Movieland Mystery Photo — B.J. Merholz Edition

Oct. 20, 2014, Mystery Photo

This week’s mystery film is courtesy of B.J. Merholz.

Posted in Film, Hollywood, Mystery Photo | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Mary Mallory / Hollywood Heights: Nigel De Brulier — Soothsayer From the East?

Nigel de Brulier Nigel de Brulier, courtesy of Mary Mallory.



F
or decades, Hollywood typed actors for their looks, personality, temperament, a shorthand telling audiences what they could expect whenever the actor appeared. Some personalities like Clark Gable, Marilyn Monroe, Humphrey Bogart, Joan Crawford, and Cary Grant rocketed to fame through their megawatt looks and charm, deep talent, or fierce drive. Others like Franklin Pangborn, Ned Sparks, Edna May Oliver, and Thelma Ritter provided tart flavor to films as prominent character actors, adding zesty spark, comic interludes, or high energy with their strong characterizations.

Gaunt, imploring Nigel de Brulier, a live version of an El Greco painting, added a note of mysticism or fanaticism to silent films with his impassioned clerics or wild-eyed madmen. His characters often seemed to inhabit their own spiritual worlds. Tall, lean, gaunt and possessing piercing eyes, de Brulier endured ill health and work struggles as a young man, bringing realistic fervor and devotion to his roles.


Corrections: This post changes the year De Brulier declared an interest in U.S. citizenship from 1909 to 1899 and notes that he was in the second screen version of “Ramona,” the first being made in 1910.


Mary Mallory’s “Hollywoodland: Tales Lost and Found” is available for the Kindle.

Continue reading

Posted in Film, Hollywood, Hollywood Heights, Mary Mallory, Music | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

1944 on the Radio — Kay Kyser’s Kollege of Musical Knowledge

radio_dial_1944

Oct. 20, 1944: Kay Kyser’s Kollege of Musical Knowledge. Courtesy of otronmp3.com.

Posted in 1944, Music, Real Estate | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Georgette Bauerdorf, an Unsolved Murder, Part 10

Oct. 16, 1944, Daily News

Georgette Bauerdorf arm in arm with two servicemen, published in the Daily News, Oct. 16, 1944.

 


 

Georgette Bauerdorf, 20, had been living alone in an apartment at El Palacio, 8493 Fountain Ave., since Aug. 28, 1944, when her sister, father and stepmother left to go back East.

News accounts say that while Georgette was by herself in the apartment, she was extremely generous with visiting servicemen.

Continue reading

Posted in 1944, Cold Cases, Crime and Courts, Hollywood, World War II | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

To the (Anonymous) Author of This Editorial: I Dance on Your Grave

Oct. 16, 1944, Los Angeles Examiner

Oct. 16, 1944, in the Los Angeles Examiner.

Posted in 1944, World War II | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

1944 on the Radio – NBC Symphony With Marian Anderson

Radio Dial 1944


Oct. 15, 1944:
The NBC Symphony Orchestra, with guest Marian Anderson, conducted by Frank Black. Courtesy of otronmp3.com.

Posted in 1944, Music, Radio | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Georgette Bauerdorf, an Unsolved Murder, Part 9

Oct. 13, 1944, Daily News

A portrait of Georgette Bauerdorf published in the Daily News, Oct. 13, 1944.


It’s unclear from news reports whether Georgette Bauerdorf was pursuing any further education after apparently graduating from the Westlake School for Girls. Several stories in the Los Angeles papers say that she worked at one of the local papers, possibly as a copy messenger, but none of the stories identifies the newspaper. The Daily News (Oct. 13, 1944) said: “Last year, anxious to become a newspaper reporter, she worked for several weeks on a Los Angeles daily.”

The newspaper accounts of the killing say that she was a junior hostess at the Hollywood Canteen, but none of them say when she began. Apparently she was one of about 30 young women who volunteered at the canteen on Wednesday nights.

Continue reading

Posted in 1944, Cold Cases, Crime and Courts, Hollywood, World War II | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Georgette Bauerdorf, an Unsolved Murder, Part 8

Oct. 13, 1944, Herald

The Herald-Examiner published a photo of Georgette Bauerdorf with a question mark, one of its visual cliches of the 1940s, Oct. 13, 1944.


