MAD MAGAZINE, PART DEUX

MAD MAGAZINE

Mad Magazine? Really? Yeah, really!  The purveyor of pop culture parody, has been successfully poking fun at iconic movies since the 1950s and is still going strong. The incredibly wild success of 1967’s  The Dirty Dozen (The biggest box office hit of the year and the 6th highest grossing film in MGM history) meant that in the January, 1968 issue of Mad Magazine, cartoonist Mort Drucker and writer Lou Silverstone would take on the monster hit film in their own inimitable fashion. Chock full of puns, inside jokes (check out the ‘cameos’ of Beetle Bailey and Co.), and wonderfully rendered caricatures of the entire cast of Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine, Charles Bronson, Jim Brown, Trine Lopez, John Cassavetes, Robert Webber, Telly Savalas, Clint Walker, Donald Sutherland, Ralph Meeker and Robert Ryan.Too bad they didn’t do more Marvin parodies. Drucker did him great!
Oh, and the intro is wrong, by the way. The trend in anti-heroes didn’t start with Hud. That actually goes waaaay back to everything from Phantom of the Opera to Little Casear and the entire career of the likes of Humphrey Bogart, Robert Mitchum and  beyond…..And whats with the guy with the eye patch smoking the cigarette?
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THE DIRTY DOZEN PREMIERE PARTY INVITE – JUNE, 1967

Back in the days when studios did things up BIG, the studio that produced The Dirty Dozen, MGM,  planned an old-fashioned formal premeire party with all the trimmings. The studio wasn’t in the greatest financial shape at the time and was understandably nervous about the film’s prospects, never dreaming it would become the biggest hit of the year and one of the highest grossing films in MGM’s history. Relucantly, however, they did send this invite to a select few….

Attendees of this special invitation only soiree received the following souvenir program…..

DDINVITE

Dirty Dozen Preimere invite

DDFRONT

Dirty Dozen program cover

 

On the back was the following promotional ad…..
The entire legendary cast was in attendance at the black-tie affair (Ernest Borgnine, Charles Bronson, Jim Brown, John Cassavetes, Richard Jaeckel, George Kennedy, Trini Lopez, Ralph Meeker, Robert Ryan, Telly Savalas, Donald Sutherland, Clint Walker and Robert Webber). For Lee Marvin, who was divorced from his wife Betty (but still in contact with her) and keeping company with Michele Triola, the quandary was who would he take to the event? According to this ragged clip from Cue Magazine, the answer surprised everyone…..

DDBACK

Dirty Dozen program info

DDCUE

Lee Marvin & Monte Marvin at premiere party

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UNSEEN LEE MARVIN PHOTOS FOR LEE MARVIN POINT BLANK

Unseen Lee Marvin photos?
In researching and writing LEE MARVIN POINT BLANK, choosing the final images that would accompany the text proved to be an embarrassment of riches. However, due to both space and rights restrictions, not all the images were able to make the final cut. Periodically, those images will be seen here and for whatever reason, often make their own themes. Below are three such examples.

First, a still from the climatic opening fight scene from John Ford’s  Donovan’s Reef (1962) with John Wayne in the scenic Hawaiian Islands. The film started out to be the fun-loving romp Ford had intended for all concerned, but Marvin’s excessive partying took a much darker turn (Lee Marvin Point Blank).

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Lee Marvin and Duke Wayne heed Jack Warden’s advice to stand at attention in the midst of their annual brawl.

Next, there’s an image from writer-director Richard Brooks’ The Professionals (1966) showing the four leads, Woody Strode, Lee, Burt Lancaster, and Robert Ryan with their backs to the camera preparing to shoot the next scene. During the film’s down time in the Nevada desert, Marvin and Strode, along with stuntman Tony Epper, wreaked such havoc in the Vegas casinos that it rivaled the fabled Rat Pack. Marvin is shown here easily talking Strode into doing just that as an uninvited Lancaster curiously looks on.

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Finally, while making Robert Aldrich’s The Dirty Dozen in England in 1967, Marvin cavorted in the London pubs with former Chicago cop and ex-Marine Bob Phillips (shown left),  who played Cpl. Morgan in the film. An unknown old friend from Phillips’ Chicago days (center) visited the set after a day’s shooting. Phillips’ own caption for this photo: “You can tell’em it ain’t coffee in those cups.”

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