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Screening, discussion Wednesday on Keene’s Kate Phillips

  • Charlie Chan in Rio is screening in Keene next month and includes a presentation on the late actress Kate Phillips of Keene. Courtesy Photo—

  • Charlie Chan in Rio is screening in Keene next month and includes a presentation on the late actress Kate Phillips of Keene. Courtesy Photo—

  • Charlie Chan in Rio is screening in Keene next month and includes a presentation on the late actress Kate Phillips of Keene. Courtesy Photo—

  • Charlie Chan in Rio is screening in Keene next month and includes a presentation on the late actress Kate Phillips of Keene. Courtesy Photo—

  • Charlie Chan in Rio is screening in Keene next month and includes a presentation on the late actress Kate Phillips of Keene. Courtesy Photo—

  • Charlie Chan in Rio is screening in Keene next month and includes a presentation on the late actress Kate Phillips of Keene. Courtesy Photo—

  • Charlie Chan in Rio is screening in Keene next month and includes a presentation on the late actress Kate Phillips of Keene. Courtesy Photo—


Wednesday, November 28, 2018 6:26PM

‘Charlie Chan In Rio is the 31st film in the scores of Charlie Chan movies created over six decades featuring the famous detective. It is among five that included Kate Phillips, who plays the supporting role in this movie as Helen Ashby.

Phillips is fondly remembered by many in the Monadnock Region, where she taught film studies for more than 20 years at Keene State College. To the end of her life in 2008, she was versatile and active: she was a Peterborough radio show hostess, and a generous friend and neighbor in Dublin and later, in Keene, among many other activities.

As Kay Linaker, Phillips appeared in over fifty films with such actors as Henry Fonda, Ginger Rogers, Claudette Colbert, Clifton Webb, Dana Andrews, and Vincent Price, to name a few.

At the film presentation, a brief presentation will be offered about Phillips by Larry Benaquist, retired KSC film studies professor and good friend of Phillips, having taught alongside her.

Keene State offered a course called The Films of Kate Phillips, according to professor Benaquist. “It was a fascinating course,” he said, “because, in my opinion, she was an A actress in B films.”

Phillips also wrote for the movies and co-authored the 1958 cult classic, The Blob, which featured Steve McQueen in his first feature film.

Phillips made two films for John Ford: Drums Along the Mohawk and Young Mr. Lincoln. She discovered after the war, that Ford had been searching for her, to use her in more films, but was unable to locate her; by then, she had left Hollywood.

The showing of Charlie Chan in Rio at the Keene Public Library on Wednesday, Dec. 5 between at 7 p.m., is sponsored by the Historical Society of Cheshire County and co-hosted by the Keene Public Library. Seats are limited, so the public is encouraged to RSVP to this free event by 4 p.m. on Dec. 4, 2019 by visiting hsccnh.org or by calling 352-1895.

The Historical Society of Cheshire County is located at 246 Main St., in Keene. The organization has been collecting, preserving, and communicating the history of Cheshire County for 91 years. The Society puts on about 150 programs each year to help people of all ages “find their place in history.” For more information, visit hsccnh.org or call 352-1895.