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BellaOnline's Classic Film Editor

A Tribute to Robert Osborne

With Mr. Osborne's extensive career in Hollywood, it is not a surprise that he hasn't met or shared a close connection with most stars of Old Hollywood. However, not many many know that while Mr. Osborne was acting at the famous Desilu Studios, he met the famous redhead comedienne Lucille Ball, who became a friend and mentor, encouraging him to pursue journalism.

Once he took Ms. Ball's word and started a career in journalism, where is love for film expanded and could be shared with the world. He first wrote for "The Hollywood Reporter." He remained writing for the publication while he steadily moved into being regularly seen on "The Movie Channel" as a correspondent. After making a few special guest appearances on the Turner Classic Movies channel, On April 1, 1994, Mr. Osborne was officially welcomed into the TCM family and was introduced to the viewing audience. He brought a wealth of knowledge, stories and enthusiasm to everyone who watched him.

After nearly 17 with the network, Robert Osborne is the symbol of the Turner Classic Movies channel. In addition to hosting four movies seven days a week, he shares an intimate setting with classic film veterans with his special series, "Private Screenings." Actress Lauren Bacall, Liza Minelli and Ernest Borgnine are only a few of the impressive list who has been interviewed by Mr. Osborne.

In 2008, he co-hosted a brand new program called "The Essentials" with Carrie Fisher, in which a selected list of classic films were chosen to screen every Saturday night and at length, Mr. Osborne and Fisher would discuss what makes the chosen classic film an essential and a "must-see" for the viewers. As of 2010, Mr. Osborne has co-hosted the program with actor Alec Baldwin for three seasons.

In the same year, Mr. Osborne hosted along the TCM co-host Ben Mankiewicz the first TCM Classic Film Festival on April 28. The following year, he hosted the second annual TCM Classic Film Festival and as he corresponded live from California, Osborne conducted short interviews with celebrities as well as TCM fans from the red carpet in between films on their own network during the 3-day festival.

As of July 2011, Robert Osborne took a 3-month medical leave from Turner Classic Movies for minor surgery and recovery. In his absence, classic film veterans and friends of Mr. Osborne, actress Jane Powell, Tippi Hedren and Robert Wagner are to temporarily step in. However, when he returns in late-2011, Mr. Osborne will be re-assume his position as the channel's host.

For as long as Robert Osborne has been hosting Turner Classic Movies, himself and the Turner Classic Movies team has been responsible for generations young and old being introduced or reintroduced to classic film. We are sure that once he is back to being in good health, he will continue to do so.

It is fascinating to note that while he is associated with Turner Classic Movies, Mr. Osborne is also considered to be the official biographer of Hollywood's coveted award, "Oscar". He was given the recognition after publishing an impressive biography titled, "75 Years of Oscar", which was updated in 2008 to "80 Years of Oscar."

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