Lifetime Acheivement Beats 15 Minutes of Fame


Actor Charles Lane recently died at the age of 102. He was a character actor. In fact one site I researched had as an executive summary “grumpy character actor”.  He never played in a starring role but he portrayed memorable characters in dozens of well known movies. Many of us will recognize his face. The great director Frank Capra used him in several films including the classic “Its A Wonderful Life”. He met Lucille Ball when she was still an RKO chorus girl, and the two became friends. Years later he was a frequent guest on “I Love Lucy” and appeared in one of that series’ most-watched episodes, the birth of Little Ricky, in 1953.

He acted well into his 90s. In all he appeared in 250 films and countless TV episodes. All-in-all a rich and full career.

When I read about people like Charles Lane my thoughts also turn to the anti-Lanes. This would include all of the poor mannered, rich, spoiled actors, singers, performers and celebrities that populate today’s culture and dominate the media. People who have turned one or two modestly good movies/songs/sex videos into far more than 15 minutes of fame and too much fortune.

What have they achieved? What will they do with their lives beyond their mid-20s? Will anyone care about them when they hit their 90s? Their 40s?

I do not know about the man that Charles Lane was but I appreciate and value the longevity of his contributions and his devotion to craft. There are certainly many people in other less public careers who demonstrate quiet competence or even excellence that will not get written up in the NY Times but deserve our respect. These are the folks that should be on the cover of People. These are the people that should inspire our children.

BTW. Does anyone know how Lindsey is doing after rehab?

About 48facets
What you read is what you get.

2 Responses to Lifetime Acheivement Beats 15 Minutes of Fame

  1. Pax Romano says:

    When I heard he had died, I was shocked because I’d thought he was already dead.

    That said, I could not believed the career this man had. For people in my age bracket, he was a staple of television always showing up on a sitcom as some crumedgeon.

    Talk about a life well led.

    Oh and about the current crop of celebrities; they will be nothing more than blips on the screen (though, if Lohan stays out of trouble, she might actually have a career; the girl can act).

  2. 48facets says:

    I just think that too little credit is given to a long period of work.
    Pax, I agree that Lohan has talent. That makes it even sadder that she succumbed to the same temptations as the less talented yet well known of her age group. Hopefully she will pull out of it.

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