Friday, July 31, 2020

Spaghetti Western Trivia ~ Singing star Pierre Brice

Like his co-star and good friend Lex Barker, Pierre Brice started a singing career and released several records. As most songs were in German, which he didn't understand at that time, he had to sing them phonetically. He recorded 8 records from 1965 – 1980.

Ich steh' allein / Ribanna
 Du bist schön / Es ist vorbei
1966 • Pierre Brice / Anne Jurka
 Die Nacht beginnt (Fountainbleu) / Lonely
Keiner weiß den Tag / Wunderschön
 Lonely / Die Nacht beginnt
 Winnetou, Du warst mein Freund / Meine roten Brüder
 Faire l'amour / Mehr als alles kann man nicht geben
 Manitou / Freundschaft

Once Upon a Time in Spaghetti Westerns Podcast Episode #11

 Join Jay Jennings any myself as we vacation in Spain and visit the film locations for Sergio Leone’s “Dollar Trilogy”. See now and then photos and hopefully video of the actual film sites where the films were made over 5o years ago and find out what’s left to see and some interesting trivia behind them. We will honor the memory of Don Bruce and the outstanding location hunter the legendary Yoshi Yosada.

Voices of the Spaghetti Western ~ “The Price of Death”

As we know most of the Euro-westerns were co-productions from Italy, Spain, Germany and France which incorporated British and American actors to gain a worldwide audience. The films were shot silent and then dubbed into the various languages where they were sold for distribution. That means Italian, Spanish, German, French and English voice actors were hired to dub the films. Even actors from the countries where the film was to be shown were often dubbed by voice actors for various reasons such as the actors were already busy making another film, they wanted to paid additional salaries for dubbing their voices, the actor’s voice didn’t fit the character they were playing, accidents to the actors and in some cases even death before the film could be dubbed.

I’ll list a Euro-western and the (I) Italian, (S) Spanish, (G) German and (F) French, (E) English voices that I can find and once in a while a bio on a specific voice actor as in Europe these actors are as well-known as the actors they voiced.

Today we’ll cover “The Price of Death”
[(I) Italian, (S) Spanish, (G) German, (F) French, (E) English]

Mr. Silver – Gianni Garko (I) Giancarlo Maestri, (S) Francisco Valladares, (G) Manfred Schott, (F) Michel Barbey
Chester Conway – Klaus Kinski (I) Virgilio Gazzolo, (S) Ramiro Oliveras, (G) Werner Uschkurat, (F) ?
Judge Atwell – Alfredo Rizzo (I) Roberto Villa, (S) Rafael Torres, (G) Leo Bardischewski, (F) ?
Reverend Tiller – Giancarlo Prete (I) Rino Bolognesi, (S) Ángel Rodríguez, (G) ?. (F) ?
Banker Randall – Luigi Casellato (I) ?, (S) Antonio Requena, (G) ?, (F) Alain Dorval
Doc Rosencrantz – Alan Collins (I) ?, (S) Manuel Bellido, (G) Manfred Lichtenfeld, (F) ?


Virgilio Gazzolo was born in Rome, Italy on September 7, 1936. He is the son of actor Lauro Gazzolo [1900-1970] and the brother of actor Nando Gazzolo [1928-2015]. After abandoning his medical studies, he made his theater debut in 1960 and began his career playing the title role in Dalton Trumbo's " Il più gran ladro della città" at the Manzoni Theater in Milan, directed by Gianfranco De Bosio. Subsequently he contributed to founding the first historical Roman theater "cellar" (The Teatro dei 101), preferring avant-garde works and authors such as Arrabal and Pinter, Corrado Augias, Giorgio Manganelli. Immediately after the experience of the 101 he returns to the official theater interpreting for the first time in Italy a text by Samuel Beckett "Tutti quelli che cadono", starring with Paola Borboni, under the direction of Beppe Menegatti, at the Teatro Stabile in Florence and at the Milan's Odeon Theater. In 1967 he played Osborne's "Luther", under the direction of Menegatti, which earned him the most prestigious recognition of theatrical criticism of those years, the San Genesio Award for best leading actor, attributed to him in competition with Vittorio Gassman and Tino Buazzelli.

