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Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Past chats with our guests.

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mongoII
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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby mongoII » October 7th, 2013, 9:13 am

That idiot. Shame on him.
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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » October 7th, 2013, 9:30 am

Well, that's one of the more horrific things I've read about Lancaster. That would anger and incense me, too. Shame on him.

But I'm glad you will be back for a little longer. :)
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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby MissGoddess » October 7th, 2013, 11:31 am

Martha---I have been busy with a move so was unable to join in the marvelous discussion this week-end, however I do want to jump in with many, many thanks to you for being here, for sharing so generously of your memories of a time I wish I could have experienced. It sounds like you had the greatest job ever. I especially love your stories about the animals you worked with and I do hope you get your "Frosty" book published.

If you listed all the most delightful things you could say about someone and rolled them into one it would, maybe, describe Clark Gable. What a sweetheart. Not even films could destroy that inner beauty he had.


how lovely---he's one of my favorites. and I believe selling his buggy constitutes grounds for divorce in most states. :cry:

I have just a few questions if you have the time. :D

Perhaps the one figure from the "golden era" I most would like to have met was Will Rogers, who was a great polo enthusiast. You would have been just a babe when he passed but did your parents have any memories of him?

QUESTION about one of your non-horsey movies: I see you worked on THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN ARM. I'm curious if you have any particular memories of Otto Preminger, Sinatra and Kim Novak (if they were around during any of the days you filmed)? Talk about a totally different milieu from westerns!

So Chuck Connors broke a horse's jaw? I hope he realized what an awful thing it was he did. :( And I would have HORSEWHIPPED Lancaster if I'd witnessed such a thing as he did. Grrrrr....

And one more question if you have the time: Did you run into either John Ford or John Wayne in those days? Anything you could share about either would be super.

I do hope you'll peek in here from time to time, you have corralled many admirers and fans already including myself!

Kindly,
april
"There's only one thing that can kill the movies, and that's education."
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rerun
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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby rerun » October 7th, 2013, 12:51 pm

MissGoddess wrote:Martha---I have been busy with a move so was unable to join in the marvelous discussion this week-end, however I do want to jump in with many, many thanks to you for being here, for sharing so generously of your memories of a time I wish I could have experienced. It sounds like you had the greatest job ever. I especially love your stories about the animals you worked with and I do hope you get your "Frosty" book published.

If you listed all the most delightful things you could say about someone and rolled them into one it would, maybe, describe Clark Gable. What a sweetheart. Not even films could destroy that inner beauty he had.


how lovely---he's one of my favorites. and I believe selling his buggy constitutes grounds for divorce in most states. :cry:

I have just a few questions if you have the time. :D

Perhaps the one figure from the "golden era" I most would like to have met was Will Rogers, who was a great polo enthusiast. You would have been just a babe when he passed but did your parents have any memories of him?

QUESTION about one of your non-horsey movies: I see you worked on THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN ARM. I'm curious if you have any particular memories of Otto Preminger, Sinatra and Kim Novak (if they were around during any of the days you filmed)? Talk about a totally different milieu from westerns!

So Chuck Connors broke a horse's jaw? I hope he realized what an awful thing it was he did. :( And I would have HORSEWHIPPED Lancaster if I'd witnessed such a thing as he did. Grrrrr....

And one more question if you have the time: Did you run into either John Ford or John Wayne in those days? Anything you could share about either would be super.


I do hope you'll peek in here from time to time, you have corralled many admirers and fans already including myself!

