Monday, September 28, 2009

April 6, 1932


London, April 6 (UP)
Gloria Swanson and Michael Farmer received congratulations from all over the world to-day on the birth of a blue-eyed, curly haired daughter, who cried so lustily that Miss Swanson remarked: “Well, she seems wired for sound.”

The daughter was born Tuesday. She weighed seven pounds and two ounces. Arrival was almost a month earlier than expected.

When Farmer was admitted to see his child for the first time, he took the baby in his arms, paraded up and down the bedroom, and shouted: “She’s marvelous, Gloria!”

“We are most happy,” said Farmer. “But I am in a complete daze. Our plans are indefinite, but we hope to remain in London until late in August. Then we will go to south France and later to Hollywood.

Miss Swanson who married Farmer shortly after she was divorced from the Marquis de la Falaise de la Courdraye, has been in London for several weeks, having arrived from Paris after a short European tour. She has one other daughter, named Gloria, and an adopted son.

Miss Swanson and Farmer, Irish sportsman, were married secretly at Elmsford, N. Y., last August. Their wedding was not announced until Nov. 6, when it was disclosed by the officials who issued the license and performed the ceremony.

The couple had another wedding at Yuma, Ariz., on Nov. 9, after Miss Swanson’s decree from the Marquis became final.


Los Angeles, April 5 (AP)
Differences between Buster Keaton, smileless screen comedian, and his wife, the former Natalie Talmadge, which for a brief period yesterday occupied the attention of the district attorney’s office here and in the police department in San Diego, apparently have been settled.

The trouble arose, so both Keaton and his wife said, when the former decided to take his two sons, Joe, nine years old, and Robert, eight, for an airplane ride. Mrs. Keaton said she did not want her sons to make the trip.

Learning the father had taken the boys, accompanied by Connie Consuelo, their governess, to San Diego by plane, Mrs. Keaton, in company with her sister, Constance Talmadge Netcher, appeared at the district attorney’s office and got that official, Buron Fitts, to telephone San Diego police to stop Keaton.

When the plane arrived at San Diego, Keaton was held by the police for more than an hour and finally released. He, his sons and the governess were to return to Los Angeles today.

“Any report that Buster and I have separated is nonsense,” said Mrs. Keaton. “One doesn’t separate over such arguments.”

“It was just a little family difficulty,” the comedian stated. “There’s nothing to the whole thing – it’s so trivial.”

The comedian’s mother, however, said she had known there had been some domestic difficulty in her son’s home. She said she had stayed at his home Sunday night to apply hot towels to Buster’s eye which recently was badly scratched in a scuffle with friends and that the treatment was necessary because of a resulting hemorrhage.

“Natalie has not been home since Friday,” the mother said.

Richard Dix is to be a busy actor for the next fifteen months. He has a new contract with Radio to make three features in that time. Kay Francis is even busier at First National, trying to make five pictures in six months so that she can get a five-month trip to Europe on vacation.

The star dressing room at the Cohan theater in New York has changed hands, but not ownership. Dorothy Gish moved out last week when “The Bride the Sun Shines On” finished its run, and her husband, James Rennie, moved in with “Trick for Trick.”

From Luella O. Parsons

The air is filled with stories about Greta Garbo. Some we discard as too absurd, others we must give credence to. One recent tale that comes from a source close to the Swedish mystery woman is that when Miss Garbo waves good-bye to the U. S. A. she will return to Sweden to form her own producing company and make her own pictures.

Mauritz Stiller, credited with discovery of the one and only Garbo, bequeathed her a comfortable fortune when he died, so ‘tis said. It was his wish that she eventually return to her own country. Her plan, so we hear, is to make pictures in both Sweden and Germany, and Harry Eddington, her representative, has gone ahead to make the arrangements.

If Miss Garbo is as shrewd a businesswoman as everyone thinks, it seems to me she is making a mistake to leave Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Foreign productions are never as good and certainly her popularity will be lost if the release of her pictures is limited to Europe.

Lewis Milestone is actually on the train. He left New York Sunday and is returning to Hollywood as fast as the choo-choo can carry him. In the Milestone party are Dr. Serge Bertensonn, writer, formerly associated with the Moscow Art Theater; Harry d’Arrast, French director; Charles Lederer, dialogue writer, humorist, man about town, and Chester Erskine.

Milestone left town a director. He returns a United Artists associated producer, working in conjunction with Joseph Schenck, head man at U. A. The first job he will tackle is “Happy Go Lucky, Ben Hecht’s story of a tramp writtern for Al Jolson.

“Rain,” (I doubt if the rights to the play have been sold to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer) will be the next to take Milestone’s attention.

