Blogging Under the Stars 2015

Site News, Movie Memorabilia, and a Liebster!

Hey everyone! Sorry for being a rather infrequent blogger lately. Let’s take some time to catch up with a few fun things. I promise, things are going to be a lot less idle here in the near future.

First of all, it’s almost August and if you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know what that means — it’s almost time for this year’s round of Blogging Under the Stars! If you aren’t familiar with Blogging Under the Stars, here’s how it works: every August 2-September 1, I watch and review a movie that airs as part of TCM’s Summer Under the Stars, preferably something I’ve never seen before, although that’s not always possible. My intent of doing this is to encourage myself to watch some movies I otherwise might not have watched and watch some films from actors I’m not so familiar with. I’ve done this for the past few years and every year I’ve discovered some really great movies, so it’s a lot of fun for me.

Now, on to some more fun things…

Next, my friend Raquel at Out of the Past recently did some posts showcasing some of the cool movie related things she’s collected and encouraged other bloggers to share some of their neat stuff. Since I love collecting movie-related things, I figured I’d take her up on her suggestion. Here are a few of the most interesting things I’ve found over the years:

Promotional Coin for Gold Diggers of 1933

Gold Diggers of 1933 Promo Coin

What better type of promotional item can a studio make for a movie like Gold Diggers of 1933 than a coin? I’ve seen a few of these on eBay and if I remember correctly, some of them also have the name of a theater where you could see the movie stamped on the back, too.

1937 Playbill for “Yr. Obedient Husband” Starring Fredric March

Fredric March Yr Obedient Husband Playbill

I found this playbill at a flea market a couple of years ago and got it because I recognized Fredric March, but I didn’t know anything about the play itself until later. “Yr. Obedient Husband” had a tryout period at the Cass Theater in Detroit, which is what this playbill is from, before it opened in New York in January 1938. When it opened at the Broadhurst Theater in New York, it was a total flop and closed after 8 performances, which prompted Fredric and his wife Florence, who also starred in the play, to run an ad in New York Newspapers featuring a cartoon of a trapeze performer failing to catch their partner with the caption, “Oops! Sorry!” A very young Montgomery Clift also appeared in this play, I believe he was 17 at the time.

Although I really like this piece for its connections to Fredric March and Montgomery Clift, I also love that it’s full of ads for old, high-end clothing stores and restaurants that were around in Detroit at the time.

Original Program for The Hollywood Revue of 1929

Hollywood Revue of 1929 Graumans Program

If you went to go see The Hollywood Revue of 1929 when it originally played at Grauman’s Chinese Theater in Los Angeles, you would have been given a program listing the actors and the songs in the film, much like you would be given if you went to see a play. Since it’s my blog’s namesake, I’m really happy to have this in my collection. It’s printed on a very thin type of paper, almost like newsprint.

A Pair of Earrings Owned by Lana Turner

Lana Turner Earrings

A while back, Lana Turner’s daughter Cheryl was selling some jewelry, movie stills, and other things that had belonged to her mother on eBay, including these earrings. I’ve never found a picture of Lana actually wearing them, but I like to imagine that missing bead on the earring on the left fell off while doing something like getting ready to head to the set of Peyton Place or while doing something fun with Ava Gardner.

Vintage Clark Gable Movie Stills/Screenland March 1934

It Happened One Night Screenland2

I didn’t deliberately set out to start collecting stills from Clark Gable movies, but along the line, I just happened to keep coming into vintage Clark Gable movie stills so I just decided to go along with it. In addition to this one from It Happened One Night, I have one from Wife Vs. SecretaryThe Hucksters, Strange Cargo, Strange Interlude, The Misfits, Teacher’s Pet, and a lobby card from Boom Town.

So, what’s with the copy of Screenland magazine? Even though Kay Francis is on the cover, it’s actually related to my It Happened One Night still. If you’ll notice, there’s a little bit of writing near the bottom of the still, which is mostly covered by the frame. It says, “Screenland December 1933.” I was curious to see if that picture actually was in the December 1933 issue of Screenland, so I did a little research and found out it wasn’t featured in the December 1933 issue, but it was in the March 1934 issue. So I found a copy of the magazine because I thought it’d be cool to have a copy of the magazine my still was used in. What’s really interesting is that this issue was clearly printed before It Happened One Night became a huge hit. The movie would have been brand new at the time, but the movie only got a brief mention, accompanied by this photo, near the back of the magazine.

