Tag Archives: old

Hollywood Heavyweight – William Powell

Happy Birthday to William Powell (July 29, 1892-March 5, 1984).

Happy Birthday to William Powell (July 29, 1892-March 5, 1984).

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001635/

Personal Quotes

[when asked how he kept so slim] “I highly recommend worrying. It’s much more effective than dieting.”

[speaking in 1929] “Unfortunately, or perhaps it is fortunate that I have always been forced to stand on my acting ability. I haven’t a personality such as Jack Gilbert’s, for instance, that attracts women and makes them like me for myself. When I am on the screen I must make them forget me entirely and think only of my acting.”

My friends have stood by me marvelously in the ups and downs of my career. I don’t believe there is anything more worthwhile in life than friendship. Friendship is a far better thing than love, as it is commonly accepted.

I do not hold that because the author did a bad job of writing the player need trump it with the same kind of acting. When I go into a picture I have only one character to look after. If the author didn’t do him justice, I try to add whatever the creator of the part overlooked.

I have never gone into a picture without first studying my characterization from all angles. I make a study of the fellow’s life and try to learn everything about him, including the conditions under which he came into this world, his parentage, his environment, his social status, and the things in which he is interested. Then I attempt to get his mental attitude as much as possible.

There is more money in being liked by an audience than in being disliked by it. The biggest thing about movie audiences is the sympathy they give characters on the screen. But the art of acting and the talent of selecting what one will act are divorced qualities.


Old Hollywood Guess Who…….

I adore this picture!! I just can’t believe my eyes and think it is so lovely to find pictures of some of your favorite actors when they were young.  I dare everyone to try and guess before looking at the name below.

Vivian Vance

Vivian Vance!
AKA Ethel Mertz on TV’s “I Love Lucy”!!!
LOVE!!


PSA to Classic Film/Pre-Code Film lovers!!

I just found this out and will start my 2 week free trial TONIGHT!!

http://instant.warnerarchive.com/

Warner Archive Features


Happy Birthday James Cagney!!

James Francis Cagney, Jr. (July 17, 1899 – March 30, 1986) was an American actor, first on stage, then in film,[2] where he had his greatest impact. Although he won acclaim and major awards for a wide variety of performances,[3] he is best remembered for playing tough guys.[4] In 1999, the American Film Institute ranked him eighth among its 50 Greatest American Screen Legends.[5]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Cagney#cite_note-2

To see all of his wonderful movies check out my most favorite reference site:

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000010/


Behind the Scenes

Not much to write about on this one other than check out these really neat behind the scenes pictures I found on classic movies.  Enjoy!!

Frankenstein (1931)

Frankenstein (1931)

Rebel Without a Cause (1955)

Rebel Without A Cause (1955)

House on Haunted Hill (1959)

House On Haunted Hill (1959)

Wizard of Oz (1939)

Planet of the Apes (1968)

 


James Cagney….The Original Gangster

James Cagney….the original gangster

James Cagney, aka The Professional Againster, born 1899 in New York City, New York. Always a tough guy ready to hold his ground while throwing one liners to the headline gal.

Some Cagney facts:  According to his authorized biography, Cagney, although of Irish and Norwegian extraction, could speak Yiddish since he had grown up in a heavily Jewish area in New York. He used to converse in Yiddish with Jewish performers. 

Though most Cagney imitators use the line “You dirty rat!”, Cagney never actually said it in any of his films.

According to James Cagney‘s autobiography Cagney By Cagney, (Published by Doubleday and Company Inc 1976, and ghost written by show biz biographer Jack McCabe), a Mafia plan to murder Cagney by dropping a several hundred pound klieg light on top of him was stopped at the insistence of George Raft. Cagney at that time was president of the Screen Actors Guild, and was determined not to let the mob infiltrate the industry. Raft used his many mob connections to cancel the hit.

Cagney was known for several of his gangster films like City for Conquest, “G” Men, White Heat, and Each Dawn I Die.

Now to pick a movie suggestion for you.  I could say for your first film watch Public Enemy (1931) so you can really get a feel for what he is capable.  That and most out there have seen remakes of this film, so you will recognize the story line.

The next film I would suggest is Great Guy (1936)

Cagney is the New York Department of Weights and Measures vs. a systematic effort to cheat the public by giving them less product than they pay for…organized by crooked city alderman Marty Cavanaugh, who put the last chief deputy inspector in the hospital. The new man, pugnacious Johnny Cave, steps on the toes of influential merchants and gets increasing pressure, both political and strong-arm, to desist.

If you ever check these movies out or have others that are favorites of yours, let me know!


Getting a clear view of the past

It never ceases to amaze me the clarity of many of the wonderful pictures being scanned in and distributed online for all to see.  It really gives you the opportunity to see how life was lived from day to day, outside of the usual posed for pictures.

Here is a gem I found of the lower East side of New York 1908:

Delancey Street

You can find a whole new collection recently added to the New York department of records website here: http://nycma.lunaimaging.com/luna/servlet/browseByCategory 

All of the pictures in this post are in New York.  I know I tend to be partial to Southern California as that is where I am from and still live today.  When I look at old pictures I try to take it all in, the architectures, the fashions, the cars or lack there of, the mentality or mind states of everyone, the conditions of the city.  It is amazing how far we have come in really a short amount of time.