Archive for April 2013

From Paramount, a silent ‘White Woman’   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2013.04.30 at 00:59
Current mood: nostalgicnostalgic

Heritage Auctions has two pairs of Carole Lombard photos available, both from Paramount…but one of those pairs doesn’t look as if it came from there. After all, Lombard never made any silents for that studio.

carole lombard 2419a
carole lombard 2419b

Not convinced those photos, which definitely look to be from the silent era (though it’s difficult to discern whether they’re from Fox, Mack Sennett or even Pathe), were distributed by Paramount? We’ll furnish proof:

carole lombard 2419 joint
carole lombard 2419a date
carole lombard 2419b date

Both pictures have a 1937 copyright.

The question then shifts to why did Paramount issue these images? It’s possibly some sort of response to a May 1937 photospread of Lombard and Clark Gable in Look magazine that featured several racy portraits of Carole in the late 1920s (, although the pics above are considerably more demure. Beyond that, we’re in the dark — but more than three-quarters of a century later, Lombard fans thank Paramount for making them available.

The other pair of pics are from Carole’s 1933 potboiler, “White Woman.” One of them, from Eugene Robert Richee, is fairly common to collectors:

carole lombard white woman 40a

Not so the other one, featuring her character in a small boat, escaping the steamy Malayan jungle:

carole lombard white woman 40b

The silent era pics are single-weight glossy, in fine+ condition; the “White Woman” images are double-weight and satin finish, in fine/very fine condition. Both pairs are unrestored.

Bidding on each set ends at 11 p.m. (Eastern) on Sunday. Heritage’s bidding process is different than eBay’s, so anyone interested in bidding should become familiar with this firm’s procedure. The Paramount silent set is at; the two from “White Woman” are at

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Posted April 30, 2013 by vp19 in Uncategorized

And even more pics   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2013.04.29 at 08:40
Current mood: artisticartistic

As promised, more Carole Lombard images now available via eBay, beginning with this one, Lombard looking sleek and stylish (albeit with furs), befitting the heiress she portrayed in the 1932 Columbia film “No More Orchids”:

carole lombard no more orchids 28a

Heritage Movie Posters, which is selling the item, describes it as: “Vintage gelatin silver, single weight, and glossy photo. An unrestored photo with a clean overall appearance. It may have general signs of use, such as slight edge wear, small corner bumps, pinholes, or very minor tears. Light scratches. details. Very Fine-.”

Something else that’s “very fine” is the opening bid price — 99 cents — but for a vintage Lombard pic, you know it won’t last that long. Bids conclude at 10:54 a.m. (Eastern) next Monday, and expect multiple bids for this over the next week. Find out more at

Next, Paramount p1202-1164:

carole lombard p1202-1164a

That’s Carole on the phone from her dressing room at Paramount in 1935 (with her head beautifully framed among the flowers). According to the seller, this 8″ x 10″ originally ran in Architectural Digest. Bidding begins at $40, with bids closing at 7:10 p.m. (Eastern) Thursday. If this pic catches your interest, visit to learn more.

Next up, Lombard with a Paramount artist named Eric Stone, showing off his tribute to her:

carole lombard 122931a eric stone front
carole lombard 122931 aeric stone snipe

The photo also has a Dec. 29, 1931 stamp from the NEA syndicate.

We have no idea whatever happened to the rag portrait of Carole, but this 8″ x 10″ is available, with an opening bid of $100, and bidding slated to end at 7:01 p.m. (Eastern) Thursday. Want this rarity? Go to

Finally, a Lombard portrait that in itself isn’t all that uncommon, but the source is interesting:

carole lombard nbc radio 02a front
carole lombard nbc radio 02a back
carole lombard nbc radio 02a snipe

It’s from NBC radio, specifically its famed (and now gone) Los Angeles headquarters at Sunset and Vine..

los angeles nbc 00

…for the short-lived series “The Circle.”

