Saturday, January 31, 2009

Spaghetti Collectables

A scarce gum card issued in the Netherlands and distributed in Sweden and Finland in the 1960's by Maple Leaf showing a wonderful picture of Spaghetti Western star George Martin.

Trivia: “George Martin was a high level gymnast before devoting himself to the cinema. He gave up the sport after the plane, which took the Spanish gymnastic team off to the Olympic Games trials in 1959 crashed. He was the only survivor as he missed the bus taking the team to the plane.”

Adiós Bandido

Adiós Bandido – International title

A 1981 Spanish production [Cinema del Callejón (Benidorm)]
Producer: ?
Director: José Rios
Story: José Rios
Screenplay: José Rios
Cinematography: Luis Colombo [color, Panoramico]
Music: ?
Running time: 8 minutes

Story: ?

Students at the University of Bachillerato in Benidorm, Spain

Story: A 35mm films short film shot in and around Benidorm Spain using the students from the University of Bachillerato as actors and behind the scene personnel.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Remembering John Ireland

John Ireland always appeared as a rough, gruff and tough guy. Seldom a leading man he was always a reliable supporting actor. Born John Benjamin Ireland on January 30, 1914 in Vancouver, British Columbia he was raised in New York City. He became a professional swimmer and often performed in water shows. In the late 1930s he caught the acting bug and plied his trade on Broadway in Shakespearean plays before turning to film in the ‘40s. His first film role was in 1945’s “A Walk in the Sun” as Private Windy. He followed this up by appearing in John Ford’s classic 1946 western “My Darling Clementine” as Billy Clanton. He then appeared in another classic western, Howard Hawks 1948 film “Red River” as Cherry Valance. In 1949 he was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor as the tough newspaper reporter Jack Burden in 1949’s “All the King’s Men”. He developed a reputation in Hollywood as a womanizer during the 1950s and his career began to decline. He was relegated to TV roles and in films playing villains. Still he appeared in classics such as “Vengeance Valley” (1951) with Burt Lancaster “Gunfight at the O.K. Corral” (1956) again with Lancaster and Kirk Douglas and as a gladiator in the 1960 spectacle “Spartacus”. Still he could not break into leading man roles and took lesser roles and then ventured to Europe to try and capitalize on his name. It was here he would make his impact in Spaghetti Westerns appearing in more than a dozen and starring in “Hate for Hate” and “Run, Man, Run” (1967), “Gatling Gun”, “Go for Broke” and “A Pistol for 100 Coffins” (1968). His final Spaghetti role being in a Spanish, Mexican co-production called “Garden of Venus” (1979). He returned to the US and back to stage plays and dinner theater. He even ran an ad in Variety asking for work. He eventually retired and moved to Santa Barbara, California where he died of leukemia on March 21, 1992. Always the tough guy but always reliable and the equal to most of the white hats he butted heads with in America and Europe. Today we remember John Ireland on what would have been his 95th birthday.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

RIP Armand Meffre

French actor and screenwriter Armand Mefre died on January 22, 2009 of natural causes in Auxerre, Burgundy, France. He was 79. Born Armand Marius Meffre on March 16, 1929 in Maubee, Voucluse, France, he was active as a stage, radio and TV actor and also wrote a few screenplays. He was married to actress Pomme Meffre and appeared in the 1967 French western TV series “Fortune”.

The Actress, the Dollars and the Transylvanians

Artista, aurul si ardelenii – Romanian title
Artista, dolarii si ardelenii – Romanian title
Johnny schießt quer – German title
Gesucht wird Johnny – German title
The Actress, the Dollars and the Transylvanians – English title

A 1978 Romanian production [Filmstudio Bucuresti (Bucharest)]
Producer: Nicolae Mitcan
Director: Mircea Veroiu
Screenplay: Titus Popovici
Cinematography: Calin Ghibu [color]
Music: Adrian Enescu
Running time: 97 minutes

Traian Brad - Ilarion Ciobanu
Romulus Brad - Mircea Daiconu
Johnny Brad - Ovidiu Iulio Moldovan
Anabelle Lee - Rosica Tapalaga
sharpshooter - Marcel Lures
with: Mircea Albulescu, Tania Filip, Francisc Bács (Ferenc Bács), Alöd Kiss, Traian Costea, Ahmed Gabbany, Ion Craciunescu, Constantin Brînzea, Radu Stoeneuscu, Mihai Oroveanu, Ioan Henter, Iosif Naghiu, Sorin Balaban, Mihai Persa, Dan Nasta, Ion Pascu, Dan Bubulici, Petrur Traian, Ion Niciu

