Who is Beyoncé Giselle Knowles? The music and entertainment world knows her as Beyoncé. She is an American singer-songwriter, record producer and actress. Born and raised in Houston, Texas, she enrolled in various performing arts schools, and was first exposed to singing and dancing competitions as a child. Knowles rose to fame in the late 1990s as the lead singer of the girl group Destiny’s Child. Knowles has sold more than 50 million records worldwide with the group.
During the hiatus of Destiny’s Child, Knowles released her debut solo album, Dangerously in Love, in June 2003. Dangerously in Love, which spawned the number-one singles “Crazy in Love” and “Baby Boy“, became one of the most-successful albums of that year. It earned Knowles five Grammy Awards in a single night in 2004, and its reception signaled her viability as a solo artist. The disbandment of Destiny’s Child in 2005 facilitated her continued success: she released her second solo album, B’Day, in 2006, which contained the worldwide hit “Irreplaceable“. Her third solo album, I Am… Sasha Fierce, was released in November 2008, and spawned the worldwide hit “If I Were a Boy“, and the US number-one single “Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)“.
“Crazy In Love”
“Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)”
“Say my name”
“Crazy In Love”
” Baby Boy”
“Bonnie & Clyde”
“Bills, Bills, Bills”
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(January 25, 1921 – November 28, 2010)
Cohen’s parents were Jews who immigrated from London, England. He was born on January 25, 1921 in Brooklyn and raised in New York City. He studied math and physics at UCLA before joining the Army after Pearl Harbor. In 1944 he worked on the Manhattan project in the efficiency group and calculated how neutrons behaved in Fat Man, the atomic bomb that was later detonated over Nagasaki, Japan. After the war he studied for his Ph.D at Berkeley before dropping out to join the RAND Corporation. At RAND Corporation in 1950, his work on the intensity of fallout radiation first became public when his calculations were included as a special appendix in Samuel Glasstone‘s book The Effects of Atomic Weapons. Cohen was personally responsible for recruiting the famous strategist Herman Kahn into the RAND Corporation.
During the Vietnam War, Cohen argued that using small neutron bombs would end the war quickly and save many American lives, but politicians were not amenable to his ideas and other scientists ignored the neutron bomb in reviewing the role of nuclear weapons. He was a member of the Los Alamos Tactical Nuclear Weapons Panel in the early 1970s. President Carter delayed development of the neutron bomb in 1978, but during Ronald Reagan‘s presidency, Cohen claims to have convinced Reagan to make 700 neutron bombs, 350 shells to go into the 8 inch (200-millimetre) howitzer and 350 W70 warheads for the Lance missile.
‘Clean’ nuclear tests
In 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower announced the testing of a 95% ‘clean’ (2-stage) fusion weapon, later identified to have been the 11 July Navajo test at Bikini Atoll during Operation Redwing. This weapon had a 4.5 megatons yield. Previous ‘dirty’ weapons had fission proportions of 50-77%, due to the use of uranium-238 as a ‘pusher’ around the lithium deuteride (secondary) stage. (The fusion neutrons have energies of up to 14.1 MeV, well exceeding the 1.1 MeV ‘fission threshold’ for U-238.) The 1956 ‘clean’ tests used a lead pusher, while in 1958 a tungsten carbide pusher was employed. Hans A. Bethe supported clean nuclear weapons in 1958 as Chairman of a Presidential science advisory group on nuclear testing:
… certain hard targets require ground bursts, such as airfield runways if it is desired to make a crater, railroad yards if severe destruction of tracks is to be accomplished… The use of clean weapons in strategic situations may be indicated in order to protect the local population.
– Dr Hans Bethe, Working Group Chairman, 27 March 1958 “Top Secret – Restricted Data” Report to the NSC Ad Hoc Working Group on the Technical Feasibility of a Cessation of Nuclear Testing, p 9.
In consequence of Bethe’s recommendations, on 12 July 1958, the Hardtack-Poplar shot of the Mk-41C warhead was carried out on a barge in the lagoon yielded 9.3 megatons, of which only 4.8% was fission, and thus 95.2% “clean”.
Cohen in 1958 investigated a low-yield ‘clean’ nuclear weapon and discovered that the ‘clean’ bomb case thickness scales as the cube-root of yield. So a larger percentage of neutrons escapes from a small detonation, due to the thinner case required to reflect back X-rays during the secondary stage (fusion) ignition. For example, a 1-kiloton bomb only needs a case 1/10th the thickness of that required for 1-megaton.
So although most neutrons are absorbed by the casing in a 1-megaton bomb, in a 1-kiloton bomb they would mostly escape. A neutron bomb is only feasible if the yield is sufficiently high that efficient fusion stage ignition is possible, and if the yield is low enough that the case thickness will not absorb too many neutrons. This means that neutron bombs have a yield range of 1-10 kilotons, with fission proportion varying from 50% at 1-kiloton to 25% at 10-kilotons (all of which comes from the primary stage). The neutron output per kiloton is then 10-15 times greater than for a pure fission implosion weapon or for a strategic warhead like a W87 or W88.
