Roughly a week and a fortnight before the most recent Harvest Moon, a celestial light of a different kind harkened Hollywood denizens near and far by way of Bat Signal!!!
Incorporating paper, digital, and social media alike, the Hollywood Museum hosted one of its first panels in person and on Facebook Live all in honor of the Batman 66 Exhibit on display at the venerable old Max Factor building!
Coordinated by Hollywood Museum president and founder Donelle Dadigan along with Hollywood Insider Roger Neal and also moderated by Neal, the panel consisted of Robin himself, Burt Ward, Joker Deputy Donna Loren, along with avid Batman collectors Rob Klein, Alex Zsolt, Tom Woodruff, Pat Evans, Kelly Delcambre, Jim Ojaia, and Bob Mitsch. But one of the most unexpected appearances came from original Batman director, Robert Butler himself, “They say you can’t go home again. Well, I just did. Between the Batman 66 Exhibit on the third floor of The Hollywood Museum and spending time with Burt and Donna, it was like going home again,” exclaimed Butler. “I enjoyed my visit back to Gotham City and the Batcave!”
The panel would later open up to scintillating queries from fans and online onlookers/enthusiasts alike, not the least of which revolved around the justification for villains to be shot on a constant angle, and whether or not Bruce Lee’s first appearance on the TV Serial constituted his first filmed fight!!! Answers to these and many other Whiz Bang! inquiries can be found on the Hollywood Museum’s Facebook page!!!
3D guests also enjoyed steadfast nostalgia fixtures from the outset of the exhibit. Having opened in January 2018, pieces incorporated since its inception include: The Batmobile, Batcycle, original regalia sported by Ward and West along with a myriad and sundry of getups worn by varying and multifarious villains!!!
More recent additions to the display encompass that of the King Tut sculpture with perfectly replicated costume, featuring a superimposition of Victor Buono’s face, along with heretofore and as yet, unveiled Batman 66-appropriate keepsakes from the George Barris collection!
All in all, a night of intrigue, tale-weaving and nostalgia!
“Donna Loren’s character gave me my first kiss on screen 52 years ago,” quipped Ward. “And here we are today; and I now have my second kiss from her… seems like yesterday…”
“It was wonderful giving Robin his first kiss,” Loren could only respond. “And today I enjoyed making it number two. Batman 66 will go on forever!”
Not completely bereft of dramatic tension, well at least not that of the catty variety, Julie Newmar purred the following wishes remotely as she was regrettably unable to attend (but only in cat corporeality not in any manner of sensual spiritedness): “Hello to all you lovely Bat fans out there, especially you Cat fans … and you know who you are. I will forever be grateful to my brother, John, for insisting that I except the role of Catwoman. I had no idea what a deliciously villainess individual she could become and I am grateful to the extended family of colleagues, collectors and cat-a-holics that have kept her, and myself by extension, in the public’s periphery all these years. I wish I could have joined you today, but know you will have a purrrrfectly wonderful time with these brilliant people at one of my favorite places on earth, the Hollywood Museum. We owe a debt of gratitude to its founder, president and Hollywood hero in her own right, Donelle Dadigan. And it takes a villain to know a real hero. Bless you all.”
Wrapping up a rousing rendition of a most singular evening, Donelle Dadigan could only punctuate its related sentiments by declaring: “We are so happy to have had so many of the collectors that have items in the exhibit appear on this panel, and particularly thrilled with the public’s response to the exhibit.”
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