Monday, March 29, 2010
Friday, March 26, 2010
Cal York’s Gossip of Hollywood
The Things We Hear and See: It happened at Mocambo. Across the way we were eyeing the luscious
Lana Turner and her escort Peter Lawford. Suddenly, in the midst of their steaks a waiter brought word Miss Turner was wanted on the telephone and oddly enough old Cal, nebby as usual, had a feeling he should pass and repass that phone.
But all we could hear was, “Yes, John. All Right, John.:
Back at her table Lana and Peter brushed the food aside (know how much food costs at this place?) and rushed out with Cal (how can we be so nosy?) right behind. But instead of climbing into a taxi or car, the pair strode off down Sunset Strip with Sherlock Rathbone York right behind and on to the Trocadero. Once inside this club Lana glanced anxiously about and then made straight for a table occupied by her agent (whose name is not John), his girl friend and Hodiak whose name most certainly is John. And there she, with faithful Lawford, spent the remainder of the evening. Now guess which man is closest to Lana’s heart.
Best Wishes Dept.: It was Friday night at the Hollywood Canteen and Susan Hayward was there to dance with the boys and serve behind the snack bar. Jess Barker, Columbia’s new actor, was master of ceremonies and so it was inevitable that during one of the lulls someone should say “Susan, this is Jess Barker.”
That was in November and the beginning of an exciting series of Hayward-Barker flare-ups. They liked each other right off, but Susie’s red hair and Jess’s definite ideas had the pair in a constant state of “good-by forevers.” Then Jess would rush off to date a dozen girls at once, which eventually earned him the title of the datingest guy in town.
Besides, Susie’s mother disapproved and so the romance limped along until one day Susie and Jess decided they loved each other way beyond all differences.
They were married just one week after this momentous decision by the Reverend Howard in the St. Thomas Episcopal Church. Susie looked lovely in a pale blue turquoise dress and hat.
After a short honeymoon at Rancho Santa Fe near San Diego the couple returned to take up residence in Susie’s own apartment since none other was available.
This was a first marriage for both. Their friends, including old Cal, wish them all happiness.
This Month: Mrs. Ward Bond divorced her actor husband . . . Mary Astor has a new boy friend but no one seems to know who he is . . . ‘Tis said Charlie McCarthy is about to acquire a stepmother in Frances Westerman, but when Cal put it to Edgar Bergen he would neither deny or affirm it . . . Joan Blondell is being beaued everywhere by produced Mike Todd. Her son Normie has now been promoted to chief errand boy for Scwab’s Drugstore . . . Deanna Durbin just looks and looks and looks at produced Felix Jackson while the two are lunching or dining in Hollywood . . .
An Experience for Jeanette: It was almost eleven o’clock when Jeanette MacDonald entered her bungalow of the El Encanto Hotel at Santa Barbara to retire for the night. It was still and quiet outside and the silence oppressing. Methodically, Jeanette closed the clothes-closet door, undressed and went to bed. Always a light sleeper, she was awakened fifteen minutes later by a sound somewhere in the room. Switching on the light, she looked about. The clothes-closet door had come open. She arose, closed it and went back to bed. It was the feeling of a presence in the room rather than sound that had her sitting bolt upright a few minutes later. her hand went to the night lamp and her eyes swept the room. The closet door was open. She knew the truth then. Someone was in there, waiting.
Fearfully she got out of bed and took a step or two toward that door. In a flash someone leaped at her with a blanket outspread as if to smother her. She fought and kicked. Heavy blows rained on her face, hitting her repeatedly in the eye. The assailant finally fled with Jeanette screaming behind him.
The attacker was a boy fourteen years old who was even then on probation from reform school. Because of a California law that prohibits using the name of any minor in such a offense, his name was not given out to the public. Bruised and horribly beaten about the face, Jeanette returned to her Hollywood home and next day from Santa Barbara where she had gone to study operatic roles under the direction of Lottie Lehman. Upon learning the boy’s mother was blind and earned her living by operating a tobacco concession in Santa Barbara, Jeanette refused to press charges.
Jeanette’s husband, Capt. Gene Raymond, stationed in Yuma, Arizona was on the phone the minute the word was flashed to him.
Sunday, March 14, 2010
Friday, March 12, 2010
Cal York’s Gossip of Hollywood
Surprise: Maybe you’ll be awfully surprised — and maybe you won’t — when Ginny Simms’ future plans are announced. But take our tip — she’s liable to become the bride of one of the top movie magnates before very long. And when she does, she’ll have the most amazing set of in-laws you could possibly imagine!