U.S. Department of Defense manual on the neutron bomb
Cohen’s neutron bomb is not mentioned in the unclassified manual by Glasstone and Dolan, The Effects of Nuclear Weapons 1957-77, but is included as an ‘enhanced neutron weapon’ in chapter 5 of the declassified (formerly secret) manual edited by Philip J. Dolan, Capabilities of Nuclear Weapons, U.S. Department of Defense, effects manual DNA-EM-1, updated 1981 (U.S. Freedom of Information Act).
Provided that the weapon was not used in a thunderstorm, no fallout effects would occur from the use of a neutron bomb according to that manual, as the combination of 500 m burst altitude and low yield prevents fallout in addition to significant thermal and blast effects. The reduction in damage outside the target area is a major advantage of such a weapon to deter massed tank invasions. An aggressor would thus be forced to disperse tanks, which would make them easier to destroy by simple hand-held anti-tank missile launchers.
Cohen’s backing of investigations into these controversial ideas won him some media attention after many years of being ignored. In 1992 he was featured in the award-winning BBC TV series Pandora’s Box, episode To the Brink of Eternity, discussing his battles with officialdom and colleagues at the RAND Corporation. Cohen controversially argued: “When we started this systems analysis business, we stepped through the looking glass where people did the weirdest things and (used) the most perverse kind of logic imaginable and yet claimed to have the most precise understanding of everything.”
Alleged support from the Pope for low yield tactical nuclear bombs
Cohen reportedly worked in France on low-yield, highly discriminate tactical nuclear weapons in 1979-80. He claimed that he was awarded a medal by Pope John Paul II in 1979 for his bid to reform modern warfare. Author Charles Platt reported in a 2005 profile of Sam Cohen that “…he showed me the Medal of Peace that he had received from the Pope in 1979.”
At the time, Warsaw Pact forces had a massive tank superiority in Europe (though NATO maintained an overall strategic superiority); the Christian Science Monitor reported in 1981 that there were “19,500 tanks in the Soviet-controlled forces of the Warsaw Pact aimed at Western Europe. Of these, 12,500 are Soviet tanks in Soviet units. NATO has 7,000 tanks on its side facing the 19,500.” A deterrent which was designed to minimise civilian casualties was a step away from the risk of indiscriminate warfare. The neutron bomb’s killing by neutron radiation is different from the fallout of a normal high yield thermonuclear weapon because it can be controlled more precisely, restricted to military targets and kept away from civilians.
The speed of modern warfare meant that the civilian population would be unlikely to be able to withdraw from combat zones and would suffer a large number of deaths in a nuclear war where the blast yields and fallout were significant. Because neutron bombs do not produce the indiscriminate blast (only 40 kilopascals at ground zero from a 1 kt blast yield detonation at 500 m altitude, and only 7 kPa at 2 km distance), heat and fallout damage of other nuclear weapons, they were more credible as a deterrent to Soviet tanks. However, many people believed that the very deployment of the neutron bomb threatened an escalation to full scale nuclear retaliation, thus canceling out the supposed benefits. Advances in precision anti-tank weapons ultimately made the neutron bomb redundant tactically in its original objective. The debate over “clean” low yield nuclear weapons continues with earth penetrator technology (“nuclear bunker busters“).
Red Mercury claims
More recently, Cohen was the main proponent of what most consider to be a mythical substance, red mercury. If the “conventional story” is to be believed, red mercury was a disinformation campaign led by US government agencies in order to lure potential terrorists into being captured. The story that was released was that red mercury was developed by the Soviet Union as a “shortcut” to a fusion bomb, and that with the fall of the Soviet Union it was being offered on the market by the Soviet mafia. When prospective buyers showed up to take delivery of the material, they were arrested.
During the height of the story, in the 1990s, Cohen became a proponent of red mercury, claiming not only that it existed, but going further to claim that it was a powerful ballotechnic material that directly compressed the fusion fuel without the need for a fission primary. Bombs using red mercury had no real critical mass and could be developed at any size. He further claimed that the Soviets had produced a number of “micro-nukes” based on red mercury, which are described as being about as large as a baseball and weighing 10 pounds. According to Cohen, their existence meant that any effort to control nuclear proliferation based on fissile material was thus hopeless. A reiteration of the claim can be seen in The Nuclear Threat That Doesn’t Exist – or Does It?, by Cohen and Joe Douglass in an 11 March 2003 guest editorial in Financial Sense Online.
Cohen later went on to claim that 100 of these mini-nukes were in the hands of terrorists, and later that Saddam Hussein had taken delivery of about fifty of these devices, which he supposedly planned on using against the US forces as they approached Baghdad.
In the face of claims that red mercury was a disinformation campaign, Cohen claimed that Russia has such weapons, “red mercury” exists as claimed, and the US, among the technical elite, take it seriously, while at the same time starting a disinformation campaign claiming “red mercury” is bogus in order to assuage the public. Independent confirmation of such claims in the article is lacking.
