Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Rudy's New Musical

"Tentative title for Rudy Vallee's new musical for Universal, Too Many Blondes, sounds like Rudy's biography, edited by John Barrymore. Since Rudy has become prexy of Vis-o-graph (dime-in-slot movies) he's changed his theme song to "Your Dime is My Dime."" (Film Fun, 1941)

Wayne's Bubbles Pop

"Wayne Morris says emphatically that even though his mother-in-law desires it, he and "Bubbles" Schinasi will not reconcile." (Film Fun, 1941)

Wayne Morris (February 17, 1914 - September 14, 1969) started out playing college football and working as a forest ranger. He went back to school to study acting, and was discovered by Warner Brothers while acting at Pasadena Playhouse. Wayne loved flying and became a navy flier in the Pacific Theater of World War II in 1942, earning four Distinguished Flying Crosses. Playing mainly the boy-next-door, he appeared mainly in B Westerns. Some of his more well known films include: Kid Galahad, Brother Rat, and Paths of Glory.

Wayne married Leonora "Bubbles" Schinasi, stepdaughter of tobacco baron Leon Schinasi when she was 18 years old. Wayne and Leonora were married only a year (1939-1941), but had 1 son, Michael. Both would remarry. Wayne would marry Patricia O'Rourke on February 25, 1942 and would stay married to her until his death at age 45 from a heart attack. Leonora would marry producer Arthur Hornblow (former spouse of Myrna Loy) in 1945 and stay married to him until his death. Leonora also became an author, writing several children's books.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Nice Girl Needs 3 Endings

"THEY AIM TO PLEASE: In Deanna Durbin's Nice Girl, Universal had three different finales recorded - one for the United States, one for Great Britain, and the last for Latin-America. For the U.S., Deanna will sing "Thank You America"; for Britain: "There'll Always Be England"; and for Latin America, "Thank You America" will be sung in Spanish." (Film Fun, 1941)

Film Quiz 10

"Their ability to remember is remarkable"
If you need a hint:
  • Directed by Mervyn LeRoy
  • Was the official film debut of Lana Turner

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Is Horace McNally the next Big Thing?

"There's a newcomer at M-G-M who's said to look like a combination Clark Gable and Cary Grant, but not like Taylor. His name is Horace McNally. But what we'd like to know is, is he good" (Film Fun, 1941)

Stephen "Horace" McNally (July 29, 1913 - June 4, 1994) gave a a career as an attorney to become a B player. Horace is probably best known for his role as Locky, the man who rapes Jane Wyman's character in Johnny Belinda. Horace was active as an actor from 1942 until 1980. Some of his better known films include: Johnny Belinda, Winchester 73, Now Way Out, Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo, and The Harvey Girls.
On the personal side, he married Rita Winrich in 1941 and stayed married his entire life. They had a whopping (by today's standards) 8 children. As one of ten, this is normal to me :)

Title Quiz 9

"The merchandise on the boat was very unusual"
Some hints if you need them:
  • Stars Clark Gable and Joan Crawford
  • 1940
  • This film is included on one of the Joan Crawford DVD collections
  • Joan Crawford wore 3 ready to wear dresses in the film which cost less than $40
  • It was condemned by the Legion of Decency because scripture was quoted incorrectly in the film and there was a lot of lust in the film
  • According to IMDB: After Clark Gable and Joan Crawford shot a scene with a snake hanging from a tree, Joan realized that the snake was real. "That son-of-a-bitch is alive!". When informed that the snake's mouth had been tied shut with a rubber band, she said "And what happens if the f**king rubber band snaps!" and refused to shoot the scene again.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Screen Actor's Hight Point

"High point in a successful screen actor's career comes when he enters a yacht race to Honolulu, even if he does have to borrow the boat from his agent."

Henry Fonda's Eye

"Henry Fonda underwent an eye operation after finishing his stint on The Lady Eve" (Film Fun, 1941)

Title Quiz 8

"A Crescent"

Some Hints
  • Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald
  • 1940
  • Same title as a recent massive hit

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Artie Shaw VS Glen Gray

Artie Shaw and his band

When Artie Shaw was bandleader at the Hollywood Palladium ballroom cafe, the sign on his dressing room door read: "Stay Out."

Glen Gray
Now that Glen Gray has taken over, it reads: "Come On In."

