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Archive for the ‘Flynn and…’ Category

Dear Prudence

22 Dec

Dear Prudence,

A “more skillful swordsman” than Errol? I think not. Though you sure we’re one talented and rediantly-beautiful swashbucklerette, in both B&W and Technicolor.

“Against All Flags, 1952. This was one of the last Hollywood swashbucklers starring Errol Flynn. Maureen O’Hara proves his equal with her swordplay as Prudence “Spitfire” Stevens. In fact, O’Hara swore she was the more skillful swordsman, which might be true, as Flynn was slowing down. Usually he did his own stunts, but he declined the Douglas Fairbanks-style broad-sail-riding stunt here, having already broken an ankle and delaying production two months.

Fortunately for Universal Pictures, they had Russell Metty as cinematographer. He was the fastest Technicolor ace around, and he shot a second pirate movie, Yankee Buccaneer with Jeff Chandler, while Flynn recuperated. Co-star Anthony Quinn competes with Flynn in all sorts of skullduggery, supposedly on the island of Madagascar. The film’s secret weapon? Jokes that were purportedly inspired by Flynn’s randy sex life.”

www.santafenewmexican.com…

— Gentleman Tim

 

Hit Him Like You Hit Roark

16 Dec

Eighty Years Ago

Third Week of December, 1938

LOS ANGELES EXAMINER
By Erskine Johnson

Headlines that told of a short but terrific fight between Errol Flynn and Aiden Roark, polo player and studio executive, are scarcely dry when Flynn returns to work on his new picture, Dodge City. And oddly enough, his first scene requires him to leap out of a barber’s chair and slug Douglas Fowley. Several times director Michael Curtiz films the scene but Flynn makes his pulled punches look bad. Finally Curtiz becomes exasperated. “Hit him like the newspapers said you hit Roark, ” he demands. Flynn grins and in the next “take” he makes his pulled punch look like the real thing, and Fowley sails back on a pile of mattresses laid out to break his fall.

* Douglas Fowley was a long-time movie and tv bad guy, as well as the father of hyper-wacko Kim “Alley Oop” Fowley.

— Gentleman Tim

 

No Pink Tea was This Battle

15 Dec

Eighty Years Ago

Excerpts and Summaries of News Reports from Around the Globe …

An eyewitness to the brawl between Errol Flynn and Aiden Roark says that Roark called Flynn a North Ireland so-and-so.

No pink tea was this latest battle, eyewitnesses said. No fists this time swished through the air past their intended target. This one, ringsiders aver, was a knock-down, drag-our affair.

Flynn was a valiant defender of his birthplace, the north of Ireland, against celebrated polo-player (and executive assistant to Darryl Zanuck) from South Ireland.

Flynn was the victor by a knockout.

All afternoon, Roark had been passing sly remarks about Flynn’s heritage and acting. The star of Robin Hood objected and, according to elite rungsiders, told Roark to “shut up.” When he didn’t, Flynn let him have it.

Late in the day, when fifty or more film celebrities gathered to prepare for dinner, Roark continued his heckling of Flynn. He didn’t think much of Flynn’s Thespian ability, and less of North Ireland, and gave voice to these dislikes several times, punctuating his feelings by grabbing Flynn’s collar.

Flynn countered with a beautifully timed right hook.

Roark went down. He staggered to his feet and went down again under Flynn’s crashing right fist.

Bud Ernst, Hollywood radio man and friend of Flynn, grabbed the actor and Bruce Cabot seized Roark. At this point, one of Roark’s socialite, polo playing friends rushed forward and struck Flynn a hard blow on the mouth.

With a roar of rage, Flynn shook loose, knocked down his second antagonist and turned to meet Roark, who had shaken free. The actor then again landed a looping right hand on Roark’s jaw and Roark topped over – for good this time. He was unconscious for 20 minutes.

The hostess, Mrs. Jock Whitney, then dined with Flynn, Ernst, and Cabot, at
a Beverly Hills nightclub.

This is the first time that Flynn has hit the Hollywood headlines with a fight, although he, and Lili Damita, were mixed up in a fracas in Havana.

A philosophic attitude of Warner Bros. was due to two things: (1) Their he-man star won by a knockout. (2) The story broke a few hours before the preview of Flynn’s war picture, The Dawn Patrol.

Reticent to discuss the incident, Flynn said: “I’m sorry it happened; it’s just one of those unfortunate affairs. But some of the remarks were too pointed, and I had to defend myself.”