The little girl, small, but oh my, who wrote “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” is writing the dialogue for Marion Davies’ next picture. When Frances Marion was rushed to the hospital with a bad case of overwork Anita Loos was handed the script and told to add some of her own inimitable lines. The story is that of a chorus girl and her pal, was originally called “Three Blonds,” but that title has been discarded. Frances Marion is still in the hospital but she expects to be allowed to return home in a few days. After she and Anita Loos get together on her Davies story she will leave for New York to confer with Mary Pickford.

Marlene Dietrich is expecting her husband, Rudolph Sieber, to visit her. In order that she may have some degree of privacy she has moved to another house and I promised I wouldn’t say where. Marlene told me after an article appeared in one of the newspapers, she had as much privacy as the proverbial goldfish. Agents, salesmen and fans called to see her at all hours of the day and night. Her garden was trampled down and her grounds made a public rendezvous.

Maria can think of nothing else but her daddy’s arrival. There is talk that Miss Dietrich may return to Germany with her husband, but that seems unlikely since her contract with Paramount will not permit her to leave at this time.

In his informal talk to the newspaper crowd, M. C. Levee said that he will not do business with any stars under contract to other studios. The Screen Guild is open and above board. Ethel Barrymore has not signed with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer so there is a chance that the three Barrymore picture may be made for his company. If Levee can borrow John and Lionel Barrymore from M-G-M he will try to sign Ethel. In that event the Barrymore picture will be the first Screen Guild production. Mike is anxious to have the first one outstanding. There is a chance he may affiliate his Screen Guild with the Theater Guild in New York. At any rate, he is going to talk business with the Theater Guild when he goes to New York in a few weeks.

A great reception was given Edmund Lowe when he went out to the Fox Westwood Hills Studios to sign his contract. He is making two pictures for the Fox Company and both of these will be Chandu. The second is a sequel to the first. Fox, in producing this number, is banking on the popularity of the radio broadcast which has become almost as popular as Amos ‘n Andy.

Snapshots of Hollywood:

Miriam Hopkins, all in white at the Brown Derby, makes no comment on the report she was to elope with Austin Parker.

Constance Bennett, in yellow pajamas and white coat, was slipping into the Hollywood Plaza for tea.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

April 5, 1932


London, April 5 (AP)

A daughter was born to-night to Gloria Swanson, American movie actress. Miss Swanson has been in London for some time with her husband, Michael Farmer.


San Diego, Cal., April 4 (UP)

Buster Keaton, straight faced Hollywood comedian, transferred his funny antics to police headquarters for a time today when it was rumored that he was trying to kidnap his own children.

“Well, well,” Keaton said as he landed at the airport. “It looks like I don’t know where I stand matrimonially.”

“I wasn’t kidnapping anybody,” he protested. “I just wanta show her who’s the head of this family, and I’m on a little trip.”

“Natalie surprised me by stopping us,” he continued. “We – my two boys and I were on our way down to Ensenada where I have an option on a ranch. I am going to buy the ranch anyway. We are going to live down there and raise animals. I’ll commute to Hollywood. If Natalie doesn’t like it, she knows what she can do.”

He was referring to his wife, Natalie Talmadge, who had asked San Diego police to stop him and prevent his going to Ensenada, Mexico, with the two young sons, Jimmy, 9, and Bobby, 8.

“Have you had any trouble with Natalie?” reporters asked him.
“Well, we had a quarrel about airplanes,” the comedian answered.

Keaton, traveling with the children and their nurse, Connie Costello, in a plane owned by Hoot Gibson, also of the films, and piloted by Jim Granger, landed here late today en route to Ensenada. Police took him, the children and the nurse to headquarters for questioning.

While there he talked by long distance telephone with Buron Fitts, Los Angeles district attorney. Mrs. Keaton was in Fitts’ office.

“I’m just showing her a few things,” Keaton told Fitts. “I want her to know who’s the head of this family. I’m taking a little weekend trip to Ensenada with the children.”

Fitts advised him to stay at the San Diego jail for a while.

“No, I won’t stay here,” retorted Keaton. ‘You’re the last person in the world I want to see. Buron Fitts, I’m leaving here and going to Ensenada or some place.”

Then the children talked with their mother.

“We’re down here with daddy,” said Jimmy, “and we had a swell trip. Don’t worry.”

Keaton turned to the police chief.

“Well, I guess we can’t hold you said the official. There’s no charge against you. Seems like Mrs. Keaton didn’t want the children to ride in an airplane.”

The comedian slapped his hat on his head, took the children by the hands and began striding for the door.

