BLANCHE SWEET : SILENT FILM ACTRESS : 161 FILM CREDITS : BY FRED HARTSOOK : 1917

Blanche Sweet (1896-1986) was an American silent film actress. Her mother was a dancer and her father was a wine merchant. Blanche began show business at an early age. At age four she was performing with a touring company with stars, Marie Burroughs and Maurice Barrymore. At age thirteen, she was working at Biograph Studios under contract with D. W. Griffith. She became known as “The Biograph Blonde”. In 1914, Sweet moved to Paramount (Famous Players – Lasky). Paramount had offered her more money than Biograph could pay. During the 1910’s, Sweet appeared in several prominet film roles and kept her place as a popular leading lady. She played in a number of Cecil B. DeMille films. She and Marshall Neilan (actor, director, producer, screen writer) had an affair which led to Neilan obtaining a divorce and marrying young Blanche. She was about 16 years old. The marriage ended in 1929 because Neilan was an alleged philanderer. When “talkies” began, Sweets career suffered causing her to retire in 1930. The IMDb lists 161 film credits in Blanche’s filmography. Her post film career included radio work and non major Broadway roles. When job offers dissipated, she began working in a Los Angeles department store. She later worked with historians and gave lectures about the early days of Hollywood. This photo portrait of Miss Sweet was taken by American photographer, Fred Hartsook (1876-1930). He owned a chain of California studios described as “the largest photographic business in the world” at that time. The photo was taken circa 1917. Hartsook photographed many silent film stars as well as Woodrow Wilson during his Presidency. This vintage postcard’s AZO stamp box indicates that the postcard was published sometime between 1910 and 1930. This postcard is in very good condition (see scans).

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ANNA MAY WONG : FIRST CHINESE AMERICAN MOVIE STAR : FLAPPER : ANTI ASIAN BIAS

This vintage real photo postcard features the first Chinese American movie star, Anna May Wong (1905-1961). She had diverse performing experiences including silent film, sound film, stage, television and radio. Among her honors is that she will be depicted on the reverse of quarters as part of the “American Woman Quarter Series”. She was born in Los Angeles, California. She had to transfer from her public school to a Chinese school due to racial taunting. She began acting in silent films as a teenager. In 1922 she was in one of the first color films and appeared with Douglas Fairbanks in “The Thief of Bagdad” (1924). By 1924, Wong was an international star and a fashion icon. Wong was one of the early flappers. In 1928, Wong grew tired of playing stereotypical roles in Hollywood. She had enough of being the “Dragon Lady” or the “Butterfly Woman”. She began playing starring roles in Europe in some important plays and films. In the early to mid 1930’s, Wong commuted between Europe and the United States to perform in both theater and film. In 1935, Wong was the victim of significant anti-Asian discrimination when she was refused the starring role in Pearl Buck’s “The Good Earth”. MGM used a white actress in yellow face to play the starring role of the Asian character. One of the reasons she was excluded from the part was because she would have had to kiss a Caucasion actor is she took the role. Interracial kisses were prohibited in Hollywood. The next year Wong went to China to film a documentary about Chinese Culture and to visit the village that her family ancestors lived in. During the late 1930’s, Wong played in a number of B movies for Paramount Pictures. These films presented Chinese and Chinese American characters in a positive manner. During World War II she worked hard to aid the Chinese in their conflict with Japan. In the 1950’s she became involved with appearing on television. Wong never married. There were rumors of her being a lesbian and having affairs with director Leni Riefenstahl and actress Marlene Dietrich. In 1936, she was asked by reporters if she had marriage plans. She responded “No. I am wedded to my art”.  The IMDb reports that Wang has 61 credits in her filmography (1920-1961). In 1961, she died of a heart attack. This vintage portrait postcard was published by Ross Verlag as part of a series (No9596/1). The logo for Paramount Pictures can be seen in the lower right hand corner of the image. (SOLD)

PRETTY AMERICAN STAGE, FILM, AND TELEVISION ACTRESS: NANCY CARROLL

POSTCARD 1 (SOLD)

POSTCARD 2 (SOLD)

POSTCARD 2 (SOLD)

