“Lucille Ball at 100 and ‘I Love Lucy’ at 60” Celebration at the Hollywood Museum with CBS DVD and Paramount Home Entertainment

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First Reunion of Cast / Crew in a Decade, Special Museum Exhibit Reception and DVD “The Best of I Love Lucy” Spotlight the “Queen of Comedy” and the Genius of Desi Arnaz

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“The Hollywood Museum in the Historic Max Factor Building is where Max Factor gave Lucille Ball her famous red hair,” says Museum President Donelle Dadigan. “ in the ‘RED HEADS ONLY’ Room.

In celebration of Lucille Ball’s 100th birthday and the 60th anniversary of I Love Lucy, The Hollywood Museum, CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount Home Entertainment pay tribute to Lucy - America’s Queen of Comedy, with a reception and the largest "I Love Lucy" reunion in a decade on Thursday, August 4, 2011 6:00 -9:00 p.m.

The gala reception launches the Hollywood Museum's special Exhibit with a special guest appearance by Lucie Arnaz, daughter of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, and award-winning actress and singer. Other honored guests in the I Love Lucy reunion and tribute include:

  •     Dann Cahn - the only living legend of the original Lucy Creative Team - best known as the head editor of the TV series, I Love Lucy and for his work as the head of post-production of Desilu
  •     Tom Watson - Lucy’s publicist for 20 years and creator of All About Lucy the Webzine for Lucy Fans & Collectors
  •     Bernard Weitzman - Executive VP of Desilu Productions
  •     Arthur Hamilton - Wrote the music for the Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour
  •     Doris Singleton - Actress and co-star on Here’s Lucy Show 1968-1974
  •     Christina Carroll – Bob Carroll’s daughter - Carroll helped develop and create a vaudeville act for Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, which became the basis for the pilot episode of the I Love Lucy series

The gala reception launches a new exhibition at the Hollywood Museum, “Lucille Ball at 100 & ‘I Love Lucy’ at 60,” which will be on display from Aug. 3 to Nov. 30, showcasing memorabilia saluting the careers and romance of Hollywood’s most famous lovebirds. For photos of the exhibits: http://www.yousendit.com/download/YTYvRE9saTFBNkZjR0E9PQ

“The Hollywood Museum in the Historic Max Factor Building is the perfect venue for this exhibit because it’s where Max Factor gave Lucille Ball her famous red hair,” says Museum President Donelle Dadigan. “The ‘RED HEADS ONLY’ Room has been carefully preserved in her memory today. The museum’s historic connection to Lucy is the reason the U.S. Postal Service chose to unveil its official Lucille Ball commemorative stamp here in 2001.” The Hollywood Museum is located 1660 N. Highland Ave, Hollywood, CA.

The exhibit is presented in conjunction with CBS Home Entertainment and Paramount Home Entertainment’s newly released DVD collection The Best of I Love Lucy now available exclusively at Target and Target.com. Including 14 of the funniest and most recognizable episodes starring the comedy legend Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, I Love Lucy is the cornerstone of modern-day sitcoms and set the gold standard of family entertainment. Relive the most beloved episodes of the show including Lucy’s hilarious attempt to pass herself off as a prima ballerina, her laugh-out-loud audition for Vitameatavegimen, her side-splitting time grape-stomping at an Italian vineyard, her famed shenanigans in a chocolate factory, and much more. Co-starring Emmy winner Vivian Vance and William Frawley, The Best Of I Love Lucy is a two-disc set of 14 magnificently restored episodes, a must-have for fans of all ages.

“Lucille Ball at 100 & ‘I Love Lucy’ at 60” Exhibit includes:

  •     “Redheads Only Room" where Max Factor worked on Lucy’s famous look, featuring their original signed contract.
  •     Awards, Certificates, Statuettes/Trophies, Plaques - including the special tribute to Lucy at the 33rd Annual Emmys (1981) and a congratulatory letter from President Ronald Reagan
  •     Original Costume sketches - Halston, Elois Jennsen, Bob Mackie
  •     The famous first national TV Guide (April 3, 1953) featuring Desi, Jr. on the cover as the $50 million baby
  •     Items showcasing the genius of Desi – including original editing equipment which allowed for the technical advancement of TV production (3 cameras, live audience, on film)
  •     A huge photography collection spanning Lucy’s life including her childhood, modelling career, films, radio and TV with some never-before-seen candid personal shots
  •     Lucy's autographed leg cast from her 1972 ski accident at Snowmass, CO
  •     Personal annotated copies of Lucy’s scripts from TV shows and films
  •     Desi's original recordings + sheet music
  •     Montage of original photos from Lucy and Desi’s homes and apartments including Palm Springs, NYC and Beverly Hills

Costumes Include:

  •     Elizabethan gown worn by Lucy opposite guest Tallulah Bankhead (“The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour,” 1957).
  •     Artist smock worn by Lucy opposite guest Danny Thomas ("The Lucy Show," 1965)
  •     Flapper dance costume worn by Lucie Arnaz in duet with Lucy ("Here's Lucy," 1972)
  •     Overalls worn by Lucy in co-star Gale Gordon’s hardware store ("Life with Lucy," 1986).
  •     Bold hound’s-tooth wool pant suit worn by Lucy in her last film “Mame” (1974)
  •     Ivory and lavender beaded gown worn by Lucy in her first MGM film "Dubarry Was a Lady" (1943) opposite co-stars Red Skelton and Gene Kelly
  •     Iconic trench coat worn by Lucy and featured in ads for the classic film noir “Lured” (1947)
  •     Other personal outfits from the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s.

