CAREY: Oh yes, there is no doubt about that. I get e-mail from around the world from people who are just now discovering him. My dad was always pretty famous. As kids, we couldn’t go anywhere with him that he wouldn’t be recognized. He is remembered because he was a great actor who appeared in some landmark films, like Paths of Glory and The Killing. He made his own films, which influenced other independent filmmakers. It all comes down to originality. Someone as iconoclastic as my father resonates down the generations. It’s a mystery why he is becoming more popular since his death, but I think there’s a whole pirated underground of [The World’s Greatest] Sinner tapes out there. There are regular screenings of Sinner in Brooklyn that attract a thousand people per screening. There are Tim Carey film festivals in Chicago, San Francisco, even Australia! For a guy who did what he did in his little way, it’s pretty impressive. It just goes to show, if you put the right kind of energy into something, it doesn’t go away.
And we’re back! Today we celebrate the 114th birthday anniversary of a true Hollywood legend. The great Robert Ryan appeared in two films with Timothy, Alaska Seas (1954) and The Outfit (1973). Here are the two of them from that latter film, directed by John Flynn. Tim’s nasty thug Jake Menner gets a dressing-down from his boss, Mailer (Ryan). Variety columnist Army Archerd appears in a sly cameo as Mailer’s butler.
Ryan, born in Chicago, was a gentle and compassionate man off-screen, belying his often cruel tough-guy cinematic persona. His politics were decidedly left of center, and he actively supported many civil rights and pacifist causes. He was, in fact, a co-founder of SANE, the National Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy. He once said, referring to the notorious Senator Joseph McCarthy, “I was involved in the things he was throwing rocks at but I was never a target. Looking back, I suspect my Irish name, my being a Catholic and an ex-Marine sort of softened the blow.”