“A Tawdry Tale from Tinseltown”

14 Aug

“In the 1950s, Confidential magazine, America’s first celebrity scandal magazine, revealed Hollywood stars’ (alleged) secrets, misdeeds, and transgressions in gritty, unvarnished detail. Deploying a vast network of tipsters to root out scandalous facts about the stars, including sexual affairs, drug use, and sexual orientation, publisher Robert Harrison destroyed celebrities’ carefully constructed images and built a media empire. Confidential became the bestselling magazine on American newsstands in the 1950s, surpassing Time, Life, and the Saturday Evening Post. Eventually the stars fought back, filing multimillion-dollar libel suits against the magazine. The state of California, prodded by the film studios, prosecuted Harrison for obscenity and criminal libel, culminating in a famous, star-studded Los Angeles trial.” Errol was one of those stars. He and others, including Maureen O’Hara, won via settlement, helping to eventually financially bankrupt the morally bankrupt gossip rag, which was said to be the largest read magazine in America (mostly read in grocery store lines, I suppose.)

“Actor Errol Flynn puts his fingers to his nose as he passes opinion on “Confidential Magazine” on arrival in New York City from Paris on Aug. 14, 1957. Flynn is scheduled to testify as a witness in the criminal libel trial of the magazine in Los Angeles. (AP Photo)”

And here are a couple of photos of Francesca de Scaffa and her ex-husband Bruce Cabot – who she divorced the day before! – out on the town with Errol and Pat in 1951. De Scaffa was secretly paid by Confidential for providing information about Errol. Some friends those Cabots.

De Scaffa Dining with/Spying on Flynn

— Tim


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  1. Selene Hutchison-Zuffi

    August 14, 2020 at 6:42 pm

    That is disgusting that he did that. Why in the hell? Obviously she didnt find much..I hate Cabot. Disgusting men.
    Why was she paid? Just to give fake stories? How nice!

  2. Paula

    August 15, 2020 at 5:25 am

    With friends like that…

    I guess today’s equivalent to Confidential would be TMZ. They supposedly have quite a few tipsters at the courts, hospitals, hotels, etc.

  3. Ralph Schiller

    August 16, 2020 at 9:00 pm

    Thanks Tim, Bruce Cabot was working less and less and drinking more in those days.

  4. shangheinz

    August 17, 2020 at 3:06 pm

    Cabot`s marriage with beauty queen Francesca was “kaputt” at the time of this picture. They were still dating though while divorce procedings were underway. De Scaffa was represented by Flynnmate shyster debonair Jerry Giesler, which in the end cost Errol dearly. Et-tu-Bruce tried to make up for his alimony losses suing Flynn very soon thereafter.