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Moving Picture Exhibitors' Association.

Photoplay (Volume 36 – 37 (Jul. - Dec. 1929)) online

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most of all."

She adored Valentino and was greatly dis-
turbed to hear that his house is haunted.
Someone suggested to Nina that she rent it
during her stay in Hollywood. "Not mc/"
gasped Nina. "Ain't goin' to get me in no
house where rockin' chairs rock all by their-
selves — -oh-oh, not met"

KING VIDOR reciprocates Nina's admira-
tion. When he asked her to do a crying
scene she burst into a wail that lasted fifteen
minutes. All the colored players act with
abandon. They continue to act after the cam-
era stops and it sometimes takes half an hour to
bring them back to reality. After the colored
hero carried his dead brother past the camera
and off the set King waited in vain for his re-
turn. Calls were of no avail.

When King went out to ascertain the cause
of delay he found the two "brothers" in a par-
oxysm of emotion, weeping and stroking each
other.

As for Nina, she never stops wriggling.
When forced to sit in a chair she curls up like
a tawny jungle cat, stretches, writhes, licks her
lips and yawns, wriggles her nose or presses it
into her face with her thumb and eventually
subsides into purring slumber, to dream, no
doubt, of a copper-colored maiden in a shower
of diamonds driving Paris mad with the
rhythm of the tom-toms beating in her blood.

I shall feel very, very sorry for Miss Peggy
Joyce when Nina undulates abroad.



Lucky Amateur
Detectives

[ CONTINUED FROM PAGE_41 1



a secretary to three surgeons. She once sold a
motion picture scenario and has literary am-
bitions. Miss Rusk loves mystery stories,
which probably accounts for her success in the
Photoplay contest. Her favorite author is
G. K. Chesterton.

Fi\e prizes, of $100 each, were awarded to
the following:

5. Kenneth Weaver, 1221 West 46th Street,
Los Angeles, Calif.

6. Elizabeth Gaskins, 3240 Osceola Street,
Denver, Col.

7. Mrs. Katherine T. Bishop, 803 Colonial
Avenue, Norfolk, Va.

8. Mrs. Mary E. OHver, 1221 Butternut
Street, Utica, N. Y.

9. Mrs. Horace Campbell, 5203 Jonathon
Avenue, Fordson, Mich.

The remaining ten prizes, of $50 each, were
awarded to the following:

10. J. R. Davenport, 71 West 92nd Street,
New York City.

11. Mrs. C. H. Monks, 131 Ackerman
Avenue, Glen Rock, N. J.

12. Mrs. Chester H. Eames, 224 Union
Avenue, Framingham, Mass.

13. Mrs. Sara Loacker, 2413 North Cedar
Street, Spokane, Wash.

14. Marion Fay, P. O. Box 8118, Squirrel
Hill Station, Pittsburgh, Pa.

15. Phylon H. Cox, c/o The Marlin Grocery
Company, Marlin, Texas.

16. E. C. March, 3907 E. 39th Street, Kan-
sas City, Mo.

17. Mrs. Dana B. Reid, Allegheny College,
Meadville, Pa.

18. Mrs. J. C. King, 1947 Snowden Avenue,
Memphis, Tenn.

19. Mrs. Lottie Putnam, 2 Fifth Avenue,
Webster, Mass.




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Little Alabam



[ CONTINUED FROM PAGE 29 1



I was at Dorothy's sweet little Brentwood
house the night she got the part. I was ahead
of her. I always am. Dorothy is usually late.
That comes from being born in Alabama.
When she did arrive she stepped into the room
very grandly and, making a haughty gesture,
said:

"Meet John Barrymore's new leading
woman."

I fell in a swoon upon the floor and had to be
revived.

VX TE were very grand that evening. We
"^ were full of high hopes and great ambi-
tions. What swank Dorothy would put on
when she attended the premier performance of
"Tempest."

How she got the part in the first place is a
neat Uttle story itself.

It concerns a bewildered foreign director
named Tourjansky, who came to this country
under contract to M.-G.-M. and cooled his
heels at the studio for eight long months. Just
before his contract expired he was given the
job of directing Tim McCoy in a Western.

It doesn't sound reasonable for a sensible
studio to assign a famous Russian director to a
Western. There are very few reasonable
things in HoUj^vood.

Dorothy was given the lead in this picture.
The girls never act in Westerns. They walk
through them with their other e.x'pression and
constantly complain at a horrid old fate that
makes it necessary for them to succumb to
being carried into a sunset on the horn of a
cowboy's saddle.

Dorothy really trouped in this inconsequen-
tial drama. She did it for the Uttle Russian
director who was going back home humbled
and broken in spirit. She gave her best to him
to help him when the others laughed at his
absurd English and his ignorance of .American
ways.

Dorothy had no ax to grind, certainly.
Nobody of importance would ever see the film
and Tourjansky was going away. She felt
sorry, that was all. So Dorothy put the httle
picture and the little director out of her mind
until, instead of going back to Europe. Tour-
jansky was signed to direct John Barrymore's
picture, " Tempest."