— Gentleman Tim

 

Friday the 13th, December 1935

14 Dec

BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

FLYNN. WIFE TO N. Y. HOLLYWOOD, Dec. 13 (A. P.)— Errol Flynn and his wife, Lily Damlta, French film star, were en route to New York today to attend the the premiere of his new starring picture, “Captain Blood.”

Captain Blood had its premiere on December 26, 1935 at the Mark Strand Theatre in New York City[18] and was released in the United States on December 28, 1935.”

www.nycago.org…

— Gentleman Tim

 

E and thy shadow

13 Dec

Dear fellow Flynn fans,

we all here agree that there never will be another Errol Flynn. But if there ever was another actor, who could pass for a brother, an evil twin at that, it´d have been John Carradine. They were kindred spirits in many ways, both experiencing heights and letdowns of Olympian proportions and even sharing similar mishaps that come with a hell or highwater attitude.

Born Richmond Reed Carradine in New York on February 5 of 1906, the later day John, set his sight on the stage when seeing “The Merchant of Venice” at age 11. Donning different roles and robes seemed a way out of his drab childhood with a distant mother (one of the first female surgeons) and an abusive stepfather. A harsh education in Catholic schools made him direct his spiritual interest into a different direction. The only mass he would attend thereafter would be a black one.

Starting out as a portrait drawer, he studied sculpturing with no less than Daniel Chester French, the creator of the Abraham Lincoln monument in Washington DC. Inspired by his favorite movie “The Golem” he strived hard to model something out of nothing, to give the breath of life to an inert matter- be it clay or play. Subconsiously this also is the plot of a lot of the horror movies he would star in in the future. In addition to that he tried to make a mark for himself as a set designer in Hollywood. But Jack of all trades wanted more and his dream of reciting Shakespeare became an unbearable urge. Enter John Barrymore.

Carradine seeked out the great profile and thespian sans compare at his Bella Vista villa in 1930. He had been prowling Hollywood Boulevard in cape with cane and Fedora hat already for some time and was seeking advice on how to tackle the famous line of Richard III: “A horse, a horse, my kingdom for a horse..”. Barrymore said “Let`s have a drink!” and let him in. First into his home, then into his circle of carousing comrades. John Carradine became a regular of the Bundy Drive Boys with the likes of John Decker, Gene Fowler, Ben Hecht, W.C. Fields and Errol Flynn. After well received performances at the Pasadena Playhouse, his screen career took off as well, starring in legendary films as Stagecoach, Jesse James and the Grapes of Wrath. He bought a Dusenberg, a yacht “The Bali” and started raising a family with the intent to father a whole baseball lineup of sons. At the same time he deemed acting in movies as beneath him. “I never did like `em. Occasionally I got to play in a good one. But mostly I have been in pictures that never got anywhere and never settled anything; that only caused the patrons to waste an hour and a half of their valuable time. Of course if I don`t succeed in Shakespeare, I`ll come back to make some more pictures. After all I do appreciate all the money ($1750 per week in 1942) Hollywood paid me.” Sounds an awful lot like Ol`Errol to me.

By the true nature of Tinseltown things, the major studio bosses didn´t like being needled, not even by the dagger of a critically acclaimed Hamlet. The hand that fed him became an iron fist and pretty soon Carradine found himself offered only scripts where he either played a Nazi, a mad scientist or other freakish creatures. Yet again he managed to capture their maniacal ways in his own magickal manner. “The devil hath power to assume a pleasing shape.” (Hamlet, act II, sc 2)

After his first marriage with Ardanelle, who had lost her mind, wandering around as a real life Lady Macbeth in her nightgown talking to ghosts, faltered, he married his Shakespearian protegé Sonia Sorel, some fifteen years his junior. Sued for back alimony, John Carradine had to sell house & yacht and put up tent with his young muse in the Garden of Allah bungalow complex of silent siren, Alla Nazimova. Sharing the same initials with Jesus Christ, JC accepted bets there and then, that he could walk over the waters of the Black Sea- shaped pool. This messianic antics are reminiscent of Casy the preacher from Steinbeck`s “Grapes of Wrath” or his technicolor deathbed scene of “Blood and Sand”, where he is merely an extension of the crucifix hanging over his head.

