Moving Picture Exhibitors' Association.

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

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fascinated Ina. She, too, loves to ha-ha — her real name being Fagan and
her real nature all the Gaelic gayety that goes with it.

The more she saw of him the more she was attracted by his enormous
vitality and good spirits. Astonished, in a week or two she was saying to
herself, '" Where has this been all my life! I want this!"
And, in a sun-baked little Nevada town, she got it!

WHATEVER happens to the mating of Gilbert and Claire, they
understand each other thoroughly.

Ina is a brilliant girl, with a keenkutter mind. She has the jump on
this delightful playboy she married, and when they are together there is the
flash of continual verbal sword-play. It is better than a show.

At present Jack is the fascinated and adoring boy. He makes dental
appointments for her, he pops in and out of her dressing room when he can
get away from his own lot — he pointed out a cowlick on the back of her
blonde bobbed head as though he were showing off the eighth wonder of
the world.

In self-centered, movie-minded Hollywood, Gilbert is the great I-Am,
while Claire is just another stage star out to try pictures, and this galls


The girls go into long trousers. For
the sea scenes of "The Single Stand-
ard," Greta Garbo wore Hannel trou-
sers with a plain, tuck-in sweater and
sea-going canvas shoes

T/^. S




The newest pupil at Public School
No. 17 in New York. Notto be talked
out of American pictures by the
talkies, Camilla Horn goes with
her school books every evening to
the English classes at the little red
school house on West 48th Street.
Her teacher is Mrs. M.J. Petersen

Leila Hyams' pa jama outfit is more
elaborate. The suit is apple green
and the sleeveless, tuck-in jumper
has a printed yoke. The trousers,
too, have a yoked top

Ina no little, though she laughs it off. The queen of New York is not one
to be a mere lady-in-waiting in Hollywood.

" Tell Jack, that I'm somebody in the theater!" she commanded, and old
Cal did.

"Jack," said Cal, "when you two get off at the Grand Central Station,
you'll be just an actor carrying Ina Claire's bags!"

And the infatuated Jack, Playboy of the Western World, even took
that, and liked it!

/TLENE MARKEY was signed to write dialogue for Columbia Pictures
^-^ and arrived in Hollywood just after the Jack Gilbert-Ina Claire
wedding. It was understood that Markey had been engaged to Miss
Claire, and the sob sisters took typewriter in hand to say in headlines
that a broken-hearted writer had come on to air his grief before the
film colony.

"What do you think about all this publicity?" asked Harry Cohn,
head of Columbia, when he showed Markey the papers.

"I think it's disgusting," said the writer.

"Don't you care, don't you care," said Cohn. "Don't every story
mention Columbia Pictures?"

AFTER a year's trial, Robert Bow, father of Clara, has closed his "IT"
restaurant on Beverly Boulevard. For a while things were up and
coming, with Clara dropping in frequently to dunk her doughnuts and tear
a herring. When Clara stopped coming so did the rest of the trade.

Bow pi-re's cafe fell in hard lines right at the beginning of its career
when the Paramount studio refused to permit the use of Clara Bow's name
for advertising purposes. The loss reported to the flaming "IT" girl is
reported as better than SIO.OOO.

Before entering the restaurant business, Father Bow operated a cleaning
and dyeing business which his daughter purchased for him.

BETTY COMPSON and not Pauline Starke, as previously announced,
will play the leading feminine role opposite Eric Von Stroheim in
James Cruze's picture, " The Great Gabbo."

News of the fact that Miss Compson was to appear in Cruze's produc-
tion was received with marked interest in the film colony, due to the recent
separation of the two, with a reconciliation following.


International Newsrecl

Picture of one little clown who is not
suffering from a broken heart. Under
the grease-paint is Clara Bow, the
Brooklyn bonfire, in circus makeup
for her second talkie aptly — in fact
inspiredly — titled "Dangerous Curves"

A lovely lady retires from the screen. Florence Vidor
sails for Europe with her husband, Jascha Heifetz,
who will make his annual summer concert tour of the
Continent. Miss Vidor tried one talkie and didn't like
it. She asked for a release from her contract, so that
she might be free to accompany her husband

It was explained in the daily newspapers that ]\Iiss Starke
was unable to take the role on account of a slight injury sus-
tained from a fall while riding horseback. A well-authenticated
rumor, however, has it that she had difficulty in remembering
her lines in the production, and that Von Stroheim's shirt front
was plastered with her cues. Miss Starke has not made a screen
appearance in several months. "The Great Gabbo" was to
have marked her come-back.

