This week’s mystery movie has been the 1934 MGM picture “Sadie McKee,” with Joan Crawford, Gene Raymond, Franchot Tone, Edward Arnold and Esther Ralston. The movie was produced by Lawrence Weingarten from a screenplay by John Meehan, adapted from a story by Vina Delmar. It was directed by Clarence Brown with songs by Nacio Herb Brown and Arthur Freed. Photography was by Oliver T. Marsh and the film was edited by Hugh Wynn, and gowns by Adrian.
Mordaunt Hall wrote in the New York Times (May 19, 1934): “Miss Crawford assuredly does well by her part, but even so the incidents in which she appears often are hardly edifying. It is in fact an exasperating type of motion picture.”
The movie’s theme song, “All I Do Is Dream of You,” is a torch song that was used in “Singin’ in the Rain” under much different circumstances.
“Sadie McKee” is available on DVD in volume 2 of The Joan Crawford Collection.
Vina Delmar in the trailer for “Sadie McKee.”
“Sadie McKee” was adapted from Delmar’s story, which was serialized in Liberty magazine.
A copy of Liberty magazine with the first installment of “Sadie McKee,” listed on EBay as Buy It Now for $15.
The casting notices for “Sadie McKee” provide interesting reading. The Los Angeles Times reported (Jan. 20, 1934) that Clark Gable was up for the lead, which would have made “Sadie” a much different picture. One of the most difficult roles to cast was crooner Tommy Wallace, eventually given to Gene Raymond. Joan Crawford and Franchot Tone were an item, but didn’t marry until 1935. She divorced Douglas Fairbanks Jr. in May 1933.
The film opened in Los Angeles on June 13, 1934.
For Monday, we have a mystery police officer who knows what time it is.
Update: This is Tom Mahoney.
Brain Trust roll call: Mark A. Vieira, (Monday’s mystery guest). Mark’s new book, “Into the Dark: The Hidden World of Film Noir,” is at fine bookstores and well worth your attention. It lists at $40 from Running Press. It is also available at Book Soup, Larry Edmunds, Skylight Books and Vroman’s in Pasadena.
Here is a three-image sequence showing for today’s mystery guest.
Image No. 2
And image No. 3
Update: This is Charles Williams, being tweaked by Edward Arnold.
And for Wednesday, we have a mystery chap.
Update: This is Samuel S. Hinds, the subject of a Hollywood Heights post by Mary Mallory.
Brain Trust roll call: Mike Hawks (Tuesday’s mystery guest).
For Thursday, our mystery gent is astonished by some stage money.
Update: This is Akim Tamiroff.
Brain Trust roll call: Mary Mallory (Wednesday’s mystery gent, Tuesday’s Back of the Head Guy/wrong movie), Roget-L.A. (Wednesday’s mystery gent), B.J. Merholz (Wednesday’s mystery gent), Anne Papineau (Wednesday’s mystery gent), Mike Hawks (mystery movie, Monday’s and Wednesday’s mystery gents and Back of the Head Guy), Sheila (Wednesday’s mystery gent), Don Danard (Wednesday’s mystery gent), Howard Mandelbaum (Wednesday’s mystery gent), Patrick (Wednesday’s mystery gent), Bob Hansen (Wednesday’s mystery gent) and David Inman (Wednesday’s mystery gent).
And for Friday…..
Update: Lovers in real life, Franchot Tone and Joan Crawford.
Brain Trust roll call: Mary Mallory (mystery movie, Monday’s and Thursday’s mystery guests), Sheila (Thursday’s mystery guest), Mike Hawks (Thursday’s mystery guest), Benito (Thursday’s mystery guest), B.J. Merholz (Thursday’s mystery gent, wrong movie), Floyd Thursby (Thursday’s mystery gent), Don Danard (Thursday’s mystery gent), Jenny M. (Thursday’s mystery gent), David Inman (Thursday’s mystery gent, wrong movie), Howard Mandelbaum (mystery movie and Monday’s, Tuesday’s and Thursday’s mystery guests) and Bob Hansen (Thursday’s mystery guest).