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Moore, with Mr. Powell and his ex   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.05.23 at 06:39

Current mood: moodymoody

His “ex” being Carole Lombard, of course, but the “Moore” is that woman shown with William Powell, Grace Moore. Known as the “Tennessee Songbird” and a one-time star of the Metropolitan Opera, she was Columbia Pictures’ version of Jeanette MacDonald, although she never quite had similar cinematic success. This image is from the Associated Press during the latter part of 1933, following the Lombard-Powell divorce that August, and while we can’t show the snipe, according to the seller of this eBay, this is how it reads:

William Powell, screen actor, and Grace Moore, Opera singer and actress, are practicing a duet together, much to the amusement of Carole Lombard, screen actress and the former Mrs. Powell. Miss Moore, who has recently signed a long-term contract with Columbia Studios, was guest of honor recently after an operatic engagement in Los Angeles. All Hollywood turned out to pay her homage. Miss Moore’s first picture for Columbia has tentatively been entitled “The Love Child.” It will be made early next year. Miss Lombard’s most recent picture for Columbia was “Brief Moment.”

Moore became infamous for her temper; she was the type for whom the term “diva” was invented. Several months after this picture was taken, the Hollywood Reporter of June 13, 1934 printed this anecdote about an encounter Moore had with Lombard:

I’m sure the “menials” on the Columbia lot were thrilled to see Carole — someone who stood up to bullies of either gender — give Grace a taste of her own medicine.

The seller labels this 8″ x 10″ as “well-preserved,” although a small piece of the upper-righthand corner is missing (I’ve cropped it out) and there also are “tiny creases.” Nevertheless, it’s in good condition.

This rare image has an initial bid of $20, with the auction scheduled to end at 3 a.m. (Eastern) June 1. If interested or curious, visit

Moore, born in 1898, and Lombard each were nominated for Best Actress (Grace’s came for “One Night of Love” in 1935) and shared a tragic fate, as both died in airline crashes. Moore’s came on Jan. 26, 1947 in Copenhagen, a day after she had sung to an audience of 4,000 in the Danish capital. Lombard’s old friend Gloria Swanson referred to their deaths in the film “Airport 1975.”

Posted May 23, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

A honeymoon souvenir   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.05.22 at 15:55

Current mood: worriedworried

Carole Lombard had two husbands and one honeymoon. That came with William Powell in mid-1931, a ship voyage to Hawaii. Carole would fall ill there, in retrospect perhaps a sign that their relationship would be more successful as friends than as lovers. Perhaps that’s why Lombard wasn’t all that insistent that she and Clark Gable have a honeymoon when they finally tied the knot in 1939.

The photo below is from when Bill and Carole set sail for Honolulu, with neither really knowing what was yet to come:

It’s an 8″ x 10″ reprint on professional photographic paper, and can be yours for $14.99. If interested, visit×10-Photo-IMG935-/151682878726?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2351010d06.

Posted May 22, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Michelle Morgan’s Lombard bio? Book it!   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.05.21 at 22:22

Current mood: excitedexcited

If you were Carole Lombard, you’d be smiling, too. Why? It’s been announced that after eight years, author Michelle Morgan’s long-awaited biography of Carole will see the light of day next year.

Here’s how she announced the news at Facebook today:

“I am extremely happy, excited and ecstatic to share that I have just signed a contract with The History Press to write a biography about Carole Lombard. As many of you know, I have wanted to write this book for the past eight years, and finally the right publisher has been found. The book will be published in hardback next year, and I am absolutely thrilled! I will look forward to sharing more news about the project, as my work progresses. [smiley faces] — feeling blessed.”

The announcement was accompanied by this group of Lombard pics:

Morgan said, “I have been collecting some lovely original photos over the years, which I am excited about including. The photos seen here won’t be in the book, but are giving me inspiration from the wall above my desk.”

Morgan, a British native, has earned a reputation for writing fair and honest books on Hollywood history, volumes with integrity. One of her first books, on the early life of Marilyn Monroe, has won widespread praise for focusing on the humanity of Monroe, a person too often regarded as merely an icon.

That tradition has continued in subsequent books, including the recent “Mammoth Book of Madonna”; a biography of Thelma Todd slated for release this fall; and co-authoring another future release, “Before Marilyn,” a look back at Monroe’s modeling career before going into the movies. That book is from the History Press, which will issue the Lombard bio.

In the past, Morgan had announced a tentative title of “Carole Lombard — Twentieth Century Star”; whether the title will remain or be changed is yet to be known. All I can tell you is it should be anthoritative and full of things even the most avid Lombard fan may not be aware of. (Note: I aided Morgan some years ago in securing images of Carole for the book, although I have no idea whether any of them will be used.) Add how technology has made it far easier to collect information though digitalization of old newspapers, fan and trade magazines and other publications, and expect to learn more about Lombard than was available to authors of the past. I’m thrilled; somewhere, Carole is, too.

