Monday, January 31, 2011

Grace Bradley

Grace Bradley, one of the few actresses who kept her given name, was born on September 21, 1913 in Brooklyn, New York. She attended The Eastman School of Music and wanted to become a professional pianist, but also studied voice and dance. Her first professional gig was on Broadway in the 1930 production of Ballyho, and it was followed by numerous nightclub and stage appearances. Hollywood was the logical next step.

Grace's first film was an uncredited part in 1932's Tip Tap Toe, but 1933 saw her in a featured role in Too Much Harmony. Bing Crosby was the film's star. In the 1930's she was in 30 films including Girl Without A Room (1933), Harold Lloyd's The Cat's Paw (1934), Stolen Harmony (1935) starring George Raft, Anything Goes (1936) with Crosby again and Ethel Merman, Wake Up and Live (1937), Larceny on the Air (1937), and The Big Broadcast of 1938.

Things really changed in May 1937. Grace went on a blind date and met Hopalong Cassidy star William Boyd. They were married the following month, her first marriage and his fifth (and last). She was 23 and he was 42. They remained married for 35 years until his death in 1972. Grace continued to act after the marriage, but her career was not heading anywhere and after five films in the early 40's, she retired from the screen. She remained active however, traveling and helping promote her husband's Hopalong Cassidy films, television shows and personal appearances. She was quoted as saying, "I made a point of being in the background. As far as the kids were concerned, Hoppy was Hoppy. He didn't have a wife or family. When the young ones would ask, "Who are You?," I'd say, "I'm Hoppy's mommy."

Lastly, as often featured as a nightclub performer or possible other woman type, Grace had some interesting character names. They included Verne La Mond, Nada, JoJo La Vern, Flossie, Trixie La Brey, Bonnie La Tour, and Lily Lamont.

Grace Bradley Boyd died on her 97th birthday; Tuesday, September 21, 2010, and was interred with her husband.

Double-click on the images for a larger view.

Movie Classic Magazine - September 1934

Here are several publicity photos of Grace.

Publicity still from The Cat's Paw.

Frame captures from Sitting On The Moon (1936)

Frame captures from Larceny On The Air (1937)

Frame captures from Romance On The Run (1938)

Grace Bradley -What do you think - Allure?

Sunday, January 02, 2011

Asides - Covers From The Silent 20's

Some of the best artists and illustrators of the twentieth century produced cover illustrations for the leading film publications. The images in this post cover each year from 1920 to 1929, and are excellent examples of their work. I have also included a few inside pages and one ad to help pay for this blog - so be sure to contact the advertiser and say you saw it here.

Double click on the images for a larger view.

Picture Play-October, 1920
Artist: Unknown
Picture Play did not always credit the artist.
Cover: Constance Binney

Photoplay-November 1920
Artist: Rolf Armstrong
Cover: Anna Q. Nilsson

Photoplay-December 1920
Artist: Rolf Armstrong
Cover: Anita Stewart

Photoplay-October 1921
Artist: Rolf Armstrong
Cover: Agnes Ayres

Photoplay-October 1921
Marie Prevost, in the latest swimwear.

Photoplay-January 1922
Artist: Rolf Armstrong
Cover: Corinne Griffith

Picture Play-October 1921
Artist: Henry Clive
Cover: Lila Lee

Photoplay-July 1923
Artist: J. Knowles Hare
Cover: Pauline Garon

Photoplay-August 1923
Artist: J. Knowles Hare
Cover: Marion Davies

Picture Play-November 1924
Cover: Mae Murray

Picture Play-November 1924
Jetta Goudal - publicity still for Open All Night, which is available on DVD.

Picture Play-November 1924
Artist: White Studios, NY
This may be the same studio known for its photography of Broadway productions.
Cover: Betty Bronson

Picture Play-September 1925
Artist: Hal Phyfe
Hal is best remembered as a Hollywood portrait photographer, but began his career as an artist and illustrator.
Cover: Renee Adoree

Picture Play-September 1925
The great profile, along with Mary Astor in a film that was never made or released.

Photoplay-December 1925
Artist: Livingston Geer
I cannot locate any bio on Mr. Geer.
Cover: Georgia Hale

Photoplay-December 1925
La Boheme was released in 1926 and also starred Renee Adoree.

Photoplay-December 1925
Bille Dove in her 23rd film, available on DVD.

Photoplay-December 1925
Esther Ralston, The American Venus.

Photoplay-August 1926
Artist: C(K)arl Van Buskirk
Best info I can find dates him from 1887-1930
Cover: Doris Kenyon

Photoplay-June 1927
Artist: Charles Sheldon
Cover: Mary Brian

Photoplay-September 1928
Artist: Charles Sheldon
Cover: Gloria Swanson

Screenland-December 1928
Artist: Georgia Warren
I cannot locate any bio on Ms. Warren.
Cover: Nancy Carroll

Picture Play-September 1929
Artist: Modest Stein
Cover: Baclanova -Olga to her friends.

Picture Play-September 1929
Beautiful portrait of Joan Bennett

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