Posted by medusamorlock on July 22, 2011
It’s summertime, and the perfect opportunity to pull out some photo albums — no groans, please — and take a look at Hollywood behind-the-scenes from my stash of old news photos. It’s a nutty mixed bag, but that goes along with these lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer, right?
Here’s Jimmy “Schnozzola” Durante and the highly respected actress Ethel Barrymore together, with Jimmy supplying the hilarious ham. They had appeared together in radio and on TV, on Durante’s show, even recorded together, and this photo shows their unlikely but delightful collaboration.
Here’s a rather “Boardwalk Empire”-like photo of the “Toastmaster General of the United States” George Jessel, who I mostly remember as a guest on talk shows during my younger years, but might be nearly unknown to the current generation. Jessel was an actor, a comedian, a vaudevillian, a movie producer, a tireless after-dinner speaker and celebrity roast host, and an unstoppable ladies man. Hubba Hubba!
Another super romantic figure was Errol Flynn, who at the end of 1949 turned up with a new fiancee – and a new beard (for his role in Kim). The fiancee was Rumanian Princess Irinia Ghica, 19 years old to Flynn’s 40, and no, they never actually got married. But she was cute and he was still a big hunk of handsome at that time!
Comedian Bob Hope was a tireless entertainer for American troops wherever they were stationed, and in 1950 among the places he visited was Kimpo Air Base in Korea, where he was photographed leaving a T-33 jet aircraft which was ferrying him on his tour. Mission Accomplished!
This lovely photo of a fresh-faced and natural-looking Judy Garland was identified on the back by this terse note: “Los Angeles. 6/20/50 Judy Garland…Attempted suicide by slashing throat with broken piece of glass”.
The beautiful and talentd actress Jane Russell caused quite a to-do back in 1952 when she and husband Bob Waterfield adopted a young Irish baby boy named Thomas Kavanaugh and brought him to the U.S. to be part of their family. Several issues — she was Prostestant, the child would be taken away from Ireland — almost put the kibosh on the adoption, but the Tommy’s biological mother was in favor of the arrangement and so it went through. Read the whole interesting story here.
This last sequence of photographs shows the de-moustaching of actor Adolphe Menjou, who over his long career had been famous for his suave moustache — possibly more famous for it than for his unpopular testimony before the HUAC hearings…possibly. He shaved it for his role in 1952′s crime drama The Sniper, urged by producer Stanley Kramer, but didn’t like it at all and returned to the moustache soon after. You have to admit he looks somewhat skeptical and almost powerless in the final result.
Sometimes what went on behind the screen is as almost as fascinating as what on it!
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