Tuesday, March 14, 2023

A couple of 90th birthdays

In order to get through the time around when I'm moving so as not to have too much of a hiatus, I decided to look ahead a couple of days and see if there was anybody whose birth anniversary was worth mentioning. I saw director Henry Hathaway, but searched and found I did a birthday post on him back in 2015. And then I noticed that there were two birthdays of people still living, and both were born on the same day: March 14, 1933, which will make today their 90th birthdays.

First up is Quincy Jones. He's probably somewhat better known as a music producer, considering how many Grammys he won, but for about 20 years from the 1960s through the 1980s he wrote a bunch of movie scores. Among the more memorable ones are Walk, Don't Run; In the Heat of the Night; The Italian Job; and The Color Purple. Not only that, but over the course of the film scoring portion of his career, he received seven Oscar nominations. He never won a competitive Oscar, but he would eventually be given the Jean Hersholt Award for his humanitarian work.

I mention The Italian Job among Quincy Jones' scores because, by an interesting coincidence, one of the cast members of that movie was also born on March 14, 1933. That would be the film's star, Michael Caine. Caine, who announced his retirement a couple of years ago, had a long career with a bunch of memorable roles, although for all the good British movies he made, it wasn't until some of the supporting roles he took that he finally won the Oscar. In fact, Caine would go on to win twice, for Hannah and Her Sisters and The Cider House Rules. Among the movies in which he was playing a more-or-less lead role was The Man Who Would Be King, although you could argue that it's really Sean Connery who's the lead. I'd say they're 1A (Connery) and 1B (Caine). But I picked that movie because the role of the Afghani queen in that movie was played by Caine's real-life wife Shakira (née Baksh). According to IMDb they're still married, and recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary.

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