Odds and Ends: Jackie Coogan sure got himself a hero’s welcome every place he went during the few days’ leave he spent in cinema-town. His last date here was with Ramsay Ames. Ramsay has managed to date every possible male within a radius of a hundred miles! . . . Edith Fellows and Hal Chester, one of the original Dead End Kids, are setting their wedding date . . . Maureen O’Hara has a beautiful pair of ruby and diamond earrings. Given to her as a “baby present” by her husband Will Price . . . Helmut Dantine is still playing the feminine field with no one in particular leading . . . Don’t pay any attention to those silly rumors about Linda Darnell and Pev Marley. So far — so happy! Rudy Vallee bought his wife, Bette Jane Greet, a brand-new automobile just a few days before she went into court to divorce him. They’re still good friends and he tells everybody that it was all his fault.
Item-izing: Before Carole Landis left for that South Pacific tour, she and her husband Major Tom Wallace visited an orphanage and they’re thinking about adopting a child . . . Both the little twin girls born to Nancy Coleman and Whitney Bolton have bright red hair! . . . Marie Wilson is one of the most consistent Red Cross Blood Donors in Hollywood — just made her fifth trip . . . You can expect to see Felix Jackson’s engagement ring on Deanna Durbin’s finger — but any minute!
Ken Murray, genial master of ceremonies and man behind the famous stage play “Blackouts” which is now a Hollywood institution, gave a backstage party at the conclusion of its second year run.
Alan Ladd and his faithful Sue were on hand. Alan looks fir again, but after the horrible workout given him by director John Farrow in “Two Years Before The Mast” (there is no love lost between these two, believe us) Alan would either have to be in trim or dead. Seems to old Cal that Alan lately has grown cagey in his answers and conversation. Someone must have crossed him up or betrayed a confidence to prompt Alan to deliver such a set of cut-and-dried answers, all given with that enigmatic half-smile that helped skyrocket him to fame. Nevertheless, he’s one of our favorite persons and we’re for him. Sue is too.
Jackie Oakie slipped up behind and almost knocked old Cal through the wings with a hearty clap on the back.
Cute Marie Wilson was running all over the place showing off the bracelet Ken Murray had given her for never missing a performance. Carole Landis done to the teeth was all excitement because her husband, Major Tom Wallace, was due in town in a few days. (This marriage keeps going despite rumors.) W. C. Fields who kept wandering on and off the stage during the performance, to the delight of the audience, finally connected with the—er—liquid refreshments.
Donna Reed and her husband Bill Tuttle and Chester Morris and his cute wife Lily were a happy have-fun foursome.
If every star in town had the well-wishers this Ken Murray has what a world this would be.
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Cal York’s Gossip of Hollywood
Cheer for Rita: People were talking about how hard it must have been for Rita Hayworth to keep all of a certain week’s troubles to herself —
but she managed it. She is a very quiet gal anyway, but there was one week of shooting on “Tonight and Every Night” when nobody would have been surprised if she had unburdened herself — in fact, they would have welcomed her confidence. But she didn’t open her mouth about the fact that she had received word that her brother Vernon Cansino had been wounded on the Italian front. She didn’t want to say a word until she found out how badly — and after a few days she was notified that he wasn’t too terribly injured and had won a Purple Heart. And during these same few days, she had been notified that her husband Orson Welles had collapsed (during a Bond Tour) from overwork and exhaustion and that he was a very sick man again. But Ritadidn’t open her mouth to anyone about this either until it was all over and Orson was well again.
Private War Fronts: Paulette Goddard and her bridegroom of only a few weeks had a slight tiff one Sunday night in the Clover Club — and you should have heard the gab that went all over Hollywood the next day. You’d have thought that Buzz Meredith had hauled off and hit her over the head — to hear people talk. And all the time it was probably no more than the kind of argument that any two people are liable to have whether they’re married or not. Anyway, Buzz quieted a lot of rumors by saying that if their romance were any hotter they’re “both go up in smoke.”
Another pair who are being gabbed (and worried) about are Jane Wyman and Capt. Ronnie Reagan. This, old Cal knows, may come as a bit of a shock to you — but it looks like a different kind of “smoke” here. A case of “where there’s smoke — there must be fire” — sort of thing. Hope it isn’t true — but even their close friends suspect that all is not hunky-dory in the Reagan household at this writing.