And, when they asked Tourjansky for his
choice of leading woman, he called for Dorothy
Sebastian.

When this all came about I made three
salaams toward Mecca and decided that there
was a just .-Ulah hovering somewhere in the
vicinity of Hollywood, after all.

Those were happy days for Dorothy. Barry-
more's leading woman.

Loaned from M.-G.-M., she received more
attention at United Artists than on her home
lot.

A star's dressing room. A maid to attend
her on the set. And the knowledge that she
was doing good work. She gloried in it as
ever>- girl would.

For three months she was Barr>'Tnore's lead-
ing woman. .And then the blow fell. Tour-
jansky was taken off the picture. Sam Taylor
was put on as director. Camilla Horn arrived
from Germany. Dorothy was taken out of the
picture, CamUla put in. The real reason for
all these pohtical changes has never been
known. One of the theories was that Taylor
wanted full credit for the film and saw no
better way of getting it than to change leading
ladies. As a selling point Camilla was under
contract to U. A. and Dorothy wasn't. I have
my personal opinion about it. They can't
shoot me at daybreak for that.

•T^HE minute I heard about the tragedy I
■*- went to Dorothy. She hadn't come from
United .Artists yet. I waited. .A big box of



flowers arrived. It looked like a coffin. I sat
in the room with the ghastly thing. I felt like a
funeral.

At last I heard the purr of her car in the
driveway. She opened the door. There was
not a sign of weeping on her face. She looked
as pert and gay as you please.

"Hello, honey," she said to me. "Have you
had your dinner?" People always say such
meaningless things in crises.

And suddenly we fell into each other's arms
and wept together. I told her what a bunch of
meanies I thought all producers were and the
bunch at United Artists in particular. Dorothy
smiled wanly and opened the box.

There were dozens and dozens of red roses
from John Considine, the head of United. The
note was to tell her that in all his years as a
producer he had never seen such a fine display
of real trouping as he had that day.

"What did you do, Dorothy?" I asked.

"I didn't do anything but go into his office
and grin from ear to ear and tell him that I
loved e\ery minute I had worked with him and
that I was glad to have had the opportunity of
playing with Mr. Barr>'more, even if three
months' effort would never be seen on the
screen and that I hoped some day to have the
pleasure of working at his lovely stucho again."

I smiled wickedly. I, too, lo\'e a bean gcsle.
".And you meant it?"

"That," said Dorothy, "is my own busi-
ness."

"And you didn't cry?"

"■r\ON'T be silly. Not before HIM. Not
■'-'before anybody at the studio. Wasn't
that other girl, Camilla Horn, taking a test?
Taking my part? Going to wear my clothes
and do my scenes? Do you think I'd cry? Oh,
honey, I thought you knew me!"

And we both fell to weeping again.

The phone began to ring. The cameraman
called her, the assistant called, the prop boy.
All wanted to tell her how sorry they were.

We sat there while Dorothy told me how
much the part meant to her.

"We're going to the Ambassador to dance
and dine," she said suddenly.

I couldn't have faced the music that night,
for when the four of us (our young men had
arrived by this time) stepped into the Cocoa-
nut Grove (it was mo\ie night, too) there was
whispering and conjecture. Why had she lost
the part? Was she a rotten actress? Had she
been temperamental?

.And Dorothy, her head held high, nodded
brightly to her friends, danced as gayly as any
and was, as usual. Little Alabam, the Ufe of the
party.

I never saw "Tempest." I couldn't bear to
look at it, but there's a strange tag to the story.
Camilla Horn was tested for a speaking part in
"The Green Ghost." The character was sup-
posed to have an accent.

It would hax'e kept Camilla from being sent
away to Germany. Camilla lost the part and
now Dorothy has it !

TIGUND up in a poUtical mess at M.-G.-M.,
•'-'Dorothy has not had, until recently, the parts
she deserved. But she has never fallen down
on an assignment. She gave an outstanding
performance in "A Woman of .Affairs," and I
guess there's no argument about her work in
"Spite Marriage." It wouldn't be right if
Dorothy were kept out of good roles.

I'm glad Dorothy is the way she is. I'm
glad she's not the roisterous kid Hollywood
thinks her. But I'm happy that they know her
as "Little .Alabam." I couldn't bear a
Paghacci. I couldn't stand a person who
prated of being unhappy and misunderstood.

I'm proud that Dorothy is exactly like she is
and one of my best friends.



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Photoplay Magazine — Advertising Section



1 21



The Lawyer for the
Defense

[ CONTINUED FROM PAGE 37 ]

been created just for him. Even with Norma
Shearer, one of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's ace
actresses in the title role, Hackett's work
stands out as one of the fine things of the pro-
duction.

Perhaps it is why again in the role of an
attorney, this time pleading at the bar for
the life of his mother in "Madame X," even the
electricians and the prop boys found themselves
reduced to lachrymal outpourings. They
couldn't help crying — these hard-boiled men
who usually regard the emotional histrionics
as part of the mechanics of the job.

