Moving Picture Exhibitors' Association.

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

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Lesquendieu"; Just write to J. Lesquendieu, Inc., 68 j
Fifth Avenue, New York.

@ L. 1929



^Tien you write to advertisers please mention PIIOTOPLAT MAGAZINE.


Photoplay Magazine for October, 1929

so hearty and reassuring. It made you feel
good just to listen to him — gave you confidence
and courage. Eileen leaned toward him.

"Oh, it's all too wonderful!" she cried.

"You're the wonderful one. Great luck my
m^eeting you." He caught her hand, pressed
it and pulled her to her feet. " Toughluck that
I have to tear myself away. Tennis date with
Silvermarsh, my producer. In the picture
game, it's always business before pleasure, you


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"T'VE got to be going myself,

.*-miirklv_ **Thp l\in(r<;ton-Rrr

said Eileen

quickly. "The Kingston-Smiths will be
wondering what has become of me. You really
meant what you said about the job? It's a

"Sure!" he boomed. "It'sapromise. Come
around to see me at the studio."


"Any time. Just say you're a friend of
Jerry Wilton's." Then as he looked down at
lier uplifted face and eyes moist with speech-
less gratitude, his voice became more tender,
"Gee, you're a sweet kid, Eileen O'Neil — "

"My name's not — " she began, but was sud-
denly checked, because he pulled her towards
him and kissed her on the lips — a kiss, such as
she had never received in all her life — so
impersonal it was and yet so vibrant with the
warm surging vitality of the man.

Eileen bade adieu to her hostess, climbed
back onto the sands and strode happily towards
the Beach Club. What a contrast to her bored,
aimless stroll along the selfsame sands before
she had encountered that horse! Now her
heart was leaping high, like the charging waves

Now that she saw escape before her, she
realized what a bound, depressing life hers had
been. Trj'ing with her lady mother to stretch
that most inelastic of all inelasticities, — a
govenm:ient pension. Living on the wTong
side of the railroad tracks. Having people nice
to her when she could never be sure whether it
was due to her own charm or the memorj' of
her revered soldier father.

Well, that was all over. She would never
have to go to another party where she felt
she was invited only because the hostess was
anxious to do something "nice for Col.
O'Hara's daughter." She would be free and
rich like those girls at Margalo's party. She
would be able to do things for her mother. And
— she blushed as she realized how much it
meant to her — she would be living in the same
town with Jerrj' Wilton.

After dinner, she had it out with the King-
ston-Smiths. They were perfectly polite about
it. Of course, if Eileen did not wish to con-
tinue the trip with them — ? Oh, it wasn't that,
Eileen assured them, but this marvelous oppor-
tunity to break into pictures. Mrs. Kingston-
Smith's thin lips compressed themselves into a
line still thinner.

Marvelous opportunity, indeed! What would
Eileen's mother say? And Gary Owens?
Would he approve?

"T DON'T give a dam whether he does or
-*• not,' ' was on the tip of Eileen's tongue, but
she only breathed gently that Gary Owens
really had no claim on her and as for her
mother, why she was thinking mostly of her
mother — the things she could do for her.
Surely the Kingston-Smiths could understand?

But the Kingston-Smiths could not or would
not and after a frosty interval, it was finally
arranged that they should continue their tour
the next day while Eileen remained in some
comfortable and respectable apartment which
Mrs. Kingston-Smith would look up for her in
the morning.

The next day, when the big limousine finally
rolled away, Eileen experienced a Uttle sinking
of the heart. The month's rent in advance for
the apartment in which Mrs. Kingston-Smith
had installed her, had absorbed most of her

The "P. P.," or Pride Fund, had been
Eileen's most precious possession. Through
long years, by the most brilliant economies, by


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Photoplay ]\Iagazine for October, 1929

the careful hoarding of bridge winnings, she
had managed to save it, dime by dime, and
quarter by quarter. With the "P. F." in her
pocket, Eileen had always been able to argue
with at least some degree of conviction, about
paying her share of expenses; and when a house
party or a tour like that wth the Kingston-
Smiths became almost more than her polite-
ness could bear, she had always been ible to
comfort herself with the thought that should
worst come to worst, the pride fund would pay
her way home.

VWELL, the old " P. F. " was practically shot

*'' now. Eileen could count two five dollar
drafts in her American Bankers' Association
check book and some seventeen dollars in cash
in her little alligator skin traveling bag. But
the movies — the golden movies! She wondered
if Jerry would think three hundred a week too
much for playing the part of Lisbeth.

She was a little tired with moving and she
decided it would be rushing matters to look
him up too early in the day. Late afternoon
would probably be best.

In the 'phone book she found the number of
a beauty shop she had heard Corinne Griffith
casually mention, so she called a taxi and spent
the next hours in a half somnambulant state,
soothed by fragrant creams, and dexterous
manipulations with lotions, steam and ice.

When the last curl was sleeked into place,
the last rosy finger nail polished, she called
another taxi and hurried to the studio.

