German born Harry Schultz (1883) played a lot of …Germans! He was in several films as a German (fill in the blank). He played Kabarett Doorman in STAMBOUL QUEST (1934). He was in the Laurel and Hardy short BEAU HUNKS as well as in AN AMERICAN TRAGEDY, TILLIE AND GUS, IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT, and DANTE’S INFERNO. It is almost impossible to tell, but that’s Harry rushing to get Myrna Loy (following behind) a taxi.
Leigh De Lacey (1878) was a three time Weidler Stock Company member. She was a neighbor of the O’Tooles-Mickey and Virginia’s characters-in LOVE IS A HEADACHE (1938), Train Passenger in YOUNG TOM EDISON (1940) (we’ll need to look for her), and had the very descriptive role of “woman” in THE YOUNGEST PROFESSION (1943). Unlike most actors of her type, she doesn’t have hundreds of uncredited roles posted, only 14. If she’s remembered for anything at all, it might be for playing Charley Grapewin’s wife in AH, WILDERNESS! We’ll let a LIAH photo of Ginny and the glamorous Gladys George represent.
Good morning! Richard’s recent find-a wonderful Virginia photo on eBay under a misspelling of Virginia’s name-had me doing a new search for Ginny items. In one way, it’s easier. I’d swear there are more Virginia Weidler photos showing up for sale since we started this quest almost two years ago. It’s probably only my imagination, but I prefer to think we’re out in front of a wave of Ginnymania!
In another way, the search is harder and it’s our fault. When one Googles “Virginia Weidler” now, a large amount of the results come from the Facebook page, this new website, and TCM’s fan forums. It’s all stuff we’ve spread. In addition to Ginny’s pics the search will now also bring up photos of Ben Carter and Mantan Moreland, for example, as well as a lot of the collages I used to do before FB started allowing multiple photos on fanpages.
This morning’s photo is a publicity shot from one of my favorite Weidler films, BAD LITTLE ANGEL, one in which she pulls off being both feisty and sappy and believable all at the same time. I found it at a site saluting one of her co-stars.
Guess which one.
Kenny Bowers (1923) was a singer/actor who appeared in both the Broadway play and film of BEST FOOT FORWARD (1943) as Dutch Miller. Kenny would only appear in two other films, BROADWAY RHYTHM and I’LL BE SEEING YOU. In 1946, he returned to Broadway in ANNIE GET YOUR GUN. The rest of his career is a bit of a mystery that VWRS friend Ken Robichaux has tried to solve at the Kenny Bowers Fan club site he runs in addition to his Tommy Dix one. The photo is one of Ken’s. Kenny is at left, reacting to the gown ripping scene in the Broadway version of BFF. Remember that the original play was set at a fancy prep school, not a military academy. The military angle was an MGM rewrite.
Clare Boothe Luce (1903) was a writer, diplomat and a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Connecticut. She was the managing editor of Vanity Fair before she reached the age of thirty. She also wrote THE WOMEN (1939). The story is that Luce got the idea from a rather nasty conversation she overheard in the ladies room of the Morocco Club. Early on, an MGM script scout reported that THE WOMEN was “flashy, hokey material and not too expertly written, but it is an unusually good set-up for the screen.” I was wondering if Virginia might have met Luce either during the filming or when Virginia Krisel was traveling in Washington society in 1953-54. Luce, however, was Ambassador to Italy at that time, so they may have missed each other. The photo is of Rep. Clare Boothe Luce meeting Masilla Sabtho, a wounded soldier from Basutoland during a tour of Italy in 1945.
Cy Kendall (1898) made his career playing both sides of the law. In westerns, he was usually plotting to steal all the cattle or something equally dastardly. In contemporary settings, his roles alternated between criminals and lawmen. He appeared in series like BOSTON BLACKIE, CHARLIE CHAN, and THE SAINT. He appeared with TIGer Gordon Jones in THE GREEN HORNET. He was an assayer in GOLD RUSH MAISIE (1940) and the police captain in BORN TO SING (1942).
William Broadus (1880) was an African American actor probably best known for appearing as himself in the War Department documentary THE NEGRO SOLDIER. He appeared in five feature films from 1936-41 and one of those was TOO HOT TO HANDLE (1938), where IMDb says he played the Medicine Man. Unfortunately, several actors are listed as medicine men, so the photo I ran last year may not have actually been Broadus. Once again this year, I’m not sure the photo is Broadus. He has a uncredited role in the film SUNDOWN as the Village Headman. Since this is the man who speaks with the British officers early in the film, I’m making a guess. The film, by the way, had several TIGers involved. It was directed by Henry Hathaway, Marc Lawrence played an Arab trader, daredevil Frank Clarke was the pilot, Dorothy Dandridge was the wife of one of the native soldiers and Blue Washington and his son Kenny were both in the film.
It’s another short and sweet TODAY IN GINNY! I have exactly one birthday to share.
Louise Beavers (1902) played Clairce (that’s the spelling on IMDb) in SCANDAL STREET (1938). Virginia played Wilma “Willie” Murphy in the film. The IMDb biographer says of Beavers, “1930s and 1940s film actress Louise Beavers was merely one of a dominant gallery of plus-sized and plus-talented African-American character actresses forced to endure blatant, discouraging and demeaning stereotypes during Depression-era and WWII Hollywood.” Very true.
She actually got a chance to shine that many others didn’t when she played Delilah Johnson in the 1934 version of IMITATION OF LIFE. Unfortunately, after that success there were still only bit roles as domestics available to her. She was in HOLIDAY INN and MR. BLANDINGS BUILDS HIS DREAM HOUSE but probably received her greatest notoriety nationwide when she replaced Ethel Waters for the final season of the television series BEULAH. The photo is from HOLIDAY INN.