Posted May 22, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Another chance at an autograph   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.05.20 at 16:49

Current mood: impressedimpressed

About a week ago, we did an entry on Carole Lombard autographs ( Now, another one has popped up. Here’s a closeup of her signature:

While the autograph, in Lombard’s famed green fountain pen ink, almost certainly is authentic. it’s probably the type of signature she made from a pile of pictures and then were sent out by her office or studio. It may not be personal, but definitely from her hand.

This sepia photo measures 8″ x 10″ and is in very good condition. As of this writing, one bid has been made, for $195; the auction is set to close at 10:42 p.m. (Eastern) Monday. You can get in on the action, or simply find out more, by visiting

Posted May 20, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Irene Bullock, lauded from the right   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.05.19 at 21:03

Current mood: calmcalm

She’s one of comedy’s all-time heroines, among the most beloved of cinematic characters. But Carole Lombard’s Irene Bullock won praise recently from an unexpected source — the far-right news site Newsmax.

I try not to be overly political at Carole & Co., for that really isn’t what this site is all about. But those of you who know me probably am aware that I’m somewhat left of center, though I try to avoid judging a person solely on his or her ideology, unless they’re so strident about it that it becomes predictable and irritating.

In the racent past, I’ve come across some thoughtful entries on classic Hollywood from another stalwart of the right, (although it also offers a section, “Big Hollywood,” with more ideologically-based entries on the culture wars). But Heretofore my primary exposure to them was through either-or ads asking you to vote on a particular politically-oriented topic, usually where President Obama or some other Democrat invariably is shown in an unflattering pose.

So it’s intriguing to see Lombard’s Irene the subject of debate from this perspective…particularly considering that, as I’ve frequently noted, the mindset of “Godfrey” appears more aligned to the Occupy movement than one linked to Newsmax.

Author Shawndra Russell cites 10 quotes about Lombard as Irene, from a contemporary account in Variety (erroneously listed as from 1935, as “Godfrey” didn’t hit theaters until September 1936) to a glowing tribute from Roger Ebert, someone whose ideology probably made him no friend of Newsmax. The quotes all are thoughtful and worth checking out (

Nevertheless, one guesses that if we somehow zapped the Newsmax staff back to the fall of 1940, when New Dealer Lombard was making the Hitchcock romantic comedy “Mr. & Mrs. Smith” with ardent Republican Robert Montgomery, she’d probably do with them what she did with Bob: slap Franklin D. Roosevelt bumper stickers over Montgomery’s promoting Wendell Willkie and the GOP.

Posted May 19, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Don’t know much about (Hollywood) history? That will change soon.   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.05.18 at 23:20

Current mood: nostalgicnostalgic

Or at least know more about a certain segment of Carole Lombard’s Hollywood history, including films such as “Virtue” (where she’s shown with Pat O’Brien above). It’s for the second edition of the Classic Movie History Project Blogathon, slated for late June:

Three blogs are hosting the event: Movies Silently (, Silver Screenings ( and Once Upon a Screen ( The inaugural blogathon was held last year, and for some reason I wasn’t aware of it (perhaps my impending move to Los Angeles played a role in my ignorance). This time, though, fully settled in town, I’m not only aware of it, but am proudly taking part. (That’s Rudolph Valentino in the banner above.)

Movie history here has been divided into three eras: the Silent Era (1880-1929, naturally hosted by Movies Silently), the Golden Age (1930-1952, hosted by Once Upon a Screen), and Swinging into Modern Times (1953-1975, hosted by Silver Screenings). In turn, each period is divided into sub-periods. Here’s the roster as of 10:45 p.m. (Pacific) Monday:

* Friday, June 26
The Silent Era (1880-1929)

1880-1895: The birth of the movies
Silent-ology | Overview of early film

1896-1900: From novelty to art
Silent Volume | The Best Pre-Feature Movies

1901-1907: The first hits
Big V Riot Squad | Life of an American Director: Edwin S Porter in 1903

1908-1913: Nickelodeon!
365 Days 365 Classics | Indian Silent Cinema

1914-1918: The War
Now Voyaging | Movie audience perceptions of the war

1919-1923: Hollywood triumphs
Movies Silently | Home Theaters of the Silent Era
A Small Press Life | Anita Loos: Females in Early Hollywood

1924-1927: The high art of pantomime
Sepia Stories | Jeanne Eagels was Robbed. Why the stage’s most recognized Sadie Thompson didn’t appear in the film.

1928-1929: The talkie revolution
film, fashion & frivolity | Garbo’s Last Silents
Critica Retro | 1928 Around the World
CineMaven’s Essays from the Couch | The Crowd (1928)

* Saturday, June 27
The Golden Age (1930-1952)

1930-1931: All Singing! All Dancing! All Talking!
None as of yet

1932-1934: The wild world of pre-Code
Carole & Co. | Of Carole and Pre-Code
Girls Do Film | Barbara Stanwyck’s Pre-Code Bad Girls

1935-1938: The Code enforced and the rise of Technicolor
Nitrate Glow | Disney’s Early Features

1939: The Big Year
Movie Movie Blog Blog | Laurel and Hardy’s The Flying Deuces
Smitten Kitten Vintage | The Big Year: Selections from the Biggest Year in Classic Cinema

