Friday, April 10, 2020

Four For Friday - The Side Job - Old Hollywood - Back In The Day Hollywood

Except for some light editing and adding the blind clues, I kept it the way the tipster wrote it.

While living in Los Angeles back in the day, one of my co-workers asked me one day if I would be willing to work a side job with him over the weekend. Of course I would love the cash!

Turns out the side job he did for private security (which was compromised of all off duty LAPD) was for the funeral of this former A list mostly movie actor. (#1). I was floored! Here I am in my mid twenties, newish to LA and a lover of old Hollywood.

So the day comes and we have to get to Westwood two hours early to ensure all logistics are ready. Since I have tons of experience with big (and small) events with celebrities I know the drill.  This lovely gentleman who works at the cemetery offered to give me a private tour since they were closed to the public for the actor's funeral. We had plenty of time so I took him up on the offer. It was super interesting since it was my first visit there.

*As a sidenote, he told me a horrific story. As you probably know, this former A list mostly movie actress (#2) who was murdered by her still living former A list actor husband (#3) is buried there. This tiny cemetery is surrounded by tall office buildings. Lots of people come to visit the famous graves. One day this man came to visit #2's grave and pulled out a gun and shot himself in the middle of the day right at her grave.  Tons of witnesses from the office buildings. Pretty shocking and horrible.  I can’t imagine. ☹️

I digress...

So we wrap up the tour just in time for #1’s publicist to arrive. I met with her and she gave me the guest list. It had about 25 people. #1's family, the family of his most famous co-star (#4), and the family of a former A list actor (#5) who recently died and once raped #2.

She gives me her cell number (back in the good old days of Razors and Blackberries) and told me that she will communicate any changes to the list directly to me. She told me that if anyone shows up who is not on the list I must call her directly since she will be inside with the family and she will let me know the status.  She was clear it was a VERY strict list and might or might not have an update.

A little while later a limo driver arrives. He’s way early so I asked him what he needed. He said he was just scoping out the area to figure out where to park because he would be coming back later with this former A list mostly television actor (#6) who was also a big co-star of #1. I showed him the parking area and then he pulled around and left. Of course I assumed #6 would probably be one of the additions to the list that #1’s publicist had mentioned.  Well you know what they say about assuming.

Guests start to arrive and the publicist confirmed that the list I had was the final list. Meaning no one else would be permitted in. I thought to myself that #6 might have been an oversight and I would deal with it when he arrived (it was getting busy).  I’m checking people in and everything is running very smoothly. Then the limo driver comes back. Rolls down the window and I can see #6 sitting in the backseat. I’m completely uncomfortable because he’s not on the list so I step away for a moment to call the publicist. I tell her who’s waiting and she informs me that he is not allowed in under any circumstances.

Shit! Now I have to tell him. Cringe.

I grab a security guy and fill him in real quick. (Mind you we are all dressed in our funeral best to be respectful, so it’s not like some intimidating security dude.) We approach the limo and I ever so gently inform him that “I’m sorry #6 isn’t on the list and they have informed me that I must stick to the list”.  The driver was about to say something when #6 cut him off and said fine let’s leave now! 
I kinda got the impression he wasn’t that surprised. 

Anyway, they left and it was so awkward because by this time the narrow driveway had filled up with cars and the limo driver had to make about a 1000 point turn to get out of there. It was at that moment that I really wished I had a flask of tequila with me.

I’m dying to know the backstory on this. Perhaps a question for Mr X if you don’t know? 

Ok back to the guests:
-The son (#7) of #5 drove his dad and #7's wife (#8). #5 looked almost dead even then. #7 was extremely nice and when he pulled up said “Hello, I’m #7 my wife and father”. No assumptions made at all. Very nice!

-This Old Hollywood A list director (#9) came with a driver and looked so freaking sad. Like he was about to lose it at any second.

-#1's son was so gracious and nice. Came and thanked each of us one by one for making such an awful day run smoothly. Lovely man.

-#4's family was equally as nice.

