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Celebrate with Jackie Cooper, Clark Gable, and others in “The Christmas Party” (1931)

How does child actor, Jackie Cooper, host a Christmas party for all his football buddies when his house is too small?

Well, with a handy connection to MGM and some sweet-talkin’ to Norma Shearer, Hollywood stars of the 1930’s come out to help celebrate in “The Christmas Party” (1931)!

You’ll see a young Clark Gable serving chow and chatter to the team.

Handsome Ramon Novarro is hailed on the fly to bring tea and napkins.

Santa visits the children in the form of comedian “The Schnoz” Jimmy Durante.

Lionel Barrymore makes the rounds with warm biscuits for all the “whippersnappers.”

Join MGM’s party to catch even more Hollywood stars celebrating Christmas with Jackie!

Source: Visit rlosangeleskings on YouTube for more Christmas videos.

 
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Posted by on December 4, 2013 in Movie, Short Subject, Video

 

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“A Trip Thru a Hollywood Studio” (Warner Brothers, 1935)

Come with me and sneak a peak of some Hollywood stars going about their day. On the way, we’ll visit some major studios, and then get a chance to go behind the scenes to learn how movie equipment of its day captured the sights and sounds of the movies. So, let’s go via a Warner Brothers short film called, A Trip Thru a Hollywood Studio (1935).

First, we’ll get a quick look at some major studios of the mid 1930’s. Up high with some great aerial shots, we can see Fox, RKO, Warner Brothers, Paramount, MGM, and Universal!

Stopping at Warner Brothers, we spot the great choreographer Busby Berkeley and dance director Bobby Connolly directing some hard-working chorus girls!

Next, we catch comedic actor Hugh Herbert putting on his make-up. “A little powder, a little paint, make little Hughie look what he ain’t!

Let’s wave to heartthrob Rudy Vallee as he leaves Warner Brothers studio!

Watch out as Hollywood dogs take their owners for a jaunt: three Scottish Terriers enjoy Jean Muir and Warren William while Alice White’s sheepdog begs to be her lapdog.

Don’t throw in the towel yet; watch actor/boxer Pat O’Brien and actress/manager Ann Dvorak as Pat spars with former welterweight champion Jackie Fields.

Hold on a minute as “regular guyJames Cagney gets a light for his cigarette.

Let’s be a bit quiet here while Dolores del Rio poses for a still photographer.

Now, back to Hugh Herbert as he hams it up in a scene with a Hollywood harem!

On the last bit of the tour, Hugh runs through his scene while we visit all the amazing film equipment used for creating a Hollywood movie. From the microphone, to the disk recording machine, to the editing and printing rooms, to the movieola, and finally to the projection room to watch Hugh’s completed scene.

See ya on the next tour!

Thanks to Victoria Mentz for making this short subject available.

 
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Posted by on November 13, 2013 in Movie, Short Subject, Video

 

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“Hollywood Hobbies” (1939) A surplus of Hollywood stars!

Jump in and take a Hollywood tour with two star-crazed ladies (Joyce Compton & Sally Payne), who get a spectacular chance to see Hollywood celebrities with tour guide William ‘Billy’ Benedict. Stick with these guys and catch scads of movie stars in MGM’s 1939 short subject, Hollywood Hobbies!

Pre-tour note: Morey “Buddy” Amsterdam, from The Dick Van Dyke Show, wrote the story and screenplay!

Are you ready to see the stars? Here we go …

First stop, we see Reginald Denny at his model airplane factory.

Gosh, isn’t that Clark Gable at home whitewashing his barn?

Awwww, look who is expecting. It’s Robert Young and Allan Jones as “expectant” godfathers of a new foal! Irene Hervey helps usher in the new equine!

Our last stop is a Hollywood baseball game with commentator Truman Bradley and baseball fans: Jimmy Stewart, George Murphy, Cesar Romero, Joan Davis, Spencer Tracy, Virginia Bruce, and James Cagney (with mom Carolyn).

