Archive for April 2015

The clip game   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.04.30 at 16:44

Current mood: enviousenvious

“No One Man,” Carole Lombard’s first top-billed vehicle at Paramount, premiered in early 1932 amid fair-to-middling reviews at best which lauded Lombard more for her wardrobe than for her acting. (She’s shown with Paul Lukas in this still.) Perhaps this clipping from a fan magazine of the time is indicative of the reaction:

From left, Lombard looks great in a white crepe romain gown, sexy in a two-piece swimsuit with cape (white jersey trimmed with balls of yarn), then concludes the white trifecta with a dazzling white jacket atop a black crepe evening gown. Splendid summer wear for Florida, California or anywhere else in the early ’30s, and none would appear that out of place today. Later that year, the swimsuit image was used for an advertisement:

You can purchase the clipping straight up for $4.99. Go to×10-R3323-/381244923459?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item58c3f7de43 to learn more.

Posted April 30, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

A ‘hermit,’ soon to be in the past tense   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.04.29 at 15:36

Current mood: curiouscurious

There was a time, however brief, when “To Be Or Not To Be” and “posthumous” were not synonymous with Carole Lombard…and here’s proof. It’s from the February 1942 issue of Screen Guide, which probably hit newsstands a few days before her fateful air accident on Jan. 16. The story refers to Lombard as Clark Gable’s “hermit wife,” but also includes a few photographs from her upcoming feature:

I wish I had it available at a larger size so I could read the copy; one presumes the premise is intriguing, especially in a “what-if” circumstance where the fatal crash never happened.

Myrna Loy graces the cover:

The rest of the issue has all sorts of things, including ads for the likes of “The Man Who Came To Dinner” and “Ball of Fire,” not to mention color photographs of Betty Grable, Cary Grant and Ann Rutherford:

The magazine consists of 56 pages and is 10 3/8″ x 13 3/8″. Two bids have been made as of this writing, with the current high bid at $10.50. The auction is set to end at 9:01 a.m. (Eastern) tomorrow. For more information, visit

Posted April 29, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

‘Godfrey’ by the dozen   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.04.27 at 14:46

Current mood: creativecreative

“My Man Godfrey” arguably is Carole Lombard’s most celebrated film, the screwball comedy classic that gave her the only Academy Award nomination in her brief life. And this weekend, Heritage Auctions of Dallas is auctioning “Godfrey” items at its Sunday Internet Movie Poster Auction.

But don’t let the title of the event fool you. These aren’t posters Heritage is auctioning.

Nope — these are photos, all original 8″ x 10″ from Universal, a dozen in all (10 horizontal, two vertical). According to Heritage, these all are “unrestored photos that display signs of use. May include light edge wear, small corner bumps, very minor toning, slight curling, or unobtrusive stains. One photo has two horizontal creases running across the image. Please see full-color, enlargeable image below for more details.” They are deemed in Fine/Very Fine condition.

Nine of the 12 feature Lombard, Powell or both:

That last one of Powell has the aforementioned “horizontal creases.”

The other horizontal features Gail Patrick, and her plan to do in Godfrey:

The two verticals are of Jean Dixon as the lovable housemaid Molly and the relatively obscure Robert Light as Cornelia’s society beau, Faithful George:

The photos are auctioned as a unit. As of this writing, the current high bid is $36, with a $50 buyer’s premium — but expect this to probably go into three figures when all is said and done. Check out the information at For more on the auction and how it works, visit

Posted April 27, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

‘A Touch of Stardust’ (and a change of fonts)   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.04.26 at 18:15

Current mood: productiveproductive

Kate Alcott’s “A Touch of Stardust,” the historical novel about Hollywood in the late 1930s in which Carole Lombard is a notable character, has been out since mid-February. We know that this was initially planned as its cover…

…but that it ended up as this:

But did you know the final cover was slightly altered? Here’s what the advanced reading copy, sent to reviewers and others, looked like:

Note the differences? The colors of the wording have changed, the italicized fonts of the words “a novel” are different, and perhaps most prominently, instead of the red multi-dimensional font for the title, this version employ a yellow italic font. All in all, the decision to change probably was the right one, as the title on the final product has a bit more impact and slightly more of a ’30s “streamline” appearance.

This rare version of the book is on sale at eBay. According to the seller, the book, an uncorrected proof, has “tight clean pages and binding. No tears, stains or inscriptions.”

It’s being sold straight up for $14.99, so if you’re into owning literary variants, this is right up your alley. Go to to buy or learn more.

Posted April 26, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

A starry day with fellow Lombard lovers   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.04.25 at 23:10

Current mood: giddygiddy

Here’s a casual photo of Carole Lombard and Clark Gable, probably from the late 1930s. I doubt memorabilia shows were staged in their day…and even if there had been, Clark and Carole probably wouldn’t have deigned to attend them. It’s not that they didn’t like their fans — for the most part, they had good rapport with them — but before they married, they cherished their privacy, which also turned out to be the case after they married and moved to the Encino ranch.