The beautiful actress pictured in these two real photo postcards is Nancy Carroll (1903-1965). Miss Carroll’s parents were Irish and she was born and raised in New York City. She left school at age sixteen to work as a stenographer for a lace manufacturing company. She and her sister participated in an amateur talent show. They performed a dance routine. She must have caught the acting bug because after this performance, she began pursuing a stage and screen career. She began her acting career in Broadway musicals. The IDBD lists Nancy Carroll as appearing in five Broadway productions between 1923 and 1948. Her musical background made her a successful “talkies” actress. She performed in movie musical in the 1930’s. Her movie debut was in “Ladies Must Dress” (1927). It seem 1928 was a busy year for Nancy Carroll. During that year she made eight films and one of them, “Easy Come, Easy Go” propelled her to stardom. Her costars over her career included George Bancroft, Cary Grant, and Randolph Scott. Carroll was under contract to Paramount Pictures and their relationship was stormy. She often refused roles the studio offered her and her reputation became damaged. She was seen as stubborn and uncooperative. Carroll was successful in light comedies, melodramas, and musicals and appreciated by critics and fans. In fact, during the early 1930’s she received more fan mail than any other star. Despite all these positives, Paramount released her from her contract. In the mid 1930’s she joined Columbia Pictures stable of performers but made four not very successful films and became a film actress no longer in demand. In 1938 she retired from films and returned to stage and starred in an early television series in 1950. She died of an aneurysm in 1965.                                                                           

 Postcard 1 was published by Ross Verlag (c.late 1920’s) as part of the luxus klasse (luxory class) series. It bears the logo of Paramount Pictures which indicates that the photograph was taken during Carroll’s stint with that studio. The postcard is part of a series (no.535). (SOLD).

Postcard 2 bears the logo of Paramount Pictures which indicates that this photograph was taken during Carroll’s stint with that studio. The postcard is part of a series (no.5395/3).     SOLD

Nancy Carroll in a scene from the 1930 pre-code film “The Best Of Life” (1930)

Postcard 2 (SOLD)

POSTCARD 1 (SOLD)

Published in: on August 15, 2021 at 12:00 pm  Comments (3)  
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PRETTY ACTRESS LOTTI LODER AND HER “DUTCH CUT” (RISQUE RPPC)

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lohdi 1 This vintage real photo postcard features German/Hungarian actress Lottie Loder (1910-1999). She was born in Nuremberg, Germany. Loder started her career as a dancer in Vienna. She was a “talkie” film actress (Warner Brothers). She was known for “A Soldier’s Plaything (1930), “Oh, Sailor Behave! (1930), and “Men of the Sky (1931). Her career was brief. The brunette leading lady, according to IMDb, acted in just five films between 1930 and 1931. Warner Brothers brought her to Hollywood to compete with MGM’s Greta Garbo, and Paramount’s Marlene Dietrich. Note Loder’s “dutch cut” hairstyle. She clearly copied Colleen Moore’s 1920’s trademark hair style. Loder was in good company. Celebrated actress, Louise Brooks, also copied Miss Moore’s “dutch cut”. Loder died in Miami, Florida at about 89 years of age. This postcard portrait was published by Ross Verlag and was part of a series (no. 6042/1). The postcard promotes Warner Brothers films. This photo portrait postcard is in good condition. The postcard has a pinhole in the center of it’s top border above the image (see scans).

 

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IMMIGRATION IN AMERICA (1939 STYLE): ISA MIRANDA, ITALIAN FILM STAR GETS CITIZENSHIP

This press photo was taken in 1939 and it captures Italian film star, Isa Miranda taking an oath of allegiance and receiving her U.S. citizenship papers. Paramount studios had brought the actress to Hollywood just two years before. The caption for this photograph states that during the short stint that she lived in the United States, she had become “completely Americanized”. The photograph shows Miss Miranda, her husband (Alfred Guarini) and the government clerk. Guarini (1901-1981) was an Italian screenwriter, film producer and director. Alfred Guarini was active in show business between 1935 and 1963. He is noted for his management of Isa Miranda’s career both before, and after their marriage. In the mid 1930’s, he encouraged her to work in a variety of different countries for the purpose of making her an international star. Isa Miranda (1909-1982) was born in Milan, Italy. She worked as a typist as she studied to be a stage actress at the “Accademia dei Filodrammatici” in Milan. She began her film career playing bit parts in Italian films. She achieved great success after appearing in the film “Everybody’s Woman” (1934). The film launched her career and she was given a contract with Paramount Pictures which billed her as the “Italian Marlene Dietrich”. She played several “femme fatale” roles for Paramount. After the outbreak of World War II, she returned to Italy where she acted on stage and in film. Her performance in “The Walls of Malapaga” (1949) earned her an award at the Cannes film festival. This press photo is from the Los Angeles bureau of the Illustrated Daily News and belonged to Acme News, located in New York City. In the 1960’s she began a television career in England. The IMDb credits Miss Miranda with appearing in 95 films between 1933 and 1978. The photograph measures about  9″ x 7″.  (SOLD)