Madge Evans was an American stage and film actress. She began her career as model. Born in Manhattan, Madge Evans was featured in print ads as the'Fairy Soap girl' as an infant, she made her professional debut at the age of six months. As a youth, her playmates included Robert Warwick, Holbrook Blinn, Henry Hull; when she was four years old, Evans was featured in a series of child plays produced by William A. Brady, she worked at the old New York movie studio. Her success was immediate. Evans posed in a mother and child tableau with Anita Stewart 16, for an Anheuser-Busch Brewing Company calendar, as the little mountain girl in Heidi of the Alps. At the age of 8 in 1917, Evans appeared in the Broadway production of Peter Ibbetson with John Barrymore, Constance Collier and Laura Hope Crews. At 17, she appeared as the ingenue in Daisy Mayme; some of her best work in plays came in productions of Dread, The Marquis, The Conquering Male. Her last appearance was in Philip Goes Forth produced by George Kelley.
Evans' mother took her to England and Europe when she was 15. As a child film actress, Evans had quite a prolific career appearing in dozens of films, including with Marguerite Clark in The Seven Sisters, a film with a large female ensemble, played on stage with Clark's rival Mary Pickford and Laurette Taylor in the cast, she was featured with Robert Warwick in Alias Jimmy Valentine, a still extant film that has seen release on home video/DVD. At 14, she was the star of J. Stuart Blackton's rural melodrama On the Banks of the Wabash, she co-starred with Richard Barthelmess in Classmates. She was working on stage when she signed with Metro Goldwyn Mayer in 1927; as with theater, she continued to play ingenue parts as the fiancé of the leading man. She played the love interest to both Al Jolson and Frank Morgan in the 1933 film Hallelujah, I'm a Bum. Working for MGM in the 1930s, she appeared in Dinner at Eight, Broadway to Hollywood, Hell Below, David Copperfield. In 1933, she starred with James Cagney in a melodrama entitled The Mayor of Hell, playing a pretty nurse who solicits the aid of a tough politician, played by Cagney.
Other notable movies in which she appeared are Beauty for Sale, Grand Canary, What Every Woman Knows, Pennies From Heaven. In 1960, for Evans' contribution to the motion picture industry, she was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame located at 1752 Vine Street. In York Village, Maine, on July 25, 1939, she married playwright Sidney Kingsley, best known for his plays Dead End and Detective Story which were turned into popular films; the couple owned a 250-acre estate in New Jersey. Following her marriage to Kingsley, Evans moved to the New Jersey home, she worked in radio and television in New York City. Evans performed on the Philco Television Playhouse, Studio One, Matinee Theater, The Alcoa Hour. Madge Evans died at her home in Oakland, New Jersey from cancer in 1981, aged 71. Los Angeles Times, Marriages In Hollywood Exceed Divorces In 1939, January 2, 1940, Page A1. Los Angeles Times, Child Film Star, Ingenue Madge Evans Dies at 71, April 27, 1981, Page A1. Oakland, California Tribune, Two Wise Young Maidens, January 10, 1937, Page 80.
San Mateo Times, A Defence of Youth, January 18, 1936, Page 15. Syracuse Herald, Madge Evans, Joan Marsh, Jackie Coogan head Sextet Surviving, Sunday Morning, July 19, 1931, Section 3, Page 11. Zanesville, Ohio Signal, Madge Evans Has Role With James Cagney, July 16, 1933, Page 12. Dye, David. Child and Youth Actors: Filmography of Their Entire Careers, 1914-1985. Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Co. 1988, pp. 70-71. Madge Evans on IMDb Madge Evans at the Internet Broadway Database Pictures at SilentLadies.com Photos at Virtual-History.com Madge Evans at Find a Grave
Francis Phillip Wuppermann, known professionally as Frank Morgan, was an American character actor on radio and film. He was best known for his appearances in films starting in the silent era in 1916, numerous sound films throughout the 1930s and 1940s as a contract player at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, with his most celebrated performance playing the title role in The Wizard of Oz, he was briefly billed early in his career as Frank Wupperman and Francis Morgan. Morgan was born to Josephine Wright and George Diogracia Wuppermann, he was the youngest of 11 children, had five brothers and five sisters. The elder Mr. Wuppermann was born in Venezuela, but was brought up in Hamburg and was of German and Spanish ancestry, his mother was born in the United States, of English ancestry. His brother, Ralph Morgan, was an actor of stage and screen; the family earned their wealth distributing Angostura bitters, allowing Wuppermann to attend Cornell University, joining Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity and the Glee Club. Morgan starred with John Barrymore in Raffles, the Amateur Cracksman, an independent film produced in and about New York City.