“Ha, I guess I’m head of my own house after all,” he muttered.

Los Angeles, April 4 (UP)

Natalie Talmadge Keaton became so hysterical when she learned that her children were riding in an airplane that she had San Diego authorities stop the plane and apprehend her husband and the boys.

After a long conference with District Attorny Buron Fitts, she denied she had separated from Buster Keaton, comedian.

“We’ve argued over airplane riding,” she said, “and that’s what this is about. I don’t want the children in a plane.”


Los Angeles, April 5

Mrs. Helene Lubitsch, divorced wife of Ernst Lubitsch, motion picture director, who socked him in the jaw in defense of Hans Kraly, scenario writer, is going to be married again – but not to Kraly.

Today she announced her engagement to Albert Edward Smith, 29-year-old broker and sportsman, who is a member of a wealthy Winipeg, Canada, family and internationally known as a hockey player. No date for the wedding has been set.

The jaw-socking episode occurred at a benefit ball given by Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks a year and a half ago. Lubitsch first socked Kraly, claiming that the scenario writer and Mrs. Lubitsch were “sneering” at the way he danced. Mrs. Lubitsch promptly socked her ex-husband.


Hollywood, Calif., April 5 (AP)

Roscoe (“Fatty”) Arbuckle, former screen star, announced at a dinner here last night that he would marry Addie McPhail, screen actress, “as soon as it is legally possible.” Mrs. McPhail’s divorce from Lindsay McPhail, song writer, becomes final on June 12.


Thirty-eight fianc├ęs in three years must be an all-time record. Anyhow, that’s how often wistful Anny Ondra, European film star, is reported to have been engaged. Among those who have been rumored to be her future husband are a young Austrian archduke, a French banker, an American film producer, a London stock broker, and a heavyweight champion.


Los Angeles, April 5 (UP)

Mrs. Sidney Chaplin, wife of Charles Chaplin’s actor-brother, was in Los Angeles today from London. She reported the brothers are traveling together through the Orient, and will arrive in Hollywood late next month.

From Luella O. Parsons:

The mad dash Bebe Daniels and Ben Lyon made from the train yesterday was not to avoid any process servers or such like. They were hurrying home to see Barbara Bebe before she was put to bed. After eight weeks absence the young lady has grown so that they could hardly believe she is the same baby.

Ben had to tear himself away to talk business with Fox company. He is slated to play opposite Joan Bennett in “Week-End Girl.” John Halliday has also been put into the Bennett picture. Let’s hope Ben does as well as he did for Joan’s sister Constance. Everyone is still talking about “Lady With a Past.” Connie had the good sense to insist that all Ben’s scenes be left in the picture because she said the better he was in the role, the better it was for her and the picture.

That long talked of Barrymore picture, featuring the three, Ethel, Lionel and Jack, will be made on the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer lot as soon as a story can be found. Everyone wondered just which company would make this picture which ought to be unique and well worth seeing.

Speaking of the Barrymores, Mrs. Lionel is out of the hospital but Lionel is laid up with the flu.

I tell you this James Dunn is getting to be the Beau Brummel of Hollywood. He and blonde Joan Marsh were together at the Cocoanut Grove and he seemed to be paying her the same devoted attention that he paid June Knight a few months ago. Well, Joan is as pretty as any of the younger generation and they look well dancing together.

Carl Laemmle, Jr. has a lot of ideas for Paul Lukas. He borrowed Mr. Lukas for the role of the opera singer in “Strictly Dishonorable” and since that day he has had great respect for the Lukas personality and talents. Paramount has lots of respect for Mr. Lukas also, but there are so many featured Paramount players and so many stars he has never seemed to have as much individual success as he deserves. To make a long story short, Junior Laemmle has taken over the Lukas contract, which has four years to run, and he will find appropriate stories for him.

It has been a long time since we have heard any word of Vincent Barnett, Hollywood’s public insulter. Nearly everybody grew to know Mr. Barnett’s jibes and sneers were all in fun, but apparently there are still many who have never met him. Joan Crawford and Douglas Fairbanks gave a party last week and invited Mr. Barnett to do his best insulting. He came as a German producer and did his best to annoy the flower of the picture industry. Ramon Novarro, Elissa Landi, Clark Gable, Laura Hope Crews were among the guests. When Clark Gable resented some of Barnett’s loud accusations, as he rightly should, Barnett pulled the old stuff of trying to fight with him. When things got hot and heavy the host and hostess explained it was all in fun so everybody was happy once again.

From Wood Soanes:

Kay Francis is being co-starred with William Powell in the screen adaptation of “The Jewel Robbery,” done on the stage by Basil Sidney and Mary Ellis. Miss Francis replaces Bette Davis, who had the role first.