Oh la la! Joe E. Brown is kissing Harry Ritz!

Buddy Ebsen’s on the bench. Tyrone Power is in the seats.

Jane Withers autographs a baseball. Milton Berle steps in as shortstop.

Buster Keaton covers 3rd base. John Boles is in left outfield.

Throwing out the first ball is Mary Pickford.

Frank Mitchell & Jack Durant attempt to bat while stacked on top of each other!

Arthur Lake garbles some pre-game chatter. Nat Pendleton steals home.

The Ritz Brothers umpire, if you can call it that!

Dick Powell bats a home run, ending the game and knocking out the tour guide!

All is well in Hollywood!

Thank you to HollywoodHobbies for making it available on YouTube!

 
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Posted by on October 4, 2013 in Movie, Short Subject, Video

 

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“Why? Because!” – Judy Garland asks and Fanny Brice answers in “Everybody Sing”!

“Why? Because!” sings Judy Garland and Fanny Brice from the 1938 musical, Everybody Sing.

Although not a short subject, I couldn’t resist showing this film clip with Judy and Fanny together. Obviously, Judy needs no introduction, but Fanny, on the other hand, might for many of you.

Fanny Brice, probably more well-known for Barbra Streisand playing her in Funny Girl and Funny Lady, was a consummate comedian, singer, and actor of almost every medium. About Fanny’s two husbands, both portrayed in the biographical movies, she amusingly reminisces, “With Nick Arnstein, I was miserably happy. With Billy Rose, I was happily miserable.” 

Fanny does one of her best characters, “Baby Snooks” in this film clip. A two-star, Hollywood Walk of Famer, Fanny was born in NY in 1891. A cerebral hemorrhage ended her life in 1951.

Judy Garland stars in Everybody Sing a year before she wows us in the 1939 movie, The Wizard of Oz. Keep an eye out for Judy’s witch pal, Billie Burke (Glinda), if you get a chance to watch the whole feature of Everybody Sing. 

Thank you gcuriosidades for making it available on YouTube!

 
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Posted by on September 17, 2013 in Movie, Music, Video

 

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Stars galore! You won’t believe how many Hollywood stars appear in this short subject, The Stolen Jools!

Stars galore! You won’t believe how many Hollywood stars appear in this short subject, The Stolen Jools! Just to wet your appetite: Norma Shearer, Buster Keaton, Laurel & Hardy, Joan Crawford, Barbara Stanwyck, Gary Cooper, Irene Dunne, Loretta Young, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., Maurice Chevalier, Bebe Daniels, Joe E. Brown, and 48 more!

The Stolen Jools (1931) was a promotional short film to raise money for the National Variety Artists Tuberculosis Sanatorium. This comedy begins with Norma Shearer’s jewels having been pinched from a Hollywood party. Detective Kane snoops around, grilling all the stars who might have attended this said party. Very fun to see how many stars you can spot.

Trivia: Alternate title is The Slippery Pearls. All actors, but a few, are credited at the end of this film. Oddly enough, this fund raiser for tuberculosis was sponsored by Chesterfield Cigarettes! Check out IMDb for the whole cast.

Thank you to Guérin Pascal for making it available on YouTube!

 
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Posted by on September 13, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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“The Prisoner of Zenda”? No! “The Prisoner of Swing”!

“The Prisoner of Swing” with a very young June Allyson singing and dancing with hoofer Hal Le Roy. Only a few minutes of this short subject are here, but it’s worth it to see 21-year-old June Allyson.

Per IMDb, “When she was eight years old, she was crushed by a falling tree limb while riding a bicycle. She wore a back brace for four years and taught herself to dance by watching Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers movies.” So glad June recovered; she gave us many musical hours of movies to watch!

Hal Le Roy is always wonderful to watch too. A talented and distinctive dancer!

A Warner Brothers, “Broadway Brevities,” short of 1938, which was a take-off of the 1937 “The Prisoner of Zenda” movie with Ronald Coleman. Thanks to GoodOldDaysReturns on YouTube!