On television he played the role of US President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in the 1975 miniseries The War at the Peace Table.  In 1973 Roberto Rossellini entrusted him with the leading role in the film "Leon Battista Alberti".

He is still active with carefully chosen and masterfully interpreted roles (recently in Dante told by Boccaccio, or in Ecclesiastes).

As far as dubbing he can be heard as the voice of Robert Woods, Klaus Kinski, Eduardo Fajardo, Gene Hackman and Dan Vadis in various films.

Special Birthdays

Percy Herbert (actor) would have been 100 today, he died in 1992.

Jiri Vrstala (actor) would have been 100 today, he died in 1999.

Oleg Popov (actress) would have been 90 today, he died in 2016. 

Geoffrey Lewis (actor) would have been 85 today, he died in 2015.

Thursday, July 30, 2020

New Book Release: ~ Grandes Temes del Western

Grandes Temes del Western
Authors: Various
Publisher: Dolmen
Country: Spain
Language: Spanish
Pages: 280
ISBN: 978-84-17956-71-4
Available: July 30, 2020

Great western themes: Everything you always wanted to know about western cinema. 

From the very origins of the seventh art to the irruption of television in the mid-late 1950sWestern remained one of the most popular and prolific genres in film history and, without a doubt, one of the favorites of the average viewer. Above all, from the American.

However, those who have reduced it to a childish genre of mere entertainment, with very stereotypical characters and not too complex stories that, in most cases, used to be solved with shots, have never been lacking. In frank opposition to these positions, therefore, this compendium of Great Western Issues is born.

A work that analyzes –and above all claims– the immense wealth of content that, in our opinion, Western cinema treasures. Two large axes will serve as a common thread. On the one hand, the human condition  (love, loyalty, courage, justice, sense of duty, revenge, violence, ambition ...) and, on the other, the national construction of the United States of America (the fight for land ownership, the conflict with the natives, the establishment of the law, the limits of its borders, the economic and technological progress of the country ...).
Values, counter values ​​and archetypes that describe the epic stories of its founding mythical space and those of its subsequent revision, this time autumnal and demystifying. After all, as the most devoted devotees proclaim: "The western is life ... and life is western."

YouTube trailer link:

Who Are Those Guys? Flavio Colombaioni

Flavio Colombaioni or Colombaioni as he was sometimes billed is a famous Italian acrobat, circus clown and film actor. He was known for the films "Partirono preti, tornarono... curati" in 1973. Performed in "Kid il monello del west" in 1973. Played Angelo in "Manone il ladrone" in 1974. Performed in "La febbre del cinema" in 1976. Performed in "Saturnino Farandola" in 1977. Played Rocco in "Gli ultimi angeli" in 1979. Performed in "I figli del vento" in 1989.

COLOMBAIONI, Flavio [193?, Rome, Lazio, Italy -     ] – theater, film actor, brother of actor, clown Carlo Colombaioni [1933- 2008], actor clown Flavio Colombaioni, actor, clown Walter Colombaioni, director, actor, clown Alfredo Clay Colombaioni, married to ?, half of the team "The Colombaioni" with brother-in-law Alberto Colombaioni (Alberto Vitali) [1937-2006].
They Still Call Me Amen – 1972 (Rat)
Bad Kids of the West – 1973 (Tuppet)
Halleluja to Vera Cruz – 1973 (Clown) [as Colombaioni]

Special Birthdays

Jacques Sernas (actor) would have been 95 today, he died in 2015.