Story: Although filmed in Bucharest this film has nothing to do with vampires. It is the second of a trilogy of Romanian westerns starring the same actors and characters. The other two are “The Prophet, the Gold and the Transylvanians” (1977) and “The Oil, the Baby and the Transylvanians” (1979). The films revolve around a Transylvanian family of three brothers trying to make a better life for themselves in the Wild West. Although often referred to as comedies they are full of drama and feature Romanian traditions which may be difficult for the rest of us to understand. One of the brothers becomes a noted gunman while the other two become farmers. They meet up with each other over the course of the trilogy and whenever they do trouble always catches up with them and they must band together to keep the family unit safe.

Film sequence link:

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

New Spaghetti Western CD

La belva (The Beast) / Se t'incontro t'ammazzo (Finders Killers) by Stelvio Cipriani
Now available on GDM Music #4122

Track listing

1. La belva

2. Cantina messicana

3. Spinetta polka

4. Attesa torbida

5. Inseguimento

6. Tramonto di sangue

7. Crudele e spietato

8. Cantina messicana (versione 2)

9. Ombra della morte

10. Fine della belva
tracks 1-10 from "La belva"
11. Cavalcata al west

12. Un grande amore nel west

13. Cavalcata al west (ripresa)
tracks 11-13 from "Se t'incontro t'ammazzo"

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

RIP Mino Reitano

One of Italy's greatest pop singers has died. Mino Reitano died today January 27th at his home in Agrate Brianza, Lombardy, Italy. He had been ill with cancer for the past two years. He was born Beniamino Reitano on December 7, 1944 in Fiumara, Reggio Calabria, Italy into a musical family which included his brother composer Franco Reitano. In 1967 Mino and his brothers formed a rock group called "I Fratelli Reitano". From it he became one of Italy's most well known pop singers of the late 1960s and continued his popularity until he fell with cancer, selling out concerts all over Italy. Because of his star status he was given the lead role in the 1971 Italian Western "Tara Poki". The Reitano brothers joined forces as composers and singers on the soundtrack. Mino also sang the title song "Devil was an Angel" for the 1967 Spaghetti Western "A Colt in the Hand of the Devil" starring Bob Henry.

Happy 75th Birthday Jaime Jesús Balcázar

Jaime Jesús Balcázar Granda was born on January 27, 1934 in Barcelona, Spain. He is the younger brother of Alfonso Balcazar. According to my interview with Robert Woods he was the nicer and easier to work with of the two brothers. Jaime was a producer, director and screenwriter during the heyday of the Spaghetti Westerns filmed in Spain.

Happy 75th Birthday Jaime!


I Quattro dell’Ave Maria – Italian title
Asso piglia tutto – Italian title
Trumfove eso - Czechoslovakian title
Tappava hymy – Finnish title
Luojan lähettiläät – Finnish title
Les quattre de l’Ave Maria – French title
Deux honnetes crapules – French title
Vier für ein Ave Maria- German title
Bosszu El Pasoban – Hungarian title
Haevneren fra El Paso – Danish title
Ess pa top – Norwegian title
O ás vale mais – Portuguese title
Eis quatre bergants - Spanish title
Los cuatro truhanes – Spanish title
Ess i topp – Swedish title
Revenge at El Paso – U.K. title
Have Gun Will Travel – U.K. title
The Four of the Ave Maria – English title
Gunmen of the Ave Maria – English title
Four Gunmen of the Ave Maria – English title
Revenge at El Paso – English title
Revenge in El Paso – English title
Aces High – English title
Have Gun Will Travel - U.K. title
Ace High – U.S.A. title

A 1967 Italian, U.S.A. co-production [Crono Cinematografica/Finanzia San Marco (Rome), Gulf & Western (New York City)]
Producers: Bino Cicogna, Giuseppe Colizzi
Director: Giuseppe Colizzi
Story: Giuseppe Colizzi
Screenplay: Giuseppe Colizzi
Cinematography: Marcello Masciocchi [Technicolor, Techniscope]
Music: Carlo Rustichelli
Running time: 137 minutes