QOMEONE asked Al Jolson how many times he had sung
'^"Mammy." It didn't take Al, now on his third picture
for Warner Brothers, long to figure an answer.

"If all the Mammies I have sung about were stood in
single file, beginning at the far end of California, the old
South would be practically depopulated," he explained.

THEY tell a story of rare self sacrifice in Hollywood. Ricardo
Cortez was offered the name role in "Trader Horn" but
refused it. It would have meant glory and money and a vivid
come back for him.

But it also meant being in Africa for eight months away from
Alma Rubens when she needed him most.

PRINCE FERDINAND of Prussia asked Anita Page to go
with him to the opening of "Show Boat." It threw the
family into a state of hysteria. Mamma and Papa Pomares
(Anita's parents) have never let their daughter appear in public
without them. But a prince is a prince even in Hollywood.

.\nita was at last allowed to go, however, but the Pomares
couldn't bear to sit at home, so they jumped into their car,
dashed to the theater 'and were on handl to see that daughter
was properly chaperoned on the way back.

T EW CODY, who is, by the way, able to call on his friends
■^^and attend the Orpheum after his serious illness, says
that now that so many Broadwayites are in Hollywood, even
if you wanted to write a letter there's nobody to write to.

THE fortieth milestone does strange things to men and
women. Charlie Chaplin has crossed that fateful line, and
according to his friends all is not so well with the little clown.
Nothing critical — simply that Chaplin, facing the downward
slope, has become age-conscious. As you know, he has taken to
touching up his gray hair with a more youthful hue, but that
is a trifling symptom of the spiritual change.


His friends say that he thinks and speaks a great deal, these
days, of the chances and changes of old age, in a gently melan-
choly way. The old-time mad buffoon is on the way to extinc-
tion, leaving a much more serious little person touched by time.

In short, our maddest wag has come to that time-conscious
period through which all men and women must pass. And
right now, with Chaplin, it is another case of leff, clown, leS.

THE most radiant girl in Hollywood today is Lila Lee.
Gone the slender, pale creature of the last few years.
The new Lila is sturdy, tanned by the beach sun, vivid with
health and the will to succeed. She is by aU odds the most
glittering young thing of the moment.

To match this spiritual and physical health, Lila is happy.
After a dull stretch, she is busy in the studios on various talking
pictures. Moreover, she has an elegant boy friend in the hand-
some and brilliant person of John Farrow, one of the ace
writers at Paramount.

It would do your heart good to see Lila Lee glisten. For we
all have a soft spot in our hearts for her, as one of the youngest
of the real veterans who have literally grown up with the screen.

FOR the first time in exactly seventeen years, Lon Chaney
has been sick!

By that token, for the first time Chaney has begged off
posing for studio portraits and other things that take time and
strength. Always the first star on the lot, he has struggled
through his latest picture on his nerve, and now needs a rest.

Chaney, in health, turns up at nine in the morning, ready for
work, in a dingy suit and a knockabout golf cap. He is Lon
to the lowliest call boy on the Metro-Goldwyn lot. At heart he
is still the old vaudevillian — regular as they come, and every-
body's pal and adviser.

At Christmas time every gal on the lot, whatever her rank,
gets a glove order from Chaney, delivered by his own hand.

The other day I saw him on the lot. A mother and a little
girl were waiting near the offices. Chaney, in dowdy suit and
old cap, picked up the child and fondled her. That was Chaney,
the $4,000 a week movie star whose public is everlasting.

WE have been advised that Mrs. William Powell, wife of
the Paramount star, is returning to the screen. At pres-
ent she is appearing on the stage in "Burlesque," under her
maiden name, Eileen Wilson. For future picture work she will
appear under her married name.

Little Eva, all set to join in the angels' chorus. The
girl in wings is Bessie Love, who plays a trouper in an
"Uncle Tom's Cabin" company in "Eva the Fifth."
Don't write in to tell us that wrist watches weren't
worn before the Civil War. The timepiece is used so
that Little Eva can be sure of an 11:15 curtain

Looking ahead on the new Fall hats.
Jean Arthur wears a small, helmet-
shaped hat made of velvet. It is per-
fectly plain and worn slightly off the
forehead. Witli it is worn a circular
piece of tulle for a nose veil

WHEN Greta Garbo was in Catalina on location the citi-
zens of Avalon were thrown into a state of constant
panic. Local physicians report eight necks broken when sight-
seers tried to get a look at her. But Garbo appeared in the
little village only once.

Dressed in her usual careless manner and with her hat pulled
over her eyes, she walked into a curio store, bought a sea shell
and, finding she had no money, had it sent to the hotel C. 0. D.,
giving her maid's name.