Kindly,
april


Will died soon after we moved to California. I believe that my father knew him from his earlier days in California. However, my father captained the first polo team to win the Will Rogers Memorial Polo Tournament which was played at the Uplifters Club in Santa Monica Canyon. I will have to look up the picture. I know Mrs. Rogers presented the trophy and the tournament is still played today although on Rogers home field. I was at the ranch many times and funny but there was a strong presence of him still being there. There was one really nice polo field, stables with his beloved horse Soapsuds buried in the front, a riding ring, cage with wooden horse where he could practice his polo shots and of course the Rogers home. The ranch was later given to the State of California by his two sons and is now a National Park. The house is wonderful with lots of Indian Rugs, paintings and many things of western theme. I remember the bannister on the staircase had beautiful Navajo Rugs draped over it. You must go there if you are ever in the area. The picture of me as a child presenting the polo trophies to a winning team with Spencer Tracy in my book was taken at a game on the Rogers Ranch Field.
Re The Man With the Golden Arm . . . I really did not see anybody there on the set. In the story, and it may have been cut out, Eleanor Parker is supposed to threaten suicide. To do this she was going to jump from a three story building. I had to walk to the edge of the roof, gulp, and stand there looking down at the camera crew. It was a little spooky as I had to stand right on the edge. Yikes! I have not seen the whole picture and do not know if they left the scene in or not.
Strangely enough I only saw John Wayne one time and never even saw John Ford at all. But, one day after a Sunday polo game I was sitting in the club house and John Wayne walked in the Lana Turner on his arm. His presence was so powerful it was like a locomotive rolling in through the door. He apparently had been invited by a member at the time though I do not remember who it was. But, the club was usually filled with celebrities either sitting and chatting or standing at the bar. Polo in those days was a Hollywood meeting ground!
Neither Chuck Connors nor Burt L seemed to give a proverbial damn about the horses or what happened to them. And, you know what? I think that comes through in their screen persona. At least it does to me.
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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby JackFavell » October 7th, 2013, 1:08 pm

I don't know if I will ever be able to watch one of them again with the same feelings, knowing that they didn't care about animals.

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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby rerun » October 7th, 2013, 1:55 pm

JackFavell wrote:I don't know if I will ever be able to watch one of them again with the same feelings, knowing that they didn't care about animals.


All I know is what I personally saw with my own eyes. I was there. They sure didn't care on those days! Although I am sure their PR people would have said I was wrong.
I am not sure if it was they didn't LIKE animals. I feel in my heart it was an ego thing. All they were interested in was promoting themselves and it mattered not who was run over or who they had to use on the way.
So very many of the REAL STARS were totally ego free. But, there was that contingent of 'look at me- don't you know who I am' who were the worst where the ego was concerned.
Last edited by rerun on October 7th, 2013, 2:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby pvitari » October 7th, 2013, 2:10 pm

I don't know if I will ever be able to watch one of them again with the same feelings, knowing that they didn't care about animals.


Same here.

I visited the Will Rogers home and polo field some years ago and thought the house and its furnishings and the grounds lovely indeed. I highly recommend it to anyone visiting Los Angeles!

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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby JackFavell » October 7th, 2013, 2:18 pm

I trust your eyewitness account. You've been straight about everything else and have nothing to gain by it.

Martha, this is a silly question but when you are talking about 'chicken wings', is that sort of how Glenn Ford rides his horses in westerns? With his arms in the air? I've heard people say he was a good horseman, but I find it disconcerting to watch him sometimes, it looks so uncomfortable. Sorry to be so dim about horsemanship. :oops:

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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby MissGoddess » October 7th, 2013, 2:23 pm

rerun wrote:The ranch was later given to the State of California by his two sons and is now a National Park. The house is wonderful with lots of Indian Rugs, paintings and many things of western theme. I remember the bannister on the staircase had beautiful Navajo Rugs draped over it. You must go there if you are ever in the area. The picture of me as a child presenting the polo trophies to a winning team with Spencer Tracy in my book was taken at a game on the Rogers Ranch Field.


I was at the Field just once---back years ago when I lived in L.A and was used in a photo shoot as a young Norma Jean (Marilyn Monroe---don't ask me why! :D ) I'm afraid Will wasn't yet on my horizon and I don't believe the house was yet a museum. If ever I go back to L.A. for a visit I really do want to make a trip to see it all. Such a dear man.


Re The Man With the Golden Arm . . . I really did not see anybody there on the set. In the story, and it may have been cut out, Eleanor Parker is supposed to threaten suicide. To do this she was going to jump from a three story building. I had to walk to the edge of the roof, gulp, and stand there looking down at the camera crew. It was a little spooky as I had to stand right on the edge. Yikes! I have not seen the whole picture and do not know if they left the scene in or not.


It certainly is in the picture and you could have fooled me...I will have to watch it again now more closely---I'm sure I thought that it was all done with the camera and editing and that Eleanor was just standing on the edge of a two foot drop. Wow! I'm not sure I could get paid enough to do a real, live "Vertigo" shot. You are brave! :D


His presence was so powerful it was like a locomotive rolling in through the door. He apparently had been invited by a member at the time though I do not remember who it was. But, the club was usually filled with celebrities either sitting and chatting or standing at the bar. Polo in those days was a Hollywood meeting ground!

