Ellen Barkin - January 31, 2014

The "Faces of the Tour" series returns, as we recognize the stars of the silver screen whose images are on display in the American Treasure Tour's Toy Box.  Today, we would like to talk about the actor Ellen Barkin.  

Born in 1954, the New York City native grew up in a lower-middle class Jewish family with a passion for entertainment.  Although she trained at the Actor's Studio years before, it was not until 1982 that Barkin got her big chance as part of the cast in the breakout hit Diner, a 1982 buddies film set during the last week of 1959 in Baltimore, Maryland.  Barkin played the put-upon wife of Daniel Stern's Laurence "Shrevie" Shreiber.  From there, her career took off with critical favorites including Tender Mercies  and The Big Easy.  She remains very active in film, television and theater, and is known as an active tweeter as well!


What was the name of the character Barkin played in the cult favorite The Adventures of Buckaroo Bonzai Across the 8th Dimension?

a)  Penny Priddy

b)  Kate Wilowski

c)  Princess Henrietta

d)  Sunny Boyd

e)  Abigail Sponder

Answer Below


Today marks a landmark event in the history of American jurisprudence:  in 1801, John Adams appointed John Marshall as the third United States Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.  Adams, knowing he lost his bid for re-election as President of the United States, selected his Secretary of State to take over the Chief Justiceship after Oliver Ellsworth resigned due to ill health.  Adams appointed Marshall during the lame duck time before Jefferson took over the presidency.  Marshall was Chief Justice for the remainder of his life - a record-holding thirty-four years.  During this time, he transformed the court from a marginal branch of the federal government into the primary interpreter of the U.S. Constitution that we recognize it to be today, making many important decisions and steering the course for the country.

Born in 1872, Zane Grey became a popular writer of fictional stories about the American frontier.  His most famous novel remains Riders of the Purple Sage.  Published in 1912, it tells the story of Jane Withersteen, a Mormon woman whose unwillingness to marry within the church leads to her persecution by church leaders.  Set in southern Utah in 1871, it criticized polygamy, a practice that was deemed illegal prior to Utah's achieving of statehood in 1896 but was still believed to be tolerated behind closed doors.  Grey condemned multiple marriage on the contention that some church members continued to endorse it.  Despite the locations depicted in his fiction, Grey was born in Ohio and owned a house in Lackawaxen Township, Pennsylvania, which is preserved as a museum by the National Park Service. 

Born in Huntsville, Alabama in 1902, Tallulah Bankhead was something of a troublemaker most of her life.  Raised predominantly by her grandparents, she was placed into a convent at an early age for education and discipline.  It didn't work out, and the attractive young woman pursued modeling work, which led to an acting career both on Broadway and in movies, performing in such notable plays as Thornton Wilder's The Skin of Our Teeth and films including Alfred Hitchcock's Lifeboat.  Bankhead's life was definitely colorful and full of scandal thanks to her outspokenness and her controversial views.  She died when she was 66, and is buried near Chestertown, Maryland.


I'm tenacious, I think - I know - and I do also have a quality where if you tell me I can't do something, if I know I can't do it I'm the first to raise my hand and say, 'I can't do that.'  But there is a big Bronx New York Jew in me that just says, 'Really?  Really?  You think I - yes, I can.  I can do it. I can do it.' - Ellen Barkin

Answer:  a)  Penny Priddy