Wilson Post Blogs
Matt Damon dropped out of Harvard
Dear Ken: Can you provide a bit of background on Matt Damon?
The actor, 40, was born in Cambridge, Mass., where his mother was an early childhood education professor and his dad was a stockbroker. One of his childhood friends was Ben Affleck. Damon entered Harvard as an English major in 1988 but dropped out before graduating after he co-starred in the movie Geronimo: An American Legend in 1992. He had also worked in Mystic Pizza, Rising Sun and School Ties. It was 1997’s Good Will Hunting, which he wrote with Affleck, that turned him into a star and also won him and his pal Oscars for best screenplay. The Boston Red Sox fan is a serious poker player.
Dear Ken: Back in the heyday of cigarette commercials, how many different models portrayed the Marlboro Man?
There were many on TV and in print from 1954 to 1999. The original model was Clarence Hailey Long, a real Texas cowboy. Among others were Christian Haren, Darrell Winfield and Brad Johnson. Three of the Marlboro Man models eventually died of lung cancer. Amazingly, when Marlboro was introduced in 1924 it was as a woman’s cigarette and at one time promoted “as mild as May.”
Dear Ken: What were some of the best films of Jane Russell, who died recently?
Russell, who died earlier this year at age 89, made her film debut in Howard Hughes’ 1943 western, “The Outlaw.” You can see her in some of her top movies in “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,“ “The Paleface,” “His Kind of Woman,” “Double Dynamite,” “The Tall Men,” “Macao” and “The Revolt of Mamie Stover.” A devout Christian who held weekly Bible studies in her home at the height of her stardom, she had three adopted children.
Dear Ken: Is actor Harry Morgan, who played Col. Sherman Potter on “M*A*S*H” and Jack Webb’s partner Bill Gannon on “Dragnet,” still living?
Yes, indeed. Morgan turns 96 on April 10. Born Harry Bratsberg in Detroit, he made his movie debut in 1942 and went on to make about 90 more. He also voiced the character of Bill Gannon on an episode of “The Simpsons.” He appears in many classic films, including “The Ox-Bow Incident” “The Big Clock,” “Holliday Affair,” “High Noon,” “The Glenn Miller Story,” “Teahouse of the August Moon,” “Inherit the Wind,” “How the West Was Won,” “Frankie and Johnny,” “Support Your Local Sheriff,” “Cat Ballou,” “The Apple Dumpling Gang” and “The Shootist.”