His career expanded when talkies began, his most stereotypical role being that of a befuddled but good hearted middle-aged man. By the mid-1930s, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer had been so impressed by Morgan that they signed him to a lifetime contract. Morgan's best remembered film performances, are in The Wizard of Oz: he played the Wizard and five other roles: the carnival huckster "Professor Marvel", the gatekeeper at the Emerald City, the coachman of the carriage drawn by "The Horse of a Different Color", the Emerald City guard, the Wizard's scary face projection. Morgan was cast in the role on September 22, 1938. W. C. Fields was chosen for the role of the Wizard, but the studio ran out of patience after protracted haggling over his fee. An actor with a wide range, Morgan was effective playing comical, befuddled men such as Jesse Kiffmeyer in Saratoga and Mr. Ferris in Casanova Brown, as he was with more serious, troubled characters like Hugo Matuschek in The Shop Around the Corner, Professor Roth in The Mortal Storm and Willie Grogan in The Human Comedy.
MGM's comedy film The Great Morgan, was written with the story centering on the latter. In 1939 Morgan played alongside Shirley Temple as Professor Appleby in Dimples. In the 1940s, Morgan co-starred with Fanny Brice in one version of the radio program Maxwell House Coffee Time, aka The Frank Morgan-Fanny Brice Show. During the first half of the show Morgan would tell outlandish tall tales about his life adventures, much to the dismay of his fellow cast members. After the Morgan segment there was a song, followed by Brice as'Baby Snooks' for the last half of the show; when Brice left to star in her own program in 1944, Morgan continued solo for a year with The Frank Morgan Show. In 1947, Morgan starred as the title character in the radio series The Fabulous Dr. Tweedy, he recorded a number of children's records, including the popular Gossamer Wump, released in 1949 by Capitol Records. Like most popular character actors of the studio era, Morgan was sought out for numerous supporting roles, he played Barney Wile in The Stratton Story, which follows a baseball player, who makes a comeback after having his leg amputated due to a hunting accident.
His final film, Key to the City, was released posthumously. Morgan married Alma Muller in 1914, their marriage ended with his death in 1949. He was known to have alcoholism, according to several who worked with him, including Margaret Hamilton and Aljean Harmetz. Morgan sometimes carried a black briefcase to work equipped with a small mini-bar. Morgan's niece Claudia Morgan was a stage and film actress, most notable for playing the role of Vera Claythorne in the first Broadway production of Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None. Morgan was a brother of playwright Carlos Wuppermann, killed in the Rhineland in 1919 while on duty there with the Army of Occupation. Wuppermann had only one play produced on Broadway, The Triumph of X which opened at the Comedy Theater in New York City on August 24, 1921, but ran for only 30 performances; the production starred Morgan, featured Helen Menken as the female lead. In the production for his first Broadway outing was Robert Keith, father of actor Brian Keith and one-time husband of Theater Guild actress Peg Entwistle.
Morgan died of a heart attack on September 1949, while filming Annie Get Your Gun. He was replaced by Louis Calhern for the film, his death came before the 1956 premiere televised broadcast on CBS of The Wizard of Oz, which made him the only major cast member from the film who did not live to see the film's revived popularity and become an annual American television institution. Morgan is buried in Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn, his tombstone carries Wuppermann, as well as his stage name. Morgan was nominated for two Academy Awards, one for Best Actor in The Affairs of Cellini and one for Best Supporting Actor in Tortilla Flat, he has two stars dedicated to him on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Hollywood, California: one for his films at 1708 Vine Street and one for his work in radio at 6700 Hollywood Boulevard. Both were dedicated on February 8, 1960. Biography portal Film portal Radio portal List of actors with Academy Award nominations Frank Morgan on IMDb Frank Morgan at
Musical film is a film genre in which songs sung by the characters are interwoven into the narrative, sometimes accompanied by dancing. The songs advance the plot or develop the film's characters, but in some cases, they serve as breaks in the storyline as elaborate "production numbers." The musical film was a natural development of the stage musical after the emergence of sound film technology. The biggest difference between film and stage musicals is the use of lavish background scenery and locations that would be impractical in a theater. Musical films characteristically contain elements reminiscent of theater. In a sense, the viewer becomes the diegetic audience, as the performer looks directly into the camera and performs to it; the 1930's through the early 1950's are considered to be the golden age of the musical film, when the genre's popularity was at its highest in the Western world. Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the earliest Disney animated feature film, was a musical which won an honorary Oscar for Walt Disney at the 11th Academy Awards.
