Born on this date: William V. Mong in 1875; Charlotte Greenwood in 1890; Dorothy Bernard in 1890; Basil Radford in 1897; Buddy Roosevelt in 1898; Anne Revere in 1903; Roger Livesey in 1906; Reed Hadley in 1911; Peter Lind Hayes in 1915; Sidney Lumet in 1924; and June Lockhart in 1925.
All links lead to each actor's IMDb page, set to open in a new tab.
Classic Movie Daily subscribers will find a nice shot of Charlotte Greenwood inside today's issue, with a few other birthday celebrants pictured at the bottom of this page. The rest of today's images feature some of the stars of the movies mentioned below, which means some pretty big stars! Enjoy them.
TCM TV Alerts through tomorrow at 7 am:
These titles play on TCM's US schedule and all quoted times are for my own local Eastern time zone.
—4:00 am, late Thursday night, Saratoga (1937). Harlow's last movie. A lighthearted movie, but it plays a bit eerie because of Harlow's passing. The cigar smoking scene, otherwise hilarious, feels creepy because of comments about her character's health. Harlow died before they'd wrapped this one up, her scenes completed by the back of Mary Dees' head. See more on Dees and her contribution to the movie here. Probably my favorite scene in this one is the train singalong highlighted by contributions from Clark Gable and Hattie McDaniel.
—6:00 am, early Friday morning or, if you prefer, immediately following Saratoga, TCM's "Summer of Darkness" continues with The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946). A real eye-opener if you ever doubted Lana Turner's acting abilities. Co-starring John Garfield with Cecil Kellaway (poor guy) and Hume Cronyn (hiss!) in key roles. Directed by Tay Garnett. This one is subject of another of my very early review posts HERE.
This Week in WAC
Only one new release of genuine interest this week, superior RKO "B" Five Came Back (1939). Directed by John Farrow and starring Chester Morris, Lucille Ball, Wendy Barrie, John Carradine, Allen Jenkins, Joseph Calleia, C. Aubrey Smith, Kent Taylor, Patric Knowles, and Elizabeth Risdon (whew, come up for breath!) as passengers and crew from all walks of life sharing a plane that goes down in the South American jungle. The expected character complications arise, people change, people adapt, people cope, people lose their cool. I think I talked about it in a little more detail in my Chester Morris biography. Highly recommended title.
—A good day off. Didn't accomplish nearly as much as I had hoped, but got a good chunk of things done while managing to relax a bit at the same time. Did that by incorporating all of my movie-watching tasks into the activities. Watched one super-rare new arrival for my Twelvetrees book; took notes and did screen captures for the coming post about The Good Fairy (1935); and watched two of the movies in Warner Archive's new Eddie Cantor set, which will likely be subject of the next major review after The Good Fairy. Very productive movie watching!
—Listed some postcards on eBay, but didn't get to the John Sinclair cards or still photos yet. Will likely list one or the other over the next couple of days.
—Caught up on email late Tuesday night. Am woefully behind on email as of Thursday morning. If I owe you a reply, I hope to find time to write later today (Thursday). My apologies for the delay.
—Didn't get to work on the Twelvetrees book until late Wednesday night, but the key point is that I have worked on it since we last talked. I just closed that screen before opening this one, so I can tell you exactly where I am: March 1933.
Helen has completed her first film at Paramount, A Bedtime Story, but with FDR coming into office concerns are a bit larger in scope. Drafted a paragraph about the studio pay cuts, originally implemented after the bank holiday because the studios didn't think they could make payroll. Wove one decent Helen quote into this, but for today's purposes I mention this mainly so I can point to the neat newspaper cartoon I found during my research:
—Testing out a new theme with today's issue. If it's the one that I think it is, it should allow the oversized images to bleed more naturally to the edge of your emails. I get a copy of this too, so if I'm wrong, and it looks terrible, I'll adjust again tomorrow.
—Some smaller birthday images follow my sign-off below.