Cohen spoke at an April 2000 fundraiser in La Canada, California, for then-Reform Party presidential candidate Patrick Buchanan. Irv Rubin was prominently present at this event, with his organization, the Jewish Defense League (JDL), and with members of the Libertarian Party, to protest. The JDL posted Cohen’s home phone number and address on its website, urging its members to contact him, to persuade him to stop supporting Buchanan.
In her address to the 2000 Reform Party National Convention, Buchanan’s running mate, Ezola Foster, cited Cohen’s endorsement of Buchanan to refute the claim that the candidate was anti-Semitic.
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Gilbert James McDougald was an American infielder who spent all ten seasons of his Major League Baseball (MLB) career with the New York Yankees from 1951 to 1960 died from prostate cancer he was , 82. He was a member of eight American League (AL) pennant winners and five World Series Champions. He was also the AL Rookie of the Year in 1951 and a five-time All-Star. He was most remembered for accidentally hitting a line drive that severely injured Herb Score‘s right eye in 1957.
(May 19, 1928 – November 28, 2010)
Major League career
He played his first major league game on April 20, 1951. On May 3 of that year, he tied a major league record, since broken, by batting in six runs in one inning. Later in the year, in the World Series, he became the first rookie to hit a grand slam home run in the Series. He narrowly beat out Minnie Miñoso in the voting for the 1951 American League Rookie of the Year. His entire major league career was spent on the New York Yankees, wearing uniform number 12. He was a versatile player, playing all the infield positions except first base: 599 games at second base, 508 games at third, and 284 at shortstop. He played in five All-Star Games: in 1952, 1956, 1957, 1958, and 1959.
McDougald led all American League infielders in double plays at three different positions – at third base (1952), at second base (1955) and shortstop (1957). He was the double play leader at shortstop despite sharing time at the position with rookie Tony Kubek.
On May 7, 1957, McDougald, batting against Herb Score of the Cleveland Indians, hit a line drive that hit Score in the right eye. It caused Score to miss the rest of the 1957 and much of the 1958 season. While addressing reporters following the contest, McDougald said, “If Herb loses the sight in his eye, I’m going to quit the game.” Score regained his vision and returned to pitching in the majors late in 1958, but arm problems led to a premature end to a promising career.
Ironically, only two years before, McDougald was struck in the left ear during batting practice by a ball hit by teammate Bob Cerv. Though initially believed to be a concussion (he missed only a few games), McDougald soon lost the hearing in his left ear and later also in his right. He retired in 1960 at only age 32, though not directly because of his hearing loss.
In 1958, McDougald was given the Lou Gehrig Memorial Award, which is awarded annually by the Phi Delta Theta fraternity (to which Gehrig belonged) at Columbia University.
His last appearance was in Game Seven of the 1960 World Series against the Pittsburgh Pirates; as a pinch runner in the top of the ninth, he scored on Yogi Berra‘s ground ball to tie the game at 9-9. The Pirates, however, won the Series on Bill Mazeroski‘s walkoff home run in the bottom of the ninth.
McDougald decided to retire as an active player after the Fall Classic when it appeared that the Yankees were going to leave him unprotected for the 1960 Major League Baseball expansion draft with the strong likelihood that he was going to be selected by either the Los Angeles Angels or Washington Senators.
McDougald was a former baseball coach at Fordham University. He lived in Wall Township, New Jersey, until his death.
His hearing loss was somewhat restored by a cochlear implant he received during a surgery at the New York University Medical Center in 1994. McDougald had since been a paid spokeperson for the manufacturer, Cochlear Americas, including benefits for hearing organizations and testimony before Congress.
McDougald died of prostate cancer at his home in Wall Township, New Jersey, at the age of 82. He is survived by his wife, seven children, and 14 grandchildren.
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Leslie Nielsen, Canadian-born American actor (Airplane!, The Naked Gun), died from pneumonia he was , 84
Leslie William Nielsen, OC  was a Canadian and naturalized American actor and comedian. Nielsen appeared in over one hundred films and 1,500 television ied from pneumonia he was , 84.
programs over the span of his career, portraying over 220 characters. Born in Regina, Saskatchewan, Nielsen enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force and worked as a disc jockey before receiving a scholarship to Neighborhood Playhouse. Making his television debut in 1948, he quickly expanded to over 50 television appearances two years later. Nielsen made his film debut in 1956, and began collecting roles in dramas, westerns, and romance films. Nielsen’s lead roles in the films Forbidden Planet (1956) and The Poseidon Adventure (1972) received positive reviews as a serious actor, though he is primarily known for his comedic roles.