The investigation revealed that the young woman found face-down in the bathtub at 8493 Fountain Ave., was Georgette Bauerdorf, who was born in New York on May 6, 1924. Her father was George F. Bauerdorf and her mother was Constance Bauerdorf. She had an older sister, Constance Ann Bauerdorf, born May 1, 1920 (d. 2014).
Continue reading

Posted in 1944, Cold Cases, Crime and Courts, Hollywood | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

1944 in Print — Hollywood News and Gossip by Louella Parsons, Oct. 14, 1944

Oct. 14, 1944, Comics

Oct. 14, 1944:

Danton Walker says: David Sarnoff, RCA president, predicts a television gadget that will be worn on the wrist but contains a practical television screen.

Louella Parsons says: Constance Moore and Dennis O’Keefe report next week for “The Earl Carroll Vanities” — but hold everything! Republic has just bought the rights to the title and there’s not a single Carroll beauty in the lineup. And Earl, himself, will be conspicuously missing. I can’t think of anything funner, except a Ziegfeld Follies movie without a Follies girl!

From the Philadelphia Inquirer via Fultonhistory.com.
Continue reading

Posted in 1944, Columnists, Comics, Film, Hollywood | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Movieland Mystery Photo (Updated + + + +)

 

image
This week’s mystery movie has been “Badlands” (1973), written and directed by Terrence Malick, starring Martin Sheen, Sissy Spacek and Warren Oates. I generally avoid more recent films, figuring that they are too easy, but realized that 41 years isn’t all that recent anymore. I chose “Badlands” because it was based on the Charles Starkweather saga of the 1950s.  I try to vary the eras and genres to make the mystery films more challenging, although I have neglected musicals because most are so well known and westerns because I don’t have many in the archives.

Continue reading

Posted in Film, Hollywood, Mystery Photo | Tagged , , | 40 Comments

Georgette Bauerdorf: An Unsolved Murder, Part 7

 

Oct. 13, 1944, Georgette Bauerdorf

Georgette Bauerdorf found dead, Oct. 13, 1944, Los Angeles Times.


Oct. 13, 1944

This account has been assembled from newspaper stories that generally agree, but contradict one another on some details. Newspapers of this era often published long excerpts from coroner’s inquests, but not in the Bauerdorf case, so I have had to gather the details piecemeal. Here’s what I have gleaned from The Times, the Examiner, the Daily News and the Herald-Express.

Note that breaking news stories in this era were typically done by rewrite men taking information over the phone. As a result, names are often spelled phonetically, depending on what the rewrite man thought he heard, such as Atwood/Attwood and Lulu/Lula.
Continue reading

Posted in 1944, Black Dahlia, Homicide | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Mary Mallory / Hollywood Heights: Dick Grace, Hollywood’s Daredevil Sky Pilot

 

photoplay2829movi_0186
Dick Grace in action.



H
ollywood and aviation took off at about the same points in history, helping to put each other on the map. Early American aviators inaugurated the fledgling field in the early 1900s, just as early filmmakers were introducing short motion pictures to the American public. These film directors and producers sought out the magical sport of flying, capturing it with their cameras and screening it for astonished audiences. The Wright brothers’ first flight, the Dominguez 1909 Air Rally, as well as several others, were shot as moving pictures and shown to the public. Soon, stars themselves took to the air, with actress Mabel Normand possibly the first celebrity aloft in the 1914 Keystone short, “A Dash Through the Clouds.” Aviation really took off when it helped win the Great War in 1918.

Air thrills excited audiences, particularly those tricks performed by former war pilots barnstorming the country, so the movie industry quickly turned their cameras to the skies. Early films captured flying stunts by building large stands atop high hills and shooting angles that made it appear stars were aloft in the area. By the early 1920s, studios hired veteran aerialists to devise spectacular air stunts to energize moviegoers, stunts which also goosed the adrenaline of the thrill-seeking pilots. Mostly forgotten today, except by dedicated aviation fans, Richard “Dick” Grace stands out as perhaps Hollywood’s top daredevil sky pilot, intentionally diving and crashing planes for movies, living to tell the tale. Grace’s life and flying career rival any daring adventure concocted by film studios.