Today, memorabilia is a big deal for both entertainment and sports, and it’s understandable that both ballplayers and movie and TV figures whose time came a bit to early to cash in on the big money try to make up for it now. I’ve attended a few of these shows since I moved to Los Angeles nine months ago, and they’ve all been fun, as I’ve met a lot of people in the industry, people whose work I’ve enjoyed for many years — from Angie Dickinson and Dame Joan Collins in January ( to Beth Broderick, best known for playing Aunt Zelda on “Sabrina, the Teenage Witch,” in September.

Today was no exception, as a show I attended at a hotel near Los Angeles International Airport included two guests who have cited Lombard as an influence — and whereas I’ve previously been reluctant to have my photo taken with celebs, considering a personally autographed picture and some substantial banter sufficient, this time I changed my ways (and am glad I did). First of all, one of the top comedic actresses of the 1970s and ’80s, someone I met for the first time…Teri Garr:

Teri has battled multiple sclerosis, which by necessity has limited both her work and public appearances in recent years, so seeing her at this show was a special pleasure. She seemed in good spirits, too. Oh, and note the light blue card at the bottom of the photo? I reminded her that she had cited Lombard as a role model and then gave her a Carole & Co. business card; she was delighted to receive it. Just a genuinely nice person (something I like to think she learned from Lombard, whether or not that’s actually true). Continued personal and professional success, Teri, and enjoy checking out this site every now and then.

The other notable who’s made public her fondness for Lombard is someone I’ve met before and in fact interviewed in April 1997 for the Courier-News in central New Jersey when she appeared at a memorabilia show. I am referring to the still statuesque and stunning (at age 81!) Julie Newmar:

Perhaps the odd angle I was pictured at makes me appear a bit intimidated, but I like to think it was simply being in such close presence to the wonderful, beautiful Julie — the definitive Catwoman, but so much more (she won a Tony award for her work in the late 1950s stage play “The Marriage-Go-Round”). Newmar has been a favorite with fans for years, and has cited Lombard (for comedy) and Rita Hayworth (for dance) as her primary influences. I hope one of these days, I can track down that 1997 interview I did with her.

Others I spent some time with Saturday included ’60s songstress Donna Loren, who wore the cheerleader sweater from a “Batman” episode she appeared in (and it still fit her nearly 50 years later!) and from whom I bought three CDs; veteran actor Monte Markham, who’s guested on everything from “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” to “Star Trek: Deep Space Nice” in addition to playing Perry Mason in the 1970s revival of the series; and director Bert I. Gordon, whose special effects-laden work has ranged from “Attack of the Puppet People” to “Village of the Giants.” He’s written an autobiography, which I purchased. (Alas, veteran character actor William Schallert, who was scheduled to attend, canceled Friday due to illness. Get better, Bill.) And I purchased some 1930s fan magazines as well.

The show concludes Sunday; for more information, visit

Posted April 26, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

The lovely Lombard, footsie tootsie   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.04.24 at 16:01

Current mood: amusedamused

People love Carole Lombard for all sorts of reasons — her beautiful face, her sparkling cinematic personality, her timeless approach towards life, and so on. But there’s one group of folk whose fondness for Lombard literally gets right down to the bottom of it. Ladies and gentlemen, Carole’s foot fans.

That scene, of course, is from “Mr. & Mrs. Smith,” and it’s among 26 Lombard foot photos that can be found at (Carole’s specific sub-site is WikiFeet refers to itself as “the collaborative celebrity feet website,” and its members have rated Lombard’s as just below 4.5 stars out of five (coincidentally, 4.5 was Carole foot size). And these photos aren’t limited to barefoot shots; here’s one of her in shoes:

Thousands — yes, thousands –– of other celebs from around the world are listed. A fetish? Certainly, but plenty of fun. Here are two of the 68 of Angie Dickinson, a lady perhaps better known for what’s connected to her feet than the feet themselves. Her rating is just above 4.5, placing her in the “beautiful” category as opposed to Lombard’s mere “nice”:

Just for fun, I thought I’d see how Lombard compared with both some of her contemporaries as well as a few of my current-day favorites and Facebook celeb friends in both number of photos and foot quality rating. Among 1930s stars, let’s begin with my second all-time favorite actress, Myrna Loy, who has just 13 pics at wikiFeet but a “beautiful” rating:

No. 3 on my list, Barbara Stanwyck? 28 pics, “nice” feet:

Marlene Dietrich (30 pics, “nice” feet):

and Jean Harlow (29 pics, “nice” feet):

Now for some later generation stars. Tomorrow I’m attending a memorabilia show in Los Angeles, and among those slated to attend are longtime Lombard fan Julie Newmar (72 pics, “beautiful” feet)…

…and perhaps my first face-to-face meeting with Teri Garr (26 pics, “nice” feet), who’s long called Carole one of her role models:

Now let’s check out how Goldie Hawn (213 pics, “beautiful” feet)…

…goes toe-to-toe with daughter Kate Hudson (1,225 pics, “beautiful” feet). Oh, and Kate’s feet are bigger than her mom’s, too — 6.5 to 5.