How Do They Do It: Where they get the energy, heavens knows — because Joan Crawford (besides working hard in “Hollywood Canteen”) and Phil Terry have been doing all their housework and some of the laundry for months. To the point where you’d think both of ‘em would be having housemaid’s knee. But there they were at Mocambo, on the dance floor for so long at a time people wondered if they were going to try for a Marathon contest.
June Romance: Dick Powell is getting plenty of consolation (if he needs any) from June Allyson — and even though the studio keeps sending out reams of publicity linking June romantically with this and that beau you can take our word that it’s the Dick Powell dating that counts. Dick is a very domestic type too and it wouldn’t surprise us if he has such a yen to get back in harness that he up and proposes any minute. And neither would we be surprised if she said “Yes.”
Pretty Thoughts: Must tell you about Betty Hutton’s new dressing room — a gift from Paramount, where the blonde bombshell is rapidly making herself one of their biggest box-office bets. The room was done by Raoul du Bois (who did a great deal of the designing for “Lady in The Dark”) and it’s mostly shell-pink and antiqued silver. It’s walls are shell-pink and there are two quilted pink satin Victorian chairs and a large high-backed satin couch. It has an antiqued mirrored fireplace and a small grand piano that is pale green and silver, rubbed down to a smoky hue. And there’s a perfume bar, gals, that is something to drool over!
What a place to lounge around in and greet your friends! Isn’t it too bad that movie stars almost never have any time to lounge around???
Saturday, March 6, 2010
Friday, March 5, 2010
Cal York’s Gossip of Hollywood
In the Cummings Corner: A lot of people were surprised to see Bob Cummings and K.T. Stevens being a dinner twosome in a cozy corner. Of course, Hollywood fashion, the gossips tried to fashion a new “romance” out of the combination. But they must have short memories — or no faith in friendship at all. For Bob, though rumored “engaged” to Faye McKenzie, still has his heart in the safekeeping of Mary Constant, attractive widow of the famous flier, Max Constant — and it’s Cal’s guess they’ll marry. Then how come K.T.? Well, it just so happens that she has directly and indirectly played a big part in Bob’s life from the very moment he started his picture career — and they are very close friends — and that’s all. Not only is K.T. a pal of Bob’s ex-wife’s, but it was she who got her dad, the big director Sam Wood, to give Bob his first real break in pictures at Universal — and then again when Wood took up the megaphone for “King’s Row.”
Style Note: Lana Turner probably started a new fad or something — by walking into the Trocadero wearing a low-necked black dinner dress, with a scarlet red chiffon handkerchief (an enormous one) knotted tightly around her neck Apache fashion. The effect was startling — and the copycats promptly started making mental notes.
Married — and Happy:
Harry James and Betty Grable came back to Hollywood from Harry’s band-
playing jaunt back East absolutely exhausted — and with plenty of work looming ahead for both of them. Betty made her first public professional appearance since becoming a momma at a Brooklyn Bond rally with Harry when she cleaned up for her Uncle Sam. And of all the unromantic things! They had to spend their first wedding anniversary doing a one-night stand in Wilkesbarre, Pennsylvania. But they’re so romantic about each other it really wouldn’t matter where they were spending the evening. They wouldn’t know!
Crosby Corner: Just to show you how un-hammy some actors can be, here’s a cute and true story about the one and only Bing. In all the years that he’s been famous (and it’s a good many) Crosby has never clipped or saved a single line that ever appeared about him in print. Most stars have scrapbooks a foot thick — but not Bing. But at last he’s impressed enough by something (notice we said something — and not himself) to want to keep some of the swell things that are being written about him. It’s the reviews and reams of comment that have been written not only about the picture “Going My Way” which is one of the all-time best, but about the Bing too. After all these years as a singing star, it’s so swell that he should now be gaining recognition as a fine actor for the first time — and evidently he thinks so too. Because the other day he called up his pal, Leo McCarey, who directed the film, and after clearing his throat in a rather embarrassed way, Bing asked “Say — Leo, how do you go about keeping a scrapbook?” ( ! )
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Irene Dunne epitomizes class. She was so elegant and beautiful, but wasn't afraid to put herself out there in screwball comedy. Her acting with her leading men is so effortless. And when you watch her act, you get the feeling you are watching the real Irene — that you are seeing little pieces of herself woven into her roles. She also knew when to gracefully make her exit from the movies. Irene Dunne was probably one of the first movie stars I ever knew. I remember watching "My Favorite Wife" and "The Awful Truth" with my mom when I was little. To me, she was at her best when she was doing screwball comedy with Cary Grant. They paired so flawlessly. Irene will always hold a special place in my classic hollywood heart.