Musical short films were made by Lee de Forest in 1923–24. Beginning in 1926, thousands of Vitaphone shorts were made, many featuring bands and dancers; the earliest feature-length films with synchronized sound had only a soundtrack of music and occasional sound effects that played while the actors portrayed their characters just as they did in silent films: without audible dialogue. The Jazz Singer, released in 1927 by Warner Brothers, was the first to include an audio track including non-dietetic music and diegetic music, but it had only a short sequence of spoken dialogue; this feature-length film was a musical, featuring Al Jolson singing "Dirty Hands, Dirty Face", "Toot, Tootsie", "Blue Skies", "My Mammy". Historian Scott Eyman wrote, "As the film ended and applause grew with the houselights, Sam Goldwyn's wife Frances looked around at the celebrities in the crowd, she saw'terror in all their faces', she said, as if they knew that'the game they had been playing for years was over'." Still, only isolated sequences featured "live" sound.
In 1928, Warner Brothers followed this up with another Jolson part-talkie, The Singing Fool, a blockbuster hit. Theaters scrambled to install the new sound equipment and to hire Broadway composers to write musicals for the screen; the first all-talking feature, Lights of New York, included a musical sequence in a night club. The enthusiasm of audiences was so great that in less than a year all the major studios were making sound pictures exclusively; the Broadway Melody had a show-biz plot about two sisters competing for a charming song-and-dance man. Advertised by MGM as the first "All-Talking, All-Singing, All-Dancing" feature film, it was a hit and won the Academy Award for Best Picture for 1929. There was a rush by the studios to hire talent from the stage to star in lavishly filmed versions of Broadway hits; the Love Parade starred Maurice Chevalier and newcomer Jeanette MacDonald, written by Broadway veteran Guy Bolton. Warner Brothers produced the first screen operetta, The Desert Song in 1929.
They photographed a large percentage of the film in Technicolor. This was followed by the first all-color, all-talking musical feature, entitled On with the Show; the most popular film of 1929 was the second all-color, all-talking feature, entitled Gold Diggers of Broadway. This film broke all box office records and remained the highest-grossing film produced until 1939; the market became flooded with musicals and operettas. The following all-color musicals were produced in 1929 and 1930 alone: The Show of Shows, The Vagabond King, Follow Thru, Bright Lights, Golden Dawn, Hold Everything, The Rogue Song, Song of the Flame, Song of the West, Sweet Kitty Bellairs, Under a Texas Moon, Bride of the Regiment, Whoopee!, King of Jazz, Viennese Nights, Kiss Me Again. In addition, there were scores of musical features released with color sequences. Hollywood released more than 100 musical films in 1930, but only 14 in 1931. By late 1930, audiences had been oversaturated with musicals and studios were forced to cut the music from films that were being released.
For example, Life of the Party was produced as an all-color, all-talking musical comedy. Before it was released, the songs were cut out; the same thing happened to Fifty Million Frenchmen and Manhattan Parade both of, filmed in Technicolor. Marlene Dietrich sang songs in her films, Rodgers and Hart wrote a few well-received films, but their popularity waned by 1932; the public had come to associate color with musicals and thus the decline in their popularity resulted in a decline in color productions. The taste in musicals revived again in 1933 when director Busby Berkeley began to enhance the traditional dance number with ideas drawn from the drill precision he had experienced as a soldier during World War I. In films such as 42nd Street and Gold Diggers of 1933, Berkeley choreographed a number of films in his unique style. Berkeley's numbers begin on a stage but transcend the limitations of theatrical space: his ingenious routines, involving human bodies forming patterns like a kaleidoscope, could never fit onto a real stage and the intended perspective is viewing from straight above.
