Posted by vp19 on 2015.01.07 at 20:56
Current mood: cheerful
We’ve shown this Charles Gates Sheldon cover of Carole Lombard from the October 1935 issue of Screenland before…but for some reason, we’ve never run the article about her that accompanies it. We’re going to rectify that today, because it’s simply wonderful to read — especially since the author, Elizabeth Wilson, arguably was one of Carole’s closest friends in the fourth estate.
It’s the first of a two-part Lombard life story entitled “Merrily She Rolls Along” — but Wilson decided to focus the first part on Lombard in the here and now. I’m a former newspaperman and when reading this, I sort of wonder how I would have felt were I (figuratively) in Wilson’s shoes nearly 80 years ago. (OK, as a red-blooded heterosexual male, I admit I’d have lusted for Lombard…but at the same time, I think I would’ve been sufficiently professional to hold my desires in check. Anyway, let’s drop that angle.) There is an amazing relationship here between writer and subject, and shows why Carole generally was beloved by the entertainment press.
What a wonderfully vivid word portrait of Lombard.
Another article in that issue concerns something many of us care to forget about Carole: She was one of several notables in Hollywood with an interest in aviation. She’s mentioned a few times in this story:
This issue hit newsstands in mid-August 1935 — about the same time Will Rogers died in an Alaska plane piloted by his friend, Wiley Post. So one senses many who read the piece lost some enthusiasm for aviation, even if they had no idea Lombard would meet a similar fate less than 6 1/2 years later. Specifically, here’s what the article said about Carole the aviatrix (the “her” at the start of the paragraph refers to Ruth Chatterton):
Finally, the friendly relationship between Lombard and Walter Lang, who would later marry her best friend Madalynne Fields, is briefly mentioned in a gossip column:
“Spinster Dinner” was soon renamed for another meal…”Love Before Breakfast.”