She's calm, cool and classy — and not too big for a behind-the-scenes gig. Between making movies and her upcoming guest arc on the new season of Rescue Me (premiering May 30), Susan Sarandon still found time to narrate a revealing documentary on one of the industry's legends, Stardust: The Bette Davis Story (tonight at 8 pm/ET on TCM), and she was gracious enough to chat with TV Guide about the film, fame and Oscar.
TV Guide: You know I have to say it: You've got
Question: I know the Oscar statuettes are about a foot tall and weigh 8 pounds, but what are they made of, and is it true that they got their name because someone said it looked like their Uncle Oscar? That sounds like a made-up story.
Answer: Last part first: The official story is indeed that Margaret Herrick, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' first librarian in 1931 and its executive director from 1943 to 1971 (and for whom the Academy's Los Angeles library, where I've done my share of research, is named), saw one of the statuettes (designed by MGM art director Cedric Gibbons for the first ceremony in 1929) on a desk and exclaimed that it looked just like her Uncle Oscar. Which is sort of alarming in that it implies that her uncle was a bald nudist with a thing for (perhaps compensatory) swords. Many people prefer the slightly ruder version in which Bette Davis sugge
Question: My father and I were chatting about Clint Eastwood's talent for directing actors to Academy Awards, now I'm wondering which director has directed the most actors to Oscar victories. My father is thinking William Wyler. Is he right?
Answer: Yes, he is: It's William Wyler. He directed 31 actors and actresses in performances that earned them Academy Award nominations. Bette Davis (Jezebel), Fay Bainter (Jezebel), Greer Garson (Mrs. Min
Question: I remember seeing a movie, I think made in the '60s, about a mother who for some reason is holding her son's fiancée/girlfriend hostage in a basement or cage or something like that. It was extremely suspenseful, but can't remember the title! It's driving me nuts, because I'd like to see it again. Ring any bells?Answer: My vote goes to Die! Die! My Darling! (1965), one of a string of films starring golden-age movie divas as deranged and/or terrorized crones, notably Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962), with Joan Crawford and Bette Davis; Hush… Hush, Sweet Charlotte (1964), with
Question: Sir, could you please tell me who the main stars were on Wagon Train? Thank you.
Answer: Thanks for the respect, Teri (I get so little), but as the old boot-camp admonishment goes, don't call me "sir" — I work for a living!
There are a few answers to that question, the first being the cast list (which I'll run down in a moment) and the second being a list of guest stars, since episodes revolved around one-shot characters who came and went. But any fan of the show would whittle it down to one actor: the opinionated, tough-as-leather Ward Bond.
In the series, which ran on NBC from 1957-62 before jumping to ABC and finishing out its run there in 1965, Bond played Major Seth Adams, who led the train each season from St. Louis to California with assistant wagon master Bill Hawks (Terry Wilson) and cook Charlie Wooster (Frank McGrath) by h