(11 February 1926 – 28 November 2010)
Although Nielsen’s acting career crossed a variety of genres in both television and films, his deadpan delivery in Airplane! (1980) marked a turning point in his career, one that would make him, in the words of film critic Roger Ebert, “the Olivier of spoofs.” Nielsen enjoyed further success with The Naked Gun film series (1988 – 1994), based on a short-lived television series Police Squad! in which he starred earlier. His portrayal of serious characters seemingly oblivious to (and complicit in) their absurd surroundings gave him a reputation as a comedian. In the final two decades of his career, Nielsen appeared in multiple spoof and parody films, many of which were met poorly by critics, but performed well in box office and home media releases. Nielsen married four times and had two daughters from his second marriage. He was recognized with a variety of awards throughout his career, and was inducted into both the Canada and Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Nielsen was born on 11 February 1926 in Regina, Saskatchewan. His mother, Mabel Elizabeth (née Davies), was a Welsh immigrant from Fulham, London, and his father, Ingvard Eversen Nielsen, was a Danish-born Constable in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Nielsen had two brothers; his older brother, Erik Nielsen (1924–2008), was Deputy Prime Minister of Canada during the 1980s. Ingvard beat his wife and children; that made Nielsen want to escape.
Their half-uncle, Jean Hersholt, was an actor best known for his portrayal of Dr. Christian in the long-running radio series of the same name and the subsequent television series and films. In a 1994 The Boston Globe article, Nielsen explained, “I did learn very early that when I would mention my uncle, people would look at me as if I were the biggest liar in the world. Then I would take them home and show them 8-by-10 glossies, and things changed quite drastically. So I began to think that maybe this acting business was not a bad idea, much as I was very shy about it and certainly without courage regarding it. My uncle died not too long after I was in a position to know him. I regret that I had not a chance to know him better.”
Nielsen spent several years living in Fort Norman (now Tulita), Northwest Territories where his father was stationed with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. At the age of seventeen, following his graduation from Victoria Composite High School in Edmonton, Nielsen enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force and was trained as an aerial gunner during the latter part of World War II (but was too young to be fully trained or sent overseas). He worked briefly as a disc jockey at a Calgary, Alberta radio station, before enrolling at the Lorne Greene Academy of Radio Arts, Toronto. While studying in Toronto, Nielsen received a scholarship to the Neighborhood Playhouse. He noted, “I couldn’t refuse, but I must say when you come from the land of the snow goose, the moose and wool to New York, you’re bringing every ton of hayseed and country bumpkin that you packed. As long as I didn’t open my mouth, I felt a certain security. But I always thought I was going to be unmasked: ‘OK, pack your stuff.’ ‘Well, what’s the matter?’ ‘We’ve discovered you have no talent; we’re shipping you back to Canada.'” He moved to New York City for his scholarship, studying theater and music at the Neighborhood Playhouse, while performing in summer stock theatre. Afterward, he attended the Actors Studio, until making his first television appearance in 1948 on an episode of Studio One, alongside Charlton Heston, for which he was paid US$75. 
Nielsen’s career began in dramatic roles on television during what is known as “Television’s Golden Age“, appearing in almost 50 live programs in 1950 alone. Nielsen reported that for his salary that there “[…] was very little gold, we only got $75 or $100 per show.” His distinct voice narrated several documentaries and commercials but, with a handful of exceptions, his early work as a dramatic actor was uneventful. Hal Erickson of Allmovie noted, “…much of Nielsen’s early work was undistinguished; he was merely a handsome leading man in an industry overstocked with handsome leading men.” In 1956 he made his feature film debut in the Michael Curtiz-directed musical film The Vagabond King. In the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Nielsen pointed out that he remembers Curtiz as “a sadist, a charming sadist, but a sadist”. Nielsen would go on to call this film “The Vagabond Turkey”. Though the film was not a box office success, Nielsen caught the eye of producer Nicholas Nayfack who offered him an audition for a role in the science fiction film Forbidden Planet, resulting in Nielsen being signed to a long-term contract by Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer (MGM).
Forbidden Planet became an instant success, and roles in other MGM films such as Ransom! (1956), The Opposite Sex (1956) and Hot Summer Night (1957) followed. In 1957 he won the lead role opposite Debbie Reynolds in the romantic comedy Tammy and the Bachelor, which, as a Chicago Tribune critic wrote in 1998, made people consider Nielsen as both a dramatic actor and a handsome romantic lead. However, dissatisfied with the quality of the films he was offered, calling the studios “[..] a Tiffany, which had forgotten how to make silver”, Nielsen left MGM, but not before auditioning for the role of Messala in the 1959 historical piece Ben-Hur. Stephen Boyd was eventually given the role. After leaving the studios, Nielsen landed the lead role in the Disney miniseries The Swamp Fox, as American Revolutionary War hero Francis Marion. In a 1988 interview he reflected on the series, stating, “That was a great experience, because the Disney people didn’t do their shows like everyone else, knocking out an episode a week. […] We only had to do an episode a month, and the budgets were extremely high for TV at that time. We had location shooting rather than cheap studio backdrops, and very authentic costumes.” Eight episodes were produced and aired between 1959 and 1961.
His television appearances include parts in Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The Virginian, and The Wild Wild West. In 1961, he was the lead in a taut Los Angeles police drama called The New Breed. In 1968, he had a major role in the pilot film for the popular police series Hawaii Five-O, and later appeared in one of the seventh season episodes. In 1969, he had the leading role as a police officer in The Bold Ones: The Protectors.