The mention of Jerry Wilton's name and the
assertion that she had an appointment got her
past the gate-keeper, doorman and two secre-
taries. Her heart was leaping high when she
finally came upon a frosted glass door with
"Jerome Wilton, Director" stencUed in large
gold letters.

But Jerry wasn't there. Instead, a cool
blonde creature with the manners of a grand
duchess, yet somehow exuding efficiency, an-
nounced herself as Jerry's secretary.

"I had you sent up because I wanted to tell
you Mr. Wilton's not in town."

""NTOT in town?" gasped Eileen.

••-^ "No. They had a little fire on the sound
stage last night. Upset the whole schedule, so
he's taking the principals of his cast up to the
High Sierras to get some snow stuff for the
Siberian sequences. No, I haven't the least
idea when they'll be back."

Then seeing the stricken deer expression on
Eileen's face, she relented a little. "You might
call him up in a week, dearie."

Eileen could hear the crisp clicking of the
typewriter keys as she hurried down the cor-
ridor. Outside the studio she decided she had
best walk back to her apartment. That night
she had her first experience of a Hollywood
cafeteria, bearing before her a tray meagrely
arrayed with a dinner that cost her thirty-nine

Five days later, when walking to the drug
store where she usually purchased her cup of
coffee breakfast, she noticed headlines in the
paper at the news stand.




From the paper, which cost her a nickel, she
gathered that Jerry and his cast were safe,
but sufltering horrible hardships. That it
might take a week before rescuers could bra\ely
battle to their release.

But whatever hardships the marooned com-
pany suffered, were mild compared to those
of Eileen. Though she lived on one meal a
day and that at a cafeteria, the precious
"P.F. " was soon reduced to a minus. The
minus representing debt due one Solemn
Marcus and secured by the leather traveling
coat Mrs. Kingston-Smith had given her at
the start of their tour.

Nevertheless, she was really as cheerful as
the cheerful letters she wrote home, and when
she read that the Jerome Wilton company had
finally returned, she made another trip to Mr.



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Photoplay Magazine for October, 1929






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Marcus and parted with the brooch Gary
Owens had given her the past Christmas.
With the proceeds, she purchased a good meal
and the requisite beauty treatments to efface
the marks of her fasting. But this time she
took a bus to the studio instead of a taxi.

Here she was informed that Jerry was shoot-
ing on the sound stages.

From the secretary's manner, Eileen gath-
ered that he might as well be in Darkest Africa
as far as any possibility of communicating with
him was concerned.

No, the secretary wouldn't give his address
or 'phone number. It was forbidden by the
rules of the studio. But Eileen might try com-
ing back tomorrow.

nrOIVIORROW, after a light breakfast and a
-'- finger wave, Eileen returned.

"No," the secretary told her. "Mr. Wilton
isn't on the sound stage, but he can't possibly
see anyone. Can't for days — " The secretary's
\'oice sunk to a horrified whisper. "He's ten
days behind schedule."

Eileen did not quite understand what being
behind schedule meant, but she gathered it
was something rather worse than being sus-
pected of having murdered your own mother.

She waited three days. Then sought out
a cheaper beauty shop. By guiding the
inexpert operator, she achieved a finger wave
that would at least be attractive under her
smart French toque. Jerry would be pleased
with her appearance, if he would only see her.
.\nd she knew he wanted to see her. Any
furtive thought that he might not have meant
all he promised she quickly banished from her
mind. It was just up to her to put a stop to
this nonsense.

So when the secretary told her "Mr. Wilton
is in conference," she sat down and wrote him
a note. It took a week to get an answer, in
which time she found a place where she could
sell her clothes and she propped her head up
on pillows at night to keep her precious finger
wa\'e in place. Then the secretary' told Eileen
th^t Jerry had left word she was to see the
casting director.

This illustrious personage referred her to the
second assistant, who referred her to the first.
He sent her to the scenario-\mter, who con-
fided a long list of his own troubles and made
an appointment for her mth the supervisor,
who said she had better see Jerrj* \\ilton after
all. seeing she had discussed the part with him.
Thus, after two days, she found herself right
back where she started from, in Jerry Wilton's
outer office and the secretar>- informed her
that he was home asleep, after "shooting"
until dawn.

npH.AT night Eileen took stock of herself and
^ the situation. She must see Jerry Wilton.
It was so depressingly necessarj* to her pride!
Her scant)' meals and the necessary beauty
treatments for her daily trips to the studio had
left her with exactly S2.65. Ever>-thing pawn-
able had been pawned, and every dress, except
the dark green one that she thought most
becoming, had been sold. And to whom could
she iWre for money? The Kingston-Smiths?
Gary Owens? The very thought made her
pride curl up and die. Her mother, her darling
mother, who was always at least fifty dollars
behind by pension day? No, that was un-
thinkable also.

She would go to the studio. She would just
wait and wait and wait until somehow she
saw Jerry Wilton. Then they would laugh
over her troubles. He would take her in his
arms and kiss her once more. She wondered
if hunger was making her light headed.