Hollywood Palladium Ballroom

Film Title Quiz 7

"A couple of Paul Reveres"
If you need some hints:
  • It was a 1940 film
  • The film starred Ida Lupino, Humphrey Bogart, Ann Sheridan and George Raft

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Lana's Sweater Starts a Cat Fight

"MEOW: Said one gal to another as she watched Lana Turner go by: "Take away her sweaters, and what has she got?" Well, there are a lotta folks who'd rise up and say "Pu-lenty." (Film Fun, 1941)"

Police Commissioner Dishes Hollywood Secrets?

Hollywood Police and Fire Department 1930's

"IT SHOULD BE GOOD: Movietown's police commissioner has gone literary, a la Hollywood: he's writing a book on the town." (Film Fun, 1941)

The police commissioner at the time could have either been James R. Capeheart, who was commissioner from 1936-1940, and 1941-1943; or E. W. Christian who served as commissioner from 1940-1941. I could not find a book written by either gentleman, but can you imagine what dirt a police commissioner could dish on Hollywood?

Folsom Prison Before Johnny Cash

"Charles Chaplin has been presented with a scroll bearing the signatures of 3,000 prisoners at California's Folsom Prison for the free holiday showing there of The Great Dictator". (Film Fun, 1941)

Folsom Prison - 1952 (Source: My Folsom)

It's nice that prisoners would get some fun during the holidays. Jail can be very boring and scary. It's nice for them to have gotten a Chapliin film. I wonder what happened to the list of signatures? Wonder if anyone notorious was on the list? On a side note, it's next to impossible to find things on Folsom Prison that don't involve Johnny Cash.

Film Title Quiz 6

"Get Up, Sweetheart"
Some Clues (If You Need Help)
  • It stars the two pictured stars
  • It is apparently Claudette Colbert's favorite film the she was in (imdb)
  • It's from 1940

Monday, August 23, 2010

Golfing's For the Dogs

"A dog kept running in and out of the Bing Crosby - Bob Hope golf match the other day. At the last hole, Bob spied the pooch again and cracked, "That poor animal is worse off than I am. I didn't miss a single tree."" (Film Fun, 1941)

Orson Welles Does Not Want Credit

"Orson Welles wants it known that Mr. Dynamite was not written, directed, or produced by Orson Welles." (FIlm Fun, 1941)

I'm assuming that Orson thought this film was bad. I have not seen the film myself, and it appears to be somewhat obscure. It does not even warrant a summary on TCM. For what's it's worth the film was written by Stanley Rubin, Directed by John Rawlins, and Produced by Marshall Grant. From Universal in 1941, this thriller B film stars Lloyd Nolan, Irene Hervey, and J. Carrol Naish (whom I adore in OTR's Life With Luigi). It sounds like a fun thriller. Lloyd Nolan plays Tommy N. Thornton, aka Mr Dynamite, who is a dynamite baseball player. He follows a girl, Irene Nesbitt, into a theater. When the show is over, she's next to a dead man. Nasty characters become involved, and for some reason Shemp Howard as a fortune teller. I guess it's just one of those films I'll have to keep my eyes open for.

Hidden Film Title Quiz 5

"He was a marvel at giving letters to his secretary"

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Errol Can't Keep his Pants On

"Dr. Stork may have to resort to a battle-proof tank, and wear steel armor, but he'll get through nevertheless to the Errol Flynn manse this year. Lili Damita is still Mrs. Errol, despite gossip and numerous separations, and colorfully stages battles, with Husband Flynn." (Film Fun, 1941)
The child was Sean Flynn, born May 31, 1941 and probably passed away in April 1970 when he was captured by the Viet Cong in Cambodia.

Ginger Pounces on Ann Sheridan's Ex

Ginger Rogers is now being seen with Ann Sheridan's ex-husband, Eddie Norris.

I couldn't find a 1940s picture of Eddie Norris, so the above is a more recent image. Eddie passed away in 2002. Eddie was an actor in his own right, active from 1933 until 1963. He appeared in such films as Boys Town, Scandal Sheet, Decoy, The Kentuckian, and the cheesetastic sounding Killer Shark.