Musical stars such as Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers were among the most popular and highly
Richard Charles Rodgers was an American composer of music, with over 900 songs and 43 Broadway musicals, leaving a legacy as one of the most significant composers of 20th century American music. He is best known for his songwriting partnerships with the lyricists Lorenz Hart and Oscar Hammerstein II, his compositions have had a significant impact on popular music. Rodgers was the first person to win what are considered the top American entertainment awards in television, recording and Broadway – an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar, a Tony Award — now known collectively as an EGOT. In addition, he was awarded a Pulitzer Prize, making him one of only two people to receive all five awards. Born into a prosperous German Jewish family in Arverne, New York City, Rodgers was the son of Mamie and Dr. William Abrahams Rodgers, a prominent physician who had changed the family name from Abrahams. Richard began playing the piano at age six, he attended P. S. 166, Townsend Harris Hall and DeWitt Clinton High School.
Rodgers spent his early teenage summers in Camp Wigwam. Rodgers, Lorenz Hart, collaborator Oscar Hammerstein II all attended Columbia University. At Columbia, Rodgers joined the Pi Lambda Phi fraternity. In 1921, Rodgers shifted his studies to the Institute of Musical Art. Rodgers was influenced by composers such as Victor Herbert and Jerome Kern, as well as by the operettas his parents took him to see on Broadway when he was a child. In 1919, Richard met Lorenz Hart, thanks to a friend of Richard's older brother. Rodgers and Hart struggled for years in the field of musical comedy, they made their professional debut with the song "Any Old Place With You", featured in the 1919 Broadway musical comedy A Lonely Romeo. Their first professional production was the 1920 Poor Little Ritz Girl, which had music by Sigmund Romberg, their next professional show, The Melody Man, did not premiere until 1924. When he was just out of college Rodgers worked as musical director for Lew Fields. Among the stars he accompanied.
Rodgers was considering quitting show business altogether to sell children's underwear, when he and Hart broke through in 1925. They wrote the songs for a benefit show presented by the prestigious Theatre Guild, called The Garrick Gaieties, the critics found the show fresh and delightful. Only meant to run one day, the Guild knew they allowed it to re-open later; the show's biggest hit — the song that Rodgers believed "made" Rodgers and Hart — was "Manhattan". The two were now a Broadway songwriting force. Throughout the rest of the decade, the duo wrote several hit shows for both Broadway and London, including Dearest Enemy, The Girl Friend, Peggy-Ann, A Connecticut Yankee, Present Arms, their 1920s shows produced standards such as "Here in My Arms", "Mountain Greenery", "Blue Room", "My Heart Stood Still" and "You Took Advantage of Me". With the Depression in full swing during the first half of the 1930s, the team sought greener pastures in Hollywood; the hardworking Rodgers regretted these fallow years, but he and Hart did write some classic songs and film scores while out west, including Love Me Tonight, which introduced three standards: "Lover", "Mimi", "Isn't It Romantic?".
Rodgers wrote a melody for which Hart wrote three consecutive lyrics which either were cut, not recorded or not a hit. The fourth lyric resulted in one of their most famous songs, "Blue Moon". Other film work includes the scores to The Phantom President, starring George M. Cohan, Hallelujah, I'm a Bum, starring Al Jolson, and, in a quick return after having left Hollywood, starring Bing Crosby and W. C. Fields. In 1935, they returned to Broadway and wrote an unbroken string of hit shows that ended only with Hart's death in 1943. Among the most notable are Jumbo, On Your Toes, Babes in Arms, I Married an Angel, The Boys from Syracuse, Pal Joey, their last original work, By Jupiter. Rodgers contributed to the book on several of these shows. Many of the songs from these shows are still sung and remembered, including "The Most Beautiful Girl in the World", "My Romance", "Little Girl Blue", "I'll Tell the Man in the Street", "There's a Small Hotel", "Where or When", "My Funny Valentine", "The Lady Is a Tramp", "Falling in Love with Love", "Bewitched and Bewildered", "Wait till You See Her".
