Lord of Shanghai- Errol after all?

09 Jun


Dear fellow Flynn fans,

what kept us guessing by day and wandering at night, may finally be resolved. You remember this tepid topic, don’t you?…

If that’s not our Hollywood hero in the back, I don’t know where else to look.


— shangheinz


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  1. Gentleman Tim

    June 9, 2015 at 9:04 pm

    Well, ladykillerfromshangheinz, this suited man hovering in the background certainly is displaying some of Errol’s “moves’ – and Orson sure has a look like Flynn’s around! – but I just can’t tell. … What good would my opinion be anyhoo, as I confused Orson and Rita for years, until I saw them in this photo:


    Not only that, I think this hombre in the Mercado looks like Joseph Cotton. But what in the world would he be doing in downtown Acapulco, never mind an Orson Welles flick.


    • shangheinz

      June 9, 2015 at 9:38 pm

      Well, Tugboat Tim, we said it before, if the Third Man was in, Errol seems to be the odd man out. Our Hollywood hero loved to keep everybody guessing.Churchill would have put it like this: “Flynn is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.”

      • Gentleman Tim

        June 9, 2015 at 11:56 pm

        Well, churchheinz, after all Lord Randolph, Winnie’s distinguished dad, did to annex Burma into the Empire, how could the Primal Minister not be forever grateful to Captain Flynn for Operating so successfully on Burma during the Big One.

        Here’s the rather randy Lord Randolph (who looks like he might have fathered Raul Julia, too!)


        Inexplicably, I could not find a poster for OB! from Brittania , so here’s one from Italia:


      • Tina

        June 10, 2015 at 11:13 pm

        “Flynn is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.”
        Very well said, Heinz!
        If there ever was a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma it was Flynn and only Flynn!
        I too watched out for Errol in The Lady from Shanghai, but could never find him.
        I cut out the man in your picture and tried to clear him up, but it didn’t work very well BUT it could be Errol. It sure is Errol’s posture.
        What do you or all of you think?


        • Tina

          June 10, 2015 at 11:42 pm


          What about this one? Is it Errol?

          • Gentleman Tim

            June 11, 2015 at 9:58 pm

            This one looks more like Garfield than Flynn to me, Tina … possibly with Maria Felix.

        • shangheinz

          June 11, 2015 at 5:55 pm

          Dear Big time Tina,
          Errol in the “Lady of Shanghai” by now has turned into a superban legend.

        • Gentleman Tim

          June 11, 2015 at 9:52 pm

          That helps tremendously, Tina. I think that’s him alright! Thank you.

          Errol and Orson are probably sailing the eternal blue skies and sipping some heavenly wine wondering what the hell took us so long!

          Magnificent, work, shangrilaheinz!

  2. Gentleman Tim

    June 9, 2015 at 9:16 pm

    And what about these shady figures shadowheinz? That could be Our Man In Mexico over Orson’s left arm. Then again, even the fellow in the far right movie ad looks like Flynn! Could Orson be that creative!?! … Well, he was just about the most creative film fellow ever. How could he resist getting Errol into the film is the real question.


    By the way, I love how Welles brought the Zaca right back to the exact (Nunes Bros.) site of its birthplace in Sausalito:


    • shangheinz

      June 10, 2015 at 10:46 am


      Word can be treacherous, but the body never lies.

      • Gentleman Tim

        June 10, 2015 at 5:55 pm

        lord shangheinz, this why your standing on the Blog is so preeminent – evidence such as this. bung ho, old boy.

        It’s impossible to declare your great discovery an erroneous Errol. No bad jokes please, but the limited equipment I’m working with makes it very difficult for me to view the visage of this Errolian candidate. Are you able to post an expanded head-shot for us, so we can examine in further detail? Thank you, kind sir.

    • shangheinz

      June 11, 2015 at 6:00 pm

      Dear Trivia Tim, your guesses are as good as mine, if not better. Now the black suit above seems to be the same man as in my photo. I don`t think that Erol was willing to appear in more than one take. His cameo was supposed to be in and out like Flynn…

      • Gentleman Tim

        June 11, 2015 at 9:56 pm

        I agree, shang, that’s him! Congratulations to you, old boy! This is big movie news! Gotta get TCM to feature this Orwellian presentation of Our Man from Mulholland! (and the Acapulcon Mercado)

    • David DeWitt

      December 2, 2015 at 8:33 pm

      This fella walking by the poster with Flynn’s face on it gets my vote as Errol himself. I think Welles would juxtaposition him in this artful way …

  3. Gentleman Tim

    June 9, 2015 at 9:27 pm

    Looks like the guy in this movie poster is trying to look like Flynn, too! Run, Rita, run.


    How could anyone ever kill such a beautiful creature? Good thing for Michael O’Hara that Flynn wasn’t at the amusement park. He would have given it to him good for mistreating Miss Hayworth.


  4. twinarchers

    June 10, 2015 at 2:25 pm

    I have never seen this film but it is Flynn in the poster. I would bet money I think. It could be the man over Orson’s left shoulder but I cant tell. As for the rest I would say no.

    • shangheinz

      June 10, 2015 at 4:19 pm

      Thanks Double A, for putting money in the middle. The hunt for Errol in Shanghai is still on.