The photo is in near-mint condition, with bids opening at $50 and bids ending at 7:16 p.m. (Eastern) Thursday. You can find out more at

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Posted April 29, 2013 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Three more pics…oops, make that four   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2013.04.28 at 18:24
Current mood: amusedamused

carole lombard george hurrell 10a

In yesterday’s entry about some new Carole Lombard images, I announced, “We’ll run three of them today and save the other three for tomorrow.” Well, that isn’t going to happen…because we have four more photos for you to enjoy (and bid on, if you so desire).

The first one is above; it’s said to be a George Hurrell photo, but it looks very much like one of the images of Carole used in the 1933 Paramount potboiler “White Woman.” It’s an 8″ x 10″ in near mint condition, including a sealed plastic sleeve. Bids open at $35 and last through 12:19 p.m. (Eastern) Saturday. If interested, go to

Next, to April 18, 1936, and one of the first public photos of Lombard with Clark Gable:

carole lombard clark gable 041836a front
carole lombard clark gable 041836a back

From Hearst’s International News Service, this is described as “rare,” probably the reason bids on this start at $100; bids close at 12:46 p.m. Saturday, and you can get more information at

Finally, not one, but two images of Lombard with James Stewart in promotional art for “Made For Each Other.” They teamed up for several portraits for the film, but I’ve never seen either of these:

carole lombard made for each other 59a
carole lombard made for each other 60a

Each of these have opening bids of $7.99, which may mean they aren’t originals, but I can’t say one way or the other. Bidding closes at 1:37 and 1:38 p.m. (Eastern) Thursday. Curious? Then go to for the picture on top and for the one on the bottom.

We’ll have even more Lombard images tomorrow…but this time, I’m not going to give you a specific number as to how many.

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Posted April 28, 2013 by vp19 in Uncategorized

A few new pics for you   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2013.04.27 at 20:27
Current mood: nostalgicnostalgic

When you run across a Carole Lombard image you’ve never seen before, it’s cause for celebration. When you come across several, it’s cause for exultation. We’ll run three of them today and save the other three for tomorrow.

Only one of them is from the Paramount p1202 series of portraits — specifically, p1202-1205:

carole lombard p1202-1205a front

Think you’ve seen that dress before? You possibly have, in p1202-1201…

carole lombard p1202-1201c

…and p1202-1204:

carole lombard p1202-1204b

Uniike those two, p1202-1205 has a snipe on the back that tells more about the outfit:

carole lombard p1202-1205a back

The snipe mentions “Hands Across The Table,” and the following photo probably has ties to that film, judging from Carole’s outfit and the date the picture ran:

carole lombard hands across the table 42a front
carole lombard hands across the table 42a snipe

The next pic is said to have something to do with “To Be Or Not To Be,” and it certainly looks like Lombard in late 1941:

carole lombard to be or not to be 41a front

This pic and p1202-1205 have an opening bid price of $50; the one of Carole on the set starts at $100. Bidding on all three ends between noon and 1 p.m. (Eastern) next Saturday.

For p1202-1205. go to The “To Be Or Not To Be” image is at And Lombard arriving on the set is found at

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Posted April 27, 2013 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Per your request   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2013.04.26 at 00:19
Current mood: pleasedpleased

carole lombard office 01a

We get letters (or, should we say, email), and one we received today had a request of us. It read:

“I’m wondering…Do you have the header picture of Carole in the sequin and chiffon dress in a bigger size? I’ve never seen it before. Thanks!”

(For those of you who access Carole & Co. via WordPress, an explanation. At our LiveJournal site, we run a header related to Lombard. At the start of 2013, we decided to run a header of every Paramount p1202 portrait of Carole and change it after four days or so; since our collection features several hundred such portraits, it should take several years before we exhaust them all. They aren’t visible at WordPress.)

Currently, we’re at p1202-69, and for consistency’s sake, we run them at the same depth. But the good news is that we do have a larger version of that portrait…and here it is:

carole lombard p1202-69 larger

Hope that’s large enough for you.