And the same curio dealer was among the crowd who tried
to catch a glimpse of her when she hurried from her hotel to the
location yacht.

'TPHE naive curiosity of Ralph Forbes, who is playing an
important role in "The Green Goddess," with George
Arliss, for Warner Brothers, led to this. Forbes was testing
the rather extensive botanical knowledge of his friend and
co-player in the picture, H. B. Warner, by bringing him
small pieces of flora from about the company's location
set near Chatsworth, Calif.

"What's this?" he asked Warner one morning, displaying
a single, green leaf.

"That," said the obliging Mr. Warner, "is poison ivy."

IT may be for solace or it may be for spite, but the fact remains
that since Jack Gilbert and Ina Claire were married Greta
Garbo and Nils Asther have been chummier than ever before.

Rockabye, Baby Star,

Up at the top;
While the blurbs rave

Yon never can flop!
When the blurbs stop

Your contract will fall.
And down will come Baby Star,

Options and all!

THIS is the Recipe of the Month, so far as Cal is concerned.
It is the Louise F'azenda cocktail — as smooth and per-
suasive a concoction as ever soothed a parched gullet.
To serve six people —

One pint of pineapple ice, the juice of one-half grapefruit and
two lemons.

I hear, also, that it would be improved if that obsolete fluid

known as "gin" were achled, to taste. But this, of course, is
quite impossible in a prohibition country.

HOW time does fly! Can you believe that little Bill Ince,
son of the late Thomas Ince, is old enough to get married?
Well, he is twenty now and very shortly will be married to Miss
Ada Williams, a Kentucky girl who won a beauty contest in
Florida and came West to win further fame in pictures.

Miss Williams has appeared on the screen intermittently, but
the best thing she has done for herself is to win the affections
of "Nell " Ince's son.

Mrs. Ince is one of the most beloved women of the film colony
and Bill numbers his friends by the score. Besides, the young
people will have no financial worries.

"T^R. STEPIN FETCHIT, the eminent sepia comedian,
■^is now the undisputed king of the colored colony of Los

Dr. Fetchit took Dr. Herb Howe, whose brilliant inter-
view on the comic appeared in Photoplay, to see the
colored aristocracy, not long ago. Their gathering place is a
big, noisy and joyous cafe named The Apex.

At a table near Drs. Howe and Fetchit sat a particularly
handsome girl of a yellow tint, and dressed to kill.

Fetchit called her over, and Dr. Howe was presented to
the belle of the high-toned set.

"Very pretty girl," commented Herb. "Who is she?"

"Mrs. Smith?" drawled Stepin. "Why, she's the wife of
dat big p'liceman you saw outside the doah!"

TIME was when Joan Crawford and Doug Fairbanks, Jr.,
were the most audibly devoted couple in Hollywood. They
could be seen any noon at the M.-G.-M. commissary languishing
over the soup and crooning sticky phrases.

.A daily witness of the procedure penned the following
epitaph which Dorothy Herzog ran in her column:

Here lie the bodies of Doug and Joan.

They died as they lived — making sweet moan.

THEN, alas, came the day when the vivacious Lupe brought
her Gar-r-ee to the commissary. They occupied the table
next to Doug and Joan and completely out-mooned the former
billing and cooing champs. [ please turn to page 88 ]


^OW to Make


Aged scientist reports on the love life of the
domesticated microphone

I WILL try to explain to you, with the aid of a quart of
commas and a few semi-colons, how talking pictures are
Of the history of talking pictures I will only remark that
they were invented by I and Dr. Herb Howe, the young
Armenian numismatist, in the early fall of '93, which you re-
member as Centennial Year, but I remember for an attack of
shingles. Our first talking picture was that of a snail crawling
across the head of cabbage. Then, you may recall, came the
war, and an unpleasant incident it was.

My researches in the modern talking picture were carried on
on Stage 13 of the great Paramount Studio in Hollywood, to
which I gained entrance by lisping, as an actor. I was assisted
in my experiments and observations by the famous Case D,
the young lady who slept through the burning of Rome and
" The Trial of ilary Dugan."

My chief subject was Dr. Adolphe Menjou, that distinguished
Siamese model who was sewed into a claw-hammer coat in 1919
and has not since emerged. Our experiments were carried on
during the filming of "The Concert," a sophisticated Viennese
comedy in which Dr. Menjou appears as a jaded lover, a jealous
husband, a Knabe baby grand piano and a flourish of trumpets
heard off. He was in process of being directed by Dr. \'ictor
Schertzinger, the eminent composer-director who is still under
sentence of death for having composed the song " Marcheta."

