Still in Love with Lucy

by Thomas Watson

Monday, March 12, 2007

Dear Fellow Lucyfans:

"I Love Lucy: The Final Years" on DVD

Just a quick reminder that the new CBS/Paramount Home Video release of "I Love Lucy" programs on DVD is due in stores tomorrow, March 13. Included this time are the "Lucy-Desi" specials of 1957-1960. The box has an assortment of unique items that fans will want to add to their collections:

  • The full-length "Lucy Takes a Cruise to Havana" special that launched this series of programs. The show runs approx. 68 minutes (75 with commercials) -- and because of this odd length, it was only telecast once -- 50 years ago this year. CBS later had Desilu trim it down to a more manageable 60-minute format, and most of the outtakes have been locked away in a vault ever since. How wonderful to see this show as the creators intended!

  • Color footage filmed by an audience member of the 1951 production of "The Audition" episode! This exciting bonus feature is the only known color footage of the Tropicana nightclub set and the Ricardo livingroom.

  • A special sponsor-presentation film produced by Desilu to introduce Westinghouse appliance dealers around the country to the Arnazes' plans for their 1958-60 series, "The Westinghouse-Desilu Playhouse" and "The Westinghouse Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Show." This 39-minute piece includes aerial footage of the three Desilu Studios and exterior shots of Lucy's dressingroom and other Desilu studio locations.

Also included, of course, are the twelve Lucy-Desi specials that followed the "Havana" show. These, alas, are the trimmed-down versions that were aired in the 1960s as "The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour," but all have been remastered and look sensational. Whenever possible, "the outtakes" -- the footage that was trimmed from the original broadcasts -- are included as "bonus material" on the discs. These were derived from surviving 16mm prints of the broadcasts. (It's sad to say, but when Desilu made the edits in 1962, they cut the master negatives and discarded the excised material! No one realized we'd still be clamouring for these shows 40 years later!)

Also included are cast bios, production notes, a 1965 CBS-network promo for "The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour," and the openings/closings for network repeats of the half-hour "I Love Lucy" programs that aired on CBS during the 1957-60 era.

"STAR NOTES" On the Radio

Many thanks to the friends and fans who called-in during the broadcast last Saturday of our new STAR NOTES internet radio series. Special thanks to our special guests, Wanda Clark, who served as Lucy's personal secretary for over 25 years; video-producer Neil Wilburn; TV archivist and historian, Dan Wingate; and computer-graphics artist and animator Jonathan Angus. Congratulations to listener Joe Alamo, who called in with the correct answer to our Lucy Trivia Question. Prizes for our weekly contests are provided by the Gift Shop of The Lucy-Desi Center of Jamestown, New York.

If you missed Saturday's broadcast, it is being repeated all this week on Shokus Internet Radio ((, 4-6PM Eastern Time (1-3PM Pacific Time).

Joining us for Show #5, on Saturday, March 17, will be actress Janet Waldo, who played Peggy Dawson ("Keep jiggling, Peggy") in the "Young Fans" episode of I Love Lucy, and played Lucy's sister in an episode of The Lucy Show.

If you have questions you would like to ask our guest, you can either "phone in" during the broadcast -- and be part of the show -- or send your questions in advance via e-mail. The toll-free call-in number is:

1 - 8 8 8 - 7 4 6 - 5 8 7 5

The e-mail address is -- or click this icon:

Again, STAR NOTES is presented "live" every Saturday afternoon -- 1-3PM Pacific Time; 4-6PM Eastern Time. Repeats will air daily: Sundays 11AM - 1PM (Eastern Time); and Monday-thru-Friday 4-6PM (Eastern Time).

"STAR NOTES" -- and all of the Shokus Internet Radio offerings -- can be accessed from your computer at:

Have a great week everybody!


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"I Love Lucy" is copyrighted by and a registered trademark of CBS Worldwide, Inc.
Images of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz used with permission of Desilu, too, LLC.
Licensing by Unforgettable Licensing, Northbrook, Illinois.