In 1972, Nielsen appeared as the ship’s captain in the all-star disaster epic The Poseidon Adventure. He also starred in the William Girdler-directed 1977 action film Project: Kill. His last role before portraying mainly comedy roles was the Canadian disaster film City on Fire in which he played a corrupt mayor. In 1980, he guest starred as Sinclair on the CBS miniseries The Chisholms.
Airplane! and The Naked Gun
Critics praised the film, which also proved to be a success with audiences. The film’s directors, Jim Abrahams, David Zucker, and Jerry Zucker, chose Nielsen for the role based on his ability to play “a fish in water”, stating that “You could have cast funny people and done it with everybody winking, goofing off, and silly…we wanted people to be oblivious to the comedy.” For Nielsen, Airplane! marked a shift from dramatic roles to a new focus on deadpan comedy. When it was suggested that his role in Airplane! was against type, Nielsen protested that he had “always been cast against type before,” and that comedy was what he always really wanted to do.
The directors, interested in the success of the new comedy, decided to bring a similar style of comedy to television, casting Nielsen in the lead role in their new series, Police Squad!. The series introduced Nielsen as Frank Drebin, the stereotypical police officer modeled after serious characters in earlier police TV series.
Police Squad’s opening sequence was based on the 1950s cop show M Squad, (which starred Lee Marvin), which opened with footage of a police car roving through an after-dark urban setting with a big band playing a jazz theme song in the background. The voice-over and the show’s organization into “acts” with an epilogue was homage to Quinn Martin police dramas including The Fugitive, The Streets of San Francisco, Barnaby Jones, The F.B.I., and Cannon. Much like in Airplane!, Nielsen portrayed a serious character whose one-liners appeared accidental next to the pratfalls and sight gags around him. Although the show was quickly canceled, lasting only six episodes after being juggled between time slots, Nielsen received an Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series.
With the exception of Airplane!, Nielsen had not been known as a comedian. His roles continued to be small and sporadic, such as Prom Night (1980) and Creepshow (1982), both horror films. Nielsen’s most recent non-comedic role was a cameo appearance as Allen Green, a sleazy character who is murdered by Barbra Streisand‘s character, Claudia Draper, in Martin Ritt‘s courtroom drama Nuts (1987).
Six years after the cancellation of Police Squad!, its directors decided to make a feature length version for theaters. Titled The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad!. The film returned Nielsen to his role as Frank Drebin. It involved a comical scheme of a ruthless drug kingpin using hypnosis in an attempt to assassinate Queen Elizabeth II. Drebin, like the doctor in Airplane!, seemed unaware of the absurdity around him even when unintentionally contributing toward it. Nielsen later said in an interview that he had done many of his own stunts, “You have an idea of how you’re going to do something, and it’s your vision… unless you do it, it really doesn’t stand a chance.” This movie grossed over $78 million at the box office and was well-received by critics. Ebert’s 3½–star review (out of four) noted, “You laugh, and then you laugh at yourself for laughing.”
The Naked Gun spawned two sequels: The Naked Gun 2½: The Smell of Fear (1991) and Naked Gun 33⅓: The Final Insult (1994). Naked Gun 2½ grossed more than the original, with $86,930,400, while Naked Gun 33⅓ grossed $51,132,600 in receipts. Nielsen remained open to the prospects of acting in a fourth Naked Gun film, although he doubted that it would ever be produced—”I don’t think so,” he said in 2005. “If there hasn’t been one by now, I doubt it. I think it would be wonderful.”
Nielsen briefly appeared on the World Wrestling Federation program in the summer of 1994 on Monday Night RAW; capitalizing on his Frank Drebin character, Nielsen (and George Kennedy) were hired as “super-sleuths” to unravel the mystery of The Undertaker who had disappeared at January’s Royal Rumble event. At SummerSlam 1994, in a Naked Gun parody, they were hot on the case (in fact, they were literally standing on a case). Although they did not actually find The Undertaker, the case had been closed (the literal case had been shut) and thus, they solved the mystery.
Nielsen attempted a variety of similar roles with none achieving the prominence of Frank Drebin. These films mostly emulated the style of The Naked Gun series with varying degrees of critical and commercial success: many were panned by critics and most performed poorly. In 1986, Nielsen played against recent type as a dramatic (and unsympathetic) character in the comedy, Soul Man. In 1990, Nielsen also appeared as a Frank Drebin-style character in a series of advertisements in the United Kingdom for Red Rock Cider.
Although The Naked Gun series parodied police dramas in general, Nielsen’s later parody films focused on specific targets. Critics panned Repossessed (1990) and 2001: A Space Travesty (2001), parodies of The Exorcist and 2001: A Space Odyssey, respectively. Both films attempted the absurdist comedy Nielsen is recognized for, but were poorly received. Even a leading role in a Mel Brooks comic horror parody, Dracula: Dead and Loving It, failed to generate much box office excitement, although it did gain somewhat of a following on its later release to video. Both 1996’s Spy Hard and 1998’s Wrongfully Accused, a parody of James Bond films and The Fugitive, respectively, received more popularity on home video but were not well-received by critics.