After looking at a test tube, eating a piece of litmus paper and
drawing pictures on a desk calendar for 1922. I find that the
following properties are needed for the making of a 'modern
talking picture. I list them in the order of least importance.
1. Dr Menjou and the actors.
Dr. Director Schertzinger.
Tweve colored maids to hold things.
Eighty electricians, blonde or brunette.
Twenty experts, cameramen, technicians,
bat-boys, rubbers and chief seconds.

6. Ten dirtv gentlemen to say

7. A young doctor, fresh from
mail order school for electrical engi

neers, who sits at a desk, pushes buzzers, yells "Sink it!" and
thus sinks the talking picture — in short, makes the shadows
yodel, chortle and play dead.

Let us now proceed to the actual making of a talking picture
scene. In words of one syllable let us see what actually happens
on a great sound stage, among microphones both wild and

The big felt-lined stage is buzzing with talk. Electricians are
knocking over lights, character women are doing the black
bottom, blondes are fighting in corners, Dr. Director Schert-
zinger is pulling out handfuls of his own hair and stuffing a sofa
pillow with it. Seated in a chair marked " Miss Compton," Dr.
Menjou is trying to keep from falling through his eight inch
collar. In a chair marked "Mr. Entwhistle," Miss Compton,
an English actress, is trying to say "America" so that it will
sound less like "Hemuddicah!"

At last Dr. Schertzinger, having pulled out the last hair, says,
"Are we all set?"

The young electrical doctor puts down his diploma, swallows
his toothpick and says "oh kay !"

"Lock the doors!" booms the assistant director.



My chief sub-
ject was Dr.
Adolphe Menjou,
who was sewed
into a claw-ham-
mer in 1919 and
has not since
emerged . The big
felt-lined stage
was in action.

The cameras
and the meduUae
oblongatae were
beating as one.

"Darling," said
Dr. Menjou, "our
two hearrts are
beating togedder
like one."

"Cut!" yelled
Director Schert-




By Prof. Dr. Leonard Hall

{Western Electric Co.)

The mighty portals shut out the world.

The professional shushers all begin shushing.

Four cameramen, with dirks in their teeth, are shut into air-
proof, sound-proof cells with their cameras and a dozen
tarantulas. Electricians maladjust the lights for the last time.
Dr. Menjou and a bon-bon blonde take their places on the
"set." The blonde looks as though she wishes a cloudburst
would descend and melt her. Dr. Menjou has the gay and
debonair appearance of a gentleman about to be hanged.

"How are yah fi.xed, kid?" asks Dr. Menjou, in his best

"Oke," says Dr. Schertzinger.

A field piece booms from the roof of the studio. Signal flags
are run up at the masthead. Rockets break in the afternoon
sky. A bell is rung — once, twice, thrice. A whistle blows

electrical doctor into a telephone.

Silence falls. The cameras and the medullae
oblongatae, or sound dinguses, are beating as
one. Eye and ear are in "synchronization,"
or "are sunk," as we scientists say.
In the mLxer they are being mixed,
or mu.x.

Here comes
Dr. Menjou,
gnawing first at


Illuitrated by

Ken Chamberlain



yf^ THE ARGYLE CASE— Warners

THIS is not only Thomas Meighan's first talkie; it is one
of the most logical murtler mysteries we've yet seen. As
a modern Sherlock Holmes-Craig Kennedy sort of sleuth,
Meighan is superb. The story is sane, sophisticated and
thrilling. High above the plane of the ordinary crook melo-
drama, the battle is one of wits, not gats. It is vibrant with
mental action and suspense.

H. B. Warner is singularly fine in the role of Joint A r gyle's
attorney. Lila Lee, as the chief siispect, and Gladys Brock-
well, a mystery woman, are both splendid. There are too
few flashes of ZaSu Pitts of the querulous voice.

This picture shows a marked improvement in the voice
reproductions of the Vitaphone. Howard Bretherton's di-
rection is highly commendable. All Talkie.

■^ ON WITH THE SHOW— Warners

ONE hundred per cent everything — singing, dancing,
talking and technicolor. The color photography makes
it unique.

The situations have whiskers, but the transitions from
back stage drama to footlight hey-hey are well done. There
is a large chorus with lively dance routines, and tuneful
music. The conversation consists of snappy comebacks,
1910 variety.