It is because of the fine sincerity in his work
in these first two pictures that Metro-Goldwyn-
Mayer now regards Raymond Hackett as one
of their "big shots" in talking pictures. His
ne.xt wiU be "Eva, the Fifth."

H.\CKETT is twenty-six— the boyish type.
Clear, blue eyes. Blond hair. He is re-
served, shy, the sort of lad mothers Hke to
point proudly to as son.

From the beginning, Raymond took his
work as only a serious-minded boy with a deep
sense of chivalrous protection toward a mother
and sister could.

When he was seven, he was playing the im-
portant child role in "The Awakening of
Helena Ritchie" with Margaret Anglin. He
came early to work one day to find a new-
comer rehearsing his role.

A little later, he was discovered choked up
with sobs in a dark corner of the wings.

"Why, Raymond, what's the matter?" he
was asked.

No answer. Only a dismal shake of the
head.

Margaret Anglin, summoned, sensed the
trouble.

"Raymond, did you think we were going to
put a new actor in your role?"

The boy nodded.

"Why, he's just an understudy. Didn't you
ever hear of an understudy?"

Another shake of the head.

"He's someone trained to take your place
in case you are ever ill."

Raymond sat straight up. "I'll never be
ill," he stated quite simply. And he never was
during the run of that play.

WHEN he was sixteen, he went to see about
getting the role of Scott, the boy whom
Lincoln pardons in Drinkwater's famous drama.

William Brady and Lester Lonergan were
interviewing the applicants. They liked
Raymond's looks.

"What salary do you want?" Lonergan
asked.

"Well," he said almost apologetically, "I
was getting S125 in my last part."

"■What?" bellowed Brady, "a boy like you?
I don't believe it."

Raymond, suddenly white-faced, picked up
his hat and walked away.

By the boy's very gesture, they knew he
was telling the truth.

"I believe he's the. one we want," Lonergan
said.

"Send a messenger for him," returned
Brady.

From this engagement and a later one with
Lionel Barrymore in "The Copperhead"
Raymond became a veritable encyclopedia on
Lincoln.

He never had an education, in the formal
sense of the word. Two years in a private
school, three years with a tutor.

But ask him about Lincoln. Or ask him
about Dickens' haunts, Stratford-on-.'^von,
Westminster Abbey — he knows them all. For
about the time the average boy is a freshman




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Photoplay Magazine — Advertising Section




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in college, he was playing in George M. Cohan's
"So This Is London" on the London stage.

He knows a good deal of law from "Mary
Dugan." He knows most of the contemporary
dramatists from appearing in their offerings.
He knows the best Uterature of the world from
his study for the drama.

One of his childhood tragedies was that he
couldn't own a bicycle. He did find time in
the midst of his stage career, however, to try
the movies.

When he was five, after appearing with
Maude Adams in "Peter Pan," D. W. Griffith
chose him for a role in a picture. Raymond
cannot remember the name of it.

"T REMEMBER I Hked Griffith because he

-*■ let me play with a lot of tin soldiers and
then gave them to me," he grinned.

"And I played parts on the old Lubin lot
in Philadelphia from 1912 to 1915. My
mother was married to Arthur Johnson, a
Lubin star, whom she later divorced." He
paused a moment, looked away regretfully —
his way of saying that chapter was closed.
Then he added, "For three years, Albert,
Jeannette and I worked on the lot."

"No, I don't remember much of what I
played then. No important parts. I was the
child carried from the burning cabin at mid-
night, or the little boy who galloped miles on
horseback to let the settlers know the Indians
were coming. Things hke that.

"I didn't care much about the movies then.
I liked the stage. I liked the applause the
audience gave me. Now that I've come back
to pictures," he grinned — "I say that as if
I had the choosing — I am terribly interested.
It's been hard work getting the technique. I
should have known my part in 'Mary Dugan'
letter perfect. In fact, I did on the stage, but



when it came to the cameras and the micro-
phone I found I had a great deal to learn.
Oh, well—

"The nicest part is that it gives Mrs.
Hackett and me a chance for a home and
evenings together. We have a house at Santa
Monica overlooking the ocean. It's a nice,
homey sort of a place. Brown shingled — ■
NOT Spanish. It has green shutters and a red
chimney.

"Awfully cozy. I have some things in New
York, some old books picked up in London,
some old brass and odds and ends, you
know, that we still need to make it thor-
oughly homelike."

TJTACKETT is married to Myra Hampton,
-*■ -'■whom he met while playing in that rau-
cously funny farce, "The Cradle Snatchers,"
in New York. That was two and a half years
ago. They have never been separated, although
Miss Hampton is an actress and has carried on
professionally aU the time. There was a
period during which Raymond went into the
cast of "The Nightstick" and Miss Hampton
went to Chicago with a play, when it looked
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and signed him.

One of the ironic things about his success,
however, is that the movie magnates were not
thinking so much of his personality as they
were of getting an actor-proof cast for Norma



Online LibraryMoving Picture Exhibitors' AssociationPhotoplay (Volume 36 – 37 (Jul. - Dec. 1929)) → online text (page 19 of 145)