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This Just In ...

Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely young daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.

Goodnight everyone, and have a Golightly weekend!

Nostalgia


“The Romeo-and-Juliet type of film writing is not so successful in TV because it is such a small medium You might record in the best studio in the world-but it still has to come out of that little three-inch speaker.”
Henry Mancini


It's Friday night. Time to unwind with our regular Friday night feature on This Just In.

The weekend has finally arrived.

The sun has set.

The evening sky has erupted. 

Let's smooth our way into Saturday and Sunday.

Last October right around Halloween, my family paid a visit to our favorite Franklin restaurant, Casa di Giorgio.  The staff was bedecked in costumes, including young Elle, a native of Bulgaria who was serving as the maitre’d.

Elle looks and is built like Audrey Hepburn. So it was natural that there she stood behind the welcoming station with dark hair pulled back, pearls, gloves, black dress.

She needs to pull that ensemble out again this year.

Tonight, a famous movie with a famous soundtrack turns 50.

In 1958, Truman Capote, who would later author the non-fiction masterpiece “In Cold Blood” about two mass murderers, wrote “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.” It was destined for the big screen and it hit movie theaters in 1961 with a plot surrounding an eccentric society girl.






Henry Mancini did the soundtrack album and wrote most of the tracks. On the others, he had help from Johnny Mercer. What a collaboration.

Tonight we salute music from that great film and begin with “The Big Blowout,” played where our star, Holly Golightly throws a wild party in her small New York apartment. Note the uptempo and bold trumpet solos that portray the festive (drunken) scene.





[ BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S POSTER ]




George Peppard, center left, and Audrey Hepburn take a break during filming 'Breakfast At Tiffany's' in New York City in June 1961. Keystone Features via Getty Images.


ABC News supplies us with tidbits you might not have known about this classic film. For example, Audrey Hepburn was not Truman Capote’s first choice to play Holly Golightly. Capote wanted…






Monroe was told by her advisers that she did not want to be in a role as a lady of the evening.

More from the soundtrack, with a Latin flavor done a la Mancini. You can just feel the 60's in "Latin Golightly."



Audrey Hepburn, as Holly Golightly, holds a cup and a paper bag while looking into one of the window displays at Tiffany's in a still from the film, 'Breakfast at Tiffany's'. She wears sunglasses, a little black dress, long gloves and a tiara in her chignon. Paramount Pictures via Getty Images.

Holly Golightly was…a tart?

Say it isn’t so!

It’s true.

America knew it 50 years ago.  It knows it 50 years later.

But it doesn’t want to admit.

Remember the character Sally Tomato? HE was a gangster Holly visited weekly in prison. Tomato was played by Alan Reed who actually gained more fame for being the voice of...

 
This next track is pure Mancini. Though obscure, it is marvelous in conjuring images of an era long gone. It's called, "Sallly's Tomato." Shall we dance?




 


Actors George Peppard and Martin Balsam compete to light Audrey Hepburn's cigarette at a formal party in a still from director Blake Edwards' film, 'Breakfast at Tiffany's' in 1961.

All you women who wear black dresses today, you can thank Audrey Hepburn. She turned the little number into a symbol of sophistication at a time in the brand new decade of the 60’s when big, bold fancy colors were in.

A half century later, would “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” or a reasonable facsimile work? Sam Wasson who has authored a book about the film doesn’t think so:

“The age of the grown up Hollywood comedy is long behind us. Mind you, this isn’t nostalgia, it’s arithmetic: the people making the movies have changed and so have the people they’re making them for.  

Alas, (Paramount’s Richard) Shepherd wouldn't get far with ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ today, at least not if he were making the grown up version we know and love. Out would go the subtle innuendo, European couture, moral ambiguity, and brilliant counterpoint casting of its good-girl star in a bad-girl part, and in their place, rim-shot jokes, the latest fashion trend, explicit messages, and safe, dependable typecasting. In other words, today’s ‘Tiffany’s’ would be a film suited to the mundane demands of Hollywood’s most admiring customers: kids. Theirs is mainstream film’s greatest love affair.”

Goodnight.

Sleep well.

Have a great weekend.

We close with some "Breakfast at Tiffany's" trivia about the film's big song. Allmusic.com writes:

“The song served to cement the lovable qualities of Hepburn's character Holly Golightly, forever endearing the actor to her public. Mancini -- in Audrey Hepburn: An Intimate Portrait (Diana Maychick, 1993) -- recalled the first screening of the film, immediately after which a Paramount executive replied ‘Well, I'll tell you one thing, that f-ing song's got to go.’ Perhaps recognizing the value of the song to the film and her character, Hepburn apparently had to be restrained by her husband, actor Mel Ferrer, as she leapt up, responding ‘over my dead body’!"




 


Related reading: 'Breakfast at Tiffany's:' Five Things You Didn't Know

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