Mary Mallory’s “Hollywoodland: Tales Lost and Found” is available for the Kindle.

Continue reading

Posted in Aviation, Film, Hollywood, Hollywood Heights, Mary Mallory | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Wikipedia vs. Joe Streater

Awful Announcing.com

Thanks to Earl Boebert for pointing us to this one. From Awfulannouncing.com:

For years, [Joe] Streater has been falsely linked with one of the greatest scandals in the history of college sports. Streater was 100% not involved in the point shaving scandal despite the fact media organizations including Sports Illustrated, The Associated Press, local media outlets, and Boston College blogs say he did. Here’s the AP version:

“BC basketball players Rick Kuhn, Joe Streater and Jim Sweeney were persuaded to fix nine Eagles games during the season. Kuhn and two money men were handed 10 years each in prison.”

Streater wasn’t even on the team or in school at that time the point shaving took place in the 1978-1979 season, an observation that is occasionally made on message boards and comment sections, but is quickly dismissed given the abundance of articles stating that Streater was among those involved.

So how does a man’s name become besmirched to the point where his false indiscretions are constantly retold to the point they become common fact in today’s media?

The answer – Wikipedia.

Previously:

Me vs. Wikipedia

Another Wikipedia Hoax Exposed

I Accidentally Started a Wikipedia Hoax

Wikipedia: Murder and Myth, Part 19

Posted in Sports, Wikipedia | Tagged , | Leave a comment

1944 on the Radio — Kay Kyser’s Kollege of Musical Knowledge

radio_dial_1944

Oct. 11, 1944: Kay Kyser’s Kollege of Musical Knowledge. Courtesy of otronmp3.com.

Posted in 1944, Music, Radio | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Georgette Bauerdorf: An Unsolved Murder, Part 6

El Palacio Apartments

El Palacio Apartments, 8491 Fountain Ave., in a photo from the Los Angeles Herald-Express, courtesy of the Los Angeles Public Library.


image
El Palacio in 2008, as shown by Google Street View.


Los Angeles Times, May 10, 1931: El Palacio is dedicated.


El Palacio Apartments, where Georgette Bauerdorf was killed, were designed and built by William R. Hauptman, with gardens by Seymour Thomas. By the time El Palacio opened, Hauptman had built several apartment buildings in West Hollywood, including the Coral Gables, Royal Madrid, Royal Palms, Villa Poinsettia and   Wyngate Manor. The Times noted that in December 1928 that the emperor of Japan attended the dedication of the Lotus Garden apartments, which adjoin El Palacio.

Continue reading

Posted in 1944, Cold Cases, Crime and Courts, Hollywood | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments

1944 in Print — Hollywood News and Gossip by Louella Parsons, Oct. 10, 1944

Oct. 10, 1944, Comics

Oct. 10, 1944

Walter Winchell: All Around the Town

The Waldorf’s special entrance for private railroad cars … Ramshackle Lower East Side apartments without any bathing facilities – in the world’s most modern city .. The 22 reservoirs that supply the town with aqua … Sidewalk tie salesmen now hawking campaign buttons as a sideline … Debutantes perched on a limb of their family tree – looking down on the peasants … Greenwich Village trees that live without sun and water … Bowling Green, the burg’s oldest park, where the Injuns sold Manhattan … West Street, the most expensive waterfront property in the world: $470,000 an acre. At one time it was covered with water … Card sharps who sit in cheap hotel lobbies and practice shuffling cards … Grimy houses near Washington Market that were swanky mansions a century ago. Time rubs the glamour off everything.

Louella Parsons says: The news was hardly out that “Jubal Troop” had been postponed than Claudette Colbert was knee deep in scripts. The story that caught her attention, and the one she has accepted is “Guest Wife,” which she will do for Bruce Manning and Jack Skirball. But hold everything — that isn’t all! Don Amecho co-stars with Claudette. This means Don’s first independent fling, “What Manners of Love,” will wait.