Forever remembered for spooking audiences as Dracula, Blackbeard, Captain Satan, Voodoo Man and in his last hoorah as Judge of hell, John Carradine died in Milan, Italy, after climbing the 328 steps to the top of its Gothic Dome. He had set out to ascend his own personal Jacob`s ladder. Son David remembered the funeral at St. Thomas, the Episcopal Church on Hollywood Boulevard as a macabre outing, where the undertakers had given the cadaver a demonic, artificial grin. “…like nothing I had never seen him do in real life, except in his horror films.” He was poured a final drink, but the boys had trouble getting the champagne in the bawdy bard`s sewn- together mouth wetting his dark suit in the process. Not that it mattered much, for he was given a sea burial near Catalina Island, where he did patrol as a coast guard during WWII with his Bali. Sonia, his estranged wife no. 2, died a bag lady down and out in LA in 2004.

Good night, sweet Prince of Darkness.

Enjoy,

 

— shangheinz

 

Who was the Love of Her Life?

13 Dec

“Who was the love of your life?” She answered immediately: “Errol Flynn!”

Olivia De Havilland Was Able To Search For Love ‘Despite Heartbreak’ Because She Was ‘Bold,’ Author Reveals

— Gentleman Tim

 

Clubbing with Cubby and Cousin*

08 Dec

Reported on December 9, 1938
Eighty Years Ago Today
in the LOS ANGELES EXAMINER

HOLLYWOOD PARADE
By Ella Wickersham

After many false alarms, Franchot Tone actually entrained yesterday morning for New York.

Just prior to one of his “departures,” Pat DiCicco tossed a farewell stag party for him that started with cocktails at Pat’s valley home and then carried on to Club 17, where Franchot’s friends, Joe Frisco and Pat Rooney III, put on a special show for him.

The reveling stags were Errol Flynn, Bruce Cabot, Henry Fonda, Johnny Meyers, Mischa Auer, Bud Ernst, George Peabody Jr. and Cubby Broccoli.

laheyday.blogspot.com…

Note the secret passageway.

* DiCicco and Broccoli were cousins, purportedly connected to Lucky Luciano.

— Gentleman Tim

 

North to Unalaska

04 Dec

75 Years Ago Today

December 4, 1943
Dutch Harbor USO Show

vilda.alaska.edu…

— Gentleman Tim

 

Pauper for a Princely Sum

03 Dec

Reported December 3, 1936

HOLLYWOOD CITIZEN NEWS
by ELIZABETH YEAMAN

The highly publicized reunion of Errol Flynn and Lili Damita and their departure for a “second honeymoon” in Europe may all be called off. That is to say, the trip to Europe may be canceled. Warner’s will decide today if they shall summon Flynn back to take the adult male lead in The Prince and the Pauper</em. This picture is growing daily in budget and production plans. Some enormous sets have been built, and the studio expects the film to be one of its most ambitious efforts. Now Bobby and Billy Mauch, the twin child stars, have the leads, but the are little known to the public and can't be regarded as a box office lure. Errol Flynn is well established with the fans, and while the role for him is of far less scope and importance than any he has been given in the past, it could be built up a little and his presence would insure a certain fan following. The point is, a picture which costs a lot of money needs some star with fan appeal to insure return on the money invested.

Ian Hunter was mentioned frequently for the role now pending for Flynn.

Reported December 14, 1936

by SHEILA GRAHAM

Errol Flynn demanded— and received— a $20,000 bonus for cutting short his European reconciliation trip with wife Lili Damita, returning instead to Hollywood for the leading role in the kiddie story, The Prince and the Pauper*

* A “kiddie story” beloved by adults around the globe.

BTW, I wonder if Errol ever read this advice from Mark Twain? I’d bet he did.

— Gentleman Tim

 

“Columbus” Discovers Flynn — Sends Him to America

01 Dec

NOVEMBER 30, 1934

EVENING HERALD EXPRESS
JIMMY STARR

Irving Asher, Warners’ London laddie in charge of the foreign studio, played “Colombus” and discovered a handsome Irish chap by the name of Errol Flynn .  The young newcomer proved himself in Murder at Monte Carlo. 

Asher figured Flynn had a better chance in Hollywood, and sent him to Jack Warner, who took a quick look at the English-made movie, snapped a contract under his nose and gave him one of the featured leads with Kay Francis in A Present from Margate, her next film following the current Living on Velvet. 

Mr. Flynn it seems has made quite an impression— and good leading men are scarse, you know.

Was it Asher? Or Doug Jr.? Or JB?

books.google.com…

Asher and Warner found gold in England when the found Flynn. The public really dug Errol.

— Gentleman Tim