Nicolau Breyner (actor) would have been 80 today he died in 2016.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Spaghetti Western Location ~ Monastero di San Pedro de Arlanza

Located in the Rio Arlanza valley, on the road from the village of Hortiguela to the town of Covarrubias (to the south), this monastery was one of the most important in Castile. It was founded in 912 by Gonzalo Fernandez, father of Fernan Gonzales, first count of Castile. The primitive Romanesque construction, which began in 1080, was enlarged in the following centuries. This grand complex was abandoned in the nineteenth century, due to the policy of alienating ecclesiastical goods. In 1966, given that some important sequences of the film “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” - those of the Langstone bridge - which were shot in the valley of the Rio Arlanza, the monastery, which is located one kilometer south of the place where the bridge was built and chosen as a set to represent the interior of the mission of San Antonio in New Mexico (while as regards the exterior of the mission the Cortijo del Fraile was used in the countryside of Nijar in Almeria - Verdi Cortijo del Fraile).

The filming by Sergio Leone in the monastery of San Pedro de Arlanza, which at that time showed signs of the long state of ruin (currently and under restoration) are carried out in a large rectangular room (where the wounded soldiers of which the Franciscan friars are taking care of), in a narrow corridor and in a room representing the cell of a friar in which Blonde (Clint Eastwood) is recovering, from serious burns after crossing the desert (this part of the film is shot in the sand dunes of Cabo De Gata, on the Almeria coast.

From the window of this room of the monastery of San Pedro de Arlanza you can see some crosses on the surrounding landscape, with trees and the shape of a stone building on a hill: it is the ancient church of San Pelayo, located a few hundred meters from the monastery on the road leading to Covarrubias, built on a rocky outcrop in a strategic and panoramic position on the narrow and wooded valley of the Rio Arlanza. Also the sequence of the meeting of Tuco (Eli Wallach) with his brother, father Pablo Ramirez (Luigi Pistilli), and shot in an adjoining room in the monastery of San Pedro di Arlanza.

“The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” (1966)

Special Birthdays

Christian Tramitz (actor) is 65 today.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Half a century as a priest and actor in ‘The Good, the Ugly and the Bad’

Born in Salas de los Infantes and priest of Villalmanzo, Domingo Contreras starred in the harmonica sequence in Sergio Leone's film at just 19 years old

El Correo de Burgos
By Raquel Fernández

A life full of stories that could well be used to write a book. Is that of Domingo Contreras Camarero Domingo Contreras Camarero a native of the town of Salas de los Infantes, who now fulfills a half a century in the priesthood, years that have even led him to the Amazon jungle as a missionary.

But, in addition to being popularly known as a priest in numerous towns, Domingo Contreras has to his credit an anecdote that marked his life in an important way, since he played one of the most iconic scenes in cinema in the film 'El Bueno, el Feo and El Malo' (The Good, the Bad and the Ugly), in which he starred in the harmonica sequence, at Betterville Fort, when he was only 19 years old.

He remembers this film as "a novelty at that time" and personally defines it as "a dream, where you saw the main actors as gods, something out of the ordinary". He confesses that Sergio Leone, the director, "was very serious and demanding" and asked him to cry on the scene while playing the harmonica.

"Since I wasn't crying, they gave me a few drops of something that make you cry even if you don't want to," he confesses with a laugh, "I had to interpret, not play, for the record player was already playing the vocal 'A Soldier's Story'", Contreras narrates, doing the seen 54 years ago and affirming that during the filming he had a great time and won his "pesetillas".

About 4,000 pesetas exactly, which at that time came as May water. “At that time I was 19 years old, I was studying and I was on vacation days. They told us that a movie was going to be shot and that they needed extras with posters that they put up in the bars. We had to know how to play an instrument and I showed up with my harmonica that my father bought me when I went to the seminary. And you see, it became an important scene in the film," he explains with emotion.

Domingo Contreras also remembers some other anecdote such as when he saw Clint Eastwood with his double, he could almost identify the real one, "they were identical," he points out, noting that he met all the main actors, "in addition to Eastwood, I also met Lee Van Cleef and Eli Wallach, they did not talk much, they allowed themselves to take some photos and in free time they liked to party.