The next morning there was the problem of
how best to employ her remaining funds.
Fifteen cents she spent for breakfast, — her first
meal in twenty-four hours^the remaining two-
fifty at her cheap beauty shop. Then she
walked to the studio.

She was very serene when the secretary
announced that Mr. Wilton was busy and
couldn't see her.

"Very well then," she said, "I'll wait 'till he

The secretary shrugged her best grand
duchess shrug. "It's up to you, dearie, if you
care to wait. I can't promise anything. He's
in an important conference."

Eileen waited. One hour, two, three. The
grand duchess secretary went to lunch and
was replaced by a dark, nervous one.

A delicious avocado salad and iced tea tray
went tinkling in to Jerry Wilton's private
ofiSce. The first secretary came back, confiding
the raptures of Baked Alaska at the Mont-
marte. Eileen got herself a paper cup of water
from the lukewarm container in a corner.

The secretary sat in the shade, directly in
front of an electric fan, which wafted the
draperies of her apple green print coolly about
her. The afternoon sun found its way to
Eileen's chair and bathed her with its parching
dryness. It seemed that she waited years —
years composed entirely of hot, sizzling sum-
mers. The floor began to sway up and down
like the razzle-dazzle at the amusement park.
She felt strange and far away, when the
secretary at last disappeared into Jerry's
office to emerge a moment later with the

"Mr. Wilton says he can't see anyone today.
He's been called away to look at a location."

"But he's got to — it's desperate — " there
was panic in Eileen's eyes.

"Well he's coming out now — you can ask
him yourself," the secretary said sourly.

Eileen rose unsteadily to her feet. The door
opened and there came toward her a mountain
of goldish tweed — a rumpled red haired crest
and beneath it that friendly contagious smile.
Eileen took it for a look of glad greeting. She
started forward.

"■X>fR. WILTON," she began and then
■'■'■'•stopped, as with a shock she realized he
was not smiling at her at all. He was laughing
at a joke told to him by one of the men who
followed him out. He looked straight through

" Don't you remember me — Eileen O'Hara? "
she begged.

His eyes were as vacant as ever. Eileen
might as well have been a piece of furniture in
his way. He spoke rather sharply to his

"Can't see anyone today — going out to look
for a location. Back here in an hour. Im-
portant conference wth Silvermarsh. " Then
the great outer door banged behind him.

Eileen stared at it unbelievingly. Then she
cried, "He must know who I am. He promised
— I stayed on here, spent all my money. I
wouldn't have stayed if he hadn't promised."

"Promised what?" demanded the metallic
voice of the secretar)'.

' ' Promised me a part . The part of Lisbeth. "

"Lisbeth! Why Ruth Hale got that part
three weeks ago. She always plays those
types in his pictures."

"Wha — t?" gasped Eileen. For a moment
she stood there swaying. The pent up resent-
ment of her weeks of waiting, the high white
heat of anger paralyzed her body, mind and
soul. The "slow swinging sea" Jerry had
spoken of rose in a whirlpool of wrath, the
peaceful mountain broke forth in volcanic fires,
the stained glass -nindow cracked and shattered
on the cathedral floor.

T\ THEN Eileen came to, she was lying on
''* the leather couch in the office. Someone
was dabbing wetness on her forehead. And the
voice of the grand duchess had become warm
and human. "There, there, dearie. I was
afraid this was going to happen. It's fierce the
way these directors give girls the run-aroimd."

"The run-around?"

"Yes, kid 'em along and then refuse to see
them when it comes to a show-do^\'n. "

"Do you mean to say Mr. Wilton was
giving me the run-around all the time I was
waiting for him?"

"I'm afraid he was, dearie."

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Photoplay Magazine for October, 1929

"And he deliberately lied when he offered
me that job? "

"No, it was just a Hollywood promise.
You asked him for a job, didn't you? Well,
if he'd refused, said you wouldn't do, it would
have meant explanation, argument. Good
Lord, they get enough of that around the

"But I wouldn't have argued," quavered

"T\ TELL, ninety-nine girls out of a hundred
»* would. That's why the big directors
and executives will promise almost anything —
outside a studio. It costs too much in time and
energy to say 'no'."

"But don't they ever think how much it
might cost the others — the people who believe

"A lot they care. They're so big and im-
portant they know they can get away with it,
all right, all right."

"Run-around." "Get away with it!" The
phrases hummed through EUeen's brain as she
left the studio.

And she had been so darned nice to Jerry

Listened to him all that time, and not only
listened, but believed.

Thought him too sure and strong and
powerful ever to stoop to petty deceits, the
meannesses of life.

Now she realized that he had deliberately
used her to ease a restless moment of his
mind. Used and discarded her as one might
pick up a rag to flick a bit of dust from a pair
of shoes. The fighting spirit of her soldier
father took possession of her. He hadn't let

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Online LibraryMoving Picture Exhibitors' AssociationPhotoplay (Volume 36 – 37 (Jul. - Dec. 1929)) → online text (page 89 of 145)