Archive for November 2014

For a little pic, a lot of Lombard   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2014.11.30 at 15:50

Current mood: contentcontent

carole lombard 2623b

The hairstyle Carole Lombard is wearing makes it very likely this photo was taken for Pathe Pictures in the late 1920s (probably by William E. Thomas), when her first name was publicly known as “Carol.” She’s holding a cigarette between her fingers, wearing a gown with a thin strap whose shade nearly matches her skin, giving an initial, yet faulty, impression that she’s nude beneath the fur — and of course there’s plenty of Lombard leg on display. But a glance at the entire picture throws us a curve:

carole lombard 2623 large

Her name is listed as “Carole,” and the type font looks suspiciously British. (Then again, this item is on sale via an eBay seller in the UK.) I’m guessing this card, a mere 5″ x 7″, was printed after Lombard signed a long-term deal with Paramount and adopted the name Carole for good.

Bidding on this stunning pic begins at $7.81 US, with the auction closing at 3:06 a.m. (Eastern) Friday. To put in a claim, go to×5-/311189398094?pt=UK_Collectables_Photographs_MJ&hash=item487455624e.

Posted November 30, 2014 by vp19 in Uncategorized

In a fit of pique   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2014.11.29 at 14:52

Current mood: curiouscurious

carole lombard otto dyar 08b front

“What is he writing about?” you may think to yourself. “Carole Lombard looks in pretty good temperament there.” In terms of mood, you’re certainly correct…but focus on that word “fit.” There’s the (figurative) rub, as the snipe on the back makes evident:

carole lombard otto dyar 08 back large

And if you’re wondering who took this portrait, we can answer that question too:

carole lombard otto dyar 08a back large

This Otto Dyar photo from 1932 is, according to the seller, “approximately 8 1/8″ by 10 1/8″. Has a 3/4″ tear bottom left hand corner, creased bottom right hand corner, a raised/creased area left hand side & a little bit of wear to the corners. Shows signs of age/wear/handling.”

You can purchase this straight up for $195, or you can make a bid, beginning at $149.99; the auction closes at 5:51 p.m. (Eastern) on Wednesday. To bid or learn more, visit×10-Photo-No-Man-of-Her-Own-Paramount-/191429977009?pt=Art_Photo_Images&hash=item2c921da3b1.

Posted November 29, 2014 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Come and get these memories, part 2   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2014.11.28 at 22:55

Current mood: melancholymelancholy

carole lombard clark gable otto winkler howard strickling 033039b

The memories that go with this entry aren’t the happiest ones, though they seemed so at the start. On March 30, 1939, Carole Lombard and Clark Gable — married the day before — posed with two of Gable’s MGM buddies. Standing next to Clark is Howard Strickling, the studio’s head of publicity. Alongside Carole is a witness to their wedding of the day before, part of Metro’s PR staff…Otto Winkler. Yes, the same Otto Winkler who would perish with Lombard, her mother Elizabeth Peters, and 19 others on Flight 3 on Jan. 16, 1942.

And at Bonhams’ recent memorabilia auction “TCM Presents…There’s No Place Like Hollywood,” some of Carole’s correspondence to Winkler — plus the photograph above — was sold for $2,250.

It begins with this letter sent to Otto and his wife, Jill, on Oct. 8, 1938, and one would guess it has some connection to Lombard’s 30th birthday two days before:

carole lombard letter otto winkler 00a

Note that not all the signatures here are Lombard’s; a few were signed or addressed by the Gables’ personal secretary, Jean Garceau.

carole lombard letter otto winkler 01a
carole lombard letter otto winkler 02b
carole lombard letter otto winkler 03a
carole lombard letter otto winkler 04a

The collection is described this way:

“Comprising a typed letter signed by Lombard, 1 p., October 8, 1938; an autograph note signed by Lombard on ‘Mr. and Mrs. Clark Gable’ stationery; an autograph note signed by Carole Lombard on ‘Miss Carole Lombard’ stationery; two autograph notes signed by Carole Lombard on ‘CG’ stationery with original transmittal envelopes dated October 11 and December 27, 1941; and two secretarial cards from Clark Gable and Carole Lombard that accompanied gifts. All of the letters are addressed to Otto Winkler and/or his wife Jill. Together with an oversize photograph of Gable and Lombard posing between Otto Winkler and MGM Publicity Chief Howard Strickling on March 30, 1939, when the couple announced their marriage to the press. Winkler had been the only friend present at their wedding in Kingman, Arizona, the previous day.”

