Sunday, August 30, 2009
Born today (August 30) in 1906, actress Joan Blondell.
With blonde hair, big blue eyes and a big smile, Joan was usually cast as the wisecracking working girl who was the lead's best friend. Born into vaudeville to a comic named Eddie, Joan was on the stage when she was three years old. For years, she toured the circuit with her parents and joined a stock company when she was 17. She made her New York debut with the Ziegfeld Follies and appeared in several Broadway productions. She was starring with James Cagney on Broadway in Penny Arcade (1929) when Warner Brothers decided to film the play as Sinners' Holiday (1930). Both Cagney and Joan were given the leads, and the film was a success. She would be teamed with Cagney again in The Public Enemy (1931) and Blonde Crazy (1931) among others. In The Office Wife (1930), she stole the scene when she was dressing for work. While Warner Brothers made Cagney a star, Joan never rose to that level. In gangster movies or musicals, her performances were good enough for second leads, but not first lead. In the 1930s, she made a career playing gold-diggers and happy-go-lucky girlfriends. ..more/source
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Born Olga Vladimirovna Baclanova,later billed as the Russian Tigress in her early talking films, was born August 19, 1896. She graduated from the Cherniavsky Institute in Moscow prior to her selection in 1912 at age 16 to apprentice at the Moscow Art Theatre. During her early years at M.A.T. (1914-1918) she appeared in perhaps 18 films bringing her into contact with Tourjansky, Boleslawski and M. Chekov among others. Her last Russian film, Bread (1918) was the first communist agitprop vehicle. From 1917 she appeared in the "classics" on the parent stage and at the M.A.T. First Studio. Her mentor, Nemirovich-Danchenko, showcased her in avant-garde productions of the newly created M.A.T. Musical Studio from 1920-1925. She was honored with the Worthy Artist Of The Republic by the Soviet regime.
Eight months after her M.A.T. New York debut in December 1925, she declined to return with the M.A.T. company to Russia and subsequently defected. She was noticed by the Hollywood studios while performing on stage in Los Angeles in The Miracle in the role of the nun. Her film debut was a bit in The Dove (1927). Her dramatic Portrayals in The Man Who Laughs (1928), Street of Sin (1928), The Docks of New York (1928) and Forgotten Faces (1928) brought her critical acclaim in 1928. Her subsequent vamp/tramp roles in early Paramount and Fox talking films nearly destroyed her promising start. Stagey mannerisms and a heavy accent relegated her to supporting roles. She appeared to advantage in three films at MGM including the infamous Freaks (1932) with an unrestrained and legendary performance. ..more
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
These images, and more animal prints, are available on Fine Art Paper & Canvas in our 'All Creatures' collection on our website. Click on individual pics above to see more details or to purchase.
Monday, August 17, 2009
Mary Jane West (Mae West) was born in Brooklyn, New York, on August 17, 1893, to parents involved in prizefighting and vaudeville. Mae herself worked on the stage and in vaudeville from the time she was five years old. She never was academically inclined because she was too busy performing. She studied dance as a child, and by the time she was 14 she was billed as "The Baby Vamp" for her performances on stage. Later Mae began writing her own plays. One of those plays, "Sex", landed her in jail for ten days on obscenity charges in 1926. Two years later her play "Diamond Lil" became a huge Broadway success. Mae caught the attention of the Hollywood studios and was given her first movie role with George Raft in Night After Night (1932) ...more
Sunday, August 16, 2009
These images, and more cafe style prints, are available on Fine Art Paper & Canvas in our 'Drinks' & 'Products' collections via our website. Click on individual pics above to see more details or to purchase.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Saturday, August 8, 2009
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Born today (August 2) in 1905, Myrna Loy.
At the end of the silent era, Myrna Loy started her career as an exotic, Theda Bara -like femme fatale. Fortunately, she was rescued by the advent of the sound picture, where she was recast in the role of the witty, urbane, professional woman. She is best remembered for her role of Nora Charles opposite William Powell in six "Thin Man" movies. source/more