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Monthly Features

Featured Artist


TIMOTHY CAREY

Tim CareyRarely has an actor with virtually no recognition by wider audiences made such a lasting impression on a small circle of movie fans as character actor Timothy Carey. His crazed improvisation and intense manner graced small but memorable roles in movies and television of the 1950s and 60s.

Timothy William Carey was born in Brooklyn in 1929. The 22 year Movie Poster, The Killingold Carey made his film debut in 1951 (as a corpse in "Across the Wide Missouri"!), but it was as a member of Lee Marvin's motorcycle gang in the 1953 film "The Wild One" that pointed the off-kilter direction his film roles would take. For Andre DeToth's 1954 film noir "Crime Wave", he mugged and grimaced in the background of several scenes - one would assume not at the request of the director. He menaced James Dean in "East of Eden" and performed an improvisational dance in the grind house hit, "Bayou" that was re-titled "Poor White Trash" and played second run theaters for a decade

Perhaps most memorable, and hard to fathom, was his scene-stealing work in two Stanley Kubrick's classics, "The Killing" and "Paths of Glory". A director known for his tight control, Kubrick seemed willing to let Carey do as he pleased, improvising eye rolling and facial tics that hardly seemed relevant, but were all the better for it.

Carey lobbied hard for parts and filmmakers were impressed with his peculiar genius, but it's easy to imagine his presence unnerving co-stars. His energy often left other cast members looking a bit flat He appeared in "One Eyed Jacks", "Beach Blanket Bingo" and several films for John Cassavetes. Francis Ford Coppola tried unsuccessfully to cast Carey in the first two "Godfather" films and "The Conversation". Quentin Tarrantino tested him for the role of the Tim C areycrime boss in "Reservoir Dogs", but felt he wasn't right for the part.

Rarely screened is Carey's brainchild, "The World's Greatest Sinner", a cult classic for die-hard fans of scenery chewing. He wrote, directed and starred as a bored insurance man who changes his name to "God" , becomes a rock and roll star and eventually runs for president. Rumor has it that Elvis Presley personally asked for a copy of the film and was denied. Carey was working on a stage play entitled "The Insect Trainer" (subtitled "an intimate collaboration with Salvatore Dali") when he died at the age of 64. The old saying "We won't see his likes again" was never more true.


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