But my FAVORITE of all...
-This permanent A list mostly movie actress who is an Oscar winner/nominee from an acting family where she is arguably lesser on the list pulled up in a filthy 90’s Ford Taurus with tissue boxes and beanie babies inside the windshield. It was amazing to witness. She was super cool too and I was wishing I could do that tequila shot with her. We all laughed about that for weeks. Love her. 

102 comments:

Tricia13 said...

Natalie Wood/Robert Wagner and?

MDAnderson said...

5. Kirk Douglas
2 Natalie wood

Tricia13 said...

Pierce Brothers Cementary,Westwood Billage. James dean for the first deceased actor?

MDAnderson said...

7 Michael Douglas
8 CZJ

sandybrook said...

Liza Minelli for the very last one? She's lesser than Judy Garland arguably?

Tricia13 said...

Carrie Fisher for the last actress?
Robert Altman the director?Or Bogdonavich

MDAnderson said...

Shirley MacLaine?? For the actress.

Tricia13 said...

Bogdonavich directed something on her in 2004. They were friends

sandybrook said...

Yes three or four of them are Douglas's. Nice to see back in the day is now the 2000's on this site.

Sunspirit said...

After reading all that I want to know who it is

sandybrook said...

Maybe it's Jerry Orbach who died in 2004?

sandybrook said...

Nope he was serviced in NYC, not Hollywood, so not hime.

Rosie riveter said...

Dear lord. Got to the obvs Robert Wagner/ Natalie wood and daydreamed thru the rest.
Adderall would help. Think I'll go ahead and have a 1960s lunch instead.
#fridayyy

E said...

If this is back in the day then #8 is Diandra, Michael's first wife

Someone Said said...

Is this Burt Lancaster's funeral?

HushHush said...

Who was #1, and #6?

Someone Said said...

Is #6 Tony Curtis?

Paul Bearer said...

For some reason I’m thinking Walter Matthau for #1 and Jack Lemmon for his most famous costar (The Odd Couple).

Tricia13 said...

+1 E. Definitely Diandra

Pottymouth said...

who raped who? who was on the casket?

Someone Said said...

Lancaster had no funeral or memorial service,

E said...

For some reason I'm thinking this is Bing Crosby (died in 1977) and #4 is Bob Hope. Which could make #6 William Holden; maybe he wasn't allowed in because by then he would have been a major alk and capable of making a scene (pulling this part totally out of my ass). There could have been bad blood over Grace Kelly; I remember reading once that BC was in love with her maybe?

gauloise said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nubian princess said...

Who's funeral? That's the best place to start. So many numbers. Thanks to whomever sent this in. Great blind.

E said...

Forget #6 being Holden, he's not a mostly TV actor. I still feel like this is Bing

Paul Bearer said...

If it’s Matthau, maybe the big TV star who got turned away is Andy Griffith (they costarred in the film “A Face in the Crowd.”)

MDAnderson said...

If this takes place after Natalie wood death then it has to be after 1981.

Paul Bearer said...

It can’t be Bing because Natalie Wood (2) died in 1981. Crosby died in 1977.

Someone Said said...

George C. Scott, Campbell being the gracious son.

Paul Bearer said...

I do think Walter Matthau is #1:

https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2000-jul-16-mn-53773-story.html

Saintpat said...

@E This is in the day of the BlackBerry and Razor phone, so you’re a couple decades two early I think.

gauloise said...

The director, Billy Wilder/

he worked with Matthau numerous times and died after him

cheesegrater15 said...

The Natalie Wood aside is throwing us off.

Nubian princess said...

That changes some things.

Someone Said said...

Like the Matthau guess. Director, Billy Wilder. Actress in the Taurus, Tatum O'Neal.

gauloise said...

The only thing is CZJ married MD in november 2000, and matthau died in July of 2000. But it could be just a mistake calling her "wife"

AuntBee said...

BlackBerry's hit the market in 1999 so it has to be after that. And when did Robert Wagner shoot himself?? What did I miss? I wish you smarter people would just solve this 1-10 so my brain can relax!

Paul Bearer said...

#1: Walter Matthau
#2: Natalie Wood
#3: Robert Wagner (allegedly!)
#4: Jack Lemmon (most famous costar)
#5: Kirk Douglas (allegedly!)
#6: Andy Griffith
#7: Michael Douglas
#8: Catherine Zeta-Jones
#9: Billy Wilder
Last one would probably be Liza Minnelli!

gauloise said...

