Inside the 2019 TCM Classic Cruise With the Hosts & Stars (PHOTOS)

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TUESDAY:

As New York City’s Pier 88 recedes into the distance, the sail-away party begins with a kickline of movie-theater usherettes welcoming passengers aboard. The retro characters could later be found stationed in the popcorn-scented halls outside the Disney Magic’s two movie theaters. Even though the cruise embarked in the late afternoon, eight movies and two documentaries screened that day alone.

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TUESDAY:

Singer/dancer/actress Mitzi Gaynor, best known for 1958’s South Pacific, basks in the crowd’s appreciation at the sail-away party. In a later conversation with TCM’s Ben Mankiewicz, she would reveal that Frank Sinatra, her costar in 1957’s The Joker Is Wild, was instrumental in her landing that signature role as Navy nurse Nellie “I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair” Forbush in the film adaptation of the Rodgers & Hammerstein musical.

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TUESDAY:

The cruise’s full roster of guests (from left): programmer for NYC’s Film Forum cinema Bruce Goldstein (applauding in blue jacket), film historian and preservationist Randy Haberkamp, critic Leonard Maltin, triple-threat star Mitzi Gaynor, Golden Globe winner and three-time Oscar nominee Diane Ladd, TCM primetime host Ben Mankiewicz, actress Cicely Tyson and TCM hosts Eddie Muller, Dave Karger and Alicia Malone.

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TUESDAY:

The talk “An Hour With Ben Mankiewicz” brought anecdotes from the primetime TCM host (second from left, with moderator and TCM Director of Programming Production Scott McGee) on the channel’s late Robert Osborne and Mankiewicz’s dismal audition to be a game-show host—and a surprise engagement between two viewers who had met on the 2013 cruise, Heidi Tittle and Thomas Bruno!

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TUESDAY:

TCM host Dave Karger intros one of the 20-plus classic movies that screened poolside on the cruise. Among the titles: Shall We Dance (1937), Sullivan’s Travels (1941), Viva Las Vegas (1964), The Sting (1973) and, one of several Halloween-related flicks, Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948)!

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WEDNESDAY:

TCM host Ben Mankiewicz sits down with actress Cicely Tyson (1972’s Sounder, 1974’s The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman), where the born storyteller reveals a curious acting exercise: checking out people’s feet.

For example, she says, years ago on the subway, she saw “these women, matronly, 50 years old or something like that…dressed to the nines. They had on their sable fur coats, lots of jewelry. I looked at their feet, and what I saw were two women who probably came into the wealth because their shoes showed they never really had a pair of shoes that fit their feet, [which were] gnarled from bunions and corns and so on. So I knew what their early lives were like. And to this day, I walk down the street, I never look in people’s faces—I look at their feet.”

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THURSDAY:

At “TCM: Open All Night,” hosts Dave Karger, Alicia Malone, Eddie Muller and Ben Mankiewicz cap off a day at port in Bermuda with a game of 100 Questions. (Their attempt at Two Truths and a Lie a night earlier had failed due to, uh, counting mistakes.) Most impressive feat: Malone explains all 12 of her tattoos!

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FRIDAY:

Fierce, funny, self-confident Diane Ladd drops countless memorable sayings (“T’ain’t true, McGee!”) during a Q&A with TCM host Ben Mankiewicz. His hour with the legendary actress, whose many films include 1974’s Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore and Chinatown and 1991’s Rambling Rose, covers everything from “miracle” daughter Laura Dern to her script about Watergate figure Martha Mitchell.

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FRIDAY:

Time for the All Hallows’ Eve deck party! Zorro (that would be TCM host Ben Mankiewicz) crowns Elizabeth I—based on the Bette Davis role in 1949’s The Virgin Queen—best individual winner of the costume contest. Passengers also dress up as Nosferatu, Princess Leia, the Invisible Man, Young Frankenstein’s Frau Blucher…and a green screen!

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FRIDAY:

A trio representing 1944’s Arsenic and Old Lace take the prize for best group costume on All Hallows’ Eve. Other multiperson efforts evoke Nick and Nora Charles of the 1930s and ’40s Thin Man movies, the How to Marry a Millionaire (1953) showgirls played by Jane Russell and Marilyn Monroe, the Humphrey Bogart and Katharine Hepburn characters in 1951’s The African Queen, real-life MGM bigwigs of the 1920s and ’30s, actress Norma Shearer and exec husband Irving Thalberg, and…

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FRIDAY:

…the slicker-sporting stars of 1952’s Singin’ in the Rain!

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FRIDAY:

TCM hosts Dave Karger (as silent-film comedian Harold Lloyd) and Alicia Malone (as Hitchcock heroine Tippi Hedren from 1963’s The Birds) pose up with special cruise guest Cicely Tyson.

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FRIDAY:

More TCM Classic Cruise Halloween party fun with actresses Cicely Tyson, a witchy Diane Ladd and Mitzi Gaynor revisiting her role in South Pacific.

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FRIDAY:

Fireworks wrap up the All Hallows’ Eve Deck Party!

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SATURDAY:

TCM host Alicia Malone mingles following a presentation she based on her 2017 book, Backwards & In Heels: The Past, Present and Future of Women Working in Film. Also today: Noir Alley host Eddie Muller talks film heists in a special hour—and Ben Mankiewicz calls bingo!

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SATURDAY:

As the Magic nears New York City, the gang says goodbye at a farewell party. We’ve said who’s who many times before but just in case, there’s: programmer for NYC’s Film Forum cinema Bruce Goldstein, famed film critic Leonard Maltin and TCM hosts Eddie Muller, Dave Karger, Alicia Malone and Ben Mankiewicz. In the background, you can see the Holly Street Stompers about to perform music from, as they describe it, “the Golden Age of American song.”

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We took the 2019 TCM Classic Cruise, and all we got was this lousy popcorn hangover!

From October 22 to 27, the Disney Magic was home to this special sailing from New York City to Bermuda. All aboard: TCM’s hosts, three legendary actresses and several industry know-it-alls (we mean that in a good way).

Sail through the gallery to see what went on. And for information on the October 4-10, 2020, trip, visit tcmcruise.com. (Warning: This year’s cruise sold out fast!)