Now it is Carole Landis wealthy Al Vanderbilt is beauing to the nightspots. Apparently he and K.T. Stevens are no longer romancing, for he is seeing the ex-Mrs. Wallace every eve.

From the Philadelphia Inquirer via Fultonhistory.com.

Continue reading

Posted in 1944, Columnists, Comics, Film, Hollywood | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Georgette Bauerdorf: An Unsolved Murder, Part 5

Oct. 3, 1942, Hollywood Canteen

Oct. 3, 1942: Abbott and Costello outside the Hollywood Canteen at the opening ceremony, in a Times photo.


image
Cahuenga Boulevard south of Sunset Boulevard, former location of the Hollywood Canteen, via Google Street View


One of the important locations in the Georgette Bauerdorf killing is the Hollywood Canteen, a club for enlisted men at 1451 N. Cahuenga Blvd., where she volunteered as a hostess. When Bauerdorf was killed, investigators initially focused on a “dark, husky soldier” who insisted on jitterbugging with her “against her wishes,” according to The Times. (More about that later).

Continue reading

Posted in 1944, Black Dahlia, Cold Cases, Hollywood | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

1944 in Print — Hollywood News and Gossip by Louella Parsons, Oct. 9, 1944

Oct. 8, 1944, Comics

Oct. 9, 1944

Walter Winchell says: Wendell Willkie* didn’t know the real reason for his hospitalization. Intimates persuaded news and air reporters to “play it down.” … When the flash of his passing reached midtown spots at 2:30 Sunday ayem — it sent many people home depressed … Beatrice Lillie was welcomed back to the U.S. with a barrage of legal entanglements, aimed at the contract she has with Billy Rose.

*Willkie died Oct. 8, 1944.

Louella Parsons says: Overheard two party guests recently discussing which is the more enthusiastic new father — Ronald Colman or Charles Boyer.

Danton Walker says: Luise Rainer, recovered from malaria contracted during her tour of the African war zone, returns to show business via radio’s “Here’s to Romance” Oct. 26, about the same time confirming her engagement to the heir of a major aviation firm.

From the Philadelphia Inquirer via Fultonhistory.com.
Continue reading

Posted in 1944, Columnists, Comics, Film, Hollywood | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Georgette Bauerdorf: An Unsolved Murder, Part 4

Jan. 23, 1947, Elizabeth Short, Bauerdorf

Jan. 23, 1947: The Herald-Express publishes an article headlined “Werewolves Leave Trail of Women Murders in L.A.” (The obnoxious watermark is so that people who see this image after it has been swiped by Pinterest, skyscraper.com and all the Black Dahlia sites will know where it’s from).


One reason I’m devoting so much time to the Georgette Bauerdorf killing of 1944 is not because of what it is, but because of what it is not.

The Bauerdorf slaying is not in any way related to the Black Dahlia killing of Jan. 15, 1947. Armchair sleuths and dreadful “true” crime books have done much work to fuse the two crimes together over the years. Their narrative arcs are quite similar and follow the typical “life cycle” of an unsolved murder, but the details are entirely different.

I will revisit this issue at the conclusion, but it’s important to state from the outset that regardless of what people might have read elsewhere, these two cases are not related.

Continue reading

Posted in 1944, 1947, Black Dahlia, Cold Cases, Hollywood, Homicide, LAPD | Tagged , , , , , , | 4 Comments

1944 in Print — Hollywood News and Gossip by Louella Parsons, Oct. 8, 1944

image
Reginald de Koven’s “Robin Hood” will be performed in Philadelphia.


Oct. 8, 1944: Louella Parsons says: The first official visit Effie Klinker, Edgar Bergen’s new wooden spinster, made was at my house. The old gal, who Edgar says was a teacher before she joined Charlie McCarthy and Mortimer Snerd, was dressed to the teeth for the occasion. She wore a shirtwaist of purple taffeta, a John Frederics hat in green, and gaiters – of all things – to say nothing of a watch on her bosom.

From the Philadelphia Inquirer via Fultonhistory.com.
Continue reading

Posted in 1944, Columnists, Film, Hollywood | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments