Here's everything you ever wanted to know about Hollywood's new golden boy, in 1940 anyway, William Holden:
- He was born in O'Fallon, Illinois
- He was four when his family moved to Pasadena, California so his father could move for his work in a chemical laboratory
- He has 2 brothers, 17 and 14
- He wanted to be a bacteriologist and was going to Pasadena Junior college for it. He's not upset to be a picture star now because "If you're really destined to be a scientist, nothing can shake you"
- His first acting job was by chance. In 1938 at age 21 he was begged by his friend to fill in for the 8 line role as a 70-year-old man in 'Manya' and was immediately scouted by Paramount.
- His eyes are blue; his complexion is bronze; his hair is curly and 'balks at regimentation".
- He doesn't think he's good-looking
- He doesn't use garters - he let's his socks do as they please
- He "has a flair for nice ties"
- He loves wearing a jacket, pair of slacks and sports shoes - not fancy duds. He is 'not a Beau Nash' (dandy from the 1700')
- William Holden quote - "I refuse to be a jelly bean"
- He is shy and lowers his head a bit when he talks
- He is a great conversationalist and often ends up quizzing his interviewers
- He has a great sense of humor and he "can be a Puck"
- He is related to 2 presidents, George Washington and Warren G. Harding
- When he was 8, he parked cars for patrons at the Pasadena Playhouse. He hated the profession for years after this job, but good for us, he changed his mind.
- William Holden loves music. He played clarinet, piano, guitar and drums. He also sang baritone in the church choir.
- He collects Gregorian chants and sings them
- He loves solitude
- He doesn't like talking about himself because he things "no one's interested".
- He prefers candor and hates 'pussyfooting'
- He loves reading
- His favorite columnists are Walter Winchell, Bugs Baer and Boake Carter
- His favorite actors are Paul Muni, Adolphe Menjou, Claude Rains and Bette Davis
How does he feel about his new job? To quote Holden, "I'm in pictures for the duration of the public's interest. I love the work."
Mandy's Musings - I'm glad he loved the job. He was fantastic in many films. My favorite William Holden role is of Joe Gillis in the iconic Sunset Boulevard. And who isn't slightly troubled by the fact that he was basically a valet at age 8? Why were they letting this kid park cars? No wonder he hated showbiz after this experience. It seems logical he was treated poorly in that job because he was a kid. I also had no idea he was so musical. When I think of William Holden's image, I don't think music. I suppose I should have guessed since he was in Picnic, but I think of him in harsher roles. I would love to have heard him sing Gregorian chants. Hearing who his favorite actors was interesting. And of course, he that he was related to 2 presidents. And of course, I was definitely surprised he wanted to be a scientist. Who knows what kind of diseases he could have cured? Who knew the simple act of filling in for a sick friend in a play would change William Holden's life forever? I can't help but feel bad for the person he replaced. They could have made it.
Source: Franchey, John R. "That's Holden for You". Photoplay. July, 1940. Page 10.