Think Young this January (when Loretta’s star shines)   1 comment

Posted by vp19 on 2012.10.18 at 11:53

Current mood: excitedexcited

Carole Lombard and Jean Harlow share a special honor, as both film legends were Turner Classic Movies’ Star of the Month in the centennial month they were born (October 2008 for Lombard, March 2011 for Harlow). Now, another noted actress will receive that distinction come January 2013…

…the luminous Loretta Young. And I couldn’t be happier.

If someone had told me 20 years ago that I would someday be championing Loretta Young’s cinematic work, I would have called them nuts. To me, Young was this prim, proper Catholic stalwart who made spectacular entrances on a television series I barely remembered from childhood…someone whose work seemed far removed from Lombard and other ’30s stars I was already enthralled with.

Amazing what a little learning can do, and for Loretta, the pre-Code revival that began in the ’90s helped redefine her achievements as an actress. Thankfully, people began to appreciate what she had done on screen before she left us in 2000.

Yep, that’s Loretta, circa 1934, from “Born To Be Bad,” made about the time she turned 21. A far cry from her nun parts, doncha think? TCM will be showing 37 of Young’s films each Wednesday in January, nearly two-thirds of them pre-Codes. In fact, the series begins with a silent –– Loretta’s first lead role, in 1928’s “Laugh, Clown, Laugh,” opposite Lon Chaney. Senior.

Here’s the list of films:

Jan. 2 & 3
“Laugh, Clown, Laugh” (1928) with Lon Chaney and Bernard Siegel
“The Squall” (1929) with Myrna Loy and Richard Tucker
“Road To Paradise” (1930) with Jack Mulhall
“Loose Ankles” (1930) with Douglas Fairbanks Jr. and Louise Fazenda
“The Truth About Youth” (1930) with David Manners, Conway Tearle and Myrna Loy
“I Like Your Nerve” (1931) with Douglas Fairbanks Jr. and Henry Kolker
“Platinum Blonde” (1931) with Robert Williams and Jean Harlow
“Life Begins” (1932) with Eric Linden and Aline MacMahon
“Taxi!” (1932) with James Cagney and Guy Kibbee

Jan. 9 & 10
“The Ruling Voice” (1931) with Walter Huston and Dudley Digges
“They Call It Sin” (1932) with George Brent and Una Merkel
“The Hatchet Man” (1932) with Edward G. Robinson and Dudley Digges
“Play Girl” (1932) with Winnie Lightner, Norman Foster and Guy Kibbee
“Employees Entrance” (1933) with Warren William and Ruth Donnelly
“She Had To Say Yes” (1933) with Winnie Lightner and Lyle Talbot
“Midnight Mary” (1933) with Ricardo Cortez, Una Merkel and Franchot Tone
“Heroes For Sale” (1933) with Richard Barthelmess and Aline MacMahon
“Born To Be Bad” (1934) with Cary Grant

Jan. 16
“Beau Ideal” (1931) with Frank McCormack and Ralph Forbes
“Big Business Girl” (1931) with Frank Albertson and Ricardo Cortez
“The Life Of Jimmy Dolan” (1933) with Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Aline MacMahon, Guy Kibbee, Lyle Talbot, John Wayne and Mickey Rooney
“A Man’s Castle” (1933) with Spencer Tracy, Marjorie Rambeau and Glenda Farrell
“Suez” (1938) with Tyrone Power and Annabella
“Kentucky” (1938) with Richard Greene and Walter Brennan

Jan. 23
“Week-end Marriage” (1932) with Norman Foster, Aline MacMahon and George Brent
“Grand Slam” (1933) with Paul Lukas and Frank McHugh
“Wife, Husband and Friend” (1939) with Warner Baxter, Binnie Barnes and Cesar Romero
“The Doctor Takes A Wife” (1940) with Ray Milland
“Bedtime Story” (1941) with Fredric March and Eve Arden
“A Night To Remember” (1942) with Brian Aherne and Jeff Donnell

Jan. 30
“The Unguarded Hour” (1936) with Franchot Tone and Dudley Digges
“Along Came Jones” (1945) with Gary Cooper and William Demarest
“The Stranger” (1946) with Edward G. Robinson and Orson Welles
“The Farmer’s Daughter” (1947) with Joseph Cotten & Ethel Barrymore
“Rachel And The Stranger” (1948) with William Holden and Robert Mitchum
“Key To The City” (1950) with Clark Gable and Frank Morgan
“Cause For Alarm!” (1951) with Barry Sullivan and Bruce Cowling

All in all, a pretty potent lineup, though a few of her more notable films aren’t on hand, such as two she made in 1935, “Call Of The Wild” with Clark Gable (and we all know what resulted from that movie) and Cecil B. de Mille’s “The Crusades.” Four of these pre-Codes were issued by Warner Archive last year (, while “They Call It Sin” was part of a recent “Forbidden Hollywood” compilation. “Taxi!”, of course, is the loanout Lombard turned down while at Paramount (a move she subsequently regretted), and was Young’s only teaming with Cagney.

This will mark the third consecutive month TCM will have an actress as star of the month (Constance Bennett takes honors in November, Barbara Stanwyck in December), but anyone who loves Loretta and pre-Codes won’t complain.

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Posted October 18, 2012 by vp19 in Uncategorized

One response to “Think Young this January (when Loretta’s star shines)

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  1. as i exclaimed on twitter when i heard this: yaay!
    so excited, even though i have seen most of these, there are many i haven’t! almost equally excited for the people who will, just as you described, discover the whole of Loretta Young’s career, it really is a revelation for folks who have just one later image of her. Also, on a superficial note, gosh she was pretty! you always have the nicest pics! thanks, you know I love your blog and follow it closely 🙂 happy to repeat that every so often though.. cheers!

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