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Old May 29th, 2006, 04:57 PM   #1
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Default Canada Post honors Lorne Greene


May 26, 2006
Canada Post honours four legendary Canadians in Hollywood

New stamp series adds Hollywood glamour, Canadian style
Toronto - Canada Post launched new stamps today to honour the lives and achievements of four Canadians who made a lasting impression in Hollywood: John Candy, Lorne Greene, Mary Pickford and Fay Wray. The Canadians in Hollywood stamp issue – the first of its kind in Canada – offers Canadians a unique way to celebrate Canadian success in Hollywood.

The families of the headlining stars were genuinely surprised and touched by this Canada Post tribute. "John would have been honoured to be included among such wonderful actors," says Rose Candy of her late husband, John. "The portrait of him is very touching. It shows John in an everyday way – a man who loved people, was compassionate and empathetic and who wanted to make you laugh and bring joy to your life. I know that this stamp will bring joy to everyone who sees it." Candy's legacy of laughter stretched beyond films, from his radio work on Radio Kandy and a children's cartoon (Camp Candy) to widescreen Hollywood actor, he is fondly remembered by peers as a friendly screen giant. John also brought a Canadian work ethic to Hollywood, appearing in at least one film a year between 1974 and his death in 1994.

The CBC's "Voice of Canada" during World War II and "Pa" to Bonanza fans, Ottawa's Lorne Greene was the white-haired, resonant-voiced, patriarchal actor who never gave up his Canadian citizenship. For Greene's son Charles, this stamp would be a source of great pride for a man whom he described as having a strong affinity to his Canadian roots. "I am extremely pleased by Canada Post's recognition of my father's unique contribution to radio, film and television in Canada and around the world. My father would have been proud and grateful. He always took pride in being Canadian, working for many Canadian causes and on Canadian film and television projects until the end of his life." During his work on Bonanza (1959-1973) and other TV projects, Greene found time to do guest roles and movies, as well as record several albums. In 1964 he even had a top hit with the song Ringo.

America's Sweetheart – Mary Pickford – was born Gladys Louise Smith in 1892 in Toronto, and over her 27-year film career made 236 films. "It's so important that people remember Mary and recognize her for the remarkable woman she was," says Keith Lawrence, who knew Mary when he was a child, and is now President and CEO of the Mary Pickford Institute. "She had a deep love for Canada and would have considered this stamp a huge honour. She was always so appreciative when people recognized that she made a difference in their lives." Mary Pickford was the first actor to benefit from the fact that films were becoming international phenomenas, and for a while she was the most recognized person in the world. Mary is also remembered as an important producer, writer and director and as one of the founders of United Artists studios, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and of the film community called "Hollywood."

Fay Wray fans will remember her best as the heroine with a gorilla love interest in the original 1933 film, King Kong. It has been said that when Wray was offered a role opposite "the tallest, darkest leading man in Hollywood," she hoped it was Clark Gable… The role as the heroine in King Kong was her most famous role, and made hers Hollywood's most famous scream for decades. Born in Cardston, Alberta in 1907, Wray arrived in California at the age of 14 with dreams of being a movie star. According to Wray's daughter, Victoria Riskin, her mother "always felt this love of the majesty of the country she was born in. She had very vivid memories – even though she left when she was very young – of events that took place when she was living outside of Cardston." After Wray's death in August 2004, the lights at the Empire State Building were dimmed in her memory.

The stamps featuring movie poster likenesses of each star are available for purchase in a booklet of 8 self-adhesive stamps ($4.08) or as a special souvenir sheet of 4 stamps ($2.04). The Canadians in Hollywood stamp series can be used for everyday mailing but for those who enjoy collecting movie memorabilia or stamps, Canada Post is offering postcards (stamped for mailing anywhere in the world) featuring each star and collector's envelopes cancelled with a special Day of Issue indicia. The stamp booklets will also randomly feature one of the four Canadians in Hollywood on the cover, adding additional collectability to the set.

The Canadians in Hollywood stamps are available for purchase today at postal outlets across Canada, online at www.canadapost.ca/collecting or by calling toll-free 1-800-565-4362.

Lorne Greene

Born in 1915 and raised in Ottawa, Lorne Greene began acting while attending Queen's University. Originally destined for engineering, Greene switched his major to allow more time for acting. During his five years at Queen's, Greene produced, acted and directed plays for the Drama Guild.

Greene began his career with the Canadian Broadcast Corporation (CBC) during the Second World War becoming Canada's first celebrity anchorman. He soon became known as "the Voice of Canada" and his solemn bulletins during the War also earned him the title, "The Voice of Doom." Greene founded the Academy of Radio Arts in Toronto and was one of the founders of the Jupiter Theatre. Greene played hundreds of roles on stage in Canada and the United States. He performed in radio and television dramas, on nature programs and commercials.

In the early fifties, Greene moved to Hollywood to pursue an acting career on the big screen. His greatest success came in two quintessential television genres - a western and outer-space drama. Greene was a father-figure to a generation of Bonanza viewers during his 14-year stint as Ben Cartwright. When Bonanza was cancelled, he continued in series television, including the role of Commander Adama in Battlestar Galactica. Back in Canada, Lorne Greene's New Wilderness, aired from 1982 - 1986. Green also used his voice for singing - in 1964 Greene had a #1 single on the music charts with his hit ballad, Ringo.

Lorne Greene died on September 11, 1987, of complications from prostate cancer. He is survived by his children Chuck and Gillian.

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Old June 1st, 2006, 09:07 PM   #2
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Old June 2nd, 2006, 08:59 AM   #3
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