The song titled “Come And Get These Memories” was Martha & the Vandellas’ first hit in early 1963, as they joined Motown’s stable of stars. More than half a century later, Bette Midler drastically reworked it into a ballad for her fine new CD “It’s The Girls,” saluting the girl group sound. Give it a listen.

Posted November 29, 2014 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Come and get these memories, part 1   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2014.11.27 at 19:37

Current mood: thoughtfulthoughtful

carole lombard clark gable 1941a

It’s sometime in 1941, and Carole Lombard and Clark Gable are making one of their by-now infrequent excursions into Hollywood nightlife. But note what Gable is wearing on his little finger…it’s this, given to him by Lombard:

carole lombard clark gable wedding ring 00b

This was part of the recent “There’s No Place Like Hollywood” auction co-sponsored by Bonhams and Turner Classic Movies; it went for $50,000.

Some more about the ring, from Bonhams:

“14k gold men’s ring with ribbed center band. Gable typically only wore rings on his pinkie finger, which would account for the ring’s smaller than expected size. Gable and Lombard married on March 29, 1939 and are remembered as one of the most iconic Hollywood couples of the period.

Provenance: Accompanied by a typed letter signed by Kay Gable.” And here’s said letter, plus envelope:

carole lombard clark gable wedding ring 01c

carole lombard clark gable wedding ring 02a

According to Bonhams, “Lazier was a well-known collector of militaria who often wrote to famous people asking for donations to his military museum.”

Six weeks after writing this letter, Kay Gable herself would be gone. It says something about the lady and her regard for not only Gable, but Lombard, that she refused to sell such a personal item of Clark’s.

Tomorrow, more memorabilia concerning Clark and Carole.

Posted November 27, 2014 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Carole goes rustic one more time   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2014.11.26 at 20:30

Current mood: chipperchipper

carole lombard p1202-1587a front

For the eBay seller who’s been supplying us with all these fabulous images of Carole Lombard during her 1937 “farmerette” phase, yet one more pic — and this one’s a beaut. It’s Paramount p1202-1587, as we stare down at Lombard, delighted her barn is in splendid shape. And yes, there’s another plug from the studio regarding her upcoming Paramount offering, “True Confession,” on the back:

carole lombard p1202-1587a back

It measures 8″ c 10″, and has some creases on the bottom edge, but for the casual Carole fan, that probably won’t mean very much. Bids open at $9.99, with the auction closing at 9:14 p.m. (Eastern) next Wednesday.

Think you’d like to add that Lombard smile to your collection? Then visit to bid or learn more.

By now, many of you know what a fan I am of the girl group sound, the music made by female vocal groups, predominantly in the early and mid-1960s. Another fan is the talented and wonderful Bette Midler (you know, the woman whose star is next to Carole Lombard’s on the Hollywood Walk of Fame), and she’s paid tribute to these acts with a splendid new CD, “It’s The Girls.” Midler goes to town on 15 tracks, most of them from the apex of the genre (1962 to 1965), but several from the pre-rock era as well (the Andrews Sisters’ first hit, “Bei Mir Bist Du Schon,” and the CD’s “title” song, the Boswell Sisters’ brilliant “It’s The Girl”). Here is Bette performing the Ronettes’ “Be My Baby,” from the album, followed by the Bozzies with “It’s The Girl” (from 1931).

