We classic film fans all have our favorite screen teams: Tracy and Hepburn, Fred and Ginger, Powell and Loy. You name ‘em, we got ‘em. But what about that most symbiotic of all relationships in motion pictures – The Director and His Star?


 I know, I know. These are poor examples:


We’ve seen that relationship go horribly wrong funny, or horribly wrong tragic. But I’m going to look at the bright side of things. For my first-ever blogathon hosting duties, I’d like to explore the times this relationship works wonderfully well. And when it works, it works because of the two-way street both parties travel…learning from each other and helping each other grow in their craft. So I invite bloggers near and far, hither and yon, and over hill and dale to join me in support of “SYMBIOTIC COLLABORATIONS.”

Everyone within an eyeball of my post who has a blog, is a blogathon veteran and knows the drill. But as a good director, I think I’ve got to set some guidelines:

  • Check out my banners below ( which, of course, you may use ). Here you’ll get an idea of the Star-Director collaborations I’m talking about. These teams have made three or more films together so I am looking for posts about teams who’ve made at the very least THREE films. ( The third time’s a charm they say, and I’ll make only one exception: for Pabst and Brooks ).
  • The collaboration can be for any genre ( drama, musical, western etc. ) or from any country ( I’m thinking Bergman, Lean, Kurosawa etc. ). No I’m not talking about directors working with their favorite cinematographers. I want to see the connection between who’s in front and who’s behind that camera. Now, what if the star is not your average ‘star above the title’ celebrity…but your dyed-in-the-wool, tried-and-true supporting player? Fine with me, as long as they worked together in three or more films. Boy, I can feel the shorthand now between John Ford and Ward Bond as I type.
  • What if a bunch of you want to deal with Hitchcock. After all, he made four movies with Cary Grant and four movies with James Stewart. Since I don’t want any duplicates ( pssst, I don’t want any duplicates ), I wouldn’t want eight of you to all jump on “Notorious” or “Rear Window” or any one film by Hitch. He’s a big man….spread him around. You can all share collaborative teams, but only one film per team.
  • This is where first come, first serve fairly comes into play, don’cha think? In the Comments section below, tell me which collaborative team and their film you’d like to write about. Here is where my secretarial skills of thirty-four years kicks in, even though I’m retired. Give me your name, your blog’s name and your blog’s URL. I’ll start logging you in and making everything nice and neat and organized.

There are so many star-director collaborations to choose from ( Capra-Stanwyck / Cukor-Kate / Wyler-Davis / Boetticher-Scott / Mann-Stewart / Sturges-Demarest and many many more ) so I hope your cups runneth over with choices. January is a ways away. We’ll be finished with all the holidays by then, but you know how time tends to slip away from us. I hope you all might find this a good topic to think about and write about. Yes, your guest posters are welcomed to join as long as they follow the guidelines.

Don’t mind me if I’m a bit of a noodge in putting out this announcement a couple of times before the actual blogathon. I look forward to hearing from all who want to join in. Now…let me find out exactly what a ‘dale’ is.

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Banners are hot linked:



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This list might help, though it’s only sprinkled with a few collaborations from the classic era. It might give you more ideas.

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Please check back here for the roster to be updated. Thanks!

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Here is my second announcement for this blogathon——> Part Deux!

(  H O M E  )



  1. Hi there, is it too late to join your blogathon?
    If not, I’d like to contribute something on Kurosawa and Tatsuya Nakadai.
    Blog is F for Films:

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Joshua…how’s it going? I hope you’re getting yourself ready for your New Year’s celebration. Me…I’m getting ready for my January blogathon. Thank you for wanting to join in. ( How’d you hear about l’il ol’ me? ) Looks like I’m going to have a lot of reading to do. And I happily include your contribution as part of my Winter’s reading. Yes, I’d love to include you and learn about Kurosawa with yet another leading man. Looks like quite a few folks can lay claim to collaborating with the great Kurosawa. If you go to both my blogathon announcements: ( #1 and #2 ) you’ll see your blog listed. Thanks again, Joshua. And Happy New Year!

      Liked by 1 person

      • I heard about you thorough the Criterion Blogathon and the connections that created. Thanks for including me, now I have to come up with an interesting angle worthy of the great collaboration I’ve picked!