Maybe the turned-away actor was the Honeymooner's Art Carney, who was the original Felix Unger in the Odd Couple on Broadway?

Paul Bearer said...

Like the Tatum O’Neal guess for the last one (instead of Minnelli). Tatum and Matthau were in The Bad News Bears together.

gauloise said...

Art Carney was having addiction problems at the time he acted with Matthau, so that could have tainted things, as well as him not getting the movie part

Nubian princess said...

Nice work!

Paul Bearer said...

True—actor turned away could be Art Carney instead of Andy Griffith.

E said...

@Bear and @Unknown I totally missed those landmark references in my haste to research Bing

gauloise said...

I agree with Tatum, not sure she is perm A though, but Liza is an EGOT, and more than just an actress..

E said...

@Bearer, not Bear

Paul Bearer said...

Revised guess:

#1 Water Matthau
#2 Natalie Wood
#3 Robert Wagner
#4 Jack Lemmon
#5 Kirk Douglas
#6 Art Carney
#7 Michael Douglas
#8 Catherine Zeta-Jones
#9 Billy Wilder
Actress who drove up in Ford would be Tatum O’Neal

Katy said...

I think the actress in the Ford is Shirley Maclaine; lower than Warren Beatty and starred with Jack Lemmon in the Apartment, directed by Billy Wilder. That's the Walter Matthau connection- they all knew/worked with each other...

Nubian princess said...

I dont see Tatum as a fun person to laugh with. But..I could be wrong. Thinking Shirley instead

KM said...

#1Jack Lemmon, #4 is Matthau. That’s why it says the family of #4, Matthau passed away in 2000. Also #9 Billy Wilder. Douglas, McLaine were at Lemmon’s funeral. I was thinking lemmon and then I found a BBC article about his funeral.

bumble bee said...

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-57368/Stars-Lemmon-laid-rest.html

gauloise said...

Shirley MacClaine is a Taurus if the car is some kind of clue :)


She is def perm A and fits the description and crowd. Also with Tatum's addiction problems I dont think everyone would be so jolly about her wanting to do tequila shots

Anon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Red Velvet Boots said...

#2 Natalie Wood
#3 Robert Wagner
#5 Kirk Douglas
#7 Michael Douglas
#8 Catherine Zeta-Jones
I think Carrie Fisher for the Favorite. I could see her in a Taurus with tisue boxes and beanie babies.

Nubian princess said...

Matthau died a year before Lemmon. Still think Shirley is the Taurus driver. 2nd guess Carrie Fisher.

canroadrunner said...

I agree with KM that this is Jack Lemmon, making the Taurus owner Shirley MacLaine.

P. Edwin Nibbles said...

Shirley MacLaine driving a Ford full of Beanie Babies? I don't buy it.

nancer said...

i don't think minelli would be described as a mostly movie actress either. plus, she'd never show up driving her own car and it never would have been this car.

Clit Yeastwood said...

Clues: Blackberry's came out in 1999. Razr's = 2004. So, time frame is 1999 - early 2000's.

Westwood cemetery where A-Listers are burried: Westwood Village Memorial Park
https://www.seeing-stars.com/Buried2/PierceBros.shtml

A-List "Mostly Movie" Actors Deceased after 1999: George C. Scott, Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau, James Coburn, Karl Malden (starred with #5 Michael Douglas in "Streets of San Francisco"), Rodney Dangerfield?

For #1 & #3, can see Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon but the Razr, which didn't come out until 2004, throws me off. Agree that #2 is Natalie Wood, #3 Robert Wagner, #5 Kirk Douglas, #7 Michael Douglas, #8 CZJ, #9/x = lest we not forget about... Jane Fonda (with Walter Matthau in 1978's "California Suite" AND co-starred with Jack Lemmon AND Michael Douglas in "The China Syndrome"!)!!

Or: GOLDIE HAWN, who co-starred with Walter Matthau in 1969's "Cactus Flower."

Random alternative: Or Drew Barrymore?