In 1939, he wrote the ballet Ghost Town for the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, with choreography by Marc Platoff. Rodgers' partnership with Hart began having problems because of the lyricist's unreliability and declining health. Rodgers began working with Oscar Hammerstein II, with whom he had written songs, their first musical, the groundbreaking hit Oklahoma!, marked the beginning of the most successful partnership in American musical theatre history. Their work revolutionized the musical form. What was once a collection of songs and comic turns held together by a tenuous plot became a integrated piece; the team went on to create four more hits. Each was made into a successful film: Carousel, South Pacific, The King and I, The Sound of Music. Other shows include the minor hit Flower Dru
A hobo is a migrant worker or homeless vagrant one, impoverished. The term originated in the Western—probably Northwestern—United States around 1890. Unlike a "tramp", who works only when forced to, a "bum", who does not work at all, a "hobo" is a traveling worker; the origin of the term is unknown. According to etymologist Anatoly Liberman, the only certain detail about its origin is the word was first noticed in American English circa 1890. Liberman points out that many folk etymologies fail to answer the question: "Why did the word become known in California by the early Nineties?" Author Todd DePastino has suggested it may be derived from the term hoe-boy meaning "farmhand", or a greeting such as Ho, boy! Bill Bryson suggests in Made in America that it could either come from the railroad greeting, "Ho, beau!" or a syllabic abbreviation of "homeward bound". It could come from the words "homeless boy". H. L. Mencken, in his The American Language, wrote: Tramps and hobos are lumped together, but see themselves as differentiated.
A hobo or bo is a migrant laborer. Lower than either is the bum, who neither works nor travels, save when impelled to motion by the police, it is unclear when hobos first appeared on the American railroading scene. With the end of the American Civil War in the 1860s, many discharged veterans returning home began hopping freight trains. Others looking for work on the American frontier followed the railways west aboard freight trains in the late 19th century. In 1906, Professor Layal Shafee, after an exhaustive study, put the number of tramps in the United States at about 500,000, his article "What Tramps Cost Nation" was published by The New York Telegraph in 1911, when he estimated the number had surged to 700,000. The number of hobos increased during the Great Depression era of the 1930s. With no work and no prospects at home, many decided to travel for free by freight train and try their luck elsewhere. Life as a hobo was dangerous. In addition to the problems of being itinerant and far from home and support, plus the hostility of many train crews, they faced the railroads' security staff, nicknamed "bulls", who had a reputation of violence against trespassers.
Moreover, riding on a freight train is dangerous in itself. British poet W. H. Davies, author of The Autobiography of a Super-Tramp, lost a foot when he fell under the wheels when trying to jump aboard a train, it was easy to be trapped between cars, one could freeze to death in bad weather. When freezer cars were loaded at an ice factory, any hobo inside was to be killed. According to Ted Conover in Rolling Nowhere, at some unknown point in time, as many as 20,000 people were living a hobo life in North America. Modern freight trains are much faster and thus harder to ride than in the 1930s, but they can still be boarded in railyards. Many hobo terms have become part of common language, such as "big House", "glad rags", "main drag", others. To cope with the uncertainties of hobo life, hobos developed a system of a visual code. Hobos would write this code with chalk or coal to provide directions and warnings to others in "the brotherhood". A symbol would indicate "turn right here", "beware of hostile railroad police", "dangerous dog", "food available here", so on.
Some used signs: A cross signifies "angel food", that is, food served to the hobos after a sermon. A triangle with hands signifies. A horizontal zigzag signifies a barking dog. A square missing its top line signifies. A top hat and a triangle signify wealth. A spearhead signifies a warning to defend oneself. A circle with two parallel arrows means get out fast. Two interlocked circles, representing handcuffs, warn. A caduceus symbol signifies. A cross with a smiley face in one of the corners means the doctor at this office will treat hobos free of charge. A cat signifies. A wavy line above an X means a campsite. Three diagonal lines mean. A square with a slanted roof with an X through it means that the house has been "burned" or "tricked" by another hobo and is not a trusting house. Two shovels signify. Another version of the hobo code exists as a display in the Steamtown National Historic Site at Scranton, operated by the National Park Service. There is an exhibit of hobo codes at the National Cryptologic Museum in Annapolis Junction, Maryland.