Lastly, Girls Do Film nominated me for a Liebster award! Sorry it took me so long to get around to doing this, but thank you!

The rules for the Liebster, which I admit I am about to break a little bit: Tell 11 random facts about yourself, answer 11 questions asked by the person who nominated you, and tag 11 other bloggers to keep the train going.

First, 11 random facts about me:

  1. My day job is copywriter for a digital marketing agency.
  2. My nails are currently painted yellow.
  3. I named my car Tallulah Bankhead.
  4. I love watching Antiques Roadshow. It’s such a calming show.
  5. Lately, I’ve been reading a biography on Norma Shearer.
  6. I recently got an 8mm film projector that I’m going to try to repair.
  7. I like to crochet.
  8. I recently went to concerts by the Rolling Stones and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra within just a few days of each other.
  9. Going for a walk is my favorite way to relax after work.
  10. The movie I most want to see on the big screen is Sunset Boulevard.
  11. I have a soft spot for really bad disco movies.

Congratulations on your award. Who’ll be presenting it to you? And why?

I always kind of cop out on nominating other people for these sorts of things because I feel like if it seems like fun to you, go ahead and do it. But in this case, I’ve really just been super busy lately and haven’t had much time to notice who’s been already nominated for this and I don’t want to keep nominating someone who’s been nominated at least once.

Which movie character would you like to ask for advice?

Maude from Harold and Maude

You can spend one day dressed in a movie costume. Whose would it be – and why?

The black dress Rita Hayworth wears in the “Put the Blame on Mame” scene from Gilda. I figure if I’m going to spend a day in a movie costume, I ought to make it a super glamorous one.

What’s your favourite film decade?

I find the 1930s fascinating because of how much the industry grew during that time. In the early part of the decade, the industry was finding its footing after the transition to talkies and there’s the pre-code era. After the production codes went into effect, the industry continued to flourish and the decade culminated with what is widely considered Hollywood’s greatest year. Although, I’m also very fond of the 20s and the 40s.

Which film character do you most identify with?

I honestly can’t think of a movie character I really see that much of myself in that I really identify with them.

What talent would you most like to have?

I’d love to know swing dancing.

One movie that you’ve never seen but probably should….

Seven Samurai. And The Godfather, Part 2. Those two are so big they’re tied for the number one spot on that list.

… and the movie that you can watch again and again?

E.T. is my all time favorite movie, I have no idea how many times I’ve seen it during my life, but it’s safe to say, it’s a lot.

What was your best movie-watching experience?

Oh, goodness, I have so many answers for this. Seeing White Christmas at the Redford Theater in Detroit is one of my favorite holiday traditions; everyone always starts singing along at the end. A lot of my experiences at the TCM Film Festival like seeing Lenny followed by a discussion with Dustin Hoffman, seeing Eraserhead with a theater full of people who had no idea what they were getting into, or seeing Ann-Margaret introduce The Cincinnati Kid.

You’re hosting a dinner party. Which classic stars/directors/personalities are on your invite list?

I’d invite all the big gossip columnists and publicists. They’d have all the best stories to tell.

Who is your favourite movie villain… and why?

Darth Vader. He’s got the best theme song.

Although I’m not tagging anyone in particular, here are 11 questions you are welcome to answer if you are so inclined:

  1. Favorite movie blonde bombshell?
  2. Do you think Citizen Kane is overrated?
  3. Name 4 your favorite movies from the 1940s.
  4. If you could own a prop from any movie, which one would it be?
  5. Favorite non-American film?
  6. Name a movie you hope they never, ever announce a remake of?
  7. If you could have attended the world premiere of any film, which one would it have been?
  8. What’s your biggest guilty pleasure movie?
  9. Name a movie you feel like doesn’t get as much credit as it deserves.
  10. What’s your all-time favorite movie quote?
  11. If your life were turned into a biopic, who would you want to direct it?