1940-1945: Wartime cinema
Once Upon a Screen | The de Havilland Decision
The Vintage Cameo | Wartime Musicals
Second Sight Cinema | Two Anti-Nazi comedies of 1942: The Great Dictator & To Be or Not to Be
Speakeasy | 1943 at RKO
The Motion Pictures| For Me and My Gal (1942)
Way Too Damn Lazy to Write a Blog | Christmas in Connecticut (1945)

1946-1949: Homecoming
Now Voyaging | The Soldiers Return
B Noir Detour | Wartime Cinema

1950-1952: Realism and the Method
Sister Celluloid | Stage Fright: Hitchcock Goes Home
Old Hollywood Films | Hollywood Expose Pictures
Hitchcock’s World | Destination Moon (1950)

* Sunday, June 28
Swinging into Modern Times (1953-1975)

1953-1957: The birth of cool
Back to Golden Days | Juvenile Delinquency: The Blackboard Jungle, The Wild One, Rebel Without a Cause
Movies Silently | After the Silents: A Face in the Crowd (1957)

1958-1962: Musicals, biblical epics and the shimmy-shimmy shakes
A Shroud of Thoughts | British New Wave

1963-1967: Mod’s the word
The Last Drive In | Strong Women of Sixties Film

1968-1972: Hays is dead
Portraits by Jenni | Airport (1970)
The Joy and Agony of Movies | Films about politics and social unrest
Girls Do Film | The American Road Movie
Moon in Gemini | Paranoia in Movies

1972-1975: The Godfather and Jaws
Silver Screenings | Sounder: The Anti-Blaxploitation Film

All sorts of fascinating topics already, with more to come.

Here’s more about the endeavor, should you wish to participate:

What about duplicates?
While no exact duplicates are allowed, the topic is so broad that we are sure you will find an angle that works for you. For example, if someone is covering Rebel Without a Cause, you might cover the overall career of James Dean. That being said, if there is a section that looks a little empty, we would greatly appreciate you stepping up and making sure there are no gaps in the event.

Do I have to stay in Hollywood?
No! International cinema is welcome and encouraged. While our date ranges are based on Hollywood history, please feel free to cover cinema from any nation 1880-1975.

Can I still cover a particular year?
Yes, you can. Just make sure that your angle is different from everyone else’s. For example, if someone is already writing about why 1939 is such a great year, you might write about the Academy Award winners of ’39 or choose to focus on individual films.

Do you only accept blog posts or can I get imaginative?
You can get imaginative. Pictorials, videos, podcasts and other multimedia items are allowed.

Wow! I’m so excited that I can’t choose just one topic! Can I write in more than one category?
Yes! If you would like to take on extra categories and date ranges, please feel free to do so.

How do I join?
Contact any of your friendly hosts and we will add you to the roster. Please be sure to include the address of your blog, the section you have chosen and the title or general nature of your topic.
Hello! I would like to join in the 1880-1895 category. I want to cover Fred Ott’s Sneeze. My blog address is

When do I post?
We will each be hosting one day of the event in chronological order. “Movies Silently” will be first (June 26), “Once Upon a Screen” second (June 27) and “Silver Screenings” will wrap things up (June 28).

So don’t get caught unprepared — grab yourself a banner and get ready for a historically good time. (And somebody please writw an entry for 1930-1931, a period that so often is overlooked but is full of intriguing topics and trends.)

Posted May 19, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized

Early Lombard, in linen   Leave a comment

Posted by vp19 on 2015.05.17 at 21:19

Current mood: excitedexcited

A pair of vintage, linen-backed, single-weight photos from Carole Lombard’s first two films at Paramount are now on sale at eBay. First, albeit not chronologically, is Carole standing next to character actor par excellence Frank Morgan from “Fast and Loose,” the only film Lombard shot at Paramount’s Astoria studios in the New York borough of Queens. Proof of their identities is furnished on the back, though whomever wrote this either ignored or didn’t know the man standing at right:

Fortunately, the person selling this 10″ x 7 5/8″ image did identify the third person — it’s Herbert Yost (1879-1945), who appeared in 91 films between 1908 and 1934.

This is listed in “very fine” condition; as the seller states, it’s “flat, clean and glossy; some very light general wear and very light silvering only seen in raking light (which frankly attests to photo’s age and authenticity); a terrific linen-backed studio photo.”

You can purchase this straight up for $59.95 or make an offer. Find out more by visiting

The other pic, from the same seller, is from Lombard’s Paramount debut from the late spring of 1930, “Safety in Numbers,” and it’s also new to me…

…although I wasn’t initially certain it was new because this seemed eerily similar to another pic in my collection from that film:

The one on sale measures 7 3/4″ x 10″ and is in “very good/fine” condition. The seller deems it “flat, clean and glossy; some general wear and chipping at bottom edge which doesn’t affect the image. Overall a nice photo for its age.”

You can buy this for $49.95 or make an offer. All the particulars can be found at

Posted May 17, 2015 by vp19 in Uncategorized


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