The TV series, M*A*S*H, found comedy in the struggle of the Korean War for 11 years between 1972 and 1983. Set at an military hospital base and starring a team of doctors who tended to the wounded escort sites while cracking wise and cutting each other up, the series was able to make light of war while addressing serious issues, it’s a tight rope walk but they managed to do it.
Mike Farrell who played B.J. Hunnicutt on the series, says that he really knew that the show as connecting with people after particular episode that turned him from character actor to someone who was mobbed on the street, albeit in a polite way:
The episode that really affected me was the one where Gen. MacArthur comes to camp. Everyone’s getting ready to prepare for his arrival and they’re trying to hide me. MacArthur drives by without paying any attention to anyone until he drives down the road and salutes me, dressed as the Statue of Liberty. I was in Beverly Hills the next day, walking down the street and bus drivers and cab drivers were honking horns at me and people were waving at me in the street. That was from one stupid image of Klinger. I realized we’re not just working on this little soundstage. This thing goes all over the world and people are actually watching us.
Sally Field in promotional shoot for “Smokey and the Bandit” (1977)
Sally Field has been America’s sweetheart since the 1960s when she made an early star turn on Gidget, but it was Smokey and the Bandit that introduced her to an all new audience. In one of the most unexpected cinematic surprises of all time, Field and her co-star Burt Reynolds had amazing chemistry. So much so that they had an intense relationship that left Reynolds referring to Field as the love of his life.
Field says that during their five year relationship Reynolds was distant and controlling, something that she thinks has to do with the fact that he was at the height of his career when they met. (more…)