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  #161  
Old 06-10-2013, 08:01 AM
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MerryCarey...or anyone else who is a fan of L&H...TCM is showing Zenobia today. Looks to be Oliver Hardy's only lead role apart from Stan Laurel. I have my DVR set. Anyone seen this film?
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Old 06-26-2013, 07:26 AM
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Recently I found out that one of my favorite classic film stars, Rhonda Fleming, is still alive. I wrote her, not thinking I'd hear anything back. I was shocked at how quickly I did hear back and we struck up a very nice correspondence. We had some great conversations. She's 89 (I think) but still sharp! When she saw my address as being in Moore, she went out of her way to ask about my family and check on us after the tornadoes. She also sent me a very nice autographed picture with a personal message on it.
She talks alot about faith, as we share common beliefs. She also talked about Ronald Reagan and how classy of a guy he was. She stated she was also a fan of working with Bing Crosby.
My favorite movie of hers (and one of my all time favorites) is Gunfight at the O.K. Corral, and she shared some tidbits about the filming of that picture.
That was the first time I ever tried to contact a celebrity. I usually don't, but since I've been a big fan for a long time, and I knew she was getting older, I went ahead and did it. I'm glad I did!
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  #163  
Old 06-26-2013, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Ryan View Post
MerryCarey...or anyone else who is a fan of L&H...TCM is showing Zenobia today. Looks to be Oliver Hardy's only lead role apart from Stan Laurel. I have my DVR set. Anyone seen this film?
It's been a long time ago, but I've seen it. It's not a bad little film. It's an 1800s period piece. Harry Langdon sues small-town doctor Hardy for alienation of affection---of his performing elephant!

Why isn't Laurel in the film? The canny producer Hal Roach maintained separate contracts (with different expiration dates) with Laurel and Hardy after they became a team. He figured that way, they couldn't leave the studio as a team. Laurel's contract had run out, and he waited out the period between his expiration and Hardy's. In the meantime, Roach made use of Hardy by putting him in "Zenobia" (with Harry Langdon, who non-observant viewers could mistake for Stan Laurel). After this, I believe Laurel & Hardy were able to negotiate a joint contract with Roach.

You can see other Oliver Hardy (supporting) solo performances in the John Wayne film "The Fighting Kentuckian," and in the Bing Crosby/Frank Capra film "Riding High." He was a fine character actor.
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  #164  
Old 06-26-2013, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Ryan View Post
Recently I found out that one of my favorite classic film stars, Rhonda Fleming, is still alive. I wrote her, not thinking I'd hear anything back. I was shocked at how quickly I did hear back and we struck up a very nice correspondence. We had some great conversations. She's 89 (I think) but still sharp! When she saw my address as being in Moore, she went out of her way to ask about my family and check on us after the tornadoes. She also sent me a very nice autographed picture with a personal message on it.
She talks alot about faith, as we share common beliefs. She also talked about Ronald Reagan and how classy of a guy he was. She stated she was also a fan of working with Bing Crosby.
My favorite movie of hers (and one of my all time favorites) is Gunfight at the O.K. Corral, and she shared some tidbits about the filming of that picture.
That was the first time I ever tried to contact a celebrity. I usually don't, but since I've been a big fan for a long time, and I knew she was getting older, I went ahead and did it. I'm glad I did!
It never hurts to try! Some ignore their mail, but many cherish every letter, and a wonderful few take the time to answer personally.

A tip for those who are hoping for a personal answer: Be kind and include a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Not all former stars are wealthy or have staff, so the cost of postage can become considerable for those who answer their fan mail personally. If you send a photo for an autograph, include packaging and postage for its return trip to you. The star will appreciate your consideration.
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  #165  
Old 06-26-2013, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by MerryCarey View Post
It never hurts to try! Some ignore their mail, but many cherish every letter, and a wonderful few take the time to answer personally.

A tip for those who are hoping for a personal answer: Be kind and include a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Not all former stars are wealthy or have staff, so the cost of postage can become considerable for those who answer their fan mail personally. If you send a photo for an autograph, include packaging and postage for its return trip to you. The star will appreciate your consideration.
Are there any others from the classic period still with us? I know it is hard to define "classic period," and I know some of the big names are (Kirk Douglas, for example). But I wonder if any of those now largely forgotten artists are still with us.
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  #166  
Old 06-26-2013, 11:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Ryan View Post
Are there any others from the classic period still with us? I know it is hard to define "classic period," and I know some of the big names are (Kirk Douglas, for example). But I wonder if any of those now largely forgotten artists are still with us.
Very few ... Deanna Durbin passed away a few weeks ago. Shirley Temple is still living, but I've heard that she takes a very dim view of her childhood career. I think Diana Serra Cary (Baby Peggy) is still living. Jerry Tucker from Our Gang is still with us, as well as some of the lesser-known members, I believe. Jane Withers is still living. I'm realizing that these were all children during the "golden era" of Hollywood films. There are very few left with living memories of those days. That's why we cherish our time with Gloria so highly---she has in-person memories of W.C. Fields, Donald O'Connor, Bing Crosby, Groucho Marx, Mel Torme, Boris Karloff, Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce, Carmen Miranda, Alan Jones, Edward G. Robinson, Lon Chaney (Jr.), and so many others.
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  #167  
Old 06-26-2013, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by MerryCarey View Post
Very few ... Deanna Durbin passed away a few weeks ago. Shirley Temple is still living, but I've heard that she takes a very dim view of her childhood career. I think Diana Serra Cary (Baby Peggy) is still living. Jerry Tucker from Our Gang is still with us, as well as some of the lesser-known members, I believe. Jane Withers is still living. I'm realizing that these were all children during the "golden era" of Hollywood films. There are very few left with living memories of those days. That's why we cherish our time with Gloria so highly---she has in-person memories of W.C. Fields, Donald O'Connor, Bing Crosby, Groucho Marx, Mel Torme, Boris Karloff, Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce, Carmen Miranda, Alan Jones, Edward G. Robinson, Lon Chaney (Jr.), and so many others.
Now you've sold me...I'm going to have to read the book on Gloria! In fact, I just ordered it off of Amazon.
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  #168  
Old 06-26-2013, 12:01 PM
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Roger Ebert's memoir is a good read in and of itself, but the sections on John Wayne & Robert Mitchum are of particular interest to classic movie buffs.
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  #169  
Old 06-26-2013, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Yuletide Junkie View Post
Roger Ebert's memoir is a good read in and of itself, but the sections on John Wayne & Robert Mitchum are of particular interest to classic movie buffs.
I need to read that some time. I love John Wayne!
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  #170  
Old 08-30-2013, 07:55 AM
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For anyone who is going to be, or can be, in the New York City area on September 29 or 30, the Film Forum is having a great show of formerly lost films:

--A two-reel short in two-strip Technicolor featuring the Three Stooges, "Hello Pop!" (1933)
--"Gobs of Fun" (1933), a Vitaphone short with a previously unknown appearance by Shemp Howard
--A long-unseen Robert Benchley short, "Your Technocracy and Mine" (1933)---Universal struck a new 35mm print for this show!
--"Sharps and Flats," a nutty-funny Vitaphone short with Jimmy Conlin and Myrtle Glass---I've seen this one on video, and it's crazy!
--Rare fragments of early Technicolor, courtesy of the George Eastman House

A friend of ours tipped us off to this show, and it sounds great. There's a chance we might be able to go, but I'm not sure yet.
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