Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Ted Okuda  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Non-Fiction

Born: 1953 in Chicago, Illinois

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Illinois Connection

Okuda lives in Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

Ted Okuda is a Chicago-based film historian. His articles and interviews have appeared ina variety of media-themed publications.


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

The Jerry Lewis Films: An Analytical Filmography of the Innovative Comic
ISBN: 0899509614

McFarland. 1994

Using interviews with Jerry Lewis and many of his co-stars, this book analyzes his collaborative efforts with Dean Martin, his subsequent solo work, his writing and directorial careers, and more recent movies such as Hardly Working (1979) and The King of Comedy (1982). Comprehensive filmographic data are provided for each of the films, with cast and production credits, studio, release date, and running time. Lewis's own reflections on his work are included for many of the entries.

The Columbia Comedy Shorts: Two-Reel Hollywood Film Comedies, 1933-1958 (McFarland Classics)
ISBN: 0786405775

McFarland & Company. 1998

Columbia produced over 500 two-reel shorts from 1933 through 1958, with Hollywood's finest comics (the Three Stooges, Andy Clyde, Buster Keaton, Harry Langdon, Charley Chase, others). Fully illustrated with never-before-published photographs, the book chronicles the history of all, including interviews with the veterans. The filmography covers all of the 526 two-reelers: credits, date, synopsis.

The Monogram Checklist: The Films of Monogram Pictures Corporation, 1931-1952 (McFarland Classics) (McFarland Classics S)
ISBN: 0786407506

McFarland. 1999

Monogram Pictures Corporation, one of several famed "poverty row" studios, produced over 700 feature films-cheap, often inept, frequently forgettable, but so inexpensive profit was unavoidable. The Bowery Boys and Charlie Chan series were extremely popular. This, the first such reference book, corrects errors in other sources while giving movie titles, casts, credits, plot synopses, running times, release dates, alternate and remake titles.

The Golden Age of Chicago Children's Television
ISBN: 1893121178

Lake Claremont Press. 2004

There was a

time when every television station in Chicago produced or aired programming for children, and this book discusses the back stories and details of this special era from the people who created, lived, and enjoyed it,

such as

producers, on-air personalities, and fans. This compendium describes how from the late 1940s through the early 1970s, local television stations created a golden age of

children's television unique in American broadcasting and how the FCC changed the regulations governing the relationship between sponsors and local programming in 1972, effectively bringing the genre to a close since the programs operated under strict budgetary constraints. The story of this chapter in television history show the richness of imagination and inventiveness of children's programming and the devotion of the fans. Featured shows include Bozo's Circus

Garfield Goose

Kukla, Fran, & Ollie

The Mulqueen's Kiddie-A-Go-Go

Ray Rayner and Friends

and Super Circus.

"Today, we can be nostalgic about the passing of great local children's fare such as Bozo's Circus . . . and Garfield Goose. However, I believe that today's children have more and better choices in programming . . . . What is missing is the localism, the heart and soul that emanated from these and other programs. Economics, regulation, and expectations for what a program should look like have altered children's television forever. As you read this book, perhaps you will not only find memories or curiosities from a bygone era, but inspiration to create children's television for today's audiences. A pie in the face is still funny, kids still like to dance, and the last time I looked, you could still buy six buckets and nail them to a board and call it a Grand Prize Game."—from the foreword by Neal Sabin, WCIU-TV, Chicago

Behind-the-Scenes Stories of the Golden Age of Chicago Children's Television as Told by the People Who Lived It

At one time every station in Chicago—a maximum of five, until 1964—produced or aired some programming for children. From the late 1940s through the early 1970s, local television stations created a golden age of children's television unique in American broadcasting. Though the shows often operated under strict budgetary constraints, these programs were rich in imagination, inventiveness, and devoted fans. The mere mention of their names brings smiles to the faces of Midwestern Baby Boomers everywhere: Kukla, Fran, & Ollie, Super Circus, Garfield Goose, Bozo's Circus, Mulqueens' Kiddie-A-Go-Go, BJ & Dirty Dragon, Ray Rayner and Friends, and a host of others. In 1972 the FCC changed the regulations governing the relationship between sponsors and local programming, effectively bringing to a close this chapter of television history.

What Chicago kids' show had American Bandstand host Dick Clark dancing on T.V. for the first time ever? Why did one have to wait months and, more often, years to get tickets for Bozo's Circus? Which very popular and successful host never wanted to do a children's T.V. show? Who really made the puppet Garfield Goose (you may not have known it was a mystery)? Remember the talent that bit the head off a parakeet on live TV and the shocked emcee's reaction? What sent television executives into a quandary when Kiddie-A-Go-Go went on the air? Which show was almost forced off the air because a giant soft drink company opposed a so-called rival's use of the word sip? Now, discover the back stories and details of this special era from the people who created, lived, and enjoyed it—producers, on-air personalities, and fans.