Film Title Quiz 4

"Pal Unknown"

Some Hints:

  • The Film is from 1940
  • It stars Clark Gable and Hedy Lamarr

Friday, August 20, 2010

Pot O' Gold's Debut "Actress"

"Comes the sequel: Not many moons ago, a haughty New Yawk matron bought a package of needles in a department store, and ordered them delivered to her Long Island home. Now comes the wife of a well-known bandleader in Movietown, who wangles herself a screen debut in James Roosevelt's Pot O' Gold production. The lady spent 350 iron men for her wardrobe and screen guild card, then she asked for a stand-in, and got the gal who serves none other than Roz Russell. When Mrs. Bandleader's big moment came, she had a one-word line in a scene. Asked a question, she said "yes". Simply that and nothing more. Only thing she missed was a retake. And she might have wangled that if she'd muffed the line and said, "no"." (Film Fun, 1941)

Film Quiz 3

Mickey Rooney and Olivia De Havilland

"A July Nightmare"

Some Clues:
  • This film has a fabulous cast: Dick Powell, Olivia De Havilland, Mickey Rooney, Anita Louise, James Cagney, Arthur Treacher, Ian Hunter
  • The immortal bard

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Boy Meets Girl - 1840s Style

"If anyone is interested in how boy met girl a century ago, in 1840, they can find out when the re-make of Jane Eyre is released". (Film Fun, 1941)

I've always meant to see this film. I adore Orson Welles and Joan Fontaine. I will have to check it out one of these days.

Film Title Quiz 2

Guess what 1940 film this song is from:

  • If "Angry Fruit" is Grapes of Wrath; "He sank his teeth into her apartment" is what film?
  • It stars Nelson Eddy, Jeanette MacDonald, George Sanders, and Ian Hunter

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Orson Welles Making a Film about William Randolph Hearst?

According to 1941 Film Fun - "Announcement: Orson Welles says that when he gets Citizen Kane off his mind, he's going straight to work on a great idea, based on the life of William Randolph Hearst."

I assume this is tongue and cheek. I adore Citizen Kane. The search for childhood happiness speaks volumes to me. It seems like people either love or hate this film. One of my top favorite films - a must on any list of great films.

For those of you TCM addicts like myself, Citizen Kane is on TCM October 6, 2010 at 8 PM est.

Guess This Film #1

Guess this Film - Here's Some Hints:

  • If "Angry Fruit" is the film Grapes of Wrath, then "A digit on the port side" is this film

  • It's from 1940

  • Stars Myrna Loy and Melvyn Douglas

  • It's on TCM October 7, 2010 6AM est

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Tanks A Lot

"British soldiers have named a tank after Alice Faye. No doubt the Tommies meant it for a compliment, but in good American the connotation is dubious". (Film Fun, 1941)

I have to say Alice Faye is one of my favorite actresses. I'm 100% sure the Brits meant the naming as a compliment - and didn't mean Alice is as big as a tank. She's gorgeous for heavens sake! And that voice of hers just liquid gold. Lots of stars have things named after them - from Ann Sheridan and her Oomph slippers to Mae West and her life vests.

Monday, August 16, 2010

John Barrymore and Mae West?

"Hold Onto Your Hats! 'Tis rumored that John Barrymore and Mae West may be teamed shortly for a picture. What a field day for censors that will provide!" (1941 Film Fun)

As far as I can tell, this never happened. I couldn't imagine a more mismatched pair on the screen as these two would have been. I tried doing a bit of research and couldn't find anything about this potential film. If anyone knows about this unfulfilled project, let me know.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

New Warner Brothers Stars for 1941

Warner Brothers astrologers have discovered five new stars, and names them. They are:

Eddie Albert

Brenda Marshall (from Circa)

Dennis Morgan (from Find a Grave)

Ronald Reagan (seen here with Adele Gergans at Mogambo)

and James Stephenson (from Wikipedia)

Betty Grable - Best Dressed

Hollywood's best dressed gal these days is Betty Grable. Latest creation she wore which brought ohs, ahs, and envious glances, was a dinner-dancing frock of white tulle, with a many-layered skirt, dotted with circles of tiny ostrich plumes, snug bodice, with heart-shaped neckline, and shoulder straps of ostrich plumes. Feather ornament in her hair, gold sandals, evening bag, with white fox jacket complete the ensemble.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Fredric and Loretta's Bedtime Story

Bedtime Story Poster from And Scene

Columbia's Bedtime Story won't be the sort that Mommy tells the kiddies at the twilight hour.

First: Edward G. Robinson

Edward G. Robinson from Clive Robins Movie Bluff Blog

First: Edward G. Robinson gets a citation from the American Legion for his sustained contribution to the cause of Americanism, the first actor to rate it.

Preston and the Horse Show

When Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt rode at the annual Fort Myer Horse show this year, Preston Foster had the honor of accompanying her and was a guest of the president afterward.

Last year, Errol Flynn had the honor, and the year before that, Gene Autry.


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