April 18, 2010

Lorre Films on TV This Spring

Lorre movies from several different studios are on the Turner Classic Movies schedule over the next three months.

Peter Lorre's page on the TV Now website lists the Lorre films scheduled on various television channels over a 2-week period.

All times are Eastern Standard.

April, 2010

Apr. 19 (Mon.), 6 p.m. – All Through the Night (1942). As Pepi, Peter appeared in his second film with pal Humphrey Bogart, and his first with Karen Verne, who in 1945 became the second Mrs. Lorre.

Apr. 30 (Fri.), 8 p.m. – Background to Danger (1943). Peter Lorre plays Russian spy Nikolai Zaleshoff, working with and against American agent Joe Barton (George Raft). Watch for the scene in the Zaleshoffs' apartment – during filming of this sequence, Raft took exception to Peter's smoking and scene-stealing and decked him. Peter's stuntman Harvey Parry, who also doubled him on the Mr. Moto films of the late 1930s, tells the story in Stephen Youngkin's book The Lost One: A Life of Peter Lorre.

May, 2010

A rarely-televised Lorre film is the lone entry on the schedule this month.

May 24 (Mon.), 8:15 a.m. – The Face Behind the Mask (1941). One of the few films in which Peter took the leading role. He plays Janos Szabo, a Hungarian watchmaker who immigrates to the U.S., but finds his new life utterly changed when he becomes horribly scarred in a fire.

June, 2010

This month is Peter Lorre's 106th birthday, and a couple Lorre films that don't usually get much play will be shown.

June 4 (Fri.) – Peter Lorre at sea in:

They Met in Bombay (1941) at 6 a.m. – "Oh, but this is no passenger ship, sir," Capt. Chang (Lorre) tells Clark Gable and Rosalind Russell, jewel thieves attempting to escape Bombay (now Mumbai) aboard the Chinese skipper's tramp steamer. "Of course, almost anything may be done for money." And for Capt. Chang, that includes double-crossing his passengers for the £50,000 reward on their heads.

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954) at 10 p.m. – A ship of another kind – a "submerging boat" – is the setting for Peter Lorre's only film at the Walt Disney studio. To publicize the film, Peter appeared with his 20,000 Leagues co-stars on two episodes of Disneyland, the Disney television program: "The Disneyland Story", Oct. 27, 1954, the series' premiere episode; and "Monsters of the Deep", Jan. 19, 1955, which highlighted the film's set-piece: a fight with a giant squid.

Many Lorre movies have been remastered and packaged in DVDs loaded with extra features. For more information on the films of Peter Lorre released to home video, head to the DVD — VHS section of The Lost One website.

Happy viewing!

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