Cacopoulos - Eli Wallach
Cat Stevens - Terence Hill (Mario Girotti)
Hutch Bessy - Bud Spencer (Carlo Pedersoli)
Thomas - Brock Peters (George Fisher)
Drake - Kevin McCarthy
Mr. Harold - Stephan Zacharias (Steffan Zacharias)
Paco Rosa - Livio Lorenzon
Thomas’ wife - Tiffany Hoyveld
Cangaciero - Remo Capitani
bank cashier - Armando Bandini (Antonio Burlando)
Foster - Rick Boyd (Federico Boido)
Deputy Charlie - Bruno Corazzari
Al - Franco Gulà
Irish farm boy - Enzo Santaniello
Irish farm girl - Simonetta Santaniello
Harold henchmen - Frank Braña (Francisco Perez), Antonio Molina Rojo, Gildo di Marco, Riccardo Pizzuti
banker - Dante Cleri
casino employee - Aldo Sala
casino cashiers - Luciano Telli, Giuseppe Terranova
boxing promoter - Giancarlo Badessi
croupier - Roger Beaumont
roulette player - Edoardo Torricella
Don Pedro Ramirez - Vicente Roca
boxer - Isa Foster
with; Antoinetta Fiorito, Corrado Olmi, Paolo Magalotti, Elio Angelucci

Story: This semi-tongue in cheek western features Eli Wallach as con-man, outlaw, half- greek half-Cherokee Cacopoulos, who gives away thousands of dollars of the bank of El Paso’s money, while on a mission of revenge. Reprising their roles from “God Forgives, I Don’t” Terence Hill as Cat Stevens and Bud Spencer as Hutch Bessy, are given $300,000 by Mr. Harold the El Paso bank president in return for a wagon load of gold (?) they have found. Once they leave town with the money, Mr. Harold arranges for Cacopoulos to escape from his jail cell in order for him to retrieve the money. Cacopoulos agrees to the deal but for personal reasons, as he wants to get revenge on the men who put him in jail, one of which is Mr. Harold, who he shoots dead. Cacopoulos easily steals the money from Cat and Hutch and leaves them to finish his mission. Stevens and Bessy are not that easily deterred and the chase is on. They follow the trail of money he gives to the needy along the way and finally meet up in Tulsa. They realize they have to team up because Cacopoulos has lost the balance of the money to a crooked Mississippi gambling establishment run by Drake (Kevin McCarthy) who is the last of the men on Cacopoulos’s list.

Monday, January 26, 2009

RIP Kim Manners

Kim Manners, producer and director of such TV series as “The X Files” and “Supernatural” died on January 25, 2009 of lung cancer in Los Angeles, California.

Manners who grew up in a showbiz family as his father Sam shared production credits on such TV series as “The Wild Wild West” and “Route 66”. Kim did some acting as a child and was featured in a Chevrolet commercial at the age of three. He also would appear in the TV series “Rin Tin Tin” directed by William Beaudine Sr. Beaudine inspired Manners, his brother Kelly and sister Tana to become directors. Kim made his directorial debut in 1978 on a “Charlie’s Angels” episode. Before this he had worked as a unit production manager and assistant director on several projects. He would go on to direct such TV series as “21 Jump Street”, “Mission: Impossible”, “Star Trek: The Next Generation”, “Baywatch”, “The Commish” and “The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr.”

Manners then signed on to produce and direct “The X-Files” during the shows second season. The show was nominated for Emmy Awards in 1995, 1996, 1997 and 1998. He then went on to direct several small projects before signing on to direct and produce “Supernatural” in 2005. He learned he had lung cancer after the beginning of the fourth season.

Kim Manners was an assistant director on the 1971 Spaghetti Western “Valdez is Coming”.

Doc West

Shooting on "Doc West" wrapped up on December 9th 2008, and Terence Hill returned to Italy. The new made for Italian TV stars Hill, Paul Sorvino, Ornella Muti, Clare Carey and Benjamin Petry. Directed by Terence Hill and Giulio Base with music by Maurizio De Angelis. Filmed in Santa Fe, New Mexico on the Bonanza Creek Ranch it tells the story of a former doctor who blames himself for losing the life of a former patient during a delicate operation. Doc now wanders the Old West as a gambler and gunman. He wanders into the town of Holysand and becomes involved in a dispute between farmers and ranchers. Becoming attached to a young boy and a pesky school teacher West must decide whether to help the local sheriff or turn his back on the town and continue his aimless wandering. According to my friend Neil Summers who was the stunt coordinator on the project it was filmed in English and should be released on DVD here in the U.S.A. If it draws decent ratings when shown in Italy this April it could become a weekly TV series. Further updates will follow when information is received.

