Tuesday, March 3, 2009

March 18, 1932


Excerpted from the New York Times

Washington, March 18
Conrad Nagel, motion-picture actor, tonight denied the popular conception of fabulous salaries paid movie actors.

Speaking at the annual dinner of the Motion Picture Theater Owners of America, Mr. Nagel, vice president of the Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences, asserted that only twenty-three individuals out of 25,000 working in the Hollywood film studios draw “headline” salaries.

“If a motion picture star ever received $1,000,000 a year,” he said, “it would be flashed from the headlines of the nation’s papers and there would be immediately hundreds of meetings all over the country condemning motion pictures and picture people in general.”

Will H. Hays, president of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America, in a telegram to the convention read by Mr. Nagel, praised the “courage and public spirit” of the exhibitors during the depression.

About 1500 guests, including Vice President Curtis and more than 400 members of Congress, attended the dinner. They greeted with interest Mr. Nagel, Clive Brook, Richard Dix, Patsy Ruth Miller, Jacqueline Logan, Claudette Colbert, Ben Lyon and Bert Lytell, motion picture stars, who with Ernst Lubitsch, director, were among the 600 delegates.

As president of the Motion Picture Relief Fund, Mr. Nagel said he conducted a “drive” a few months ago and received permission to examine the salary lists of the various studios.

“To my amazement, he declared, “I found that with 25,000 registered actors and actresses in Hollywood, there are actually only twenty-three of the so-called ‘headline’ salaries – the amount of which, plus an added cipher or two, make startling news stories or material for a certain type of radio gossiper.”

“Contrast this with the recent report of the Collector of Internal Revenue in New York. According to his report, 266 men and women reported for the last year incomes of $1,000,000 for the year. Quite a few ran over $5,000,000 for the year.”

Mr. Nagel declared he believed it a wise choice to hold the convention in Washington, saying:

“I believe we will all derive a feeling of confidence from our contact with the men here who are grappling with the problems of national recovery. “

“No matter how partisan we may be, we must in fairness pay tribute to the industry, courage and broad knowledge with which President Hoover, Secretary Mills, Eugene Meyer, General Dawes and others in the administration have grappled with problems of the greatest magnitude and urgency, and to the legislative leaders who have dealt promptly with the measures requiring immediate passage in the recovery program.


Screen Players Married in Yuma, Ariz.,
After Airplane Flight From Los Angeles

(Dvorak/Fenton photo appears courtesy of www.AnnDvorak.com)

Special to the New York Times
Los Angeles, March 17

After an airplane flight, Ann Dvorak, 19-year-old film actress, and Leslie Fenton, screen actor, were married to-day at Yuma, Ariz.

The couple left United Airport early in the day in a chartered plane and arrived at Yuma at noon. They left shortly after being married by the Rev. Herbert Brooke, and flew to Agua Caliente, Mexico.

A report reached Los Angeles that a plane had crashed in flames near that city. When waiting friends at the United Airport heard the report and the couple failed to return at the hour set, alarm was felt. They returned some time later.

The Fentons, who met in January and were married after a whirlwind courtship, will take a wedding trip later, they said. The bride is the daughter of Mrs. A. R. Pearson, known on the screen some years ago as Ann Lehr.

Miss Dvorak recently signed a starring contract with Warner Brothers, although she has been in pictures but a short time.


Screen Star and Mate Are Spending Honeymoon Week at Del Monte on Honeymoon

Del Monte, Cal., Mar. 18 (AP)
Joan Bennett, screen actress, and Gene Markey, playwright, who were married in Los Angeles Wednesday, were here today to spend a week of their honeymoon playing golf.

They left Los Angeles by automobile Wednesday following their elaborate wedding at the Town House, fashionable residential building, with the announced intention of touring northern California.

The secrecy surrounding the honeymoon plans was in contrast to the wedding itself which was open to the public at the express wishes of the bride.


Los Angeles, March 18 (AP)
A delicate spinal operation was performed successfully today on Eve Southern, film actress, at a hospital where she was reported as being in “fair condition.” She suffered a fracture of several vertebrae in a toboggan accident March 6.

Surgeons, who said the spine began to knit slightly out of line after the accident, wrapped her in a plaster cast. They said she would be in the hospital several weeks.


Los Angeles, Mar. 18 (UP)
Kenneth Harlan, motion picture actor, was free to-day of charges that he had driven an automobile while intoxicated. After less than three hours’ deliberation, a superior court jury found him not-guilty.

Harlan was arrested after an accident the night of January 2, and a physician pronounced him intoxicated.

He explained at the trial that he had nothing to drink until after the accident, when he said he took “a couple of slugs of gin” to steady himself.


Los Angeles, March 18 (UP)
Briefs on file with the district court of appeal today asked that a $16,000 judgment against Dolores Del Rio, motion picture star, be set aside. Miss Del Rio contended that the superior court erred in awarding Gunther R. Lessing, attorney, that amount in his $31,000 suit for legal and other services.


Los Angeles, Mar. 17 (UP)
Though her contract forbids her marrying for two years, Juanita Burns, who plans an attempted solo flight around the world, became engaged to-night to Douglas Walton, stage and screen actor.

The attractive flier, who is scheduled to hop from Seattle in April for her long flight, signed a contract with her manager, Joseph Martin, not to marry for two years.

“I little dreamed that such a clause would make any difference at all to me,” the flier said. “But after I met Doug, well, we became engaged.”

Martin said to-night he would not release Miss Burns from her contract.


Los Angeles, March 18 (UP)
An appeal from their recent conviction on charges of violating the state wage laws was on file to-day by Mary Nolan, screen actress, and Wallace T. Murray Jr., her husband.

Each was sentenced to thirty days in jail, but they are at liberty under $200 bail pending the outcome of the appeal.

The appeal alleges that six sections of the state labor laws are unconstitutional.

From Luella O. Parsons:

Heard and overheard: Ann Dvorak was having publicity photographs made up to the last minute before she left to get married to Leslie Fenton.

Claudia Dell seen waiting on table at the Assistance League. Donald Cook and Jameson Thomas kept her busy serving them food. Genevieve Tobin and Ruth Selwyn were guests of honor at the Assistance league lunch on Thursday.

Joan Bennett was seen getting kissed by two of her bosses, Al Rockett and Richard Rowland. W. K. Howard, Joan’s director, finishing Joan’s last picture at the hour that she was being married, paused to drink a toast to her with his company. Harry Cohn was talking shop to David Selznick, and how, at the Bennett-Markey wedding reception.

That globe trotter, Billie Dove, who has been gone from our town for three months, arrives home Monday morning.

Evelyn Brent has been summoned to Columbia to talk pictures.

That’s all to-day. See you tomorrow!


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