Posted November 26, 2014 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Looking ‘Golden’ for Lombard, Gable and Matzen   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2014.11.25 at 21:59

Current mood: accomplishedaccomplished

carole lombard clark gable 088c

Imagine if Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie had existed some 75 years ago, living not in a society dominated by TMZ but instead by mostly fawning (if sometimes perceptive) fan magazines. Now amplify the adulation. That’s more or less the world Carole Lombard and Clark Gable inhabited for several years.

To remind us of just how it was, Robert Matzen, author of the acclaimed book “Fireball” (the definitive source regarding the January 1942 Lombard airplane crash that suddenly ended this halcyon era), has written a piece on Clark and Carole as the “Power Couple of the 1930s. It can be found in the latest issue (No. 78) of Films Of The Golden Age –– and guess who happens to be its cover subject?

carole lombard films of the golden age 78a

Matzen examines Gable and Lombard’s similar yet dissimilar Midwestern roots and their rise to prominence before meeting cinematically for “No Man Of Her Own” (although he doesn’t note that Carole didn’t become Clark’s leading lady until Miriam Hopkins backed out of the role in a dispute over billing). He resumes with the start of their prolonged romance in 1936, culminating in their March 1939 marriage. It’s worth checking out.

Counting a two-page overpiece of the couple from “No Man Of Her Own” and a one-page ad for Matzen’s book, this piece consists of 10 pages — certainly the most detailed exposure Lombard has received in the magazine since she was its cover subject back in the summer of 2001:

carole lombard films of the golden age 25a

Clark and Carole also received coverage in Films Of The Golden Age’s sister publication, Classic Images, using this lobby card on the cover of the November 2014 issue as a sort of cross-promotion:

carole lombard no man of her own lobby card 01a

Posted November 26, 2014 by vp19 in Uncategorized

A double dose of horsing around   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2014.11.24 at 08:44

Current mood: cheerfulcheerful

carole lombard p1202-1686b front

Once again, we get to see Carole Lombard, horsewoman; in fact, we’ll do it twice. First, it’s feeding time for Lombard’s lovable Palomino gelding, Pico — and once that’s out of the way, Carole will take her horse for a brief walk:

carole lombard p1202-1519 front

This pair of Paramount equine portraits — p1202-1686 on top, followed by p1202-1519 — is up for auction(s) at eBay, as both are being offered separately. However, the snipes on both are identical:

carole lombard p1202-1686a back

The same seller is handling both images. As of this writing, p1202-1519 already has two bids, topping at $10.50, with the auction ending at 9:12 p.m. (Eastern) Wednesday. Those of you interested in the horse-walking picture should visit

As for the feeding pic, p1202-1686, the minimum bid is $9.99, and bidding closes at 9:06 p.m. (Eastern) Sunday. Get additional information by going to

Posted November 24, 2014 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Next month, take a ‘White Woman’ from Universal’s vault   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2014.11.23 at 21:25

Current mood: excitedexcited

“White Woman” isn’t Carole Lombard’s greatest movie — no, it’s far from it — but it nevertheless has a core of devoted fans. Some like its sheer campiness (a term no one associated with the film would have heard of in the latter part of 1933). Others enjoy the potboiler aspect of the movie, while still others delight in Charles Laughton’s over-the-top performance.

No matter which camp (pardon the pun) you may belong to, there’s good news for “White Woman” fans — next month, it will finally appear on DVD…

…but don’t bother asking Paramount about it, since it hasn’t been their property for close to six decades. This, and many other Lombard films, are part of a group of releases from…

It’s called the “Universal Vault” series, from which “Supernatural” emerged for its first official DVD release in October. It appears you can obtain “White Woman” in one of two ways — buy it via, or rent it via (

The other releases set for that day ( feature many actors Carole knew or worked with:

* All My Sons (1948) — Edward G. Robinson, Burt Lancaster, Mady Christians
* Her Jungle Love (1938) — Dorothy Lamour, Ray Milland, Lynne Overman, J. Carrol Naish
* High, Wide, and Handsome (1937) — Irene Dunne, Randolph Scott, Dorothy Lamour, Elizabeth Patterson
* Love Letters (1945) — Jennifer Jones, Joseph Cotten, Ann Richards, Cecil Kellaway, Anita Louise
* Men With Wings (1938) — Fred MacMurray, Ray Milland, Louise Campbell, Andy Devine
* The Moon’s Our Home (1936) — Margaret Sullavan, Henry Fonda, Charles Butterworth, Beulah Bondi
* The Restless Years (1958) — John Saxon, Sandra Dee, Teresa Wright, James Whitmore

“The Moon’s Our Home,” a smart romantic comedy, has a link to Lombard: She and James Stewart replaced Sullavan and Stewart’s pal Fonda in the “Lux Radio Theater” adaptation of the story in 1940.