I can only imagine how petite Lana looked walking in next to him! I think they're cute together in their one picture, The Sea Chase.

Thank you, again, for chatting with us, it's a privilege.

P.S.
Neither Chuck Connors nor Burt L seemed to give a proverbial damn about the horses or what happened to them. And, you know what? I think that comes through in their screen persona. At least it does to me.


I always loved (still do) "The Rifleman" but Chuck does have that hard-guy quality so I can't disagree. Lancaster ---gorgeous as he was---seemed a steel-cold man.

And I don't want to forget to mention I had tears when I read about Midnight---worth $40K to his owners one day and off to the glue plant the next. I'm SO GLAD you rescued him!!!

Not liking animals is one's privilege, being cruel to them is quite another story. Didn't Will say something about not trusting a man who didn't like horses? Or am I confusing it with John Wayne's not trusting a man who didn't drink?


:D
"There's only one thing that can kill the movies, and that's education."
-- Will Rogers

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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby rerun » October 7th, 2013, 2:28 pm

JackFavell wrote:I trust your eyewitness account. You've been straight about everything else and have nothing to gain by it.

Martha, this is a silly question but when you are talking about 'chicken wings', is that sort of how Glenn Ford rides his horses in westerns? With his arms in the air? I've heard people say he was a good horseman, but I find it disconcerting to watch him sometimes, it looks so uncomfortable. Sorry to be so dim about horsemanship. :oops:


That arm flopping is the mark of a poor horseman. If you ever watch the horses perform from the Spanish Riding School you will notice that you cannot ever see the riders move in any way no matter what they are asking their horse to do. Just imagine you are carrying someone or a child on your back. The first guy sat still as you were asked to run around. The second guy flopped his arms and legs around wildly. It is really simple to figure out. The more a rider knows the less he moves around. Not a silly question at all.
Avatar: John Cantarini (Martha's husband) on future world record holder Crazy Kid. He won six in a row
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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby rerun » October 7th, 2013, 3:08 pm

Miss Goddess:
Re Lana Turner - I think she was the cutest human being I have ever seen. Perhaps another, like Linda Darnell, whose true magic was not captured by the camera.
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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby MissGoddess » October 7th, 2013, 3:17 pm

rerun wrote:Miss Goddess:
Re Lana Turner - I think she was the cutest human being I have ever seen. Perhaps another, like Linda Darnell, whose true magic was not captured by the camera.


I like hearing that; Lana is another great favorite of mine. She seemed like a fun lady, besides being a real beauty.

It seems the camera has a "mind" of its own; what it sees can be so different to the reality. This can be magic or tragedy for the one it loves, often both.
"There's only one thing that can kill the movies, and that's education."
-- Will Rogers

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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby rerun » October 7th, 2013, 4:57 pm

Can't thank you all enough for the past two days. I have so enjoyed you all.
And thank you dear Moira for all the work you have gone to with the pictures and links and everything.
It has been such fun for me to get to know all of you.
Bless you all.
Avatar: John Cantarini (Martha's husband) on future world record holder Crazy Kid. He won six in a row
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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby moira finnie » October 8th, 2013, 6:43 am

To wind things up a bit for our guest author and close this thread for this particular period--it has been our pleasure to have you here, Martha. Your candid and thoughtful remarks about your experiences with people and animals in front of and behind the camera have been truly revelatory for us. Please know that you are welcome to continue here on the SSO as long as you like.
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Re: Welcome to Martha Crawford Cantarini

Postby moira finnie » October 8th, 2013, 4:02 pm

Here's a picture that Martha asked me to share with everyone. On what looks like a chilly day in Jan., 1937, at the Will Rogers Memorial polo field at the Uplifter's Club, in Santa Monica, CA, the winners of the first Annual Polo Tournament for the Will Rogers Memorial Trophy are gathered. It is just a year and a half after Rogers' tragic early death in 1935.

Image
Left to right are producer Walter Wanger, a teenage Tim Holt, Betty Blake Rogers (Mrs. Will Rogers), the happy winner Guinn 'Big Boy' Williams, and Martha's beloved stepfather and master polo player, Carl Crawford. According to one source, Williams had 100 polo ponies at one time. No wonder he made so many appearances in films--he literally had to make hay. [Reproduced with permission of Martha Crawford Cantarini]
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