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Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Past chats with our guests.

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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby MaryoftheMovies » December 12th, 2015, 9:41 pm

Sue Sue,
Believe it or not, it was easier to find 1930s-1940s images than the 1920s or 1960s images. Many of the photos came from eBay, where vendors are selling off vast newspaper archive photos. These required much more time and looking under individual stars' names, but they brought much of the wonderful early stuff. One photo in particular stood out for the caption that would be considered politically incorrect today, that of Jeff Donnell in a July 4th image during WWII. The caption from Columbia Pictures states that "bonds begat bullets...that's the patriotic way to celebrate July 4th!" It also says that the powder employed in a Great Salute "can furnish enough death-dealing power to send Four Sons of Heaven to their Celestial Ancestors."

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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby kariebible » December 12th, 2015, 9:49 pm

Lzcutter wrote:Kari,

Thanks so much. Joan Crawford definitely knew how to keep herself in the public eye back in the day.

For both you and Mary each, what is your favorite photo and what is the photo that got away?


My most favorite photo in the book is the Halloween photo of Madge Bellamy. We were lucky enough to get an original and it is such a stunning photo. It has a detailed background and was done with such a keen eye and careful attention to detail by the Hoover Art Studios in 1921.

I'd say the "photo that got away" would be a New Year's picture of Olivia De Havilland. The only one we found was in really bad shape and way too expensive. I still keep hoping we can find a better version of that photo!

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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby MaryoftheMovies » December 12th, 2015, 9:55 pm

Moira, this is Mary.The earliest holiday still I have seen is from the late teens, in which a small studio posed their entire staff around a small Christmas tree. It was more like a Christmas card. I have seen a few from the late teens, including one of Dorothy Gish sitting on the ground in front of a large Grandfather's Clock waiting for it to strike midnight on New Year's Eve. The early companies shot mainly stills and hired portrait photographers for special shoots to promote big pictures, like the Witzel photos of Theda Bara in costume for CLEOPATRA and MADAME DUBARRY. In the mid to late teens, most of the stars employed stills photographers to shoot portraits of them that could be sent to magazines, newspapers, and the like to build their names and popularity with the public. The studios quickly realized this and formed their own stills departments in the early 1920s to control the look and aim of the photos to ensure the glamour and beauty of their talent. Remember, it was the photographers themselves that created the iconic and glamorous images we know of the stars, creating a sensual sheen and flare. From the 1920s through about 1950, they devised all manner of stills and publicity images that could be employed by magazines and newspapers to fill their pages and thus promote the stars and the studios. As the studio system began breaking up, the number and type of shoots declined. Photography styles also evolved from the luscious lighting and soft focus romanticism of the 1930s into the more stark and hard look of the 1960s.

As the stars and players were under contract to studios, they were forced to endure all types of publicity shoots to help keep their names and faces in front of the public. The bigger they came, they could refuse to shoot certain types of photos and only pose for others. Many had special clauses inserted in their contracts stating what types of stills they would or would not sit for. Members of the chorus or young ingenues had few roles and a lot of time on their hands, so they were kept constantly busy sitting for all manner of stills.

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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby moira finnie » December 13th, 2015, 3:43 am

MaryoftheMovies wrote:As the studio system began breaking up, the number and type of shoots declined. Photography styles also evolved from the luscious lighting and soft focus romanticism of the 1930s into the more stark and hard look of the 1960s."


Thanks for the intriguing reply, Mary.

Were theatrical photographers in the NYC area such as the White and Vandamm Studios used by actors when the film business was in its infancy on the East coast?

MaryoftheMovies wrote:Many had special clauses inserted in their contracts stating what types of stills they would or would not sit for.

Which actors had more interesting clauses? Was an actress or actor likely to stipulate specifc angles, lighting, dress if a performer had the clout?

MaryoftheMovies wrote:Members of the chorus or young ingenues had few roles and a lot of time on their hands, so they were kept constantly busy sitting for all manner of stills.

I sometimes think that in early parts of their careers, Jean Parker and Cyd Charisse did little but pose for publicity stills, especially those geared to holidays. Was there one person who stands out for the sheer number of posed pictures in the studio era?
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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » December 13th, 2015, 9:44 am

Great questions, Moira!

I was curious if either one of you could pose for a holiday image, which one would it be?
Thanks so much for your enlightening responses
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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby kariebible » December 13th, 2015, 10:23 am

Sue Sue Applegate wrote:Great questions, Moira!

I was curious if either one of you could pose for a holiday image, which one would it be?
Thanks so much for your enlightening responses


I must admit, I did a pin up photo session of myself for Halloween. The photos were taken by Nicole Loretta of Paper Moon Vintage. We tried to replicate the classic Hollywood style as much as possible. Here's the link:

https://www.facebook.com/karie.bible/me ... 327&type=3

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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby kariebible » December 13th, 2015, 10:27 am

moira finnie wrote:
MaryoftheMovies wrote:As the studio system began breaking up, the number and type of shoots declined. Photography styles also evolved from the luscious lighting and soft focus romanticism of the 1930s into the more stark and hard look of the 1960s."


Thanks for the intriguing reply, Mary.

Were theatrical photographers in the NYC area such as the White and Vandamm Studios used by actors when the film business was in its infancy on the East coast?