The recent death of Ennio Morricone, the famous composer of the soundtrack for this film, has been for Domingo Contreras as "feeling that ending that you see is going to come but you never want it to come", he confesses sadly and assuring that "in truth he is not dead, because his good music will last in time. The music that I like the most is La Misión and, of course, El Bueno, el Feo y el Malo”.

A film that had immense repercussions and that to this day continues to have its influences in this region with the Sad Hill Association, which has recovered the cemetery from the mythical place where the final duel of the film was filmed and which is located in the valley Mirandilla de Santo Domingo de Silos and

“All this, over the years, has helped us to make more friends and appreciate the seventh art and how much we can do when we want to do something for others. Now, we remember it with great enthusiasm and we follow all that has been and for the sake of the continuation of everything that the boys from Sad-Hill have recovered,” adds Contreras.
Domingo Contreras was born in the "most beautiful and oldest" neighborhood of Salas de los Infantes, San Andrés. During his career as a priest he has traveled many towns starting with Coculina, then 18 years in Cabañes de Esgueva and the valley; six years in La Horra and Sotillo and then six years in Ecuador as a missionary in the Amazon jungle "with fabulous people and companions, dedicated to the cause of the Gospel, that's why I have visited them twice more," he adds.

Later he arrived in the town of Hontoria del Pinar where he spent eleven years, later moving to the Fatima Parish in Burgos and now in Villalmanzo where he has spent the last six years.

At 74, he defines himself as an open person, dedicated to his vocation, "but a little dependent on others", attesting that 50 years of profession "is a grace and a gift. Years of effort and work, but a lot of joy, while being responsible, "concludes Domingo Contreras.

Special Birthdays

Preben Mahrt (actor) would have been 100 today, he died in 1989.

Rolf Ludwig (actor) would have been 95 today, he died in 1999.

Tom Cotcher (actor) is 70 today.

Monday, July 27, 2020

European Western Comic Books ~ L’Angelo con la pistola

L’Angelo con la pistola (The Angel with a Gun)

There were five published issues that actually contained both copies of SYLVIE: The Angel with a Gun and LOANA: The Venus of the Caribbean. There are therefore five numbers with ten different extensions. The covers were by Franco Picchionni (P. Franco) and were equally divided: two with a western theme (nn. 1, 3) and two exotic (nn. 2, 4).

The comic was published with #1 in November 1971 and ending with #5 issued in April of 1972. The series was published by Editorial Italy in Rome, Italy under the direction of Giuseppe Area. Each issue contained 128 pages with black and white pages and color covers.

01 (00.11.71) - “L’angelo con la pistola” (The Angel with a Gun)
02 (00.12.71) - “La vendetta di Sylvie” (Sylvie’s Revenge)
03 (00.02.72) - “Il gatto a nove code” (The Nine-tailed Cat)
04 (00.03.72) - “Il leone maculato” (The Spotted Lion)
05 (00.04.72) - ?

Special Birthdays

Erich Dunskus (actor) would have been 130 today, he died in 1967.

Ernst Fritz Fürbringer (actor) would have been 120 today, he died in 1988.

Hilde Sessek (actress) would have been 105 today, she died in 2003.

Elio Scardamaglia (producer, screenwriter) would have been 100 today, he died in 2001.

Elisa Mainardi (actress) would have been 90 today, she died in 2016.

Djordje Nenadovic (actor) is 85 today.

Salvatore Puntillo (actor) is 85 today.

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Who Are Those Composers? ~ Marcello Ramoino

Marcello Ramoino is an Italian composer, singer and songwriter. He was born in Italy on October 18, 1925 and was a member of the singing group I Santo California in 1975. Originally called La Nuova Frontiera, the band initially performed in clubs and beach resorts in the Amalfi Coast. In 1974, during a concert in Nocera Inferiore, they caught the attention of Elio Palumbo who helped them sign a contract with the Italian label Yep Record in Rome. At that point, the band changed their name to I Santo California.