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Posted April 25, 2013 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Carole, Cab, Coop and lucky Lindy, sign in, please   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2013.04.25 at 09:10
Current mood: accomplishedaccomplished

carole lombard 050538a front large

Even when Carole Lombard wasn’t in the best of moods, as she clearly isn’t in this image from May 1938, she generally was cooperative where signing autographs was concerned. It went with the territory of being a celebrity, and it probably remained a thrill to Carole that someone would actually want her signature for the signature’s sake, not for endorsing a check or paying a bill.

We bring this up because Lombard is among an array of notables who can be found in an autograph book being auctioned at eBay:

autograph book 01a

She’s in pretty good company, too, as other signees include one of her co-stars, acting and music legends, and the man who probably was the number-one hero of the 1920s. But let’s start with Lombard’s signature:

carole lombard autograph 80a

Looks authentic to me. Alas, we have no idea when and where she signed it; perhaps Carole Sampeck of The Lombard Archive can do some tea-leaf reading for clues (at least as to when).

Now to that hero I mentioned, someone whose autograph the Lombard of the late 1920s would have desired:

autograph charles lindbergh 00a

Yep, that’s Charles Lindbergh, the aviation pioneer whose solo transatlantic flight in May 1927 brought him worldwide acclaim. The owner of the book, whose father was a naval rear admiral, attended Lindy’s take-off from Floyd Bennett Field in New York. (Note: My late father, about 3 1/2 at the time, was taken by my grandfather, a Brooklyn newspaperman, to Floyd Bennett the day before, but inclement weather pushed back the take-off.)

The co-star? None other than Gary Cooper:

autograph gary cooper 00a

Another leading man who signed was Franchot Tone:

autograph franchot tone 00a

Cornelia Otis Skinner was a respected author and actress:

autograph cornelia otis skinner 00a

Carole may have caught this star in concert — the king of heigh-de-ho, Cab Calloway:

autograph cab calloway 00a

And operatic singer-actress Gladys Swarthout signed this in conjunction with a performance she gave in Providence, R.I.:

autograph gladys swarthout 00a

Among others who signed: Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald and bandleader Don Redman.

Lombard autographs don’t come cheaply, especially among this kind of company. As of this writing, 10 bids have been made, topping out at $330, and bidding closes at 10:29 p.m. (Eastern) on Monday. Think you would like to own this? Learn more at

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Posted April 25, 2013 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Fashion and furs from ’34   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2013.04.24 at 10:50
Current mood: contemplativecontemplative

The recent debate in Slate, the Huffington Post and elsewhere over a 1931 Photoplay article on who possessed the best figure in Hollywood ( is a reminder of how fluid public attitudes and tastes can be. Witness this Paramount portrait of Carole Lombard, p1202-1081, from 1934:

carole lombard p1202-1081a

By ’34 standards, that’s a pretty chic outfit, yet another reason Lombard was considered among the best-dressed stars of her era. Now imagine a current Carole at that age (25 or 26, meaning she would have been born in 1987 or ’88). Can you imagine her, chock full of 2013 sensibilities, wearing fur (assuming her modern self was as much an animal lover as the 1930s Lombard was)? Somehow I can’t, either. Take the fur out of the photo and the portrait is still pretty glamorous, if a bit dated.

This is an original photo, trimmed to 7″ x 9 1/2″. It’s an original and up for bidding, with bids starting at $17.95. The auction closes at 11:57 p.m. (Eastern) on Friday. Think you’re interested? Then visit

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Posted April 24, 2013 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Built for the box office   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2013.04.23 at 00:44
Current mood: nostalgicnostalgic

carole lombard no one man 21a

As 1932 began, Carole Lombard had a lot riding on her new film, “No One Man.” It was the first time Paramount had given her top billing, and it was an adaptation of a story by popular writer Rupert Hughes. Moreover, the studio was giving her a publicity push — perhaps not up to the level of studio stablemate Miriam Hopkins, but considerable nonetheless.