Lucky Dog said...

#1 Matthau (cannot be Lemon, as Matthau died first), #2 Natalie Wood, #3 Robert Wagoner, #4 Jack Lemmon, 5# Kirk Douglas, 6 Richard Chamberline, 7. Michael Douglas, 8, CZJ, 9. Neil Simon (or Billy Wilder), 10. Diane Keaton.

Lucky Dog said...

Aack sorry, forgot needed acting family for 10.. Carrie Fisher then...

Bitchboyardeee said...

random: #1 Marlon Brando?

Urban reader said...

Brittany Murphy for the deceased?

kelkat said...

Natalie Died in 1981

bean àlainn rua said...

This permanent A list mostly movie actress who is an Oscar winner/nominee from an acting family where she is arguably lesser on the list:

Laura Dern

Post Cards From The Edge said...

Hi please don't kill me but isn't the story of Kirk Douglas being the actor to rape Natalie Woods a Himmm blind. With that whole cluster fuck are we sure it was Kirk?

Magdalena said...

So who is the man who killed himself at Natalie Wood's grave? Certainly not Robert Wagner or Christopher Walken.

Nubian princess said...

There are many other sources claiming the very same story. Including her own sister.

Nubian princess said...

He was "just a man".

gauloise said...

Carrie Fischer is a good guess but never had an Oscar nom or win

KM said...

My point was that it is Lemmon because Matthau died first. It states the family of his most famous co-star, not the co-star himself.

“Guests at the private ceremony included director Billy Wilder, 95, Lemmon's old friend Kirk Douglas, 84, and co-stars Shirley Maclaine, 67, and Kevin Spacey, 41....also attended by Gregory Peck, Sidney Poitier, Michael Douglas, Catherine Zeta Jones, Frank Sinatra's widow Barbara and Charlie Matthau, son of Lemmon's friend and comic co-star Walter.”

1-Lemmon
2-Wood
3Wagner
4-Matthau
5-Douglas
6-crazy guess, but because of rating, Garner.
7-Douglas
8-CZJ
9-Billy Wilder
Taurus driver-MacLaine

gauloise said...

it also says "the family of a former A list actor (#5) " not Kirk Douglas but just his family.

I think it is just the writer's way of speaking, ie "The Douglas Family"

IRENE said...

It must be Jack Lemmon funeral because #4 is about "most famous costar FAMILY".
#1: Jack Lemmon
#2: Natalie Wood
#3: Robert Wagner (allegedly!)
#4: Walter Matthau (most famous costar FAMILY, because HE was already dead)
#5: Kirk Douglas (allegedly!)
#6: I don't know
#7: Michael Douglas
#8: Catherine Zeta-Jones (they were then married)
#9: Billy Wilder
I don't have any idea about the Taurus driver.

DrDeezer said...

It’s widely known, but never confirmed, that Kirk Douglas brutally raped Natalie Wood

IRENE said...

Shirley Maclaine drove a simple Toyota to a grocery store in 2018, so maybe is posible she had a.Ford Taurus drove by.herself in 2001.

Traitorhater said...

I agree with the Jack Lemmon guess & Shirley MacLaine. Jane Fonda doesn't seem like a Taurus type; nor a beanie baby type. I just want to add that when I first came to LA, I was starstruck & really wanted to see Marilyn Monroe's grave. I went to that cemetery, near where I worked & walking around stumbled on #2's grave. It had all sorts of personal tchotchkes on it, rosary beads etc & I could tell she was so well loved by her family. I felt like I was intruding & after that I never cared to invade a celebrity's space. Not even when Milli Vanilli came to our house for a party!

malcam66 said...

1 Lemmon
2 Wood
3 Wagner
4-Tony Curtis (there's photos of Jamie Lee at Jack Lemmons funeral)
5-Douglas
6-???
7-Douglas
8-CZJ
9-Billy Wilder

AussieBlogger said...

Hello? 90s car, 90s devices. It can't be Natalie's funeral.

J said...

