Greetings from beyond The Veil, Effendi.
There is no doubt, that Richard Boone was best known for his TV Western roles, particularly Paladin in Have Gun Will Travel and the titular aging, surly Hec Ramsey. In working for Rankin/Bass Productions however, Boone ventured into the realm of Imagi-Movies (albeit TV movies) in Alexander Grasshoff’s The Last Dinosaur (1977) and the animated version of The Hobbit (1977).
In The Last Dinosaur (co-produced by Tsuburaya Productions) he played wealthy big-game hunter Maston Thrust, determined to bag a Tyrannosaurus (in a prehistoric world discovered by his geologists while looking for oil deposits), as it’s the last great challenge of his life as a hunter.
In The Hobbit, he gave voice to none other than Smaug – the Dragon who seized the Dwarven kingdom of Erebor, under the Lonely Mountain – who is so bravely faced by Bilbo Baggins (voiced by Orson Bean).Boone passed away in 1981 from pneumonia, while suffering from throat cancer.
It was five years ago today, that Maila Nurmi answered the Prince’s call. If that name sounds unfamiliar to you, perhaps you would more than likely know her by her professional name – Vampira. Legend has it that she was approached at a 1953 Hollywood costume party – while dressed in a costume inspired by Charles Addams’ character, Morticia, in his New Yorker cartoons, – by local TV producer, who had hopes of hiring her to host horror movies on his channel. In April 1954, she began hosting The Vampira Show. In 1955 the show was canceled, but she retained the rights to her name, character and routines in the hopes of starting elsewhere. In 1959 she appeared in Ed Woods’ “classic”, the infamous Plan 9 from Outer Space as a zombie.
She tried to sue Cassandra Peterson, alleging that Peterson’s character Elvira was a complete infringement of the Vampira character including the dark dress, intentionally bad graveyard puns and other um… “characteristics”. The case was thrown out.