What a Character

A commercial for Turner Classic Movies

Aired 2005, US

This brief TCM-produced clip is the opening for a series of small documentary pieces on character actors. These pieces generally run in the last 15 minutes of an hour to fill out time before a new film starts in the new hour. The clip features a re-worked TCM photobooth, based on a nice old rounded-end Model 11-type booth, decorated with photostrips of character actors. A woman enters the booth, chooses her selection from a push-button menu ("Villain," "Mug," "Busy-Bodies"), and out pops a strip of photos.

The camera moves around the booth, showing off the features and labels on the machine, and the title of the clip is made with dangling photostrips. THis particular clip featured actress Hattie McDaniel.

Contributed by Brian

The camera pans by the side of the booth and we see "sample photos" of character actors.
A medium close-up of the booth, decked out with a TCM top-sign and some nice decorations.
A close-up on the "Eye Level" sign.
A woman enters the booth and closes the curtain.
The booth instructions have been changed to read "Turner Classic Movies - What a Character! - Hold Still"
The woman chooses "Budy Bodies" from the push-button menu, nicely designed to look appropriate for the era.
We see the "Pic a Character" list in the booth.
The woman chooses "Mugs."
Closing in on the "Photos Delivered" sign.
A photostrip of a character actor (whose name I'll come up with one of these days) pops out of the slot.
"Developed in a Flash - Never a Dull Moment," TCM's slightyl modified signs on the rounded end of the photobooth.
The woman sits for photos in the booth, which doesn't really make sense, as the booth doesn't seem to actually take photos of people, but no matter.
The flash goes off, taking a picture of our mystery woman.
Another close up on the outside of the booth.
The camera pans along to show us the sign.
Part-photo, part-letter photostrips spell out the name of the show.