    • David DeWitt

      June 10, 2015 at 9:43 pm

      I agree, that’s Flynn in the poster. There are no coincidences in this film!

      • Gentleman Tim

        June 10, 2015 at 10:51 pm

        Wonderful to have such teamwork in this marvelous mystery of movie history! Knowing Orson as we all do, I think you’re absolutely right, no coincidences in this masterful film. IMO, Welles knew this work of art was destined to be long-examined, and the only way Errol Flynn(!) would have been excluded is if a studio honcho (like JW) cut him out.

        I might be cotten-picken crazy that may be a straight-on sketch of Joseph Cotten’s face on the poster too, down and to the left of what appears to be Errol’s right side profile. I’d say that other photo is definitely Cotten.

        P.S. I think Errol would have definitely loved (even proposed, perhaps even insisted) on being in this film noir classic, notonly to finally be on the big screen with his great friend and contemporary Hollywood legend, Rita Hayworth (and Orson), but also to stick it to Jack, something he would surely relish.

        Btw, unless I’m seeing Flynns, that first poster, with Rita running through the doorway, has what looks like it might be a sketch of Errol during his Charge of the Light Brigade era. Hard to tell. And that may be him sitting in the background, too. Can’t say for sure.

        Being an artist and an illusionist, Welles could have titled these Errolean segments of LfS, “F for Flynn”.

        Unless a close-up if the face suggests otherwise, I’m with shangheinz on the standing figure also!

  5. shangheinz

    December 2, 2015 at 10:04 am


    Case closed, dear fellow Flynn fans Tina, Twains, Tim, Ralph & Dave!?

    • Gentleman Tim

      December 3, 2015 at 5:25 am

      Excellent, mysteryheinz. Do you know when, where and/or for what purpose this photo was taken?

      • shangheinz

        December 6, 2015 at 9:24 pm


        Sorry, I don`t know where this pic of an Errol full of panache but without moustache was taken. But in the well known photo above he takes a similar stance to that in the film footage. Let`s make the Baron a Lord here once and for all. Whatcha say, Gentleman Earl?

        • Gentleman Tim

          December 7, 2015 at 4:15 am

          I can’t see or say for certain, ladyfromshanghaiheinz, but I believe this is history your solving this mystery!!! The evidence is compelling: Flynn was in – skulking/smoking in the shadows, and posted on the poster.



      • David DeWitt

        December 6, 2015 at 10:37 pm

        I think this is a still or publicity shot from The Sisters …

        • shangheinz

          December 6, 2015 at 11:09 pm

          Coming to think of it, I think it is out of a scene of Gentleman Jim…

  6. Jack Marino

    August 29, 2017 at 7:07 am

    In the Lady from Shanghai, you can see Errol running on the deck of the ZACA in the opening credits. He goes by real quick, all you see is the back of his famous head with his famous squared looking ear lobes. Its real quick but if you go frame by frame you can catch him. He is in another scene too, I just don’t remember since it has been decades since I’ve seen the film. That shot of that guy smoking could be anyone, that worked on Orson’s film. I can’t see any distinctive head shape. Errol had a very distinct look, even if the picture is blurry you can tell it’s Errol Flynn.

    • shangheinz

      August 29, 2017 at 2:02 pm


      Ahoy Captain Jack and thanks for the new input. We wouldn`t accept a poseur as a stand-in for Flynn, would we? I came up with two more possible sighting while rewatching TLFS here:…
      First at 10:57 that could very well be Errol at the helm of his yacht despite only his destintive backside comes into view. And then at 44:06 a figure appears in the windowframe of a pierside café, while the dialogue goes like this: “Now make sure the people at the bar get a good look at you…”” The game is afloat!
      PS: The Blu-ray of the newly restored 4K version of The Lady From Shanghai is available since 27 January, 2014 from TCM.

      • Gentleman Tim

        August 29, 2017 at 5:25 pm

        Errolexcellent work, shangheinz. Walhalla/Valhalla (not to be confused with your recent Wiener/Vienna etymological explanation, errolheinz) was definitely the prodigious Mr. Flynn’s kind of place – especially upstairs I’d bet. Sally the owner could attest to that!

        Butt, I mean but, I refuse to go searching for any distinctive or destintive backsides on the Zaca, unless, of course, it’s Lovely Rita’s!


        • shangheinz

          August 31, 2017 at 8:50 am


          Quite a scoop, Microscope Tim. I bet he he even played a Walhalla Waltz on the piano of this esteemed establishment. (He was an accomplished dickgeridoo player accordeon to Marilyn). That could very well be our man Flynn sitting on the windowsill. Whatta ya say GMT?

      • Jack Marino

        August 31, 2017 at 4:55 am

        Heinz, I couldn’t see Flynn in any of the two cues you wrote about or in any part of the film that I thought I saw him. He is in the film and Orson cleverly put him in a way to drive us all crazy !!

        • shangheinz

          August 31, 2017 at 8:33 am


          Ozzie Welles dwelled on sleigh of hands magic tricks. But enigmatic Errol held his own when it came to catch- me- if you- can- games. I say there he is sailing into the sunset on his beloved CIRCE/ZACA. Whatta ya say, Cap Jack?

  7. Gentleman Tim

    September 12, 2017 at 12:35 pm

    Your work on this has been sensational, shangheinz!!!!


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