Announcing the SEVENTH Annual What A Character! Blogathon – Dec. 14-16, 2018

9th August 1933: Jean Harlow (1911 - 1937) is Hollywood sex goddess Lola Burns and Frank Morgan (1890 - 1949) is her father, Pop Burns, in 'Bombshell', (aka 'Blonde Bombshell') directed by Victor Fleming. Mary Forbes (1883 - 1974) plays Mrs Middleton.
Frank Morgan and June Brewster are just two of the superb character actors in BOMBSHELL (1933). Image via Doctor Macro

When you re-watch your favorite films, what keeps you coming back for more? A great story with sharp writing? No doubt. Beautiful costumes, swanky set designs, and stunning cinematography? Most assuredly. But the performances are key to any movie. While we all look forward to the popular leading actors, it is the stand-out, scene-stealing supporting actors that feel like “home.”

Wise-cracking Eve Arden, nurturing Louise Beavers, sassy Thelma Ritter, double-take pro Edward Everett Horton, tart-tongued Edna May Oliver, gravelly-voiced Eddie “Rochester” Anderson, fatherly Charles Coburn, frazzled Franklin Pangborn, bullfrog-voiced, barrel-chested Eugene Pallette, cigar-chomping Ned Sparks… these and so many more lovable character actors are who we look forward to seeing as our dearest old chums. We all could use a trusted sidekick.

John Ford’s STAGECOACH (1939) was rife with talented characters.

For the 7th consecutive year, we as the blogathon hosting trio of Aurora of Once Upon A Screen and @CitizenScreen, Kellee of Outspoken & Freckled and @IrishJayhawk66, and myself, Paula of Paula’s Cinema Club and @Paula_Guthat invite you to join us for the WHAT A CHARACTER! BLOGATHON 2018, December 14, 15, 16, as we pay tribute to the brilliance of the supporting players.

Our objective for the What A Character! Blogathon has always been to shed the spotlight on these lesser-known but equally talented thespians, whose names usually appeared below the title. If you wish to salute your favorite onscreen character actor — who excelled as quirky maid, ornery hotel manager, frustrated maître d’, sassy best friend, hot-tempered heavy, flabbergasted father, sarcastic sidekick, grumpy boss, or gobsmacked butler — then you’ve come to the right place. Please review the guidelines below first, and leave me a comment.

  • Let at least one of the hosts know which character actor is your choice.
  • Don’t take it for granted we know exactly who you are or where your blog resides – include the title and URL of your blog, and also your Twitter handle if you have one.
  • We will not accept repeats (previously published posts), or duplicates, since there are so many greats worthy of attention, but your choices are not limited to classics.
  • You can choose any character actor from any era and from the medium of television, which has featured talented regulars since the beginning and continues to do so.
  • Publish your WAC! post on either December 14, 15, or 16, 2018. Let us know if you have a date preference; otherwise, we’ll split publicizing duties equally among the three days.
  • Please include one of our banners (see below) within your What A Character! post.
  • Additionally, please include one of the WAC! 2018 event banners included in this post on your blog post itself to help us promote the event.
  • The last thing, please send any of us the direct link to your post once you have published it. Searching on social media sites can lead to missed entries.
  • My contact info is paula.guthat[at] / Twitter @Paula_Guthat or, simply leave a comment below 🙂
  • HAVE FUN and spread the word!

Here are the spectacular banners Aurora has created for you to add to your blog…


This year’s WAC! Blogathon is dedicated to the memory of two very fine character actors whom we lost this year. Vanessa Marquez (1968 – 2018) was an extraordinary actress on screen and stage, and an even better friend. She is greatly missed and we continue to hold her close in our hearts. James Karen (1923 – 2018) was a hard-working actor with more than 200 credits to his name. He was a personal friend of Buster Keaton, and a frequent and approachable attendee of the Buster Keaton Celebration in Kansas and the TCMFF.
Thank you to Turner Classic Movies for the tagline inspiration and to all you bloggers and film fans for your ongoing participation and support for seven years running! And a big shoutout to my fellow co-hosts who inspire me all year long and for being such marvelous and lovely characters themselves!

— Paula

SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN has a top-notch supporting cast.

List of participating blogs and their choice of actors…

Actors in alphabetical order

Another Old Movie Blog – Walter Abel

Maddy Loves Her Classic Films – Sara Allgood

Paula’s Cinema Club – Lionel Atwill

Taking Up Room – Fay Bainter

Once Upon a Screen – Beulah Bondi

A Person in the Dark – Boris and Natasha

Critica Retro – Spring Byington

It Came from the Man Cave! – Bruce Campbell

The Wonderful World of Cinema – Jack Carson

Classic Film Obsessions – Anthony Caruso’s collaborations with Alan Ladd

Nobody’s Attention – Minoru Chiaki

Outspoken & Freckled – Elisha Cook, Jr.

The Dream Book Blog – Gladys Cooper

One Gal’s Musings – Jean Dixon

Maddy Loves Her Classic Films – Marius Goring

Silver Screen Classics – Alan Hale, Sr.

Wide Screen World – Margaret Hamilton

Reelweedgiemidget Reviews – Ed Harris

The Last Drive In – Eileen Heckart

Sister Celluloid – Frieda Inescort

Married at the Movies – Patsy Kelly

dudsism – dudsism on the career of George Kennedy

Caftan Woman – Jack Lambert

Pale Writer – Hattie McDaniel in Gone With The Wind and Marjorie Rambeau in Torch Song

The Old Hollywood Garden – Charles McGraw

CineMaven’s Essays from the Couch – Stephen McNally

Second Sight Cinema – Thomas Mitchell

In the Good Old Days of Classic Hollywood – Agnes Moorehead

Carole & Co. – Eugene Pallette

Backstory: A Guide to Classic Film – Elizabeth Patterson

Sarah on Once Upon a Screen – Nat Pendleton

A Shroud of Thoughts – Thelma Ritter

Silver Screenings – Everett Sloane in The Lady from Shanghai

Vienna’s Classic Hollywood –

The Lady Eve’s Reel Life – Kay Thompson

The Midnite Drive-In – Hank Worden

Silver Scenes – TBA

Classic Film Observations & Obsessions – TBA

34 thoughts on “Announcing the SEVENTH Annual What A Character! Blogathon – Dec. 14-16, 2018

  1. Hi Paula,

    May I write about Frieda Inescort? I realize she may not technically be a “character actor,” but she’s always a colorful supporting presence…

    Take care,


  2. Hi, Paula!
    There are so many to choose from! I took some time, but madeup my mind: I’d like to write about Spring Byington, please.
    Le from Crítica Retrô (

  3. I can’t remember where I committed to the blogathon BUT my post is written and I’ll be up before midnight on 12/13. So feel free to promote me and the underrated Jean Dixon on 12/14. Thanks!

  4. Hi Paula, I’ll have my post on Thomas Mitchell up later today. I hate that I’ve become a last-minute poster, but life conspires…. Anyway, what’s the latest I can notify you that it’s up and make your roster/promo? (If I’m not already too late, that is…) Thanks!

  5. So – I found out about this on the 16th. Natch. I wish I’d known a lot earlier. So many great subjects – from William Demarest to Connie Gilchrist, to my absolute 70s favorite, Liam Dunn.

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