RE: RARA-AVIS: A query for Avians--Sinatra's assassination films: Colin/Scat

From: Todd Mason (
Date: 20 Sep 2001

Actually, seems they've conflated two films, 1962's THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE
(from the novel by Richard Condon, script by George Axelrod, directed by John Frankenheimer), which Sinatra was instrumental in withdrawing from circulation for some years because it involves a "sleeping agent" scheme by Communist forces who've deeply hypnotized a US soldier to assassinate a presidential candidate when certain words are spoken (a great film, with Much going on--Sinatra was a producer, iirc, and starred as the agent's commanding noncom or officer during the Korean War) and SUDDENLY, a 1954 film Sinatra had no distribution control over, afaik, in which he plays
(perhaps unsurprisingly may be his best performance) a psychopathic thug and small-gang leader who manage to take over a couple of buildings in the small town of Suddenly, through which a presidential train is passing; they are attempting an assassination.

Both films are now very available to broadcast/cable, if not in print for home use, which they probably both are.

 TM (looking forward to that novel, Colin...just let it pour out of you...)

-----Original Message----- From: [mailto:]

The Guardian runs a Notes and Queries (readers answers) column and this week

one of the questions concerned a film thriller. Said thriller was slated for

release in 1963 and supposedly starred Frank Sinatra. It concerned the attempts of a gang to assisinate the US president, it was apparantly withdrawn and never shown again when JFK was assasinated in not disimilar circumstances. Does anyone out there know of this. I also very very very vaguely being told of or reading of a film that was so eerily close to some catastrophe that occurred after its completion that it was withdrawn, any bells ringing?? My own un-published novel, "Colin Goes to the Pub and Drinks

Too Much Cider" will sadly never see the light of day for similar sad prescience! Regards Colin

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