His attempt at children’s comedies met with additional criticism. Surf Ninjas (1993) and Mr. Magoo (1997) faced scathing reviews. Several critics were disappointed that Nielsen’s role in Surf Ninjas was only “an extended cameo” and film critic Chris Hicks recommended that viewers “…avoid any comedy that features Leslie Nielsen outside of the Naked Gun series.” Jeff Miller of the Houston Chronicle panned Mr. Magoo, a live action remake of the 1950s cartoon, by saying, “I’m supposed to suggest how the film might be better but I can’t think of anything to say other than to make the film again.”
Nielsen’s first major slapstick success since The Naked Gun came in a supporting role in Scary Movie 3 (2003). His appearance as President Harris proved popular enough for a second appearance in its sequel, Scary Movie 4 (2006). This became the first time Nielsen reprised a character since his appearances as Frank Drebin. In one scene, Nielsen appeared almost fully nude, and one critic referred to the scene as putting “the ‘scary’ in Scary Movie 4.”
Nielsen also hosted a series of instructional golf videos beginning with 1993’s Bad Golf Made Easier. The videos were not serious, instead combining absurdist comedy with golf techniques. The series were popular enough to spawn two additional sequels, Bad Golf My Way (1994) and Stupid Little Golf Video (1997). Nielsen also co-wrote a fictional autobiography titled The Naked Truth. The book portrayed Nielsen as a popular actor with a long history of prestigious films.
Even in his eighties, Nielsen continued to have an active career. He performed serious roles on screen and stage (such as his one-man theatre show Darrow, in which he played Clarence Darrow), as well as providing voice-overs and on-camera appearances for commercials; cartoons like Zeroman where he had the leading role/voice; children’s shows, such as Pumper Pups, which he narrated, in addition to comedic film roles. The sibling relationship with his elder brother, the Honourable Erik Nielsen, a former Deputy Prime Minister of Canada, served as the premise of an HBO mockumentary entitled The Canadian Conspiracy in which Leslie Nielsen appeared, along with other prominent Canadian-born media personalities. He was a celebrity contestant on CBS’s Gameshow Marathon, where he played The Price is Right, Let’s Make a Deal, Beat the Clock, and Press Your Luck for charity.
Beginning in February 2007, Nielsen began playing a small role as a doctor in the humorous yet educational television show Doctor*Ology. The show chronicles real-life medical techniques and technology, and airs on the Discovery Channel. In an interview, Nielsen admitted his admiration for the doctors on the show: “There are any number of things that you think about when you ponder if you hadn’t been an actor, what would you be, and I’ve always said I’d like to be an astronaut or a doctor. I have such admiration for doctors. I just don’t know how you go around to thank them enough for coming up with the world’s most remarkable new discoveries.”
In 2007, Nielsen starred in the drama Music Within. In 2008, he portrayed a version of Uncle Ben for Superhero Movie, a spoof of superhero films. He then appeared in the 2008 parody films An American Carol, which David Zucker directed, produced, and co-wrote. He appeared in the 2009 parody Stan Helsing. Nielsen portrayed the Doctor in the Spanish horror comedy Spanish Movie, a spoof comedy like Scary Movie, but making fun of popular Spanish films.
Nielsen appeared in over 100 films and 1,500 television programs over the span of his career, portraying over 220 characters.
Nielsen married four times: Monica Boyer (1950–1956), Alisande Ullman (1958–1973), Brooks Oliver (1981–1983) and Barbaree Earl (2001–2010; his death). Nielsen had two daughters from his second marriage, Maura and Thea Nielsen.
Nielsen was a fan of golf, and he often played it in his free time. Nielsen joked about his view on golf, “I have no goals or ambition. I do, however, wish to work enough to maintain whatever celebrity status I have so that they will continue to invite me to golf tournaments.” Nielsen’s interest in the sport led him to star in several comedic instructional films.
Nielsen stated in several interviews that he had a few medical problems such as hearing impairment. He was legally deaf and wore hearing aids for most of his life. Because of this impairment, he publicly supported the Better Hearing Institute.
In November 2010, Nielsen was admitted to a Fort Lauderdale, Florida hospital for pneumonia. On 28 November, Doug Nielsen, Nielsen’s nephew, announced to the CJOB radio station that Nielsen had died in his sleep, due to complications from pneumonia, around 5:30 pm EST, surrounded by family and friends.
Among his numerous awards, in 1995 Leslie Nielsen received UCLA‘s Jack Benny Award for his comedic roles. In 1988, he became the 1,884th personality to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6541 Hollywood Blvd. In 2001 he was inducted into Canada’s Walk of Fame. The following year he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada, although he was also a naturalized U.S. citizen. With his American status, he maintained his Canadian heritage: “There’s no way you can be a Canadian and think you can lose it … Canadians are a goodly group. They are very aware of caring and helping.” On 19 May 2005, during the centennial gala of his birth province, Saskatchewan, Leslie Nielsen was introduced to HM Queen Elizabeth II.
