Category: Actor

Marla Gibbs

Armed with an acid dry wit and a full arsenal of sarcasm and sass, African-American character comedienne Marla Gibbs showed up on 70s TV with a bang in middle age (44). Landing the feisty maid role on the popular ground-breaking CBS comedy, The Jeffersons(1975), eventually led to her very own sitcom, 227 (1985), a decade later and international celebrity. A divorced mother with three children (Angela Elayne Gibbs, Dorian, Joseph) at the time of her initial success, it was a job transfer from Detroit to Los Angeles, while working as a United Airlines reservation clerk, that set up this more-than-welcome surprise and change of destiny.

Following high school, Marla attended Peters Business School (1950-1952) and toiled for a time as a receptionist and switchboard operator in the Detroit area. Eventually, she secured work with United Airlines. After moving to Southern California on a transfer, Marla gave acting a try and initially studied at the Mafundi Institute and Watts Writers Workshop, located in the Watts area of L.A. Bitten hard by the acting bug, she went on to appear in a number of local productions, including “Medea”, “The Amen Corner” and “The Gingerbread Lady”.

After only a couple of minor film parts, including the “blaxploitation” film, Black Belt Jones(1974), she nabbed the role of “Florence Johnston”. The maid was initially set up as a mere one-shot guest part but Marla showed the character’s potential. And, so it came to be that “Florence Johnston” became THE scene-stealing foil to Sherman Hemsley‘s equally mouthy, money-minded “George Jefferson”. Until the show became a certified hit, Marla cautiously kept her job with the Airlines. With wisecracks and Emmy nominations (totaling 5) a plenty, however, Marla never had to look back. The role of “Florence” was a natural for a spin-off series and it happened with the sitcom, Checking In (1981), in which the character becomes a housekeeper for a very swanky hotel. The show was harmed, however, by a writer’s strike before it could gain a core audience. Fortunately for Marla, she was ushered right back into the Jefferson household following its quick demise (four episodes). Two months after the last “Jeffersons” episode aired in July of 1985, “227” was included in that year’s fall schedule.

Daughter Angela Elayne Gibbs produced an award-winning play by Christine Houstonentitled “227”, with Marla as the lead, at Marla’s own local Crossroads Theatre, which the actress founded in 1981. The play was a solid hit and Marla wisely purchased the TV rights. Once “The Jeffersons” was over, she pushed for “227” as a sitcom vehicle. Producer Norman Lear gave it the green light and Marla settled right back in for another popular series ride (for NBC), this time as resident gossip “Mary Jenkins”, whose demeanor was warmer and more approachable than the feisty “Florence” character. This series, which featured spitfire Jackée Harry as vampish neighbor, “Sandra”, ran for five years.

An eight-time NAACP Image Award winner, Marla has received several honors over the years, including Essence Woman of the Year. She has not carried a series since “227”, but has been seen from time to time on other popular shows, including ER (1994), Cold Case(2003), Chappelle’s Show (2003), Judging Amy (1999), Touched by an Angel (1994), The King of Queens (1998) and Dawson’s Creek (1998). She has also had recurring roles on daytime (Passions (1999)) as well as prime-time (Pryor’s Place (1984), The Hughleys(1998)) and gave a knowing portrayal as Natalie Cole‘s mother in the heart-warming TV movie, Lily in Winter (1994).

In later years, Marla turned up again on the big screen with plucky roles in Up Against the Wall (1991), The Meteor Man (1993), Lost & Found (1999), Foolish (1999), Border to Border (1998), The Brothers (2001), and standout roles in The Visit (2000) and Stanley’s Gig (2000).

Elsewhere, Marla’s voice has been heard on the animated TV series, 101 Dalmatians: The Series (1997) and, in addition to acting, sang the theme song to the film, Stanley’s Gig(2000), “In the Memory of You”, which will be included on a CD, entitled “Scenes In Jazz”. Marla owned a jazz club for some time in South Central L.A. called “Marla’s Memory Lane, a jazz and supper club that ran from 1981 to 1999. She released her own CD of music, “It’s Never Too Late”, in May 2006, and co-wrote with Ray Colcord, the theme song to her starring series, 227 (1985).

Marla’s older sister, Susie Garrett, who co-starred on the hit sitcom, Punky Brewster(1984), died of cancer in 2002. Fully recovered after suffering a small aneurysm and stroke a few years ago, the actress recently performed in the comedy play, “Boeing-Boeing”, in Kansas City, a role created on film by the equally sarcastic Thelma Ritter, back in the 1960s.

– IMDb Mini Biography By: Gary Brumburgh / gr-home@pacbell.net

Ox Films

Actor, Producer and Director Richard Ryan established Ox Films in 2008. Richard was inspired to start Ox Films as a way to create stories, then to produce, market, and distribute films under a company. Richard also wanted to create opportunities for others. Mr. Ryan feels as if he is doing what he has always done since he was a little kid, which is creating and team building. Richard believes everyone has the ability to create and to be great, but with dedication, focus, and willingness to learn, and allowing self improvement every step of the way the possibilities are endless. Ryan says, “the constant education and opportunities we have to be creative and too collaborate with so many brilliant people is very exciting and inspiring”.  Ox Films is currently developing new movies.  Ox Films has produced three feature films and 14 short movies.  Ox Films is now in pre-production of their next feature film.

