Archive for the ‘Shangheinz Shanties’ Category

Flynn`s footsteps- When in Venice…

10 Apr

Dear Flynnmates,

the old saying that life resembles a solitary beach has never been truer than today.

Last fall I had the opportunity to roam the desert sands of Lido isle in Venice almost all by myself

The Excelsior Hotel, well known from the Thomas Mann novel “Death in Venice” emerged as a ghost castle right before me.

It was there in September of 1953, where Errol´s “The Story of William Tell” movie came to a full stop.

At the Biennale film festival, prankster Flynn faked a back injury while dancing the Bogalloo in the presence of John Huston and King Farouk.

He wanted to cash in his insurance policy and finish “the greatest film ever” in Italy.

But instead of taking Lloyd`s for a gondola ride, Will Tell sailed into the sunset.


— shangheinz


Suislide Freddie

29 Mar

Dear Flynnmates,

here is another accurate account about Errol Flynn`s best man Suicide Freddie McEvoy.

When together, they could meow the birds from the trees.…

But his panache got the playboy literally in deep waters.

The circumstances of his drowning a few meters off the coast of Morocco are as murky as his past.

He supposedly died trying to save his newly wed wife from going under.

The truth may not be as romantic as the legend.

Three crew members survived the shipwreck.

One was Manfred Lentner, a convicted murderer from Austria.

He gave three different versions of what happened that night.

Errol immediately wanted to salvage Freddie Mac`s yacht with his own money.

Why, you ask me!?

I believe the motif to be buried within the EF Enterprises script “Deep Waters”, which was supposed to be filmed in South France.

Barry Mahon was to produce and cute Corinne Calvet was to star.


— shangheinz



22 Mar

Dear Flynnmates,

always on the outlook for Flynn material, I bought me a(n old) man`s magazine. No, not for the interview. It features an article about Errol`s best man Freddie McEvoy`s untimely demise. The adress where I got it from struck me to some extent. Can it be it came from the estate of the man of River deep-mountain high fame and Second-degree murder infame?

Spector or spectator- who with a NY connection knows if we got the real Phil here?


— shangheinz


Love at first fight

20 Mar

Dear Flynnmates,

I want to share with you an (at least to me) unknown image of Laddie Errol and Lady Livvie.

Both visibly enjoy each others company, our Hollywood hero even gives it a two arrows up.

The pic must have been taken at the early stages of filming The Adventures of Robin Hood, since Flynn wears the knight outfit for the later on cancelled jousting tournament scene.

The idea originated from the grand opening in the original ROHO- movie: (163) Robin Hood (Klassiker von und mit Douglas Fairbanks [ABENTEUER 1922] Stummfilm, ganzer Film Deutsch) – YouTube


— shangheinz


Sean Fantome

09 Mar

Dear Flynnmates,

a 1990 PARIS MATCH article about Sean Flynn`s last months in Cambodia titled: “Le Fantome de Sean Flynn”, draws its conclusions about what ultimately happened to the son of Captain Blood.

The main source is Tim Page`s quest together with an English broadcasting team to locate the tomb of Sean. The other two are the books “Dispatches” of Apocalypse Now and Full Metal Jacket inspirator Michael Herr and “Enquete sur un crucifié” of a certain Jean Lartéguy. The in depth coverage depicts a probable turn of events surrounding the disappearances of Sean Flynn and his correspondent companion Dana Stone on April 6th 1970.

While the Sixties were gearing up for a space conquering second halftime, Sean was looking for new ventures which could give his life meaning. All mundane things other youngsters are eternally longing for, had almost come way too easy for the charming and charismatic offspring of Ol`Errol and Tiger Lil`. He had six movies under an inherited swashbuckler`s belt, but with each outing on film his father`s shadow seemed only to grow larger. All of a sudden he was stuck with the sole role of playing Riviera heartthrob around the elusive beaches of tiny Saint Tropez. When his innate need for artistic expression urged venting, he set out to become a photographer. His first assignment was to cover the Vietnam War for Paris Match in 1966.

“The only true adventure in life is war and death, and I will live this adventure.” True to his word he participated in covert operations of the Green Berets, always in the middle of combat action. Young soldiers, who never had heard of Errol Flynn, kept questioning themselves, what had brought this good looking guy to this forlorn front line, while most of them had been drafted to go to war against their wills. Sean`s fierceness earned him the respect of military man, whose orders a free spirit like his could have never obeyed, had he become a soldier. Four fighting years on it seemed that he had completely forgotten his pledge to settle in Bali and the plan to built a house by the sea. He no longer felt the son of a Hollywood hero. He had found his true calling. Finally he had become the original instead of a remake of his old man.