Walter Matthau's funeral.
#6 is Art Carney.
The backstory was that when they were on Broadway as the original Odd Couple in 1965, Matthau treated Carney very badly. Was constantly messing with him and not being a good co-star. Carney almost had (or did have) a nervous breakdown because of it.
No one knows why. Maybe Matthau was trying to stay in character.
Carney never said a word about it and never talked about it.
Carney was probably trying to be gracious by attending the man's funeral, but maybe the real story is that Matthau just never liked him at all.
I don't think Mike Nichols ever said much about it, either.

Miss Tink said...

#1 Jack Lemmon
#2 Natalie Wood
#3 Robert Wagner
#4 Walter Matthau
#5 Kirk Douglas
#6 Tony Curtis
#7 Michael Douglas
#8 Catherine Zeta Jones
#9. Billy Wilder

Miss Tink said...

Walter Matthau died before Jack Lemmon. That's why only Matthau's family (son) attended the funeral. Jack Lemmon costarred with Matthau in The Odd Couple. Tony Curtis, who costarred with Lemmon in Some Like It Hot, was turned away.

Blue Haired Witch said...

If this is Natalie Wood’s funeral, then #6 is Christopher Walden.

Vita said...

Great blind with lots of pieces!
#6 is mostly television, so I agree with the #1 is Walter Matthau, #6 Art Carney guesses (though I was unaware of the tension)

#4 could be Jack Lemmon's family, he himself was still alive but may have been too sick to attend?

#10 I read this as Shirley McClaine, too

Just4Fun said...

Why does ANYONE think anyone is suggesting this is Natalie Wood's funeral? The guy said he saw her grave when he was working #1's funeral. Another dating clue is the Beanie Babies. They first came out in '93 but really blew up in '96. So, unlikely to be earlier than '96

Sand1 said...

Remember BlackBerry was introduced in 1998

aemish said...

What an awesome Old Hollywood blind! I hope this author contributes more sometime to this site :o)

So, but does anyone know who killed themselves at the grave site?

aemish said...

Also, who was in the limo that wasn't allowed to stay?

Paul Bearer said...

I’m convinced it’s Matthau, based on how his funeral is described in this article:

https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2000-jul-16-mn-53773-story.html

And note that Jack Lemmon is interviewed about his respect for Walter in the article, but it doesn’t say Lemmon was AT the funeral. Lemmon died about a year later, so it wouldn’t be a surprise if he did not attend the Matthau funeral.

Paul Bearer said...

A google search of Lemmon’s funeral suggests it was much larger than Matthau’s (remember, only 25 people were on the list for the funeral in the blind item.)

Saintpat said...

@J I knew a couple of people who saw Matthau on stage at separate times and both mentioned that he purposely stepped on other actors’ lines and tried to upstage when they were speaking and he was in the background — I think one even mentioned him picking his nose during a scene where he was off to the side to get attention that was supposed to be focused on others.

So I can understand friction with someone who spent a lot of time playing opposite him in a stage setting.

MissDavie said...

The big clue has to be the cell phones being BlackBerry and Flip phones. That takes a lot of the guesses out.

Mrs Libnish said...

I think Paul Bearer and other Matthau guesses are correct. I stuck with Lemmon until I read about Matthau's understated funeral. I think Lemmon's family came to the funeral on behalf of Lemmon. Lemmon had a hard time getting used to the idea of his death.

I like MacLaine for the actress.

Tueschild said...

Agree is Lemmon.
#6= Alec Baldwin? (Glengarry Glen Ross).

KM said...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/1417891.stm

KM said...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/1417891.stm

Sunkist said...

1. Jack Lemmon
2. Natalie Wood
3. Robert Wagner
4. Matthau family
5. Kirk Douglas
6. Alec Baldwin
7. Michael Douglas
8. CZJ
9. Billie Wilder
10. Shirley Mclaine

Vernon Freedom said...

2001 still feels a little early to me for Blackberries and RAZRs (I didn't get one until 2006), but then again, this is Hollywood, and based on what some of you have put together, Jack Lemmon seems like the best answer for #1.

Smashytrash said...

#1 John Ritter?

Smashytrash said...

#1 John Ritter?

Smashytrash said...

#1 John Ritter?

Spicy Meatball said...

Great find, bumble bee!

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