 

Latest Movie “Art of deception”

“Art of Deception,” is a live-action motion feature film Starring Richard Ryan, Jackie Nova, and Leon Van Waas.  After the films Los Angeles theatrical premiere, “Art of Deception” has sold to 10 territories through out Asia, Europe, and South America.  It will have a nation wide US movie release on October 8, 2019.  

“Art of Deception” was lead by producers Richard Ryan and Jackie Nova and directed by Richard Ryan.  Other major keys to the success of “Art of Deception” is Director of Photography Vishal Solanki, and sound designer and re- recording mixer, Emmy Award-winning Patrick Giraudi.  Italian native award-winning composer,  Simone Cilio, created the magnificent score that added to the romanticized and riveting action and suspense.  Egypt’s Visual Effects Artist Mohamed Shawaf and colorist Michael Halper also contributed in a major way to help bring more color, life and pizazz into the life of “Art of Deception.”

 

Don Wilson

Don “The Dragon” Wilson is considered the greatest kick-boxing champion in the sport’s history. A native of South Florida, Wilson began fighting in the late 1970s. In a career which spanned 4 decades, he won 11 world kick-boxing championships, among them the WKA, STAR, WKC, PKO Lightheavyweight World Championships, WKA, STAR, ISKA World Cruiserweight Titles, and the WKA and STAR Super-Lightheavyweight World Championships. He posted a record of 72-5-2 with 47 wins by knockout. Wilson defeated such world champions as Dennis Alexio, Oaktree Edwards, and Dick Kimber. He retired from the sport in 1990, but launched a comeback on May 14, 1999. Since his return he has knocked-out Dick Kimber and defeated Dewey Cooper.

– IMDb Mini Biography By: angelsunchained

Linda Blair

From the age of five, Linda Blair had to get used to the spotlight, first as a child model and then as an actress, when out of 600 applicants she was picked for the role of Regan, the possessed child, in The Exorcist (1973). Linda quickly rose to international fame, won the Golden Globe, and seemed to be set to take the Academy Award for that role, but when it leaked how some parts of the role were not performed by her (the demonic voice was dubbed by Mercedes McCambridge, and eight seconds of a stunt dummy were used) that dream broke, and with that disappointment probably came the first blow to what looked like the beginning of an A-list career.


Over the next few years she had no trouble securing lead roles in a number of pictures, including the highly successful television films Born Innocent (1974) (the #1 TV movie of that year) and Sarah T. – Portrait of a Teenage Alcoholic (1975), as well as the Exorcist sequel Exorcist II: The Heretic (1977). However, when she was peer pressured into buying cocaine at the age of 18, it led to an arrest and subsequent sentencing to three years probation. The much-publicized drug bust caused Linda to be blacklisted in Hollywood, and her career was soon reduced to B-movies and occasional TV guest appearances only.

Although her career never returned to its former glory, Linda proved to be a good sport about embracing the change, and out of the ’80s emerged lead roles in two cult classics: the women-in-prison film Chained Heat (1983) and the femme fatale vigilante action film Savage Streets (1984). She continued acting in numerous films throughout the ’80s and ’90s, including the Exorcist spoof Repossessed (1990). In 1997, she also took to the Broadway stage and starred as “Rizzo” in the revival of “Grease.” She received widespread mainstream attention again in the 2000’s with the theatrical re-release of the Exorcist, followed by a hosting job on the hit Fox Family TV series Scariest Places on Earth(2000), which ran for six years and followed Linda as she visited notorious “haunted” locations around the world.

Linda was born in St. Louis, Missouri, to Elinore, a real estate agent, and James, an executive headhunter. She has a brother, Jimmy, and a sister, Debbie. Linda has been a Hollywood icon for over 40 years, but it is her first love of animals that has ultimately taken center stage in her life. She now runs the Linda Blair WorldHeart Foundation, a non-profit 501C3 tax deductible organization dedicated to rescuing and rehabilitating abused, neglected, and abandoned animals from the harsh streets of the Los Angeles area, as well as from the overcrowded and overwhelmed city and county animal shelters. She works and lives on the 2-acre rescue sanctuary full-time in California, which was featured on The Today Show in a segment titled “From Devil to Angel.” Of course, she also makes frequent appearances at horror fan conventions to celebrate the legacy of the Exorcist.

– IMDb Mini Biography By: <elmic@post8.tele.dk> and R. Taylor

Chalet Lizette Brannan

Chalet Lizette Brannan is a child actress that beat Leukemia at age 10. Chalet is an Official Ambassador for Beads Of Courage which is a worldwide charity for children suffering cancer and other major illnesses. She had started out with modeling and from there has went on to feature films and Television series. Ms. Brannan now has endorsed several Cancer Hospitals and gives back to children fighting like she did. She continues to film and tour nationwide. She has been tapped to play a 3D Animation film as a lead with a very known and talented actor. She has been nominated for several awards for Best Supporting and Lead roles. She has presented an ICON Award at the Pre-Oscars to Kevin Sorbo who has been in her films. Her lead role in Crepitus has helped her to surpass Actress Linda Blair as a lead in a R Rated horror feature at 12 years of age. Chalet Brannan continues to impress all she meets and has been likened to Dakota Fanning and Jodie Foster in her abilities.