On 20 February 2002, Nielsen was named an honorary citizen of West Virginia and an “Ambassador of Mountain State Goodwill”. Nielsen visited the state many times to speak and visit friends. In 2003, in honor of Nielsen, Grant MacEwan College named its school of communications after him. Also in 2003, the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists awarded him the ACTRA Award of Excellence.
|1956||Ransom!||Charlie Telfer||Film debut.|
|Forbidden Planet||Commander John J. Adams|
|The Vagabond King||Thibault|
|The Opposite Sex||Steve Hilliard|
|1957||Hot Summer Night||William Joel Partain|
|Tammy and the Bachelor||Peter Brent|
|1958||The Sheepman||Col. Stephen Bedford/Johnny Bledsoe|
|1964||See How They Run||Elliot Green||First television movie.|
|Night Train to Paris||Alan Holiday|
|1965||Dark Intruder||Brett Kingsford|
|1966||The Plainsman||Col. George Armstrong Custer|
|Beau Geste||Lieutenant De Ruse|
|1967||Code Name: Heraclitus||Fryer|
|The Reluctant Astronaut||Major Fred Gifford|
|Gunfight in Abilene||Grant Evers|
|1968||How to Steal the World||General Maximilian Harmon||The Man From UNC.L.E. film.|
|Dayton’s Devils||Frank Dayton|
|Companions in Nightmare||Dr. Neesden|
|1969||Trial Run||Jason Harkness|
|Deadlock||Lieutenant Sam Danforth|
|How to Commit Marriage||Phil Fletcher|
|Change of Mind||Sherrif Webb|
|1970||Night Slaves||Sherrif Henshaw|
|Hauser’s Memory||Joseph Slaughter|
|1971||Incident In San Francisco||Lieutenant Brubaker|
|Four Rode Out||Mr. Brown|
|They Call It Murder||Frank Antrim|
|1972||The Poseidon Adventure||Captain Harrison|
|1973||…And Millions Die!||Jack Gallagher|
|Amanda Fallon||Mr. Cummings|
|The Return Of Charlie Chan||Alexander Hadrachi|
|1975||Can Ellen Be Saved||Arnold Lindsey|
|Threshold: The Blue Angels Experience||Narrator|
|1976||Grand Jury||John Williams|
|Project Kill||Jonathan Trevor|
|Brinks: The Great Robbery||Agent Norman Houston|
|1977||Sixth and Main||John Doe|
|Day of the Animals||Paul Jenson|
|Viva Knievel!||Stanley Millard|
|The Kentucky Fried Movie||Man in Feel-O-Rama Movie||Uncredited cameo; Feel-O-Rama segment.|
|The Amsterdam Kill||Riley Knight|
|1978||Little Mo||Nelson Fisher|
|1979||Institute for Revenge||Counselor Hollis Barnes|
|The Albertans||Don MacIntosh|
|City on Fire||Mayor William Dudley|
|Airplane!||Dr. Rumack||First comedy role.|
|Prom Night||Mr. Raymond Hammond|
|1981||A Choice of Two||Unknown|
|1982||Twilight Theater||Various Characters|
|Foxfire Light||Reece Morgan|
|Wrong Is Right||Mallory|
|Creepshow||Richard Vickers||Something To Tide You Over segment.|
|The Night the Bridge Fell Down||Paul Warren|
|Cave-In!||Joseph ‘Joe’ Johnson|
|The Creature Wasn’t Nice (Spaceship)||Capt. Jamieson|
|1985||Murder Among Friends||Unknown|
|Reckless Disregard||Bob Franklin|
|Blade in Hong Kong||Harry Ingersoll|
|Striker’s Mountain||Jim McKay|
|1986||The Patriot||Admiral Frazer|
|Soul Man||Mr. Dunbar|
|Nuts||Allen Green||Final non-comedy role.|
|Home Is Where The Hart Is||Sherrif Nashville Schwartz|
|1988||Dangerous Curves||Greg Krevske|
|The Railway Dragon||Narrator||First animated film.|
|The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad!||Lt. Frank Drebin||First starring role.|
|1990||Repossessed||Father Jebedaiah Mayii|
|1991||All I Want for Christmas||Santa Claus||Family holiday film.|
|The Naked Gun 2½: The Smell of Fear||Lt. Frank Drebin|
|Chance of a Lifetime||Lloyd Dixon|
|Surf Ninjas||Colonel Chi|
|1994||S.P.Q.R. 2000 e 1/2 anni fa||Lucio Cinico|
|Naked Gun 33⅓: The Final Insult||Lt. Frank Drebin|
|1995||Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree||Willowby’s butler|
|Dracula: Dead and Loving It||Count Dracula|
|1996||Spy Hard||Dick Steele, Agent WD-40|
|1997||Mr. Magoo||Mr. Magoo|
|1998||Safety Patrol||Mr. Penn|
|Family Plan||Harry Haber|
|Wrongfully Accused||Ryan Harrison|
|1999||Pirates 4D||Captain Lucky||4D Cinema Show presented at various Busch Gardens amusement parks.|
|2000||Santa Who?||Santa Claus|
|2001: A Space Travesty||Marshal Richard ‘Dick’ Dix|
|Kevin of the North (Chilly Dogs)||Clive Thornton|
|2002||Men with Brooms||Gordon Cutter|
|2003||Scary Movie 3||President Harris|
|Noël Noël||English Narrator|
|2006||Scary Movie 4||President Harris|
|2007||Music Within||Bill Austin|
|2008||Superhero Movie||Uncle Albert|
|An American Carol||Grampa / Himself|
|Slap Shot 3: The Junior League||Mayor of Charlestown|
