University News

Film Course Being Taught by Son of Legendary Actor Jack Lemmon

September 5, 2017

Film Course Being Taught by Son of Legendary Actor Jack Lemmon

During the half-century from 1920 to 1970, according to Chris Lemmon, the son of famed actor Jack Lemmon, Hollywood’s stars and moguls were some of the most powerful and influential people in the world.

“Their every move was planned and choreographed, and their every movement was photographed and publicized,” said Chris.

The result?

“People across world hung on their every move,” he said. “And the backstreet theatres of Vaudeville became the studios of Hollywood, and one of the greatest business empires on earth.”

An analysis of this period is the focus of a special topics class titled “The Golden Age of Hollywood – Life Beyond the Silver Screen,” a University of New Haven film course being taught this fall by Chris Lemmon, who has more than 40 TV and film acting credits himself.

Chris Lemmon introduces his one-man show “Twist of Lemmon”.

The course is exploring how and why some of the greatest films, plays, and television programs were conceived and ultimately created. In addition, it will examine the creators and collaborators and how their experiences affected not only their personal lives but the lives of their loved ones.

“The course is about the most influential industry in the world, and what it was back in the era of innocence,” Lemmon told WNPR. “That golden age of Hollywood -- Camelot. And what that means to us now.”

Chris is taking the students right into a time and era long gone but where the entertainment business of today evolved from.

– Tom Garrett, Communication, Film and Media Studies Chair

“He has amazing stories to tell, as he was there. On any given night, in his childhood home, it was nothing to have Marilyn Monroe, Jimmy Cagney or Walter Matthau over, and JFK or George Cukor would happen to drop by, while Eli Kazan and Warren Beatty would be in a corner chatting with Gloria Swanson.”

The film course and a one-man play Lemmon performed on campus was also featured in Connecticut Magazine and on WTNH.