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Entries in Pfandom (9)

Monday
Mar272017

Pfandom: Cool Rider and a Pink (Leading) Lady

on the set of Grease 2, her first lead roleP F A N D O M  
Michelle Pfeiffer Retrospective. Episode 8 
by Nathaniel R 


We've mostly focused on Michelle Pfeiffer's acting in our Pfandom retrospective. We're sure the star who has described herself as "extremely private" would like it that way, but this would be the appropriate time for a brief bit of personal context.

Though the young actress had been working nonstop since the late 70s in television roles and a few features, she'd been struggling offscreen. She was impatient with the way her career was developing. She'd also become involved with a cult, an experience she's always been cagey about in interviews. She had given them too much of her money and was eating strangely at their insistence. In 1981, she took back control of her life.

At the Grease 2 premiere in NYC with her new husband Peter Horton and producer Allan Carr

Two marriages and two divorces (of sorts): in her personal life she fell in love with fellow up-and-coming actor Peter Horton (who would later become a TV star on thirtysomething), and broke free from the cult; in her professional life she dumped her first agent to sign with the much more powerful William Morris Agency. The shakeup had an immediate effect on her career...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Mar042017

Pfandom: "Falling in Love Again" and "...Dragon Queen"

Pfeiffer instantly sentimentalized, with a halo no less, in her first scene in "Falling in Love Again"P F A N D O M  
Michelle Pfeiffer Retrospective. Episode 7 
by Nathaniel R 

There are an infinite number of worse people to grow up to look like than British star Susannah York but somehow it's hard to buy that that's who Michelle Pfeiffer would become. Pfeiffer was still a pre-teen when Susannah York hit her career peak, most notably in a string of erotically charged and sometimes controversial 1960s movies like Tom Jones, The Killing of Sister George, X Y and Zee, and They Shoot Horses Don't They (the latter brought her her only, but well deserved, Oscar nomination). By the time Pfeiffer was hitting the movies and cast to play York as a young girl, York's star was fading. York had recently been reduced to a merely decorative alien maternal presence in Superman (1978) and now a young actress was playing the idealized version of her. Hollywood can be cruel that way.

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Thursday
Mar022017

Get Caught Up on "Pfandom"



 

P  F  A  N  D  O  M 
P F E I F F E R    R E T R O S P E C T I V E
Series Resumes March 4th. Saturdays at TFE

Coming Soon... Watch Along With the Series!
March 4th: Falling in Love Again (1980), Charlie Chan and the Curse of the Dragon Queen (1981)
March 11th: Grease 2 (1982)
March 18th: Scarface (1983)
March 25th: Into the Night (1985) 

Until then get caught up with...
Episode 1 Miss Orange County Beauty Queen
Episode 2 Early Bit Parts on TV
Episode 3 TV Recurring Roles Delta House and more
Episode 4 The Hollywood Knights (1980), her film debut
Episode 5 TV Movie Callie & Son (1981)
Episode 6 TV Movies Splendor in the Grass and The Children Nobody Wanted (1981)

Tuesday
Feb142017

Pfandom: Troubled Boys & Spurned Girls

P F A N D O M  
Michelle Pfeiffer Retrospective. Episode 6 
by Nathaniel R 

Pfeiffer is a hormonally charged pflapper in the remake of Splendor in the Grass

[Editor's Note: Due to a scheduling issue with DVDs and a two day internet outage at your host's home last week we're a bit out of sequence & behind. Apologies]

Last week we got an early glimpse of Michelle Pfeiffer's bad girl side with the campy plodding Texas melodrama Callie & Son (1981). It was one of three telefilms the young actress co-starred in the year before her first leading movie role (Grease 2). Her last two TV movies before stardom make a fascinating double feature for their good girl/bad girl dichotomy and their foreshadowing of more famous roles...

Click to read more ...

Saturday
Feb042017

Pfandom: She's Trashy! She's Trouble! Pfeiffer in "Callie & Son"

P F A N D O M  
Michelle Pfeiffer Retrospective. Episode 5 
by Nathaniel R 

Michelle Pfeiffer is big trouble in "Callie & Son"

It wasn't initially clear, as it rarely is for new working actors, where Michelle Pfeiffer's place in the Hollywood ecosystem would be. The first three years of her career (1979-1981) were a mish-mash as if her management was throwing her at everything just to see what would stick. In the first three years of professional acting career she made four TV movies, three feature films, had two series regular gigs, and snuck in a few guest spots. The roles were far from stellar but she was working, a lot and was famously a quick study. Callie & Son, an absolutely ridiculous CBS melodrama from October 1981, gave her her showiest pre-Grease 2 role. And her campiest. She wasn't the star. Lindsay Wagner was a TV superstar at the time (The Bionic Woman, Scruples) and plays Callie from teenage years to 40something. In fact, Pfeiffer is so low on the totem pole that her name is even mispelled in the credits (missing one "l"). But the acting is newly confident and fluid. It's ripe, sure, but that suits this character. In short, you can now see the great lyrical star actress that's just around the career bend.

When Pfeiffer arrives the plodding and plotty telefilm gets a badly needed jolt of energy. The PR department noticed and pushed her presence with the following very false advertisement...

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Saturday
Jan282017

Pfandom: In 1980, Pfeiffer Hit the Big Screen

P F A N D O M  
Michelle Pfeiffer Retrospective. Episode 4 
by Nathaniel R 

obsessed with Pfeiffer's eyeshadow in HOLLYWOOD KNIGHTS (1980) 

She didn't quit the supermarket. That's something we need to understand immediately about Michelle Pfeiffer's methodic rise. After losing the beauty contest and landing an agent in 1978, winning TV gigs and moving to Hollywood, she merely transferred to a different supermarket. She was very practical and very focused, according to those who knew her when, taking acting classes and going to cattle calls but always showing up at work. Many stars bios are littered with colorful anecdotes about brief early jobs but in Pfeiffer's case, supermarket checkout girl, was an actual job that she stuck with until the acting, well, stuck.

One of her teachers, who had described her as a tardy, disinterested but smart student in high school recalls meeting her just before her career took off in the grocery store...

Click to read more ...