jack Kirby and Gary Friedrich. With Kirby they fought for virtually everything Kirby drew and co-w

Steve Ditko Vs Marvel. Toberoff Strikes Again

Over the past two decades and change, our old mate Marc Toberoff has been at the forefront of trying to get characters out of both Marvel and DC. I have no doubt that his heart is in the right place, but, as the Superman case showed us, part of his reasoning is to gain control the characters - he was trying to enter into a joint venture with the Siegel and Shuster heirs in order to make a Superman film, which would have seen him make a lot of cash. Good on him, he sees a chance and he takes it.  Funnily enough, the only other high profile termination case that he wasn't involved with was Gary Friedrich and the Ghost Rider case. But, outside of the comic world and Nic Cage, that wasn't ever going to be a big money case. If you were to study his previous cases where heirs have regained copyrights, you'll notice that, in the small print, Toberoff also gets some control. His other standard operational method is to wait until the principal dies. He then approaches the heirs and,

Prime Minister's Signatures - A Neat Dozen

Following on from previous posts that showcase some of the signatures I have in my collection, I was asked if I have any Australian Prime Ministers. The answer is, of course! Not all of them, but quite a few. A dozen in fact. Out of the 30 Prime Ministers that this country has had, I have 12 of them, some on more than one item. Most are in books - autobiographies and the like - some are cuts from letters and three are from an amazing Member's book that once belonged to the Conservative Club of Melbourne in the early 1930s. And when I say amazing, I mean it's fascinating. Each member has their full name and address listed, and guests speakers details are entered, complete with signatures. Honorary Members included three Prime Ministers (both former and future) and a number of noted economists, leaders in the conservative movement and military. You don't want to know what I paid for that, suffice to say it wasn't cheap and I couldn't afford it then and certainly could

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