MaryoftheMovies wrote:Many had special clauses inserted in their contracts stating what types of stills they would or would not sit for.

Which actors had more interesting clauses? Was an actress or actor likely to stipulate specifc angles, lighting, dress if a performer had the clout?

MaryoftheMovies wrote:Members of the chorus or young ingenues had few roles and a lot of time on their hands, so they were kept constantly busy sitting for all manner of stills.

I sometimes think that in early parts of their careers, Jean Parker and Cyd Charisse did little but pose for publicity stills, especially those geared to holidays. Was there one person who stands out for the sheer number of posed pictures in the studio era?


This is Karie. We found a large number of photos on Joan Crawford, Shirley Temple and Ann Miller.

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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby MaryoftheMovies » December 13th, 2015, 1:01 pm

Moira, Hi this is Mary. Yes, Van Damm, White, Moody, M. I Boris, Campbell, etc. were East Coast portrait photographers employed by stars in the teens and twenties, particularly those who had come out of the stage or vaudeville and employed them for portraits while working in those fields. I've never seen holiday portraits by any of them however.

We discovered that certain stars like Teresa Wright had a clause written into her contract specifying that she wouldn't pose for cheesecake, bunny outfits, or sexy Santa garb. Olivia DeHavilland and Bette Davis also refused to do these later on and had it written into their contracts forbidding it.

Now Claudette Colbert, while it might not have been written into her contracts, basically required cameramen on her films or her stills to shoot her basically showing only the right side of her face if I remember, she thought she didn't look as well from the other side.

For posed stills, Shirley Temple is right up there, along with Joan Crawford, they both appeared to pose for any holiday and in multiple outfits. We found a lot of Cyd Charisse as well as Ann Miller.

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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » December 13th, 2015, 2:57 pm

I didn't realize that there would be so many photos from Cyd Charisse. But I wasn't surprised by Shirley Temple and Joan Crawford. Joan had a PhD. In marketing...

Karie, the link you posted wouldn't work on my IPad. Is this the photo you were linking to? It's lovely!
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I'm having trouble resizing it, though, so forgive the huge display.
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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby Countessdelave » December 13th, 2015, 7:12 pm

First of all: Congratulations to both of you on your fantastic book! I already have three copies-one for me and two for gifts. Yikes, I may need more. Mary, we met in LA last year, with LZCutter and Sue Sue. I had no idea you were working on this book.

One photo in particular stood out for the caption that would be considered politically incorrect today, that of Jeff Donnell in a July 4th image during WWII. The caption from Columbia Pictures states that "bonds begat bullets...that's the patriotic way to celebrate July 4th!" It also says that the powder employed in a Great Salute "can furnish enough death-dealing power to send Four Sons of Heaven to their Celestial Ancestors.


I was quite intrigued by that photo. Since I know Jeff Donnell's son, I plan to make sure he sees that picture on 4th of July, next year. He'll be intrigued by the original text.

Do both of you continue to collect these holiday photos? Can we expect a volume two? I hope so.

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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby kariebible » December 13th, 2015, 10:41 pm

Countessdelave wrote:First of all: Congratulations to both of you on your fantastic book! I already have three copies-one for me and two for gifts. Yikes, I may need more. Mary, we met in LA last year, with LZCutter and Sue Sue. I had no idea you were working on this book.

One photo in particular stood out for the caption that would be considered politically incorrect today, that of Jeff Donnell in a July 4th image during WWII. The caption from Columbia Pictures states that "bonds begat bullets...that's the patriotic way to celebrate July 4th!" It also says that the powder employed in a Great Salute "can furnish enough death-dealing power to send Four Sons of Heaven to their Celestial Ancestors.


I was quite intrigued by that photo. Since I know Jeff Donnell's son, I plan to make sure he sees that picture on 4th of July, next year. He'll be intrigued by the original text.

Do both of you continue to collect these holiday photos? Can we expect a volume two? I hope so.


If this one does well, a sequel is a very real possibility. We already have enough photos for a second volume!

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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby kariebible » December 13th, 2015, 10:42 pm

Sue Sue Applegate wrote:I didn't realize that there would be so many photos from Cyd Charisse. But I wasn't surprised by Shirley Temple and Joan Crawford. Joan had a PhD. In marketing...

Karie, the link you posted wouldn't work on my IPad. Is this the photo you were linking to? It's lovely!
Image
I'm having trouble resizing it, though, so forgive the huge display.


Yes that's me! We really tried to capture the style of the 1940s in that photo!

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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » December 14th, 2015, 9:08 am

Countess, we are so delighted you joined us for Hollywood Celebrates the Holidays!

Karie, the Halloween photo is adorable!

We are so grateful here at The Silver Screen Oasis to have had Mary Mallory and Karie Bible share a few of their secrets!
Thank you both for your tireless efforts, your expertise, and your enthusiasm for the classics!
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Re: Holidays in Hollywood with Mary Mallory & Karie Bible

Postby MaryoftheMovies » December 14th, 2015, 11:36 am

Sorry I missed the last question, I was helping set up and then celebrating at Hollywood Heritage's member party yesterday. Thanks Countess delave for your support of our book! We think it is the perfect holiday gift for classic film fans! We do hope for a sequel, I believe we have enough photos, so we will see what the New Year brings.

Thanks so much for Silver Screen Oasis having us as guests this weekend, it's been fun!


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