Lucy's Scripts Include:

  •     “I Love Lucy” – Season 6, Episode 6: “Off to Florida” (Nov. 12, 1956)
  •     “The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour” – Episode 2: “The Celebrity Next Door” (Dec. 3, 1957)
  •     “The Lucy Show” – Season 1, Episode 1: “Lucy Waits Up for Chris” (Oct. 1, 1962); Season 1, Episode 5: “Lucy Buys a Sheep” (Oct. 29, 1962)
  •     “Here's Lucy” – Season 2, Episode 10: “Lucy the Cement Worker” (Nov. 24, 1969); Season 3, Episode 1: “Lucy Meets the Burtons” (Sept. 14,1970); Season 5, Episode 16: “Lucy Goes on Her Last Blind Date” (Jan. 8, 1973)
  •     “Life with Lucy” – Season 1, Episode 1: “One Good Grandparent Deserves Another” (Sept. 20, 1986)

For more details, please go to http://yousend.it/mZTcDY

WHERE: The Hollywood Museum, 1660 N. Highland Avenue, Hollywood, CA 90028
WHEN: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday
EXHIBIT INFO: Aug. 4, 2011 to Dec. 31, 2011
PRICE: $15 for adults; $12 for seniors and children under 12.
INFO: (323) 464-7776 http://www.thehollywoodmuseum.com

Before her television success, Ball made more than 60 films, first as one of the gorgeous Goldwyn Girls, then as a RKO contract player and as a star in the MGM galaxy before becoming a Columbia Pictures headliner. She was also featured in several short-lived radio shows in the 1930s (working with long-time collaborator Gale Gordon for the first time) and returned to radio for CBS in 1948 with “My Favorite Husband.”

While at RKO, Ball starred in the 1940 film version of the stage hit “Too Many Girls.” Many of the Broadway cast came west including Desi Arnaz who had caused a sensation singing the title tune. The two were immediately smitten and were married on Nov. 30, 1940.

Arnaz (born March 2, 1917) and his wealthy family had fled Cuba in 1933 during the Batista revolution and relocated to Miami. Pursuing his love of music, he had popularized the Conga dance and even toured the country with his own band. Apart more often than not, Ball and Arnaz decided to work together when CBS moved her radio show to television.

They cofounded a company – Desilu Productions – and Arnaz proved to have a flair for producing, pioneering the concept of filming a TV show in front of an audience. The creator (Jess Oppenheimer) and writers (Madelyn Pugh, Bob Carroll, Jr.) of “My Favorite Husband” adapted it for TV with Liz Cooper becoming Lucy Ricardo, a housewife desperate to get into showbiz, much to the dismay of her husband, bandleader Ricky Ricardo (Arnaz). Her harebrained schemes often involved their landlords and good friends, Fred and Ethel Mertz (William Frawley and Vivian Vance).

The show was an immediate success and ranked No. 1 for four of its six seasons. Ball -- whose first child Lucie was born on July 17, 1951 just weeks before filming of “I Love Lucy” began -- became pregnant again at the end of the first season. The decision was made that the Ricardos would have a baby too. Both babies were born on Jan. 19, 1953 with Little Ricky debuting to a record-breaking television audience and Desi Jr. soon appearing on the cover of the first national TV Guide.

Under the astute leadership of Arnaz, Desilu Productions quickly became the biggest producer of TV programs in Hollywood, with hits including “Our Miss Brooks,” “Private Secretary,” “Make Room for Daddy” and “The Untouchables.” In 1957, the ever-expanding company bought RKO Studios where the couple had first met.

Their 20-year marriage ended in 1960 and each eventually remarried (she to comedian Gary Morton in 1961 and he to socialite Edith Hirsch in 1963). Arnaz sold his interest in Desilu Productions to Ball in 1962 and she became the first woman to head a major Hollywood studio. During her tenure, Desilu Productions produced “Mission Impossible” and “Star Trek” as well as her highly rated return to TV, “The Lucy Show.” Ball sold the company to Paramount in 1967 and formed a self-titled production company to oversee her third successful sitcom “Here’s Lucy” which also ran for six years and co-starred her children Lucie and Desi Jr.

Arnaz, who returned to producing in the late 1960s with “The Mothers-In-Law,” went on to live a quiet life in Del Mar and died of lung cancer at the age of 69 on Dec. 2, 1986. Five days later, Ball received the Kennedy Center Honors and Robert Stack, star of “The Untouchables,” read a note from Arnaz which ended with the line: “‘I Love Lucy’ was never just a title."

Ball died at the age of 77 on April 26, 1989 of a ruptured aorta. She had appeared just four weeks earlier with long-time friend and co-star Bob Hope at the 61st annual Academy Awards where they were greeted with a standing ovation. Among her many honors were four Emmys and the Governors Award from the TV academy, the Cecil B. DeMille Award from the Golden Globes and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

The Hollywood Museum http://www.thehollywoodmuseum.com, the official museum of Hollywood, has the most extensive collection of Hollywood Memorabilia in the World. The museum features four floors of breathtaking exhibits and is the home of more than 10,000 authentic showbiz treasures, one of a kind costumes, props, photographs, scripts and vintage memorabilia from favorite movies and TV shows. The museum includes costumes from Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, Jean Harlow, Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson; Props from ‘Gone With The Wind,’ ‘Twilight: New Moon,’ ‘Star Trek,’ ‘Transformers,’ ‘Revenge of the Fallen,’ ‘High School Musical 2,’ ‘Dancing with the Stars,’ ‘Glee,’ and more. The Hollywood Museum is located in the historic Max Factor Building on the corner of Hollywood & Highland, where Max Factor, the legend of movie makeup, worked his magic on motion picture stars since 1935. The Hollywood Museum is a 501(c)(3) organization.


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Cheri Warner
Weissman/Markovitz Communications for The Hollywood Museum
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