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Arrrr! TCM begins pirate-movie fest on Friday

By Rich Heldenfels Published: June 4, 2014

The official word: Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is taking to the high seas this month as the network's popular Friday Night Spotlight showcase focuses on "Pirate Pictures." Actor, comedian and podcast host Greg Proops, whose extensive TV credits include the U.K. and U.S. versions of the improvisational comedy series Whose Line is It Anyway? will host the lineup, which launches Friday, June 6, at 8 p.m. (ET).


TCM's pirate lineup ranges from a 1924 silent version of The Sea Hawk, starring Milton Sills, to Errol Flynn's swashbuckling 1940 film of the same name; from Gene Kelly's dancing buccaneer in The Pirate (1948) to Burt Lancaster's acrobatic one in The Crimson Pirate (1952). The lineup features three more Flynn pirate adventures: his star-making role in Captain Blood (1935), the TCM premiere of Against All Flags (1952) and Flynn's final swashbuckling adventure, The Master of Ballantrae (1953).

Another actor noted for derring-do, Tyrone Power, stars in The Black Swan (1942) as a buccaneer smitten by the heroine of many swashbuckling films, Maureen O'Hara. Paul Henreid tests his sea legs in The Spanish Main (1945) and Pirates of Tripoli (1955). Also spotlighted are such notorious bandits of the bounding main as Captain Kidd (1945, with Charles Laughton in the title role), Long John Silver (Wallace Beery in the 1934 Treasure Island) and Blackbeard, the Pirate (1952, starring Robert Newton). Murvyn Vye continues the role of Blackbeard in The Boy and the Pirates (1960). On the comic side, TCM has Charles Laughton lampooning his famous role in Abbott and Costello Meet Captain Kidd (1952). And in The Princess and the Pirate (1944), Bob Hope plays an entertainer posing as a nefarious pirate known as "The Hook."


A complete schedule of TCM's Friday Night Spotlight for June is included below.


In addition to his television work, Proops hosts two podcasts, "The Smartest Man in the World" and "Greg Proops Film Club," both available through iTunes and on his website,


TCM Friday Night Spotlight: Pirate Pictures – Hosted by Greg Proops




Friday, June 6

8 p.m. – The Sea Hawk (1924)

10:15 p.m. – The Black Swan (1942)

Midnight – The Spanish Main (1945)

2 a.m. – Pirates of Tripoli (1955)


Friday, June 13

8 p.m. – The Crimson Pirate (1952)

10 p.m. – The Pirate (1948)

Midnight – The Princess and the Pirate (1944)

1:45 a.m. – Abbott and Costello Meet Captain Kidd (1952)


Friday, June 20

8 p.m. – Against All Flags (1952) – TCM Premiere

9:30 p.m. – Captain Blood (1935)

11:45 p.m. – The Sea Hawk (1940)

2 a.m. – The Master of Ballantrae (1953)


Friday, June 27

8 p.m. – Treasure Island (1934)

10 p.m. – The Boy and the Pirates (1960)

11:30 a.m. – Captain Kidd (1945)

1 a.m. – Blackbeard, the Pirate (1952)

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