You’ve Got to Be Kidding Dept.

Stefanie Powers Touts

‘Girl from U.N.C.L.E.’ Revival

“The Girl From U.N.C.L.E.” series engenders schizoid reactions among U.N.C.L.E. fans — reviled for its crudely comedic slander of the parent “Man From U.N.C.L.E.” series, yet begrudgingly sought out as part of the total U.N.C.L.E. experience. Now that the series is finally on DVD, the fans who coveted those 29 lousy episodes to satisfy a yearning for completeness are also being painfully reminded of just why we’ve loathed this show for 40 years.

Stefanie Powers, who starred as the generally obnoxious and inept April Dancer, has had very little to say about “The Girl From U.N.C.L.E.” for the last several decades (even in her 2010 memoirs). Lately, however, she’s been talking up the show as one of the great experiences of her early career, and more recently has been out promoting the DVD set.

But now she’s made the flabbergasting claim that NBC plans to revive the TV series, even as Warner Bros., the studio that holds MGM’s original U.N.C.L.E. rights, continues its apparently endless attempts to get a “Man From U.N.C.L.E.” movie into production. And Powers, of course, envisions herself with a role in the remake, playing a mentor to the new U.N.C.L.E. girl.

While signing autographs at a Los Angeles nostalgia show, Powers blathered to a clueless columnist about the virtues of her U.N.C.L.E. series: “We knew we were on to something special,” she puffed, describing the show as “so indicative of the 60s spy craze.” The column goes on to claim that a remake is being developed for NBC by producers who “are reportedly staying true to the original series.”

Some remake producers are finally “staying true to the original,” and the original they plan to stay true to is “The Girl From U.N.C.L.E.”??!

Read the full story here.

Jamaica Bound 007 Fans

Can Now Fly into Ian Fleming

International Airport

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Jan. 12 — Jamaica opened its third international airport today, named in honor of one of the island’s most famous part-time residents, James Bond creator Ian Fleming.

Ian Fleming International Airport is the new name for an expanded and modernized aerodrome in Boscobel on the north shore of the island, not far from the resort town of Ocho Rios and Fleming’s vacation home Goldeneye in Oracabessa. The Bond novels, as every Fleming fan knows, were written at Goldeneye during Fleming’s annual two-month vacations.

“Ian Fleming made a contribution to Jamaica and gave Jamaica an image much larger than it would otherwise have had, because this was where the adrenalin flowed, where the creativity emerged that enabled him to write 13 James Bond novels,” said Jamaican Prime Minister Bruce Golding as he officially opened the airport.

Golding thanked the Fleming family for allowing the government to use the name. Lucy Fleming, Ian Fleming’s niece and the director of Ian Fleming Publications — the company we used to know as Glidrose Productions and that still holds Fleming’s copyrights — was on hand for the opening.

“He adored Jamaica and found so much inspiration and relaxation here,” she said. “Having an airport named after him here I know would have been a great honor for him. Honestly, I don’t think he would have written those books without Jamaica.”

Goldeneye is now a pricey and exclusive resort owned by Island Records founder Chris Blackwell. He also attended the airport’s opening, noting that the new airfield is “very well set up,” and that he expected it to be a boon to Goldeneye and other tourist destinations.


Fleming Airport Sign Vandalized

BOSCOBEL, Jamaica, Jan. 17 — Workers arrived at the newly opened Ian Fleming International Airport this morning to find the airport’s entrance defaced by what appeared to be black oil paint spattered across both sides of the sign.

The sign was taken down and was expected to be back up after being cleaned.

Richard Creary, mayor of nearby Port Maria, condemned the vandalism. “I’m not in support of such action,” he told the Daily Gleaner. “I know persons are upset with the way the name was chosen, but defacing the sign is not the answer. There are better ways of getting the message across.”

Creary, it’s now reported, stunned some of the dignitaries at the airport’s otherwise cheery Jan. 12 official opening when he told them that there are many residents of St. Mary Parish, which encompasses the airport, the ritzy resort town of Ocho Rios and the nearby Goldeneye hotel that was once Fleming’s home, who are miffed by the airport’s name.

“People are extremely upset over the name, we don’t like it and we want it to be renamed, it’s a great disrespect to the people of St. Mary and Jamaica,” said one disgruntled resident who asked that his name not be used when he was quoted in the Jamaica Sunday Observer. “I don’t think there is one person in the community or in Jamaica who agrees with Ian Fleming’s name being on the airport, it is just not right, it’s a shame and it’s an indictment on the government.”

Fitzroy Wilson, a parish council member representing Boscobel where the airport is located, is also unhappy with the choice of name. “I think it’s a great injustice to name the airport after Ian Fleming,” he said. “I think Jamaica has not benefited from Ian Fleming, but Ian Fleming has benefited from Jamaica. There are a lot of Jamaicans who the airport could have been named in honor of,” he continued, naming reggae musician Bob Marley as one possibility.

Wilson said residents also were upset to learn that the international airport will not accept commercial flights, a fact that was kept quiet until the opening. “Now they are being told that only the rich and famous will be accommodated at the airport,” he said.

Prime Minister Bruce Golding, when speaking at the airport’s opening ceremonies, defended his government’s decision-making. He noted that mass tourism is a backbone of the Jamaican economy but the country also needs to attract the wealthy visitors who will be parking their private jets at the new airfield. “They buy, they build, and they create that added energy in the economy that we need so badly,” he said.

“We also considered that the market to which we are appealing is a market to which the name Ian Fleming would have some resonance,” Golding said. “We genuinely wanted to honor the memory of Ian Fleming because of all he has achieved and the extent to which he brought Jamaica into that achievement.”


Jamaica Puts Fleming Airport

Up for Sale

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Feb. 4 — The Jamaican government confirmed today that it is seeking to cut costs by unloading three government-owned aerodromes, including the new Ian Fleming International Airport.

Fleming Airport, formerly the Boscobel Aerodrome, has had its share of problems since opening only three weeks ago. The airport’s sign was defaced with black paint five days after the facility opened, apparently as part of a growing community protest over the decision to name the airport for celebrated British author and journalist Ian Fleming.

The sign was taken down to be cleaned and was reinstalled Jan. 23. Four days later it was again splattered with black paint. Police are investigating both incidents but have made no arrests.

Another problem emerged Jan. 26 when a private jet arrived from Maryland — only the second international flight to land at the airport. As the plane prepared to leave later that day, it rolled over a defect in the taxiway that caused one wheel to sink into the pavement. Inspection of the plane found no damage and it departed several hours later. The Daily Gleaner reported that the airport’s new pavement had not been properly compacted, allowing recent rains to compromise the surface.

Now the government says it can’t afford to continue to operate airfields all over the island and so plans to shift Fleming International Airport and at least two others into private hands. The country’s largest airport, Norman Manley International at the capital city of Kingston, is also to be sold.

Surprisingly, no wealthy James Bond fan has offered to add the Fleming Airport to his collection. But then the airport may fetch a bit more than the $4.6 million paid last year for one of the Aston Martins seen in “Goldfinger.”


Jamaican Prime Minister Bruce Golding cuts the ribbon to open Ian Fleming International Airport. Looking on, left to right, are Airports Authority chairman Mark Hart, Minister of Transport and Works Mike Henry, and Ian Fleming’s niece Lucy.