Performances from the large cast are almost uniformly
good, with Joe E. Brown standing out with sparkling comedy
interpolations. Sam Hardy scores as the harassed pro-
ducer, and Betty Compson is optically entertaining. The
Blues singing of Ethel Waters is a highlight. Alan Cros-
land's direction is competent. All Talkie.



(REO. U. fl. PAT. OFF.) M ^

A Review of the New Pictures

yi^ BROADWAY— Universal

THE original of all the night club and underworld dramas
— and still the most effective. You may quarrel with
the too lavish settings given the Dunning-Abbott play, but
you'll have no complaint against Director Paul Fejos' direct
and sharp handling of the story.

Here you will find no hodgepodge talkie, tr>ing to get by
on the strength of its novelty, but an expert drama, with
concise dialogue, tense melodrama and, for the most part,
good acting.

Glenn Tryon plays the role of the innocent hoofer em-
broiled in a bootlegging murder.

Tryon is surprisingly good in a difficult part. But he has
keen competition in Thomas E. Jackson, a member of the
stage cast, and Evelyn Brent, as the vengeful chorus girl,
who steal the show. Mr. Jackson is decidedly a talkie find.
What a voice! Paul Porcasi, as the proprietor of the night
club, also duplicates the hit he made on the stage. Merna
Kennedy is not so good and is swamped by superior per-

"Broadway" is tricked out with theme songs, with special
dancing acts and with a mammoth cabaret scene, three
times as large as any New York night club.

But these bits of over-elaboration are immediately for-
gotten in the rush of the melodrama back-stage in the night

And so you will not be disappointed in Universal's version
of one of the most entertaining plays presented in several
seasons. All Talkie.


The Best Pictures of the Month





The Best Performances of the Month

Thomas Meighan in "The Argyle Case"

Thomas Jackson in "Broadway"

Evelyn Brent in "Broadway"

Adolphe Menjou in "Fashions in Love"

George Bancroft in "Thunderboh"

Casts of all photoplays reviewed will be found on page 14-1

y^ EVANGELINE— United Artists

THIS is a most unusual picture. It has a synchronized
score but no dialogue. It took six months to make and
cost a half million dollars. It marks Edwin Carevve's seven-
teenth anniversary as a motion picture director. It is the
filrii version of one of the best loved Ameiican poems.

The poet Longfellow's story of the Arcadian lovers, Evan-
geline and Gabriel, who are torn from each other on their
wedding day and spend all their lives trying to find each
other, is familiar to every school child.

Dolores Del Rio plays Evangeline and while she does not
talk, she sings both in French and English and her voice will
qualify when she wishes to talk. In her Norman cap and
curls, she hardly looks as beautiful as formerly, but she gives
a fine characterization of the French peasant girl and her
transformation as the old lady is striking. Roland Drew as
Gabriel is satisfactory and Donald Reed as Baptisle is
particularly pleasing.

The dramatization by Finis Fox, who has done most of
the Del Rio pictures, is a fine elaboration of the original.
Everything has been done to make this picture entertaining,
pictorially beautiful and historically correct. Miss Del Rio
is seven hours in icy cold, fast moving rapids for a scene that
runs only a few minutes. The town of Grand Pre is built
and burned down at a huge cost.

The picture just misses being notable, but the gorgeous
breath-taking settings and the universal appeal of the love
story guarantee intense interest. It would be a distinct loss
to miss "Evangeline." Sound.


ADOLPHE MENJOU breaks out with a voice, a French
accent and the best performance he has given in many a
movie moon. Disguised by a ridiculous title, this is "The
Concert," played so successfully by Leo Ditrichstein. It's
an old school farce of a concert pianist whose spirit to be a
Lothario is willing, but whose flesh is weak. Its glaring
fault is that a great musician should compose such inferior
melodies. Fay Compton and Miriam Seegar, both from the
English stage (the former a native of Britain, the latter an
American girl) give their first film performances in this
country. Both are capable actresses.

But the honors go to the star. His French accent is ex-
cellent, although he was born in Pennsylvania. Not a great
picture but big entertainment. All Talkie.

^ PRISONERS— First National

THIS is not another "Divine Lady," but it is an interest-
ing story of a girl's struggles to lift herself up by her boot
straps. A beautiful Hungarian peasant girl, Riza Riga, be-
comes involved with the proprietor of a low-class night club
where she is an entertainer. To escape him, she steals money
and runs away. Her weakness again overtakes her and she
steals to buy clothes whereby she can charm one Nicholas

Online LibraryMoving Picture Exhibitors' AssociationPhotoplay (Volume 36 – 37 (Jul. - Dec. 1929)) → online text (page 31 of 145)