Starkville Daily News



“Mister Roberts” (1955): Lemmon earned his first Oscar as Ensign Pulver, friend to fellow officer Roberts (Henry Fonda) and mutual nemesis of the tyrannical commander (James Cagney) of their World War II vessel in the Pacific.

“Some Like It Hot” (1959): The long associatio­n of Lemmon and director Billy Wilder began with this classic Depression-era comedy about two murder-witness musicians (Lemmon, Tony Curtis) who disguise themselves within an allfemale band to hide from the killers.

“The Apartment” (1960): One of Lemmon’s greatest performanc­es is in Wilder’s Oscar-winning comedy-drama about an ambitious worker who loans out the key to his apartment, enabling executives who can fast-track his career to dally with their mistresses there.

“Days of Wine and Roses” (1962): Being shown by Turner Classic Movies on Monday, June 10, as part of a tribute to film composers – in this case, Henry Mancini, who shared an Oscar for the title song with lyricist Johnny Mercer – this searing adaptation of a television play features unforgetta­ble work by Lemmon and Lee Remick (under director Blake Edwards) as a couple devastated by alcoholism.

“The Great Race” (1965): Blake Edwards’ sprawling roadrace comedy goes off the tracks in multiple ways, but it gives Lemmon an opportunit­y to have great fun as the villain trying to derail the saga’s hero (Tony Curtis, reunited with Lemmon).

“The Fortune Cookie” (1966): Another reteaming with Wilder gave Lemmon his first project with Walter Matthau, who earned an Oscar as a shyster lawyer representi­ng his brother-inlaw (Lemmon), a television cameraman injured while covering a football game.

“The Odd Couple” (1968): Lemmon and Matthau cemented themselves as a screen comedy team as neatnik Felix and slovenly Oscar in this hit version of Neil Simon’s play.

“The Out-of-towners” (1970): Lemmon connected with playwright Simon again as he and Sandy Dennis played Midwestern visitors who ran into every problem imaginable while in New York.

“Save the Tiger” (1973): Lemmon captured a best-actor Oscar as another businessma­n, this one so wracked by the state of his company that he makes a drastic decision about it.

“The China Syndrome” (1979): The dramatic skills of Lemmon again got a great workout from his role as a nuclearpla­nt supervisor determined to expose dangers at the site with help from a Tv-news crew (Jane Fonda, Michael Douglas). “Glengarry Glen Ross” (1992): Lemmon is heartbreak­ing as a once-prominent but now-declining real-estate salesman in the film of David Mamet’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play. “Grumpy Old Men” (1993): Lemmon and Matthau still had some hits left in them when they made this comedy about neighbors whose long-standing feud is amped up by their mutual interest in a local newcomer (Ann-margret).

 ?? ?? Lee Remick and Jack Lemmon in “Days of Wine and Roses”
Lee Remick and Jack Lemmon in “Days of Wine and Roses”
 ?? ?? Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon in “Grumpy Old Men”
Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon in “Grumpy Old Men”
 ?? ?? Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon in “Some Like It Hot”
Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon in “Some Like It Hot”

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