clark gable

SPENCER TRACY – A nightmare of a man.

August 6, 2015 // 15 Comments

  As an actor Spencer Tracy had few peers and cinema-goers adored him. Off screen he was a very ordinary human being, a man beset with all kinds of problems. He was a violent alcoholic his entire life and a rampant womanizer who had almost as many conquests to his name as Gable although, unlike ‘the King’, he is alleged to have taken male lovers as well. When he went on a ‘bender’, [...]

What’s in a name Part One?

August 2, 2015 // 0 Comments

Back in the good old studio days it was customary for studios to come up with snappy nicknames for their female stars. Well, they thought they were snappy, anyway. For some reason these were seldom given to male actors, although that is not to say that some of these guys didn’t have nicknames of their own long before their movie careers took off. John ‘Duke’ Wayne was one, for example. As a [...]

CAROLE LOMBARD – The Profane Angel.

July 31, 2015 // 0 Comments

  Finding really likeable movie stars from the studio era can be quite a challenge at times. Carole Lombard, however, courtesy of her brazen, down to earth approach to life, was a woman who enjoyed the trappings of fame, but never let them seduce her. And that made her a rarity. She seemed to recognize Hollywood for what it was, a ‘Dream Factory’ full of mostly ordinary people blessed [...]

Paul Bern ( 1889 – 1932 ) – An exercise in character assassination.

July 12, 2015 // 8 Comments

  Irene Selznick, the wife of producer David O, once described Paul Bern as ‘the single most beloved person in Hollywood’. He was a writer at MGM, 45 years old, short and bald, yet his new wife, Jean Harlow, clearly seemed to be in love with him. It was probably not a ‘match made in heaven’, but there seemed to be considerable trust and real friendship between them, qualities not [...]

‘America’s Sweethearts’ – or were they?

July 2, 2015 // 8 Comments

  Biographers have tried for years to figure out the relationship between singers Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald. Most have given up. On the one hand we have Eddy, lifelong ‘sissy’, tied to his mother’s apron-strings, a bisexual man who definitely preferred male lovers to female ones, but who seemed to (from time to time) fall head over heels for MacDonald. Jeanette MacDonald, by [...]

LORETTA YOUNG – A good Catholic girl?

June 28, 2015 // 2 Comments

  If Olympic medals were given out for hypocrisy, Loretta Young (1913 – 2000) would have won gold many times over. The studio blurb described her thus: ‘Her true beauty lies in her dedication to her family and her faith.’ About the only truthful word in that whole line would be the word ‘lies’. Loretta attended church religiously (no pun intended), outwardly a Catholic the good [...]

CARY GRANT – The loves in his life

May 6, 2015 // 0 Comments

    Outside of Hollywood debate raged for years about matinee idol Cary Grant’s sexuality. Was he heterosexual, homosexual or bisexual? He had lovers from both sexes, so I guess that makes him bisexual, although I admit I have no real idea if that is the sole criteria used to assess such things. From what I have read down the years, he appears to have been deeply in love with two [...]

Hollywood’s real-life war heroes ( Pt 3 )

April 1, 2015 // 78 Comments

Here are a few pieces of trivia regarding actresses during World War Two that you may or may not know. The first one deals with selling War Bonds, the second involves touring with the United Services Organizations Inc. (USO), and the third looks at the famous Hollywood Canteen. Touring with the USO or selling War Bonds meant flying overseas to war zones or flying to bases and rallies at home. Air [...]

Ronald Reagan – FBI spy in Hollywood?

March 24, 2015 // 0 Comments

  One of the funnier exchanges that takes place in the 1985 blockbuster Back to the Future occurs when Dr Emmett Brown questions Marty’s statement that he is from the future: ‘Then tell me, future boy’, he says. ‘Who’s President of the United States in 1985?’ ‘Ronald Reagan’, Marty replies. ‘Ronald Reagan? The actor? Then who’s vice-president? Jerry Lewis? One can [...]

MAMIE VAN DOREN – Sex siren survivor.

March 20, 2015 // 0 Comments

  The totally unfair label ‘blonde bimbo’ evolved in the 1950s, probably because of the antics of a trio of blonde actresses known to the media as ‘the three ‘M’s’. I refer to Marilyn Monroe, Jayne Mansfield and Mamie van Doren. Two of these women, Marilyn and Jayne, died young and in tragic circumstances, but what happened to the third one, Mamie? Well, as of 2015 she is alive [...]
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