Bobby Vernon is soon to be seen in the films again. The old-time comedian will try a come-back in “Ship a Hooey” on the Christie lot, where Vernon reigned as a star for 12 years.

Another old star of the silent era, Mae Busch, is to have a chance at a come-back in First National’s production, “Doctor X,” a film version of the stage mystery. Lionel Atwill will have the chief role.

Roscoe Arbuckle, still trying to step back into the limelight, goes to Seattle for a guest starring engagement with the Moore Players, replacing Perry Askam. Arbuckle recently appeared at the Pantages in Hollywood.


‘Dancers in the Dark’ Is Picture Featuring New Personality of Hollywood

Hollywood’s recent starring personality, Miriam Hopkins, comes to the Paramount theater tomorrow in her newest triumph, “Dancers in the Dark,” in which she is seen as the enticing taxi dancer of a fashionable night club.

Jack Oakie and Eugene Pallette have the comical roles, with William Collier, Jr. as the saxophone player who believes in girls and love and marriage.

When Collier offers his love to the sophisticated Miriam there evolves a character battle in which Miss Hopkins fights to overcome her past and prove worthy of this new and trusting love.

The Paramount stage tomorrow will feature “Chicago’s World’s Fair-est” starring beauty contest winners from the Midwestern city.
Lou Kosloff and the Paramounters will offer for their overture a modern arrangement of the popular melody, “You’re My Everything” with Kosloff playing a violin solo.


A beautiful woman, the more or less innocent cause of a murder, is willing to accept the blame for the crime which is not hers, because she knows it will be difficult to secure a conviction against her.

This, briefly, is the plot of “Expensive Women,” the Warner Brothers picture which plays at the Lyric Theater to-day and Wednesday.

Dolores Costello, Warren William, Anthony Bushell, H. B. Warner, Joe Donahue, Polly Walters and others form the cast. Hobart Henley directed.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

April 4, 1932


Santa Monica, April 4
When Townsend Netcher prepared a month ago to take a vacation with his wife, Constance Talmadge, motion picture actress, he placed $4,200 worth of jewels in a bureau drawer. They returned from their trip to find the jewels gone, Netcher reported to police today.


Los Angeles, April 4
A suit on file today by a New York firm accused Lionel Barrymore, actor, of having purchased neckties valued at $116 and not paying for them. The complaint did not specify the number of ties.


Hollywood, April 4
Jetta Goudal, motion picture actress, kept right on going when her chauffeur was halted on a charge of speeding. Hurrying to her studio, the actress opened the door and started walking as soon as her car was stopped, a police report related today.

If Hollywood gossip can be trusted, Evalyn Knapp will walk altarwards one of these days with Donald (Donn) Cook.

La Garbo has applied for a European passport

Paul Lukas, actor, leaving Paramount, joins Universal.

Grant Withers, Loretta Young’s ex-hubby, is attentive to Sally Starr.

George Raft has been cast as the heavy in Paramount’s “Countess of Auburn,” and it’s likely that Richard Bennett will be supplanted by J. Farrell McDonald. Raft was Miriam Hopkins’ rough-house Romeo in “Dancers in the Dark,” and her word for him is “terrific.”

Andre Luguet, recent Hollywood recruit from Paris, has signed a contract under which his services for a long term will be devoted exclusively to Warner and First National pictures. He is seen on the screen in “The Man Who Played God,” George Arliss’ latest starring vehicle for Warner Bros. Luguet plays the part of the king for whom Mr. Arliss gives a “command performance.”

Charles Starrett, who plays opposite Billie Dove in “The Age for Love,” is a former gridiron star of Dartmouth University. Starrett played his first film role in a football picture, “The Quarterback,” while still a student at Dartmouth.

Eddie Quillan, featured with Maureen O’Sullivan and Roscoe Ates in “The Big Shot,” is a member of the “Hole-In-One” club, an honor coveted by every golfer. On the same program is Robert Montgomery and Madge Evans in “Lovers Courageous.”

From Luella O. Parsons

Los Angeles, April 4
Paramount has put the matter squarely up to Stewart Walker to select new faces and new talent. Walker, famous stage director and credited with the discovery of such favorites as Peggy Wood, Kay Francis, Mary Ellis, Charles Starrett, Alexander Kirkland and Blanche Yurka, will start a school on the Paramount lot.

This school is vastly different from the one that educated Buddy Rogers, Josephine Dunn and others at the Paramount Studios some six years ago. No amateurs can attend. Walker will find his pupils among young people who have always shown talent on the stage or in minor screen roles.
He will groom them in plays and motion pictures, developing them for important Paramount roles.