Here’s another pic from “White Woman”:

And as we’ve stated before, let’s hope this leads Universal to issue DVD versions of some of Carole’s more obscure early Paramount titles, films such as “Bolero,” “Rumba,” “From Hell To Heaven,” “Sinners In The Sun” and “No One Man.”

Posted November 24, 2014 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Score on this ‘Safety’   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2014.11.22 at 02:22

Current mood: determineddetermined

carole lombard safety in numbers 108b front

It’s simply a key book fashion pose from Carole Lombard’s first Paramount film — heck, she hadn’t signed with the studio yet — but her determined look sends the message, “This is where I want to be.” In this spring of 1930, Lombard (wearing a still-fashionable cloche hat) was an ex-Pathe player seeking something, and for her, that was Paramount.

The pic is from “Safety In Numbers,” as the back makes clear…

carole lombard safety in numbers 108a back

…and this 7 3/4″ x 10″, on glossy linen paper stock, is stunning. According to the seller, it’s “in fine+ condition with minor corner wear and a minimal amount of surface and handling wear.” No wonder it already has six bids as of this writing, topping at $21.50. Expect bidding to soar even higher, as the auction won’t end until 9:44 p.m. (Eastern) Nov. 30.

It’s rare and it’s gorgeous. If you wish to join in the bidding (better have plenty of $ ready), visit

Soon Lombard would sign with Paramount, beginning a seven-year relationship with the studio that had its share of ups and downs.

Posted November 22, 2014 by vp19 in Uncategorized

The jiggle of the ‘Century’   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2014.11.21 at 13:13

Current mood: hornyhorny

carole lombard twentieth century 007d

More than eight decades after the release of “Twentieth Century” in the spring of 1934, Carole Lombard still has the power to surprise. And for at least one person, said surprise did occur — not so much from Carole’s acting (it can be argued that here is where the on-screen Lombard we know and love came alive), but from what she was wearing...and how she was wearing it.

This person, Larry Harnisch, edits The Daily Mirror blog, a wonderful site for anyone who loves Los Angeles history (and its film noir underbelly, too). He saw the film recently, and here’s what he wrote:

“I watched ‘Twentieth Century’ for the first time the other night and was more than a bit surprised to see Carole Lombard clearly braless in this scene. It’s not as apparent in a frame grab as it is in the film, but she jiggles mightily.”

The screen grab gives you a hint of what he’s talking about:

carole lombard twentieth century 061c

The entry is at This hardly is a revelation to those of us familiar with the movie; after all, it’s Carole’s final pre-Code, not to mention one of the few screwball comedies filmed before the bluenoses took over censorship reins that July. And while there’s been some dispute over Lombard’s height over the years, her measurement in this category has been pretty well documented — a 34 1/2 B bustline, certainly not flat but hardly voluptuous. (It’s also unlike her tenure at Mack Sennett; he liked his women to fill out a swimsuit, and for a while she achieved that so masterfully that she briefly won the tag “Carole of the Curves.”) Like her contemporary and future friend Jean Harlow, Lombard rarely if ever wore a bra.

But if Harnisch was surprised by seeing that in “Twentieth Century,” one can only image his reaction to this publicity photo of Carole with co-star John Barrymore, which presumably was nixed by industry censor Joseph Breen as soon as he could reach for his stamp:

carole lombard twentieth century 019b
carole lombard twentieth century 024b banned back stamp large

Posted November 21, 2014 by vp19 in Uncategorized