The Free Art and Technology Lab released a QR Hobo Code, with a QR stenciler, in July 2011. An ethical code was created by Tourist Union #63 during its 1889 National Hobo Convention in St. Louis, Missouri; this code was voted upon as a concrete set of laws to govern the Nationwide Hobo Body. When in town, always respect the local law and officials, try to be a gentleman at all times. Don't take advantage of someone, in a vulnerable situation, locals or other hobos. Always try to find work if temporary, always seek out jobs nobody wants. By doing so you not only help a business along, but ensure employment should you return to that town again; when no employment is available, make your own work by using your added talents at crafts. Do not allow yourself to become a stupid drunk and set a bad example for locals' treatment of other hobos; when jungling in town, respect handouts, do not
Harry Philmore Langdon was an American comedian who appeared in vaudeville, silent films, talkies. Born in Council Bluffs, Langdon began working in medicine shows and stock companies while in his teens. In 1906, he entered vaudeville with Rose Langdon. By 1915, he had developed a sketch named "Johnny's New Car," on which he performed variations in the years that followed. In 1923, he joined a company headed by producer Sol Lesser, he went to The Mack Sennett Studios, where he became a major star. At the height of his film career, he was considered one of the four best comics of the silent film era, his screen character was that of a wide-eyed, childlike man with an innocent's understanding of the world and the people in it. He was a first-class pantomimist. Most of Langdon's 1920s work was produced at the famous Mack Sennett studio, his screen character was so unique and his antics so different from the broad Sennett slapstick that he soon had a following. Success led him into feature films, directed by Frank Capra.
With such directors guiding him, Langdon's work rivaled that of Charlie Chaplin, Harold Lloyd, Buster Keaton. Many consider his best films to be The Strong Man, Tramp and Long Pants. Langdon acted as producer on these features, which were made for his own company, The Harry Langdon Corporation, released by First National. After his initial success, he fired Frank Capra and directed his own films, including "Three's a Crowd", "The Chaser", "Heart Trouble", but his appeal faded; these films were more personal and idiosyncratic, audiences of the period were not interested. Capra claimed that Langdon's decline stemmed from the fact that, unlike the other great silent comics, he never understood what made his own film character successful. However, Langdon's biographer Bill Schelly, among others, have expressed skepticism about this claim, arguing that Langdon had established his character in vaudeville long before he entered movies, added by the fact that he wrote most of his own material during his stage years.
History shows that Langdon's greatest success was while being directed by Capra, once he took hold of his own destiny, his original film comedy persona dropped in popularity with audiences. This is not due to Langdon's material, which he had always written himself, but due to his inexperience with the many fine points of directing, at which Capra excelled, but at which Langdon was a novice. On the other hand, a look at Langdon's filmography shows that Capra directed only two of Langdon's 30 silent comedies, his last silent film, the last one Langdon directed, "Heart Trouble", is a "lost film", so it is difficult to assess whether he might have begun achieving a greater understanding of the directorial process with more experience. The coming of sound, the drastic changes in cinema thwarted Langdon's chances of evolving as a director and defining a style that might have enjoyed greater box office success. Langdon's babyish character did not adapt well to sound films, but Langdon was a big enough name to command leads in short subjects for Educational Pictures and Columbia Pictures.
In 1938, he adopted henpecked-husband character that served him well. Langdon continued to work in low-budget features and shorts into the 1940s, playing mild-mannered goofs, he contributed to comedy scripts as a writer, notably for Laurel and Hardy, which led to him being paired with Oliver Hardy in a 1939 film titled Zenobia during a period when Stan Laurel was in a bitter contract dispute with Roach. Langdon was considered to be the live-action role model for Dopey in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, but Walt Disney rejected the idea. Eddie Collins played the role instead. Harry Langdon kept busy in pictures and completed his final Columbia short Pistol Packin' Nitwits only weeks before his death of a cerebral hemorrhage on December 22, 1944. All funeral arrangements were handled by friend Vernon Dent. Langdon was cremated and his ashes interred at Grand View Memorial Park Cemetery in Glendale, California. At the height of his career, Langdon was making $7,500 per a fortune for the times. Upon his death, The New York Times wrote, "His whole appeal was a consummate ability to look inexpressibly forlorn when confronted with manifold misfortunes—usually of the domestic type.