Trailer link:

1967 Peroni Beer Ad

Interesting Peroni Beer advertisement featuring a young pre-Terence Hill, Mario Girotti and actress Solvy Stubing.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

New Spaghetti Western CD

Ringo il Texano (The Texican) by Nico Fidenco
Now available on GDM Music #4121

Track listing

1. The Texican (02:04)

2. L'ultimo duello (02:02)

3. Il Texicano - Tema di Kit (02:51)

4. La minaccia (01:04)

5. Il Texicano - Addio al Messico (02:58)

6. Il Texicano 4 (01:11)

7. Il Texicano 5 (02:31)

8. Il rimorso (01:45)

9. La piccola ballerina (01:26)

10. Alba tragica (01:08)

11. Country sound (02:19)
1 - 11 the original album in stereo

12. The Texican (film version) (01:14)

13. Alba tragica (#2) (01:09)

14. Il Texicano (film version 2) (02:13)

15. La minaccia (#2) (01:04)

16. Il Texicano (film version 3) (02:12)

17. Ringo il Texano (suite) (03:28)

18. Il Texicano (film version 4) (02:01)

19. Il Texicano (film version 5) (02:12)

20. Alba tragica (#3) (01:10)

21. La minaccia (#3) (02:08)

22. Il Texicano (film version 6) (02:00)

23. Il Texicano 4 (film version) (01:11)

24. Ringo il Texano (suite 2) (04:34)

25. Il Texicano (film version 7) (01:38)

26. Ringo il Texano (piano saloon) (01:57)

27. Il Texicano (film version 8) (02:02)

28. Il rimorso (#2) (01:53)

29. La piccola ballerina (film version) (01:26)

30. L'ultimo duello (#2) (01:17)

31. Ringo il Texano (suite 3) (01:29)

32. Il Texicano 5 (film version) (02:31)
12 - 32 the complete film score in mono

RIP Charles H. Schneer


Long time Hollywood producer Charles H. Schneer, who worked with Ray Harryhausen on several films including “Jason and the Argonauts” died in Boca Raton, Florida on January 21. He was 88. Born in 1920 in Norfolk, Virginia and graduated from Columbia University. He started his career in B films at Columbia where he worked on Harryhausen’s “It Came from Beneath the Sea”, Earth vs the Flying Saucers” and “20 Million Miles to Earth”. He convinced Harryhausen to experiment in color film and together they produced their biggest hit of the ‘50s “The 7th Voyage of Sinbad”. Other films followed including “The 3 Worlds of Gulliver”, “Mysterious Island” and “Jason and the Argonauts”.

Schneer then moved to England and continued his career as an independent producer working on “The Executioner” and “Half a Sixpence.” He later reteamed with Harryhausen on the 1968 Spaghetti Western/Sci-Fi film “The Valley of Gwangi”, “The Golden Voyage of Sinbad”, “Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger” and their final film “Clash of the Titans”. He also produced the 1969 Spaghetti western “Land Raiders” starring Telly Savalas.

Schneer is survived by his wife of 68 years, Shirley, two daughters; three grandchildren and four great grandchildren and a sister.

Westerns... All'Italiana!

Welcome to Westerns... All Italiana! I'm starting this blog to help research and preserve the western films made by Europeans from silent films to the present day. You may not always agree with my definition of "Westerns" as I include a pretty large range of films. I hope to keep an up to date listing of the films and personnel who are and were involved in the making of these films. I will include reviews of past and present releases, obituaries of actors and crew members. Articles of note pertaining to these films and personnel. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you will join us on the ride along what hopefully will be a long and winding trail of information, enjoyment and fun as we explore these often dismissed films. All feedback is welcome.

In the meantime you can find the current Free issue of Westerns...All'Italiana! fanzine on the following sites:
Drive-In Connection
The Spaghetti Western Database
Western Clippings