Scorsese on Vincent and More

On Film / The Daily — Sep 17, 2017

While we’re still reeling from the loss of Harry Dean Stanton, there are others who’ve left us this past week or so we’ll want to remember.

“Frank Vincent, whose tough-guy looks brought him steady work as a character actor in film and television for four decades, including mobster roles on The Sopranos and in [Martin Scorsese’s] Goodfellas, died on Wednesday in New Jersey,” reports Neil Genzlinger for the New York Times. “Mr. Vincent’s other credits included another film by Mr. Scorsese, Casino (1995), and Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing (1989) and Jungle Fever (1991).”

“Frank Vincent was someone I could count on,” writes Scorsese in a statement delivered to the Hollywood Reporter. “He was a natural who was at ease in front of the camera—on a set or on a stage. He made it look easy in all respects. He was genuine.”

And from Stephen Whitty at NJ.com: “You usually had a good idea of a Frank Vincent character just from his name. Billy Batts. Joey Big Ears. Dino the Rat. Tommy the Bull. Or, when he was really starting out, simply, ‘Mafia Thug.’ But you didn't know the real Frank Vincent—a Jersey City boy who idolized Dean Martin, once had a night-club act with buddy Joe Pesci, enjoyed a good hand-rolled cigar, and even wrote a book A Guy’s Guide to Being a Man’s Man. It was well-titled.” Vincent was eighty.

Yoshio Tsuchiya, who appeared in nearly a hundred films as diverse as Akira Kurosawa’s Seven Samurai (1954), Mikio Naruse’s Hit and Run (1966), Ishirō Honda’s Destroy All Monsters (1968), Kihachi Okamoto's Kill! (1968), and Toshio Matsumoto’s Funeral Parade of Roses (1969), passed away back in February at the age of eighty-nine, reports Kyodo News.

“Peter Hall, who created the Royal Shakespeare Company at the age of 29, oversaw the National Theater’s move to the south bank of the Thames and exerted a commanding influence on theater in the English-speaking world for well over 50 years, died on [September 11],” reports Benedict Nightingale for the New York Times.

Kim Ki-duk—not the director of Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter... and Spring (2003) and nearly two dozen other films, but rather, the director born in 1934—has passed away at the age of eighty-three. “Having been behind the camera of more than sixty-five movies throughout his sixteen-year career, Kim is recognized by local cineastes for playing a major role in extending film genres in the Korean movie industry,” writes Jin Min-ji for the Korea JoongAng Daily. “Kim, a former professor at Seoul Institute of the Arts, is best known for the teen romance movie The Barefooted Young (1964), which paved the way of success of actor Shin Sung-il and actress Um Aing-ran.”

“Margot Hielscher, the German TV actress and Eurovision star, died on 20 August, aged 97,” writes Karen Liebreich for the London Review of Books. “A singer and general forces’ sweetheart during the Second World War, she was also probably the last surviving woman to have had an affair with Goebbels. . . . Her first role was as a handmaid to Mary Queen of Scots in the anti-English Das Herz der Königin (The Queen’s Heart, 1940); she went on to star in Frauen sind Keine Engel (Women are no Angels, 1943), singing the title song which became her signature tune. . . . She was still a large-eyed, striking and very well-preserved brunette when I interviewed her in the early 1990s.”

“Some of the most iconic pieces of classic monster art were found on the front covers of Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine throughout the 60s and 70s,” writes John Squires at Bloody Disgusting. “Vibrant and eye-catching, the magazine’s cover art made horror stylish, beautiful and cool. Those paintings were the work of illustrator Basil Gogos, who we’re sad to report is the latest in a long line of true horror legends who have recently left us.” Gogos was seventy-eight.

“Michael Friedman, a composer, lyricist, and integral member of New York’s theater community, has died,” reports Devin Ivie at Vulture. “The Obie-winning Friedman’s vast body of work as a composer-lyricist includes the rock musical Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, which had a Broadway run and long national tour, as well as the musicals Love’s Labour’s Lost, Unknown Soldier, and The Fortress of Solitude.” He was forty-one.

Hüsker Dü singer, drummer, and songwriter Grant Hart has passed away at the age of fifty-six. “Outspoken, intense, and sublimely gifted, Hart’s time in Hüsker Dü was characterized by the constant push and pull between himself and frontman Bob Mould, who he met at a record store when they were both teenagers in the late 70s,” writes William Hughes at the A.V. Club.

“J. P. Donleavy, the expatriate American author whose 1955 novel The Ginger Man shook up the literary world with its combination of sexual frankness and outrageous humor, died on Monday at a hospital near his home in Mullingar, County Westmeath, Ireland,” reports Anita Gates for the New York Times. Donleavy was ninety-one.

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