Facebook friends Francine York (six pics, “nice” feet)…

…and Kelli Maroney (15 pics, “nice” feet) both earned mention:

Finally, since it’s no secret I’m a fan of Anna Faris, I thought I’d check her out. Turns out there’s lots of love for the Faris feet (701 pics, “beautiful” feet). Incidentally, when I attended a filming of “Mom” a few months back, my most indelible memory of Anna was seeing her change socks between takes:

An intriguing place to check out; you could say it puts the “footage” back in film.

Posted April 24, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

A ‘Pic’ of the Smiths   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.04.23 at 16:37

Current mood: amusedamused

Carole Lombard’s return to comedy in “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” was well-dcoumented in the press. For example, check out this two-page photo spread from Pic magazine of Jan. 7, 1941:

You can purchase this magazine, one of the many clones of Life magazine from about this time, for $14.95 by visiting

Posted April 23, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

‘Godfrey” is going Broadway…er, Chicago   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.04.22 at 14:53

Current mood: excitedexcited

Carole Lombard’s cinematic triumph, “My Man Godfrey,” may soon wind up adapted along the same lines as another Lombard gem…

…”Twentieth Century,” whose musical adaptation “On the Twentieth Century” has been revived this spring in New York with Kristin Chenoweth and Peter Gallagher. Of course, that story deals with a ride on the famed high-speed train, and “Godfrey” aficionados may have to ride it in the other direction to see it on stage:

That’s because this production will hold its world premiere not in New York, but in...Chicago.

According to, that city’s First Folio Theater will host “My Man Godfrey” as a stage play, not a musical, early next year. (Several years ago, it was reported that a musical version of “Godfrey” was set for Broadway, possibly with Chenoweth as Irene Bullock — Lombard’s role on screen — but the production never came to fruition.) Here’s more information about the “Godfrey” play:

MY MAN GODFREY, a World Premiere stage adaptation of the classic 1930’s American comedy starring William Powell and Carole Lombard, is also written by David Rice. Set in the midst of the Great Depression, this delightful tale is a cross between You Can’t Take it With You and the Jeeves and Wooster tales. A young heiress of a wealthy Park Avenue family, Irene Bullock, stumbles upon a disheveled and down-and-out vagrant, Godfrey, who is residing in the city dump. The scatterbrained socialite takes pity on him and hires him on to become the family’s new butler. As the story unfolds, Godfrey has to maneuver through the family’s eccentricities and a budding romance in order to save the family from themselves. The play will be directed by Jeff Award nominee Alison C. Vesely and feature Artistic Associates Kevin McKillip as the unflappable “Godfrey” and Hayley Rice as the comic maid “Edith.” MY MAN GODFREY begins previews January 27, opens January 30 and runs through February 28, 2016.

There’s no reason this can’t work on stage, though it might help if the city dump lacks the aromatic presence of the real thing. For more on this, go to So start planning this, gang, and leave the cameras at home.

Posted April 22, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

A two-album set   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.04.21 at 17:24

Current mood: goodgood

But you won’t need a phonograph to play these, merely your eyes. These are Screen Album magazines from summer 1938 (above, with Carole Lombard on the cover) and 1936, and are being sold as a unit at eBay.

Inside the ’38 issue are profiles of William Powell and Myrna Loy…

…Robert Taylor and Margaret Sullavan…

…and a feature on “tomorrow’s stars”:

The ’36 cover subject is Claudette Colbert…

…while inside are Gladys Swarthout and John Boles…

…and Mae West and Ronald Colman:

The set has an opening bid of $18.99, with the auction ending at 2:18 p.m. (Eastern) next Tuesday. To get in on the action or learn more, visit

Posted April 21, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

A nice Facebook ‘Tribute’   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.04.20 at 21:50

Current mood: pleasedpleased

Isn’t that a delightful photo of Carole Lombard, surrounded by hay, said to be from 1937? I wasn’t aware of its existence until I saw it the other day at a new Facebook site dedicated to Carole.

It’s called “Carole Lombard Tribute” (, and is the creation of my Faceboook friend Crystal Kalyana Pacey, whom I met late last year when she visited Los Angeles from her native Australia. She’s received some help from the hosts of two other FB sites, “When Hollywood Was Golden” and “Clark Gable: When Hollywood Was Golden,” who designed this header for her:

As of this writing, the site has received 408 likes in but one week of operation, a solid debut. They’ve uncovered several gems, such as this one:

We’ve run several images of Carole in that outfit that dates from 1933, but now we know more about it — this is presumably from a snipe on the back of the photo: “Carole Lombard sporting a new grey suit which follow the lines of a man’s Prince Albert coat. The waistline is high and slit in the back, which runs from hemline to waistline. The hat is a chechia model in grey straw. Carole actually designed this dress herself [emphasis ours].” An impressive find.

To be fair, there are other Lombard-related addresses at Facebook, such as “CAROLE LOMBARD !!!” (, a group with nearly 1,200 members; the fan page “The Films of Carole Lombard” (, whose membership exceeds 3,400; and several more. All are doing splendid work in perpetuating Lombard to the public, and more power to all of them.

Posted April 20, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized