Category Archives: Classic Hollywood

Series: Photographs of Hollywood’s Cinema Stars

Classic Hollywood #138 – Jean Simmons

Jean Simmons – Early 1950s

If you say the name Jean Simmons most people under a certain age will think of the outrageous singer and bass player for KISS, Gene Simmons.

And as big of a rock fan as I may be, I will always think first of the actress whose first name is spelled Jean, not Gene.

Jean Simmons (1929-2010) had a 65 year career as an actress full of interesting and prominent roles. The one role she did not get, helped bring about another successful career. Continue reading

Classic Hollywood #137 – Clark Gable & His Father In A Bizarre Court Case

Clark Gable And His Dad At Trial – 1937

Clark Gable and his father April 20, 1937 photo: Los Angeles Daily News

The support of your parents is helpful especially if someone is trying to extort you.

Clark Gable (1901-1960) is seen here talking with his father William Henry Gable (1870-1948) at Federal Court in Los Angeles. Continue reading

Classic Hollywood #136 – Sylvia Sidney 1933

Sylvia Sidney In An Unusual Pose

Caption on rear of photograph: “Sylvia Sidney is appearing in Paramount Pictures.” photo: Paramount Pictures 1933

Sylvia Sidney (1910-1999) was born in the Bronx as Sophia Kosow. Sylvia’s father and mother divorced soon after her birth. Her mother married Sigmund Sidney and he adopted her. By the time she was 15 Sylvia had decided she wanted to be an actor and started taking lessons at Theater Guild’s School For Acting. Appearing on stage in an amateur production a New York Times critic who happened to catch the performance gave her rave reviews. More stage roles lead to Hollywood talent scouts knocking on her door.

By the 1930s Sylvia was starring in major films such as Fury (with Spencer Tracy), Sabotage (directed by Alfred Hitchcock) and Dead End (with Humphrey Bogart).  Sylvia married Random House publisher Bennett Cerf in 1935. The marriage lasted less than seven months. In his autobiography, Cerf states Continue reading

Classic Hollywood #135- William Holden & Veronica Lake

I Wanted Wings Starring William Holden & Veronica Lake -1941

William Holden Veronica Lake photo Paramount

Heartbreak Pair In New Air Epic
William Holden reaches new stellar heights as a flying cadet whose career is temporarily shattered through his love for Veronica Lake in Paramount’s “I Wanted Wings” an Arthur Hornblow Jr. production based upon the Army Air Corps training and tactics. Blonde and sultry newcomer, Miss Lake, places menace in piece. photo: Paramount.

After appearing Continue reading

Classic Hollywood #134 – Rita Hayworth

RIta Hayworth – 1947

Gorgeous Rita Hayworth plays Terpsichore, glamour goddess of classic Greece in Columbia’s Technicolor musical “Down To Earth” photo: Ned Scott (Columbia Pictures)

To say Down To Earth (1947) has a bizarre plot-line is an understatement. The goddess Terpsichore comes down from the heavens to earth when she finds out there will be a Broadway play about Greek mythology. She then gets a part in the play and suggests changes to the producer. Continue reading

Classic Hollywood #133 – Louise Henry

Louise Henry MGM Ingenue

After appearing in an uncredited role in the 1934 Laurel and Hardy picture Hollywood Party, Louise Henry was signed by MGM to a long term contract. The Hollywood Reporter described Louise as a “New York society girl.”

Over the next five years Louise made 21 films.  Despite her beauty, Continue reading

Classic Hollywood #132 – Robert Preston & Dorothy Lamour

Romantic Couple Robert Preston & Dorothy Lamour Bid Adieu 1940

ROMANTIC COUPLE SEPARATES
But not for long, perhaps. Here are Robert Preston and Dorothy Lamour, who met and fell in love during the making of the Paramount production, “Typhoon,” together at a farewell party for Dorothy before she left for a vacation in Honolulu. Friends gathered at the Cocoanut Grove to bid her bon voyage, Preston abandoning his work in the San Jacinto mountains on Northwest Mounted Police” to keep the date. Photo: Paramount, May 11, 1940

As many co-stars do, Preston and Lamour did have a love affair during the filming of Typhoon. Despite the intimation that this vacation break was temporary, the young and glamorous couple did soon permanently separate.

Dorothy Lamour

Dorothy Lamour was born Mary Leta Dorothy Slaton (December 10 1914) in New Orleans, LA.

Lamour was three years older than Robert Preston, so maybe age and life experience differences would hasten the end of the relationship.

Robert Preston & Dorothy Lamour, Cocoanut Grove nightclub Ambassador Hotel Los Angeles 1940. photo: Paramount

Soon after the love affair was over Preston married actress Kay Feltus (professionally known as Catherine Craig) on November 8, 1940 in Las Vegas. The two had met while studying acting together at the Pasadena School of the Theatre. Continue reading

Classic Hollywood #131 – John Wayne & Wife Pilar Pallete

John Wayne & Pilar Pallete Attend A Fundraiser – 1961

While recently visiting my 14-year-old nephew who lives in Orange County, CA, I asked him when he travels what airport does he fly out of?

He replied,” John Wayne Airport.”

It then occurred to me, “do you know who John Wayne is?” I queried him.

The answer should not have surprised me. The answer of course was no. “A politician,” he guessed.

I mean fame is fleeting but for goodness sake, John Wayne? Continue reading

Classic Hollywood #129 Titanic’s “Old Rose” Gloria Stuart When Young

Gloria Stuart

Gloria Stuart (b. July 4, 1910) played “Old Rose” in James Cameron’s Titanic (1997) and was nominated for Best Actress in A Supporting Role. She did not win.

This is what Gloria Stuart looked like in the early 1930s.

Gloria Stuart 1930sVivacious and pretty, Gloria Stuart was a movie star throughout the 1930s appearing in 43 films. Continue reading