Saturday, January 30, 2010

JK on Screen - Around the World With Jack Kelly

Howdy Everyone!

Well, January's almost over, but it's still winter. Our thaw didn't last and the temps plunged back into the teens. Some other folks around the country are getting socked by snow and ice right now. And, I'm sure we've all got a touch of cabin fever.

So, I thought it would be fun to "travel" to different locales with Jack Kelly.

First stop: Hong Kong!

Hong Kong Affair was released in 1958. Although the poster called JK "That Bart Maverick Guy", the film was actually made before he joined the Maverick cast.

I haven't seen Hong Kong Affair yet, but The All-Movie Guide sums it up thusly: "In this thriller, shot on location in Hong Kong, the owner of a plantation that grows Iron Lady Buddha Tea, is perplexed when he cannot make a profit. He decides to go there and investigate the problem in person. There he encounters his British lawyer's Chinese secretary. He and she team up and after many false leads and blind alleys discover that the lawyer has been keeping the profits after he smuggles opium in with the tea shipments. The plantation owner puts a quick stop to the shyster's operation and turns him over to the authorities. "

JK's plays "Steve Whalen", the plantation owner, and his then-wife May Wynn plays the secretary, "Chu Lan". Reportedly, May got the part when it turned out the Asian actress originally cast as Chu Lan couldn't speak English well enough to say her lines.

Hong Kong Affair has a theme song. It's titled (uh huh):

Sample lyrics: "New lotus moon, starlight to wear, this was the start of it, my Hong Kong affair".

Here are some stills from Hong Kong Affair. I know the plot of the film involves tea, but somehow, these photos made me think of JK's cooking talents:

"Would you happen to have a good recipe for chicken,
General Tso?"

"Let's see - I need three pounds of chicken, some soy sauce, some garlic, some ginger root, some dried hot peppers, some cornstarch..."

"Hey, Popeye, this 'ginsu' knife you sold me couldn't cut Jell-o!"

"Imagine, having to take May to this cheesy restaurant instead of being able to treat her to one of my delectable dinners. All because of a stupid knife. That's the last time I buy anything from someone selling stuff out of a truck!"

Next stop on our itinerary? Keep watchin'! :)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

The Maverick Report - "The Jeweled Gun" and JK's Lucky Redhead :)


It's been difficult to catch Maverick since it was exiled to the early morning slot on Encore Westerns. But, if you can catch it, the episode on tomorrow (Monday) is one of my personal favorites, "The Jeweled Gun".

Jack Kelly's co-star is Kathleen Crowley, who would re-team with JK in several more Maverick episodes. I found a nice story about Ms. Crowley from 1961, when she was filming "Dade City Dodge" with JK.

Describing the shoot, she says, "Working with a professional like Jack is a real pleasure...It doesn't seem like there's been almost four years between my two Maverick shows. And the rehearsals for this one went just as smooth as the other; you'd think we were on-camera instead of just running through the lines and action."