      • I’m sure you’ll come up with an interesting angle ‘cuz I read your piece on NOTORIOUS and thoroughly enjoyed it. I had never thought of the drinking angle and once you pointed it out, ( with your witty captions ) the obvious just smacked me in the face. You must do ALL of Hitchcock’s films. ( Psst! What did you think of “VERTIGO”? ) Glad to see you liked my old college classmate’s essay on “SANSHIRO SUGATA.” Brian’s a big fan of Japanese cinema. Thanks again for signing up. I’ll be sending you and the other bloggers an e-mail as it gets nearer to the event. Happy New Year!


  2. Happy New Year to you also. Thanks for reading my piece on NOTORIOUS. It was a labor of love!
    I do love VERTIGO, but it’s been a very long time since I’ve seen it. It’s my Dad’s favorite Hitchcock film. Coincidentally, I just borrowed the DVD from him recently with the intent of rewatching it soon. I’ll try to tell you if anything interesting comes of that.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Well, I watched VERTIGO again last night, and I was struck by two things primarily. First is the degree to which the picture relies on the musical score to maintain the emotional pitch, which I don’t think was the case in earlier, pre-Herrmann Hitchcock pictures. Hitchcock prodded himself on the Visual nature of his storytelling, but this film would lose the sender of restless, yet driven purpose i think without the musical cues. The second is the recurring use of the color green, in the girl’s car, in the light outside her hotel room that casts an eerie glow into her room, etc.
    It’s a disturbing picture, all the more so due to the casting of gee whiz everyman Jimmy Stewart as a sort of neurotic quasi-adulterer. Had Cary Grant, a more worldly figure, been cast as Scotty, imagine how much more appropriate he would have been for the character. But if he were cast in the lead, it would be a weaker film. The fact that it is the very relatable Stewart who goes through the events we see makes us uncomfortable I think, because we are forced to confront whether or not we relate to all the actions Scotty takes, since we naturally relate to him as a person.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve always had a battle in my head between Jimmy Stewart and Cary Grant as Hitchcock heroes. Could they do each other’s roles? Could Cary do “Rope“? Could Jimmy do “Suspicion“? I’m of the mind that they really really couldn’t. ( Or perhaps what they DID do is just too thoroughly imprinted on my DNA to imagine another option. ) Would you say the music gave us cues on HOW to feel, or did it just underscore what was going on screen? Am I recalling correctly in your piece on “Notorious” you wrote the music wasn’t outstanding; it served a functional purpose as part of the fabric of the movie. No more no less?

      Back to Jimmy, I don’t know if Cary Grant would have been more appropriate. I wholly bought Jimmy’s obsessiveness and anger ( “Why did you have to pick on me? Why me?!!” ) while Cary seems to be always cool as a cucumber. He’s cool, Jimmy’s heat. ( Ha! Am I reallly saying that about affable Jimmy Stewart? Yikes! to a certain extent I am. ) I think Kim Novak is the lynchpin in all of this. Hitchcock has created this “Madeleine” this object of desire. And if we don’t fall for her, if we don’t want to follow her and save her, we might not have a picture. I’m glad you watched the movie and hope you liked it. My friends and I gabbed about this film in this other project of mine. Thanks again for responding.


      • When I said appropriate, I meant that the good guy movie star persona that Stewart developed in films like Mr. Smith, It’s A Wonderful Life, or even Man Who Shot Liberty Valance doesn’t square with the neurotic and twisted things we see him do in Vertigo. This incongruity is heightened by having the good girl that he “should” end up with (Barbara Bel Geddes) present but mostly ignored by Scottie. Stewart is the better choice BECAUSE his movie star persona is against the type we expect to see doing the actions he engages in. It increases or emotional response of suspense and discomfort. I have a few more thoughts here on my recent viewing of this movie along with…Inside Out of all movies.


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    • Laura, I’m pretty overwhelmed by the turn out. Maybe folks will want to do it again next year. But I know I know…lets get through this year first. Thanx for your post on “Scarlet Street” for the Star & Director Blogathon. I see it was a difficult watch for you. It IS a pretty dark and tragic tale. Eddie G. got run over by a Mac Truck named Lazy Legs. Thanks again!


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    • Oh how I wish it were Summer here in New York. You’re covering the unsung duo of Lugosi and Ed Wood for the Star – Director Blogathon. Throw ’em some love! I hope participating in the Star – Director Blogathon gets them some well-deserved notice. Big budget, small budget…it’s not easy making a movie and harder still to find a bonding relationship in that business they call: Show. Thanks again, Summer.


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