You can see what we mean by the following trade ad:

carole lombard no one man motion picture herald 011632a

Lombard was praised for having “the ‘it’ that gets ‘them’,” for combining “personality and beauty,” and for being “built for the box office.” (And, dare we say it, other things.)

This ad ran in the Jan. 16, 1932 Motion Picture Herald, alongside ads for other notable films of the time, such as “Shanghai Express”…

motion picture herald 011632a shanghai express

…”One Hour With You”…

motion picture herald 011632a one hour with you

…and “Prestige”:

motion picture herald 011632a prestige

This issue came from the Fox studio library (long before 20th Century and Darryl F. Zanuck came on the scene), and it can be yours. It’s being auctioned at eBay, with a minimum bid of $5; bidding closes at 5:17 p.m. (Eastern) May 2. For additional information or to bid, visit

As for “No One Man,” it’s one of Carole’s weakest films…but she would get other chances to top the bill.

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Posted April 22, 2013 by vp19 in Uncategorized

What backs a ‘Man Of The World’? Linen!   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2013.04.22 at 00:22
Current mood: impressedimpressed

carole lombard man of the world 15a

OK, in this case, the “man” is actually Carole Lombard, showing off what’s chic in fashion for the spring of 1931 in conjunction with the Paramount film “Man Of The World.” But the portrait’s an original, measuring 7 3/4″ x 9 3/4″, in very good condition, and is linen-backed. It’s also an image of Lombard I’ve never run across before.

If you’d like to own it, bids start at $9.99 (none have been made as of this writing) and bids close at 7:08 p.m. (Eastern) next Sunday. To place a bid or find out more, go to

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Posted April 21, 2013 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Could Carole have dreamt of Manderley again?   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2013.04.21 at 17:51
Current mood: curiouscurious

carole lombard mr. & mrs. smith 13a

Carole Lombard worked with Alfred Hitchcock (and even directed his cameo) in the 1941 comedy “Mr. & Mrs. Smith.” But perhaps, just perhaps, they might have collaborated on one of Hitch’s most famous projects.

Or at least that’s a possible inference from reading one of Hollywood’s better-known columnists.

I give you Hearst’s Louella Parsons, from the Sept. 3, 1938 Milwaukee Sentinel:

carole lombard 090338 milwaukee sentinel

Reading the piece, note Hitchcock’s name is nowhere to be found. While several of his British films, such as “The 39 Steps,” had won popular and critical success in America, he had yet to make a movie on this side of the pond. It’s hard for us to imagine a “Rebecca” directed by someone other than Hitchcock, but at this early stage one doubts Selznick had any particular director in mind for the project. (Of course, in late summer of 1938, David O.’s mind was preoccupied with adapting another novel to film.)

And Lombard as star of “Rebecca”? She had just come off a Selznick success in “Nothing Sacred” and was about to make another for him in “Made For Each Other,” so it’s natural they would have been linked together professionally. One might also read this as a consolation prize for Carole for missing out on the role of Scarlett O’Hara…but then again, was she a serious candidate for that role in the first place?

rebecca 00

Given Parsons’ hit-and-miss batting average on industry scoops, casting Lombard as the second Mrs. de Winter might not have worked; despite Carole’s ability as a dramatic actress, the public might not have bought her for a lead in a movie Photoplay deemed “a strange mixture of mystery, melodrama, scenic effects and pathos.” Joan Fontaine (shown with George Sanders and Judith Anderson) got the part and fit the film’s Gothic atmosphere beautifully. (And since she was a month or so away from turning 30, Lombard might have been considered too old for the part.)

“Rebecca” would win the 1940 Academy Award for best picture (the only one of Hitch’s films so honored) and for cinematography. As for Carole, she had to settle for being America’s second Hitchcock blonde.

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Posted April 21, 2013 by vp19 in Uncategorized