|The Waterman Movie||Ready Espanosa||Voice acting is complete; will be released posthumously.|
|1958–1961||Alfred Hitchcock Presents||Lloyd Ashley & DA Rudolph Cox||Two episodes|
|1959||The Swamp Fox||Colonel Francis Marion|
|1960||Thriller||Alan Patterson (lead role)||Episode “The Twisted Image”|
|1961||The New Breed||Lt. Price Adams||Regular|
|1963||Channing||Professor Paul Stafford||Single episode|
|1963-1964||The Fugitive (TV series)||Martin C. Rowland & Harold Cheyney||Two episodes|
|1964||Your First Impression||As himself||Single episode|
|1964||The Alfred Hitchcock Hour||Steven Grainger||Single episode|
|1964–1969||The Virginian||Ben Stratton||Five episodes|
|1965||Peyton Place||Vincent and Kenneth Marham (twins)||19 episodes|
|1967||Bonanza||Sheriff Paul Rowan||One episode|
|1969||The Bold Ones: The Protectors||Deputy Police Chief Sam Danforth||Seven episodes|
|1969–1974||Hawaii Five-O||Brent & Colonel Faraday||Two episodes|
|1971–1975||Columbo||Peter Hamilton & Geronimo||Two episodes|
|1971||Bearcats!||Col. Ted Donovan||Single episode|
|1971||Night Gallery||Col. Dennis Malloy||Single episode “A Question of Fear”|
|1973||M*A*S*H||Col. Buzz Brighton||Episode “The Ringbanger”|
|1973–1974||The Streets of San Francisco||Ofc. Joe Landers, Insp. John T. Connor, & Big Jake Wilson||Three episodes|
|1974||Cannon||Eric Strauss||Single episode|
|1974||Kojak||Michael Hagar||Single episode “Loser Takes All”|
|1975||Kung Fu||Vincent Corbino||Four episodes|
|1975–1976||S.W.A.T.||Larry Neal/Vince Richie||Three episodes|
|1979||Backstairs at the White House||Ike Hoover||Three episodes|
|1980||The Littlest Hobo||Mayor Chester Montgomery||Episode “Romiet and Julio”|
|1982||Police Squad!||Det. Frank Drebin|
|1984||Shaping Up||Buddy Fox|
|1985–1986||Murder, She Wrote||Captain Daniels & David Everett||Two episodes|
|1988||Who’s The Boss||Max|
|1988||Day By Day||Jack Harper||One episode, nominated for an Emmy Award|
|1989||Saturday Night Live||Himself||Single episode|
|1992||The Golden Girls||Lucas Hollingsworth||Series finale|
|1994–1999||Due South||Sgt. Buck Frobisher||Four episodes|
|1994–1996, 2001–2002||Katie and Orbie||Narrator|
|1995||Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree||Mr. Willowby’s Butler, Baxter||Television Christmas special|
|2000||Santa Who?||Santa Claus||Television film|
|2002||Liocracy||Terrence Brynne McKennie|
|Lipshitz Saves the World||Lipshitz’s mentor||Pilot|
|Robson Arms||Cado Vasco|
- 1993: Bad Golf Made Easier
- 1994: Bad Golf My Way
- 1997: Stupid Little Golf Video
- 1997: National Geographic Video: The Savage Garden
- Nielsen also appeared in a promotional video for Layman Allen’s mathematics game called “Equations”
- 1993: The Naked Truth
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Gene Polito, American cinematographer (Futureworld, Up in Smoke, Lost in Space), died from esophageal cancer he was , 92
(September 13, 1918 – November 28, 2010)
Polito was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1918, the son of cinematographer Sol Polito and his wife, Frances Polito. Polito was just eight months old when his family moved to Los Angeles in 1919 so his father, Sol Polito, could continue working at Warner Brothers Studios.
Polito graduated from Loyola High School in Los Angeles. He attended Loyola University (now Loyola Marymount University), before earning his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Southern California. Polito was employed as an engineer for aerospace manufacturer, Douglas Aircraft Company, during World War II.
Polito began his career as a cinematographer towards the end of World War II. His career ultimately spanned more than forty years and included hundreds of film and television productions. A member of the American Society of Cinematographers, Polito is credited with the invention of the “Polito Bracket,” which film studio photographers now use as a mounting accessory for cameras. Polito became a professor at the USC School of Cinematic Arts when he was 62 years old.
Gene Polito died at his home in Irvine, California, on November 28, 2010, at the age 92, after a three year illness with esophageal cancer. He was survived by his wife, Lucy Polito, whom he had been married to for 66 years; nine children; his brother, Robert Polito; and nine great-grandchildren. His funeral was held at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in Irvine, California.
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