He was what was known as'dead-pan'...the feeble smile and owlish blink which had become his stock-in-trade caught on in a big way, he skyrocketed to fame and fortune..."In 1997, his hometown of Council Bluffs celebrated "Harry Langdon Day" and in 1999 named Harry Langdon Boulevard in his honor. For his contribution to the motion picture industry, Harry Langdon has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6925 Hollywood Boulevard. Langdon appears in the Biographical film, Stan & Ollie, played by Richard Cant, where he is preparing for the shooting of Zenobia with Oliver Hardy. † – denotes entry part of the Columbia Pictures short subject series List of United States comedy films Charles Reed Jones, Editor. Breaking Into The Movies; the Unicorn Press, 1927. William Schelly. Harry Langdon: His Life and Films. 2nd edition. McFarland, 2008. ISBN 978-0786436910 Harry Langdon on IMDb Harry Langdon at AllMovie Harry Langdon at Film Reference Harry Langdon at Find a Grave Photographs and literature
Rain (1932 film)
Rain is a 1932 South Seas drama film directed by Lewis Milestone with portions filmed at Santa Catalina Island, California. The pre-Code film stars Joan Crawford as prostitute Sadie Thompson and features Walter Huston as a conflicted missionary who wants to reform Sadie, but whose own morals start decaying. Crawford was loaned out by MGM to United Artists for this film; the plot of the film is based on the 1922 play Rain by John Colton and Clemence Randolph, which in turn was based on the short story "Miss Thompson" by W. Somerset Maugham. Actress Jeanne Eagels had played the role on stage. Other movie versions of the story include: a 1928 silent film titled Sadie Thompson starring Gloria Swanson, the sanitized Miss Sadie Thompson, which starred Rita Hayworth. In 1960, the film entered the public domain in the United States because the claimants did not renew its copyright registration in the 28th year after publication. A westbound ship en route to Apia, Samoa, is temporarily stranded at nearby Pago Pago due to a possible cholera outbreak on board.
Among the passengers are Alfred Davidson, a self-righteous missionary, his wife, Sadie Thompson, a prostitute. Thompson passes the time drinking with the American Marines stationed on the island. Sergeant Tim O'Hara, nicknamed by Sadie as "Handsome", falls in love with her, her wild behavior soon becomes more than the Davidsons can stand and Mr. Davidson confronts Sadie, resolving to save her soul; when she dismisses his offer, Davidson has the Governor order her deported to San Francisco, where she is wanted for an unspecified crime. She begs Davidson to allow her to remain on the island a few more days – her plan is to flee to Sydney, Australia. During a heated argument with Davidson, she experiences a religious conversion and agrees to return to San Francisco and the jail sentence awaiting her there; the evening before she is to leave, Sergeant O'Hara asks Sadie to marry him and offers to hide her until the Sydney boat sails, but she refuses. While native drums beat, the repressed Davidson rapes Sadie.
The next morning he is found dead on the beach – a suicide. Davidson's hypocrisy and betrayal cause Thompson to return to her old self and she goes off to Sydney with O'Hara to start a new life. Rain was not well received -- either financially -- upon initial release; the unglamorous role for Crawford, bold story, caught Depression-era audiences off guard. Motion Picture Herald commented,Because the producers have made such a strong attempt to establish the stern impressiveness of the story, it is rather slow. In its drive to become powerful, it appears to have lost the spark of spontaneity.... Joan Crawford and Walter Huston are satisfactory. Variety noted,It turns out to be a mistake to have assigned the Sadie Thompson role to Miss Crawford, it shows her off unfavorably. The dramatic significance of it all is beyond her range.... Milestone wears the witnesses down with words. Joan Crawford's get-up as the light lady is bizarre. Pavement pounders don't quite trick themselves up as fantastically as all that.
In commercial favor of Rain is the general repute of the theme and Miss Crawford's personal following, but the finished product will not help either. The film earned $538,000 in the United States and Canada and $166,000 elsewhere, resulting in a loss of $198,000. Rain on YouTube Rain on IMDb Rain is available for free download at the Internet Archive