The open door Mercedes with flat tires right in the middle of Highway RC No.1 has ambush written over it. Sean and Dana discuss how to proceed on their red Honda motorcycles. Dana argues the main road connecting Saigon with Phnom Penh, where the wife of Dana Stone was waiting, to be fairly safe. While Sean opts for a U- turn, Stone wants to press on to go get Louise. So they do. On the morning of April 6th the two daredevil reporters disappear five miles east of the village of Chi Phou. Around that time the 40th reconnaissance battalion of the North Vietnamese army was on retreat after an offense by the US army in that area . Officially Cambodia still is a neutral country. But by 1970 it had become a clandestine battleground between North Vietnam and the US. An extraterritorial, mountainous retreat for the North Vietnamese is another massive roadblock on the American way to victory. Hanoi would not, the USA could not admit a geographical extension of the war of the two Vietnams. Dana and Sean had stumbled upon a military secret not deemed ready to expose to the world.

Tim Page thinks the two are stripped off their shoes and made to walk barefoot on concrete for four miles to an adjacent temple. There they are interrogated, with Sean handling the procedure speaking French fluently. This will get you nowhere, when the North Vietnamese officer can still remember vividly the French as the last oppressor army from the Indochina war before. They then supposedly are turned over to the local Khmer Rouge chieftain of the village. After taking Sean`s Rolex watch the Khmer in chief sends them up north to a plantation in Songe Kaong. From there they are tossed from village to village like hot potatoes. First from Roko Khaor to Peu, later on to Kharach Chmar. A female political commissar called El Am Nas recalled Dana Stone having lost his glasses and being very sick. Their last stop comes at the village of Bei Met. Unsure what to do with two foreign non soldiers no side was claiming, Page speculates, they are executed at the banks of the Mekong River not later than June 12th of 1971.

Madame Nas said, despite an apparent undernourishment, Sean still handled himself gracefully under pressure. Not only his hair and height set him apart. His striking presence had not left him. He lived his dream and it showed.

Don`t look for his bones. Look for his soul on a solitary beach in Bali.


— shangheinz


Flynn Tell

04 Mar

Dear Flynnstones,

finally we can get a one eye glimpse at Errol`s missing masterpiece “The story of William Tell”. The graphic novel “One against an empire” features a William Tell with Flynn`s features. Some scenes even resemble some of the movie stills of that missed appleshot from 1953. The content however striktly relies on the Friedrich Schiller book. A historic hybrid if you will, but not the baddest match.



— shangheinz


The perfect speciwomen

18 May

Dear fellow Flynn fans,

what do you see in the picture above?

I know about you, but I see a yacht and I think it was Errol`s.

The smiling siren in front of course is Joan Blondell, his co-star in the 1937 screwball comedy “The Perfect Specimen”.

In her biography “A Life Between Takes” she remembers our Hollywood hero very fondly: “Sometimes we walked in Warner`s Sherwood Forrest, where Errol Flynn gleefully told me untold tales of his youth during the picture we were making.”

Rose Joan Blondell was born on August 30, 1906 (she herself claimed 1909) to a vaudevillain family on the Manhattan Upper West Side and made her stage debut at the age of four months in a play called “The Greatest Love”. Right from the start her father of Jewish- polish descend Levi Bluestein aka Eddie Blondell and her Irish mother Catherine “Katie” Cain, gave her more acting lessons than she saw schooling. Famous for their stage version of the then immensely popular newspaper comic strip “The Katzenjammer Kids” her folks toured the country relentlessly along with her sister Gloria and brother Ed Jr.

At age eight she was shipped to Honolulu and spent a year there, and then six more in Australia. Little Joanie`s upbringing during that time probably was outsourced to some charitable society like for example the Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks. The Elks still have a lavish estate on Hawaii, actually very near located to the former “Shangri- La” villa of Doris Duke, where Errol used to roam too. Up to this day the B.P.O.E is very engaged in youth programms, while their boy scout like kiddie club “The Antlers” was disbanded abruptly in 1947. Whatever the ties Blondell had with this hornoray organisation, they proved career defining. In 1931/32 a dinner in her honour was held at the Elk`s Club in Hollywood when she had been elected “Baby Star”. Furthermore she was one of the main hostesses of the Elk`s Motion Picture Electrical Pageant in LA on July 16th of 1936. This extravaganza saw dozens of carriages with local beauty queens dressed as butterfly winged fairies (the Victoria`s Secret formula) carted to the Coliseum, where the parade came to a bonfire end.

