Pic of the Day: “Convicts 4” revisited

After stuffing ourselves yesterday, we deserve a rest. And where better to put up our feet than in the clink? We close the holiday week with another look at Convicts 4 (1962), Millard Kaufman‘s prison biography of artist John Resko (Ben Gazzara). Unbeknownst to Resko and his old pal Nick, they’re about to have an unfortunate encounter with Iggy (Ray Walston, with his back to the camera), not one of Resko’s favorite people.

Convicts 4

Award-winning Walston was one of the most beloved character actors around, working steadily from the 1950s up until his death in 2001. I’m sure we all know him best from his role in the comedy series My Favorite Martian (1963-66). He, however, wished that we didn’t. “I never should have done My Favorite Martian,” he told USA TODAY in 1995. “I didn’t work in TV or film for three years after. Everyone thought of me as a Martian. Do you know what it’s like to go to Madrid, Spain, on vacation and have a guy yell out, ‘Hey, Martin!’ and put antennas behind his head? When that happens, you know your career is dead.”

Pic of the Day: “Convicts 4” revisited

Our pic of the day (and you remember about clicking for embiggening) is a nice promotional portrait of Timothy from Convicts 4, aka Reprieve (1962), one of my latest eBay finds. I’m still not sure if that’s a hearing aid or a transistor radio he has there. He used a similar device in House of Numbers (1957), also while portraying a prisoner. Hmm.

The typewritten notation on the back of the photo is worth sharing:

84, 85. TIMOTHY CAREY, remembered for his hit performance in “Revolt in the Big House” a few years ago, plays a convict ringleader in Millard Kaufman and Ronald Lubin’s “Reprieve,” Allied Artists production starring Ben Gazzara, Stuart Whitman, Ray Walston, and guest-starring Vincent Price, Rod Steiger, Broderick Crawford, Dodie Stevens, Jack Kruschen, and Sammy Davis, Jr. Carey is currently being hailed for his independently made “new wave” film, “The World’s Greatest Sinner.”

Pic of the Day: “Convicts 4” revisited

Our pic for today takes another look at Convicts 4 (1962), based on the book Reprieve by John Resko, an account of his time in prison. Tim, as fellow prisoner Nick, is startled by the sudden breakout of a big fight between Resko (Ben Gazzara) and Iggy (Ray Walston).

As I’m sure we’re all aware, Tim and Gazzara met onscreen again 14 years later in John CassavetesThe Killing of a Chinese Bookie (1976).