 
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Posted by on August 30, 2013 in Movie, Music, Short Subject, Video

 

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Can you guess who is in this 1947 short subject film?

“Shy Guy” (1947) is a 14-minute film, otherwise known as a short subject: a brief film (40 mins or less) that is typically shown before the main feature. Coronet Instructional Films, a successful company who, for years, sold educational films to schools and libraries, produced this short. I’m sure many of you have had the pleasure of watching an educational short…either in school, or before a movie, or on YouTube. A number of these films are corny, outdated, and sometimes offensive. However, I got a kick out of this one, as the advice offered wasn’t as bad as I expected. 

Once in a while, an actor continues his career in movies after starring in one of these instructional films. Many well-known actors made their first appearances in these and other types of shorts such as comedies, musicals, etc. As in “Shy Guy,” the main actor became quite popular on a TV sitcom from 1964-1969. Spoiler Alert Ahead! 

“Shy Guy” stars a 19-year-old actor named Dick York, who played Darren Stevens on “Bewitched.” Gotta love his voice in this film! And, by the way, the narrator is Mike Wallace, former TV journalist on “60 Minutes.” Enjoy this short, but sweet, view of teenage life in the 40’s.

 
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Posted by on August 29, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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“Believe It Or Not?”

A word that is 184 letters long? A three-story home built by a blind man? A man who can pick up and hold, in one hand, twelve billiard balls? Allow Mr. Robert Ripley to answer all of these burning questions, and more, with a nostalgic look back to 1930 from his “Ripley’s Believe It Or Not” short subject! 

I’m sure you’re familiar with Ripley’s books and television shows. But, did you know that Ripley (and the company bearing his name) produced his syndicated cartoon features in over 200 worldwide newspapers, broadcast several radio series to every world nation, created thirty-two “Odditorium” museums around the world, maintains an website and blog, and made an early talkie film series for Warner Brothers? Believe it or not!

Ripley was an avid artist, an explorer extraordinaire, a tireless traveler, and a generally busy guy, who, if had been a cat, would have surely died too soon from his insatiable curiosity. 

Enjoy more Ripley videos on MrJadedtom’s YouTube channel.

 
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Posted by on August 28, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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“Bubbles” with Frances Ethel Gumm! Oh, sorry, I meant Judy Garland!

In this clip from a Warner Brothers Vitaphone Varieties short called “Bubbles,” Frances Ethel Gumm, aka Judy Garland, is seen at the age of eight, belting out “The Land of Let’s Pretend.” Young Judy is joined by her older sisters, Mary Jane and Virginia Gumm; all three known to Hollywood as “The Gumm Sisters.” If you want to hear just Garland’s two-line solo and see her in a close-up, skip through the clip to about 1:04. Sorry, that it isn’t a better print.

The 1930 short was originally filmed in Technicolor, but did not survive in that format. However, during the 1990’s, in the Library of Congress, a black & white print was discovered. You can watch the full 7+ minutes on Dailymotion. And, to read more about Judy’s short films, please visit thejudyroom.com.

Warner Brothers made hundreds of short films showcasing many great talents of the 20’s and 30’s. Judy starred in a few more short subjects before making feature films. Isn’t it fun to see our “Wizard of Oz” girl so early in her career?

 
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Posted by on August 25, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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“Office Blues” – 19-year-old Ginger Rogers is in love!

Young stenographer, Ginger Rogers, falls in love with her boss, and he doesn’t even know it! The big galute!

Only three years before she began her streak of dancing films with Fred Astaire, Ginger starred in “Office Blues,” a 1930 Paramount short subject. Her Betty Boop-like voice and brunette curls makes it hard to recognize her. Sorry, no dancing from Ginger here, but she does show off her comedic flair and belts out two songs, “We Can’t Get Along,” and “Dear Sir,” while she rebuffs her co-worker’s advances and concentrates on catching her boss’s attention. Go, Ginger!

 
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Posted by on August 23, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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