Strange roads lead to today’s post. My better half viewed old clips of Milton Friedman, a Nobel laureate in Economics, on YouTube. Which made me think, why not Milton Friedman for the BoFN. Then I noticed when Friedman died. November 16, 2006. Six days after one of my favorite character actors died—Volodymyr Palahniuk. Although his name nearly defies the Wheel of Fortune, “. . . I’ll start with R, S, T, L, N, Pat . . .“.
And I’m sure you’ve seen “Palahniuk” of him over the years, but you may know Volodymyr better by his stage name, Jack Palance.
“Jack” began his career as a pugilist, boxing his way to 15 consecutive victories—12 as knockouts. After loosing to the future heavy weight contender, Joe Baksi, he decided the pay did not cover the beatings. No take backsies from Baksi for young Jack see. The purses then were $200 and we’re not talking Coach.
WWII broke out about the same time as his boxing career ended, so he joined the U.S. Army Air Corps. He traded one type of fighting for another.
After the war he went to Stanford University. He quit school one credit shy of graduation to pursue his acting career on Broadway as an understudy to Brando in “A Street Car Named Desire”. He took over the role when Brando left for Hollywood.
Bless the University’s buttons, they saw fit to give Jack an honorary degree in 1995 for the work he finished in 1949. Giving meaning to the phrase, “Good things come to those who wait”.
And wait Jack did.
His acting career started in 1947. He was nominated for three Oscars. Sometimes acting careers get a little soggy in the middle. His work on Ripley’s Believe It or Not revitalized his acting career in the 80’s. Landing him the role of Curly in City Slickers in 1991. Four decades after he was first nominated, he won the little gold statue.
He perfected portraying the villain from westerns and melodrama to the more modern milieus such Tim Burton’s Batman and Tango and Cash.
If you’ve never seen his acceptance speech, but feel like doing one-armed push-ups with a then 72-year-old, take a walk on the wild side. A word to the wise, his language is a little on the salty side. I’ll have some fries with that.
Blurbs fail me! Nice one!
I always liked Jack Palance though I never followed his movies in detail, but I think the role I liked best was Bagdad Cafe.
According to IMDB, Jack Palance did the narration for Horror of the Hungry Humongous Hungan.
I’ve never seen Bagdad Cafe, I’ll have to see if I can find it one of these days. As to the Horror of the Hungry Humongous Hungan, it nearly cost me my morning coffee, which I should not have been drinking when I read your comment. 🙂
I wasn’t making it up!
You’d love Bagdad Cafe, marvelous flick. Apparently based on Babbette’s Feast (haven’t read or heard it). Jack Palance’s role is quirky like the movie but has a lot of depth.
Quirky is good. I’ll keep an eye out for it.
P.S. I didn’t believe you were making it up. I just didn’t expect to laugh that hard and nearly snort my coffee.
I had forgotten he was even in that. My main memory is of the song, “I’m Calling You.” Haunting.
Fantastic song! I posted it on my humble blog a while ago:
I remember when you posted that. I still think she has a little bit of Stevie Nick’s in her.
Interesting comparison! There is something to that.
Reblogged this on Fannie Cranium's and commented:
Jack Palance by any other name would be just as intimidating . . . this month’s contribution to the Blog of Funny Names.
Never thought about Jack Palance not being a real name. Classic Hollywood! Always hiding the good stuff behind the curtain.
The one armed push up in your seventies is something to strive for. Personally if I could do one in my thirties that might be a good start.
Yes, there was a lot of ignore the man behind the curtain back then.
As for one armed push ups when I’m in my seventies, I’d be happy to strive for two arms that can lift my food to my mouth. 😀
What a clever post, and it certainly tops Milton Friedman, which sounds like many Hollywood agents/producers. I remember watching Jack do push-ups that night and thinking what a bad-a$$ he was. Certainly a less PC time, and he got to say what was on his mind. Jack Palance sure was a good call as far as renaming. It makes you wonder how far he would have gotten on the old name.
I’m with you Kerby, seeing Jack do those push-ups never left my memory banks. It was impressive. And it’s hard to say how far he would have gotten with his real name. Probably wouldn’t have been a problem today if he were coming up the ranks now.
So I have been the worst BoFN contributor over the past few weeks, but wow wow wow, amazingness Fannie! All it takes is the real name of one of the most “manly man” actors, and a little pugilism reference to pull me out of the woodwork! So much superness! I wonder if there’s any connection to Chuck Palahniuk, the author of Fight Club and many other not-too-PC books.
It’s funny you mentioned Chuck Palahniuk, I’ve often wondered, but never gotten off my “fanny” to take a look. I will have to see if there is some relation there.
I hope school is going well for you Dave. I can’t imagine the hours you must be pulling right now.
“You never got off (your) ‘fanny!'” Hahahaha
Well, I got my “fanny” off the proverbial sofa and discovered the following: Chuck Palahniuk and Jack Palance are distantly related, but they are related, according to an interview with Chuck Palahniuk. Source: Wikipedia.com. 🙂
Wow, so cool!!!! This is the best thing I’ve heard today, without a doubt. I still have 15 hours left, and I think it may be the best thing I’ll hear all day. What a cool factoid!
My attempt to comment earlier on this post vanished, but what I said was your reference to “Wheel of Fortune” almost made me Palahniuk coffee out of my nose.
Glad you were able to post your comment. We may have to make “Palahniuk coffee out of my nose” a saying around here. . . lol.
oh, i always loved him and will always remember that oscar acceptance performance )
Me too and Isn’t it one of those moments that just sticks with you?
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