Ramoino was composed the music and song for the 1977 Euro-western “Macho Killers” in 1977 and the song ‘El Macho’ sung by Sammy Bardot.

Marcello died in Rome, Italy on December 11, 1989.

RAMOINO, Marcello [10/18/1925, Italy – 12/11/1989, Rome, Lazio, Italy] – composer, songwriter, singer, member of the group ‘
I Santo California’.
Macho Killers – 1977
     Song: “El Macho” sung by Sammy Bardot

Special Birthdays

Osiride Pevarello (actor, stuntman) would have been 100 today, he died in 2016.

Susan George (actress) is 70 today.

Saturday, July 25, 2020

RIP John Saxon

One of the good guys John Saxon died today July 25, 2020. He was 83. His portrayal of the brutal Mexican bandit opposite Marlon Brando in “The Appaloosa” (1966) earned him a Golden Globe, and he had a recurring role on ABC's ‘Dynasty’ as Rashid Ahmed, a powerful Middle East tycoon who romanced Alexis Colby (Joan Collins). And on another1980s primetime soap, CBS' ‘Falcon Crest’, he played the father of Lorenzo Lamas' character. Saxon was such a good actor Burt Lancaster had him removed from “The Unforgiven” because his mere presence and acting were stealing scenes from Lancaster. He’s remembered by many of us for his roles in “Joe Kidd” (1972) as Luis Chama and “Enter the Dragon”  (1973) as Roper. John appeared in three Euro-westerns: “I Came, I Saw, I Shot” (1968) as Clay Watson; ‘Lucky Luke’ (TV) (1992) as the Black Sheriff and “Jonathan of the Bears” (1994) as Fred Goodwin.

National Day of the American Cowboy

Spaghetti Western Locations for “Day of Anger”

We continue our search for filming locations for “Day of Anger”. The scene shifts to Talby’s men playing cards and discussing Scott Mary’s wounded arm. They say when the bullet was removed the doctor had to cut a muscle and it has affected his aim. They say when gunfighters get old or can’t shoot they become a legend like Doc Holliday. Slim says if Scott Mary continues to be paralyzed they say he could light a match with his gun at 10 paces. Just the Slim draws a match, a gunshot sounds which lights the match. They all look and Scott Mary is standing at the bar and just fired that shot. He walks off the distance and it’ well beyond 10 paces. Talby comes downstairs from his room and orders champagne and tells Scott they have to celebrate. Talby asks how Scott is and he draws his pistol and says he can take care of himself. Talby tells him he’s fast than before. They toast to Scott’s recovery and he asks who the new marshal is. Talby reluctantly tells him it is Murph Allan Short. Scott tells Talby he owes no one in Clifton a thing but he’s indebted to Murph. 

This scene was filmed at a Cinecitta sound stage, Rome, Italy.

For a more detailed view of this site and other Spaghetti Western locations please visit my friend Yoshi Yasuda’s location site: and Captain Douglas Film Locations

Friday, July 24, 2020

RIP Roberto Draghetti

The world of Italian voice actors must bid farewell to one of its great interpreters. On the night of July 24, 2020, a heart attack struck the well-known voice actor and actor Roberto Draghetti, cutting him off at just 59 years old. Draghetti would have turned 60 next month. Brother of the actress Francesca Draghetti, he has been working in the world of dubbing for a long time, ranging between cinema and TV series, both live action and animation. He was the Italian voice of Noah Emmerich and Idris Elba, but also of Mickey Rourke in Sin City. He has also lent his talent several times to actors of the caliber of Terry Crews, Josh Brolin, Jean-Cloude van Damme. He was the Italian voice of Dwight Yoakam in “Bandidas” (2006), Mickey Rourke in “Dead in Tombstone” (2013), Ben Hall in “White Fang” (2018).