A Warner Bros. workhorse in terms of turnout, Joan was making 50 films from 1930 to 1938. Ten in 1931 and another ten in 1932. This cruelling schedule landed the hard working girl in hospital at the end of the year. Starring mostly alongside James Cagney, whom she had met while playing opposite him on Broadway in the show “Maggie the Magnificent”. The film adaptation of their play “Penny Arcade” retitled “Sinner`s Holiday” became the starting point of a lifelong friendship. Cagney stated that she was the only woman other than his wife he ever had fallen in love with. Plus he stated she possessed the most beautiful derriere in Christendom. He should know, when one night on stage a lighting mishap set her asset on fire. Cagney was caught in a laughing fit looking at what seemed like “…two giant owl eyes staring back at me!

Unlike the other contract players Olivia de Havilland and Bette Davies, Joan never gave Jack Warner a hard time for piss pour roles and overexposure.”It takes all the talent you`ve got in your guts to play unimportant roles. It is not degrading, just hard to do.” Even when pregnant she managed to produce six movies, sitting behind desks hiding her growing tummy. Her utmost professionalism and toughness as acrylic nails got her the inofficial title of Studio Dame of the lot. “I just sailed through things, took the scripts I was given, did what I was told. I couldn`t afford to go on suspension.” In 1952 she earned her first and only Academy Award nomination as supporting actress in the “The Blue Veil”. By then she had switched from wisecracking blondie to strong female characters like that of Aunt Cissy in “A Tree  Grows in Brooklyn” directed by Elia Kazan.

Married three times (often time co- star William Powell  being one of her husbands), she never quite found the happiness of those carefree comedies in private life. Clark Gable had proposed to her, urging her not to marry that jealous and violent other guy. He may have meant Mike Todd, the theatre and film producer, who allegedly in a fit of rage hung Blondell out of the window feet last. With doing so he passed himself on to Elizabeth Taylor. In 1972 Joan Blondell lifted the veil on some of her life`s miseries in a thinly disguised fiction novel called “Center Door Fancy”.

I wonder if the book also reveals one of movie history`s all time greatest mystery. If it was her who was on lips and mind of Citizen Kane at his deathbed. Joan entered the 1926 Miss Dallas pageant and promptly won. But she participated under a false first name. Wanna know what it was !?




— shangheinz


1000 anchor at Lock, Stock and Errol

11 Apr

Dear fellow Flynn fans,

member no. 1000 came aboard my Flynn FB site LOCK, STOCK and ERROL this week. If you fancy errolarities and flynnanigans, as well as vintage vignettes from this blog, you are on the right spot. To celebrate the shimmering spirit of all eternal Flynnmates worldwide, I posted a german gem of Errol Flynn video material here:…

Enjoy, rejoice and join,

— shangheinz


Flynn and the fiercest forehand

06 Apr

Dear fellow Flynn fans,

Francisco Olegario Segura called “Pancho” by friends and pros, had what many labeled the best forehand ever in the history of tennis.

Former World No. 1 Player Ellsworth Vines remembered it all too well: “(His) Two-handed forehand is most outstanding stroke in game’s history; unbeatable unless opponent could avoid it.”

Pancho, the eldest of  7-10 children (reports vary) was born in Ecuador on a raft on the way to the hospital on June 20th 1921.

Not only did he share Errol`s birthday, but also crossed rackets with him in later years in Spain.

“I used to play at midnight in Madrid for 1000 dollars. Errol Flynn would send a chauffeur to pick me up.”

After an exceptional career on the lawns all around the world, considering he had suffered from rickets and malaria from an early age, he settled in the US and taught many flynntimos his most deadly shot at the Beverly Hills Tennis Club.

Ava Gardner, Kirk Douglas and Shelley Winters, just to name a few, honed their tennis court skills with this great character known for his humor, relentnessness and  longevity.

He retired at 49 at the US open and died at 96 with fond memories of mentoring Jimmy Connors and to a lesser extent the son of Dean Martin to felt ball stardom.




— shangheinz


Spongerob Errolpants

26 Mar

Dear fellow Flynn fans,

in January of 1947 the National Geographic Magazine published an article called “The Errol Flynn of Sponge Divers”.

The Errol of this and the Flynn of that were honorary titles at the time. But in the case of one exceptionally dangerous profession we can well picture our Hollywood hero genuinely taking a liking to the complimentary comparison.

World traveller and life time adventurer that he was, I wonder if he read this article and got the idea for the movie “MARU MARU” then and there, or if the namesake hotel in Tanzania did the deed.

Take a deep breath and dive in here yourselves:…




— shangheinz