The original idea belongs to B. P. Schulberg, who has great respect for Walker’s knowledge of the stage and screen. The title given Walker will be “Creator of Stars,” and that, my friends, is something now. Am I right?

If Barbara Stanwyck ever changes her type and goes in for comedy I am going to register a nation-wide protest. There is no one who can be as tragic as Barbara and there is no one who can play these worldly young things with more emotional appeal.

Warner Brothers have bought a novel called They Call It Sin by Alberta Stedman Egan. Miss Stanwyck was in mind when the story was purchased. It’s about a girl whose life is ruined when she finds out she is a foundling, a girl also who loves the wrong man. Sounds very Barbara Stanwyck, doesn’t it?

Surprising that Janet Gaynor said thumbs down on Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm. The critics, it is true, weren’t very kind to Daddy Long Legs but the public liked it and it made money. Janet, it seems, registered a vehement protest against playing the little girl part in Rebecca. Since they paid Mary Pickford a nice hunk of cash for it and the public seems to crave those Pollyanna yarns, Fox has decided to give the role to Marian Nixon.

Marian, who is small and slim and very young, although she has had considerable screen experience, took tests for Rebecca. All the office boys, stenographers and prop men were invited to express an opinion with the result that Miss Nixon was given the part.

Snapshots of Hollywood:

Jack Holt in a turtle neck sweater, giving several tourists from the Middle West a run for their money. He was lunching at the Brown Derby. So was Lew Cody who came in for his share of admiring stares.

Lily Damita sent a telegram to Lupe Velez congratulating her on her “Follies” success.

Lowell Sherman is contenting himself with playing a director in “The Truth About Hollywood.” He will not direct it.


By Wood Soanes
The Barrymore brothers – Lionel and John – are pitted against each other for the first time at the Fox Theater this week in the revised version of Maurice Le Blanc’s old French detective story, “Arsene Lupin,” which has been brought up to date for the occasion.

“Arsene Lupin,” while heavy-handed at times and not always impressive in its story construction, manages to remain consistently good entertainment, the while it permits students of screen acting to compare and contrast the methods and techniques of the two stars.

Perhaps the first surprise was the fact that the men are about the same height and that each possesses an entirely different technique, although they belong to the same school of exposition. Heretofore John has seemed to have an advantage of stature over Lionel.

The choice of this old play with its flamboyant melodrama was ideal for this case because the two roles are about as evenly matched as were those of the brothers in “The Jest,” in which the Barrymores appeared in New York back in 1919.

If you would like to see a movie actor with a jaw you’d love to sock, go to the RKO Majestic and see Eric Linden and Helen Twelvetrees in “Young Bride.” As “Good Time Charley Riggs,” Eric plays the role of a dance hall sheik who talks big business, big deals and big money and lets his wife make the living.

While the picture is not altogether pleasant and possibly the kiddies wouldn’t understand it (but where else can they go this week?) it is a powerful story.

Cliff Edwards adds to the merriment of the New York dance hall wisecracking crowd.

The picture has a modern youth cast and with the exception of Miss Twelvetrees, they show it, yet here is a picture of these youngsters you read so much about and perhaps it is better as it is. Arlene Judge has a golddigging role.

There is a boxing spotlight by Grant Rice, Earl Abel, a deep sea comedy, and RKO News.

With Roland Young, Jeanette MacDonald, Charlie Ruggles and Genevieve Tobin, Maurice Chevalier is not so hard to take in “One Hour With You.”

This light and airy comedy of a wandering wife (Roland’s) and Maurice and his young bride is filled with catchy songs and neat lines, some of which the kiddies understand.

(The poor kiddies; I wonder where they’ll go this week?)

Maurice is a young doctor with apparently but one patient, Mitzi, she being the love-hungry wife of Roland Young.

Young is a professor of ancient history. And Mitzi happens to be Jeanette’s best friend, and so she sends Maurice out in the middle of the night to see Mitzi.
And if you don’t like this, there is Ford Sterling in “Twenty Horses” and a color scenic “Honeymoon Heaven,” a cartoon and Paramount Sound News.

A new picture came into the Aztec Sunday, “Disorderly Conduct,” with Sally Eilers, Spencer Tracy, and El Brendel, and last but not least, Dickie Moore.

Spencer is a motor cop who arrests Sally, bootlegger’s daughter, and is demoted. Dickie is his nephew, one of several. The plot thickens and it turns into a sort of motor cop opera.

It is quite entertaining, and there is a comedy, cartoon, musical novelties and sound news.