Charlie Chaplin at Keystone and Essanay: Dawn of the Tramp
ISBN: 0595365981

iUniverse, Inc.. 2005

Charlie Chaplin is universally hailed as the greatest comedic talent in the history of motion pictures. And yet Chaplin's early efforts-which account for more than half of his total output-are often overlooked in favor of his later films. In 1914 Chaplin appeared in a total of 35 films for the Keystone Film Company

the following year he signed with the Essanay Film Manufacturing Company, where he wrote, directed and starred in more than a dozen short comedies. Though the resulting pictures were frequently crude and erratic, they reveal the emergence of a formidable comic genius. Charlie Chaplin at Keystone and Essanay: Dawn of the Tramp is a film-by-film examination of this period in Chaplin's career, tracing the birth of his beloved "Tramp" character and his evolution as an actor and filmmaker. Also discussed are how these movies have been re-edited, recopied, reissued and retitled over the years, with a special section that matches pseudonym titles to their original source film. Charlie Chaplin at Keystone and Essanay: Dawn of the Tramp is a fascinating look at the first celluloid steps taken by this legendary laughmaker, and is a must for all Chaplin fans, old and new.

Chicago TV Horror Movie Shows: From Shock Theatre to Svengoolie
ISBN: 1893121135

Lake Claremont Press. 2007

The first comprehensive look at the horror movie programs that found their way to local TV stations in the 1950s, this book discusses how the motion picture industry initially disparaged and feared television but eventually began to embrace it, and it focuses on films grouped into the horror genre. Thousands of films that had long been gathering dust in film studio vaults gained new life with TV genre programming, and Chicago's tradition of TV horror movie shows was born in 1957.

During my generally misspent youth, I devoted an inordinate amount of time watching the most preposterous movies ever made. I use the word preposterous advisedly, because that s the precise term to describe films involving giant scorpions, teenage werewolves, little green Martians, big alien brains, fire-breathing space turtles, 50-foot women, puppet people, humongous leeches, killer shrews, and grasshoppers as big as the Shedd Aquarium. Not that I have any regrets.
--Author Ted Okuda, from the Introduction

Although the motion picture industry initially disparaged and feared television, by the late 1950s, studios saw the medium as a convenient dumping ground for thousands of films that had long been gathering dust in their vaults. As these films found their way to local TV stations, enterprising distributors grouped the titles by genre so programmers could showcase them accordingly. It was in this spirit that Chicago s tradition of horror TV movie shows was born. TV viewers couldn t get enough of the old monster movies everything from glossy Frankenstein and Dracula epics to low-budget cheapies featuring giant grasshoppers and teenage werewolves. Here in Chicago, these films were broadcast on such horror movie shows as Shock Theatre, Thrillerama, Creature Features, and Screaming Yellow Theater.

Chicago TV Horror Movie Shows: From Shock Theatre to Svengoolie is the first comprehensive look at Chicago s horror movie programs, from their inception in 1957 to the present. Through career profiles of the Horror Hosts who provided comedic interludes between commercial breaks, discover which creepy presenter was one of the 12 reporters to travel around the country with the Beatles during their 1965 66 U.S. tour, and learn about the politics behind Channel 32's sudden (and outrageous) switch from Svengoolie to the Ghoul. Also included are broadcast histories of such hostless programs as Creature Features, Thrillerama The Big Show, The Early Show, The Science Fiction Theater, and Monster Rally, along with a guide to 100 fright films broadcast on Chicago television and a look at the Shock! horror library that started a TV craze. Filled with rare photographs and ever-before-published data, Chicago TV Horror Movie Shows celebrates a grand tradition in local television.

The Soundies Book: A Revised and Expanded Guide
ISBN: 0595420605

iUniverse, Inc.. 2007

Soundies were the granddaddies of music videos: single-song musical movies that played in special jukeboxes during the 1940s. Some of the biggest musical stars (and stars of the future) appeared in these films: Louis Armstrong, Spike Jones, Liberace, Fats Waller, Stan Kenton, Cab Calloway, and many others. Thanks to Soundies, hundreds of unique musical performances were photographed for posterity. These mini-musicals were originally nothing more than a ten-cent novelty. Today, to film and music fans, they're a priceless part of history.Scott MacGillivray and Ted Okuda, authors of the landmark resource book The Soundies Distributing Corporation of America, now offer this revised and expanded guide to the Soundies musicals. This all-new book picks up where the original left off: more than 1800 titles are classified by performer, title, and date-many with new, individual annotations and all with new cross-references for easy reading and consultation. There is also a historical account of the prolific Soundies production companies, a look at Soundies' many competitors and descendants (including telescriptions and Scopitones), a checklist of the dozens of Soundies home-movie editions, and a listing of alternate titles to help collectors identify the films more easily. All in one handy volume: The Soundies Book.

Stan Without Ollie: The Stan Laurel Solo Films, 1917-1927
ISBN: 0786447818

McFarland. 2012

Long before his momentous teaming with Oliver Hardy, comedian Stan Laurel (1890-1965) was a motion picture star in his own right. From his film debut in Nuts in May (1917) through his final solo starring effort Should Tall Men Marry? (1928), Laurel headlined dozens of short comedies for a variety of producers and production companies, often playing characters far removed from the meek, dimwitted "Stanley" persona that we know and love. This is a film-by-film look at the pictures Stan made as a solo artist, as well as those he wrote and directed for other stars, shows his development as a movie comedian and filmmaker. Comedy legend Jerry Lewis, a longtime friend and admirer of Stan Laurel, provides an affectionate and eloquent foreword. Included are several rare photographs and production stills.


Awards

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