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Tuesday, 28 February 2017

This Week in History - Feb 26 to Mar 4

Everything you need to know about the goings-ons and gossip from this week in Precode Hollywood.

1929:

Nazimova’s Talker - Indications are that Nazimova will return to the screen after an absence of five years. Eddie Small has her under contract and is understood to be preparing a talking picture which will star her. Word is it will be released through Columbia.

50 Baby Tests - Paramount made screen tests of 50 babies selected in the Los Angeles Express baby contest. Infants who show the best screen possibilities will be given one week’s work in pictures.

Lillian’s Tax - The government had an income tax claim of $54,311 against Lillian Gish based upon her two year contract. She quickly filed an appeal.

No Big Meals - Heavy meals and talking picture work don’t go well together. One director discovered that after lunch actors’ voices have changed considerably. In order to have the same tone, players must eat early in the morning or starve throughout working hours.

1930:

Profane Cowboys - Professional cowboys now migrating her for picture work are giving directors plenty of headaches by their habitual profanity. When told to ad lib in mob scenes the mike gets hot with a mixed conglomeration of cowboy vernacular. It would never pass the censor and scenes must be retaken.
Shooting - Actress Vera Gingell and Siguard Bjorne, musician, were shot and killed by the woman’s estranged husband, Augustus Gingell when he found them living together. Gingell was held for double murder.

Rambeau Suit Up - Retrial of the alienation of affection suit against actress Marjorie Rambeau will be sort this week in 1930. The original suit in which Mrs Mabel Manton sought to collect $100,000 from the actress for alleged stealing of William Manton’s affections resulted in jury disagreement. The action grows out of a raid made on Miss Rambeau’s apartment where Mr Manton, an actor, was found. The actress explained that Mr Manton was merely aiding her by the reading of a part.

1931:

Not Too Much Mother - “What do you mean, too much mother?” Katherine Roth cracked when she and Lillian arrived for the girl to do her personal appearance turn, referring to a story that Paramount dropped Lillian for that reason. “We get along splendidly, Lillian gives me anything I want. I’ll never try to advise her in love affairs again because she feels so badly over one boy to whom I objected and who died four weeks ago. But maybe she’ll take my advice on financial matters since she lost money on some stocks bought against my advice,” Mrs Roth said. Later Lillian said she and her mother were, “in perfect sympathy” and also denied the “too much mother” yarn.

Del Rio Given Second Chance - Sam Goldwyn thinks Dolores del Rio can be ‘made’ as a talker star regardless of how much a bad one was her Bad One (1930). He will feature her in a piece based on The Dove but vastly metamorphosed in its screen transition.

There’s Rain and Rain - Rain scene for a Pathe picture were postponed because it rained. The rain was the kind they get in California, where everything is bigger and better. Overhead pipes had been installed for the London dizzy kind and the director refused to take what nature supplied.

1932:

Screen Novice’s First - Gloria Stuart, screen novice, whom Universal signed after litigation with Paramount, goes to First National on loan for her first picture, Street of Women.

Operator’s Home Bombed - A bomb was thrown through the front window at the home of the operator at the Strand, which was wrecked by a similar explosion last December. Four members of his family, sleeping at the time, were injured but not seriously. The operator was employed by Keraostes Bros who have been rowing with the union over the size of staffs employed in the nabe houses.

Valentino’s Million Shrinks to $130,000 - Albert and Maria Guglieni, brother and sister of late Rudolph Valentino have petitioned the court for a partial distribution of his estate, which is still in litigation. The estate, which was once rated in excess of $1,000,000 has shrink to $130,000 and may be wiped out by income tax claims.
 Rudolph's sister Maria and her husband Alberto

1933:

Paramount Abandons Sex - Paramount has abandoned the idea of producing Sex, the Mae West play. The studio had been considering it but decided that critics would dwell on the fact that the show was knocked off in New York. The matter had not been taken up with the Hays office but the studio figured that if the title was change it would go through. 

Backyard Argument - There is an argument between Jack Warner and Sam Goldwyn over the latter’s statement that picture people in Hollywood are incompetent, extravagant and out of step with the times. From the way Warner talkers, it looks as if the boys will stick their tongues out at each other when they meet in New York this week.

Not a Bit Bashful - Warner publicity staff had a tough time with the crowd of crashers trying to muscle in on the press showing of the 42nd Street train at the Santa Fe depot. Finally one of the staff asked one of the crashers, “Who are you with?” Proudly he indicated the frail clinging to his arm. “I’m with my girl,” he said.
A scene from the short 42nd Street Special (1933) which featured the films promotional train

1934:

Dressler Burns Over Citizenship - Burned at the reports that her name had been included in the list of alien players bandied about during a Congressional hearing, Marie Dressler strapped her six guns on and went into action. In answer Dressler remarked, “I have resided in the US ever since I came from Canada 55-years-ago. I married an American 35-years-ago and that gave me citizenship.” Her final broadside was to the effect that if the matter was brought up again she might “run down to Washington and tell ‘em a few things, too”.

Nudes for Hays - Irony has planted a group of plastic nudes just outside the executive office of Hays’ quarters in the Louis B. Mayer building in Hollywood. Prominence of the plaques is being commented on especially in view of the Hays censorial stress, heavy at this time.

Poor Gilbert - Metro is chastising John Gilbert again. The Queen Christine trailers mention all the feature male support but Gilbert.

Trainer Nipped - An animal trainer was injured seriously when attacked by a bear on the Mack Sennett lot. Had brought the animal from a circus for a Clyde Beatty pic.

2 comments:

  1. I'm enjoying this series quite a bit. Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks again for the work you're doing on this weekly series, very entertaining

    ReplyDelete