Sunday, May 17, 2009

March 25, 1932


‘Mr. Ann Harding” to Bring Suit

Hollywood, Mar. 25 (INS)
Harry Bannister, $75,000-a-year actor, who tired of being known as “Mr. Ann Harding,” to-day planned to establish a residence at Reno, Nev., to divorce Miss Harding, the wealthy film actress.

The couple separated and announced that Bannister, the actor, was losing his identity under the radiance of Miss Harding’s career as a film actress.

With a property settlement effected, it was known that Miss Harding would retain custody of their daughter, Jane, who will be 4 years old in June. Bannister, however, will be given full privileges of visiting the child any time he desires.

Bannister, missing from the palatial estate he and Miss Harding occupied atop the Hollywood Hills, to-day was believed en-route to Reno.


Hollywood recalled that Jamie Del Rio, tiring of being known as “Mr. Dolores Del Rio,” deserted his beautiful actress wife and died in Europe. Dolores is now Mrs. Cedric Gibbons.

Nancy Carroll and James Kirkland, a newspaper man, were happy before she attained stardom, after which they were divorced and she married Bolton Mallory.

Ina Claire and Jack Gilbert parted when Miss Claire became a star wider known than Gilbert.

Friends of Miss Harding and Bannister to-day hoped he would attain great success on the New York stage and become reconciled with Miss Harding, who now commands her own salary in motion pictures.


Los Angeles, Mar. 25 (AP)
Caught in an equinoctial storm, the yacht Invader, carrying Douglas Fairbanks, motion picture actor, and other member of his company to location in the South Seas, narrowly escaped foundering on uncharted coral reefs off Tahiti, the United Artists studio was informed by radio today.

While the yacht was rounding a peninsula en route to Moorea from Papeete for the first distant location work, the storm first broke in a tropical squall which developed cloudburst proportions.

The yacht floundered helplessly, radio advices said, with Fairbanks, Edward Sutherland and William Farnum augmenting the crew to keep the vessel from the rocks. Maria Alba, picked by Fairbanks to accompany him to film tropical motion pictures, was also aboard the craft.

Capt. John Haga, commander of the Invader, finally brought the yacht into open water.


Beverly Hills, March 25 (UP)
Jeanette MacDonald, motion picture actress, had an extra pair of shoes today, but she can’t wear them. They were left behind when a burglar, frightened from her home, dived head first through a window and escaped. Nothing was taken.

From Luella O. Parsons:

It looks very much as if Greta Garbo’s annual threat, “I go back to Sweden,” is serious this time. Greta’s contract is up June 1 and she hasn’t indicated in any way that she intends to re-sign. A friend who is very close to her says Miss Garbo has made all the money she needs and she wants to go back to Sweden and live.

To me this is the most dramatic story of any year of any studio. The breathless anxiety with which any big studio like Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer is hanging on the Swedish actress’ decision of whether she remains or whether she returns to her native land is amazing. Five years ago no one knew Greta Garbo. Today she is the biggest name in the entire picture business and that means both male and female.

Greta doesn’t give a hang for publicity. She isn’t interested in being the greatest star in the world. All she wants is a nice little farm in Sweden and a place to which she can retire. M-G-M will give her almost anything she wants if she will sign, but up to now, as I said, she shows no inclination to remain in this country and in the movies.

Whenever you read that a Sylvia Sidney story has been purchased, you know Paramount has studied its picture possibilities from all angles. Miss Sidney is one of the Paramount stars who is never carelessly cast.

One of the latest purchases for her is Goldmans, a novel by Siegfried Siwertz. The story is that of a department store with the fair Sylvia as a salesgirl. Long time since we have had a “working goil” tale of this kind. But it’s like one of the thirteen original plots, always good for a return engagement.

The doctors soon wont’ have a secret left, what with all of these pictures being made showing scientific researches and the pathological conditions of unfortunates. “The Illustrious Corpse,” now being made by Tiffany, specializes in a man without a memory. Lucien Littlefield plays this role. Warner Brothers has “Dr. X,” a horror thriller, and I am told there is enough horror to give any one who likes pictures of this kind a real thrill.

Snapshots of Hollywood:

Roland Young is saying au revoir to Hollywood and leaving for a trip to Europe. He returns in July after making a picture abroad.

Sydney Fox is still “keeping company” with Jean Negulesco, dining at the Gotham.

Phillips Holmes is still buying Florence Rice’s luncheons. This romance seems more serious than any of his previous affairs of the heart. He has just signed a new contract with Paramount.

From Wood Soanes:

The movies are growing older, it would seem, and no longer can we honestly refer to them as being in their swaddling clothes – a matter that removes at least one alibi from the list for eccentric productions.

In the current issue of “The Review of Reviews” is an account of Will Hays’ 10 years as czar; and if that were not enough the Paramount studios have sent a screed discussing Hollywood’s theatrical families. Of course they are not traditional families of the theater, but there is some point to the story nevertheless.

“The Barrymores, Costellos, Bennetts and Colliers,” write Dave Keene, are only a few. Although Ethel, Lionel and John are still a tradition, most famous of the ‘like father’ groups in Hollywood today are the Bennetts and the Morrises. Richard Bennett has just become a Paramount player. His daughters, Constance and Joan are stars and Barbara acts occasionally between being Mrs. Morton (Crooner) Downey.

Chester Morris now leads his family, although his father, William, acts in films as does his sister, Willy, and brother, Adrian. His mother was a stage star.

Then there are the many Quillens and the Gleasons. Russell Gleason, now with Wynne Gibson in “Clara Deane” is the third generation of a thespian family.

Perhaps you didn’t know it but all of the following film famous are of theatrical families: Four Marx Brothers, Phillips Holmes, Jackie and Robert Coogan, Clive Brook, William Boyd, Eugene Pallette, Lupe Velez, Lily Damita, Buster Keaton, Bebe Daniels, Kay Francis and Marilyn Miller. And more obvious, those famous juniors – Douglas Fairbanks, William Collier, Noah Beery, and Francis X. Bushman.

Yes, and don’t you forget, Creighton Chaney and Ethel Barrymore’s offspring!

“Shanghai Interlude” is to be Universal’s bid for a successful Chinese war story to rival “What Price Glory” and “All Quiet on the Western Front.” The story is the work of Wellesley Wong, who was born in China, educted in London and is under contract in Hollywood. Anna May Wong may be in the picture.

Noel Coward has arrived in Hollywood for some story conferences in regard to three stories he sold at prices advertised anywhere from $200,000 to $2,000,000. Two of the plays are “Cavalcade” and “Bitter Sweet.” The third is to be selected.

“Blessed Event,” a current Broadway drama harpooning the Broadway columnists in general and Walter Winchell in particular, has been purchased by Warner’s for the uses of James Cagney. The price is given as $66,000, bids having been made by Paramount, for Jack Oakie; Universal, for Lew Ayres and Fox for James Dunn.

Paramount is also dickering with Bing Crosby, the crooner, for the chief role in the radio drama, “Wild Waves” by William Ford Manley, which has been acquired for screen production.

1 comment:

A said...

Fascinating as usual. I've always wondered whether it was easier for stars to marry a star or a "normal person". Sounds like marriage has always been a Hollywood problem