New Look—New ReelJewels

Well, I promised long ago that I would fix things. I’ve honestly not had time or the energy to do so, but I’m making ReelJewels my top priority this year and I’ve  already done quite a lot. The design isn’t here yet, but the format is. There’s already new content in the form of articles and all the articles that were originally posted before but not linked are available.

Here’s to 2014—wishing you the best of health, lots of new favorite classic movies, and hope you enjoy the new content waiting to be found here.

I’ll start you off here: http://reeljewels.com/articles—or conveniently, I’ve tucked the articles feed right under this post.

Keeping Up With Hollywood: February 22, 1951

by Louella Parsons
February 21, 1951

Not since the stories that Shirley Temple was actually a dwarf and wasn’t a child actress, and that the real Mary Pickford had been dead for years and another actress was taking her place, have we had as ridiculous a fabrication as the one printed about Jeanette MacDonald.

A story in a Vienna newspaper says that Jennette MacDonald is in reality the child of elderly Austrian parents who still live there. I knew Jeanette’s mother, a wonderful women who died in 1947. Jeanette looks like her. Her father died several years ago—and whoever started the Austrian parents yarn certainly has a good imagination (or a bad one).

Nelson Eddy Lays It on Line to Get Out of MGM Contract

by Hedda Hopper
Los Angeles Times
August 24, 1942

Hedda Hopper’s Looking At Hollywood

Hollywood, Cal., Aug. 24. —The mighty Metro is snowed under with requests for more Nelson Eddy pictures, but I don’t think you’ll be seeing any more from that studio. Here’s the lowdown on his deal with them, and it’s pretty amazing, to say the least:

Tho he was one of their greatest money makers, his salary never rose above $2500 a week (which he gets in one night on his concert tours), and after balking at playing a sort of Daddy Long Legs to Newcomer Kathryn Grayson, he asked for his release. They said: “Sure, we’ll give it to you, but it’ll cost you dough.” It did. They wanted all the money he’s earned from them since Jan. He paid it. That’s how badly he wanted to get away.

Concert Star, Screen Idol, Is Truly ‘Self-Made Man’

by Mary Mann
The Salt Lake Tribune
December 22, 1935

Nelson Eddy, screen film idol and one of America’s foremost baritones, is coming to Salt Lake City on January 15 to give a concert tinder the sponsorship of the extension division of the University of Utah.

A few short years ago, Nelson Eddy was a newspaper man who never dreamed of becoming an international figure. He sang at his work to the tune of losing two good jobs. Either his editors had no ear for music or they were unappreciative talent.

Read more…

Nelson Eddy Finally Tries Eating Shortnin’ Bread; Singer Likes It

by Bob Thomas
Associated Press
November 18, 1946

HOLLYWOOD COMMENTS

Hollywood, Nov. 18, (AP) — Mammy’s little baby loves shortnin’ bread, and so does Nelson Eddy now after years of singing the darn song.

In recent years Eddy and shortnin’ bread have become as closely associated as Red Skelton and “I Dood It,” or salt and peanuts. Only just recently did Nelson try the pastry.

A cook in northern California heard he was to be her guest, so she whipped up some.

“You know, it tastes pretty good,” Nelson said.

Read more…

Notes on Don Ameche

Fox Publicity Department
Date Unknown

Don Ameche seldom eats at home, although his wife is a good cook. Don explained that he doesn’t like home cooking and particularly dislikes the idea of going home and eating a meal that is not of his own choice—since he never can make up his mind about just what he wants to eat until he sits down to dine. After work at the film studio, he usually meets his wife and they go to a restaurant. He is fond of spaghetti.

Read more…

Don Ameche on Don Ameche

For the 20th Century Fox Publicity Department
Late 1930’s

When I first came to Hollywood after five years with the radio chains a number of sympathetic souls maneuvered me into a corner for a heart-to-heart talk.

They were a little bit slow in coming to the point, but at least one hardy soul saw no further advantage to beating around the bush.

Read more…

Turning Tables On Press

by Don Ameche
20th Century-Fox Publicity
1937

I turned the tables on the press today.

During the last year, I have been interviewed 1,566 times, more or less, and what with the considerable journalistic experience I acquired as the city editor in “love Is News”, I came to the conclusion that it was about time I did some interviewing myself.

Emboldened by such a momentous decision, I was ready for Merle Potter, the staff correspondent of the Minneapolis Journal, when he strolled on the “Love Under Fire” set at 20th Century-Fox studios.

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Don Ameche Heeds Fan Mail

April 1936

THE POSTMAN—At Twentieth Century-Fox Studios reported that Don Ameche’s fan mail was running only slightly behind Shirley Temple’s and Production Chief Darryl F. Zanack realized that the moment of Ameche’s stardom was at hand.

Mr. Zanack’s sleek. Valentinesque recruit from radio had been given a strenuous apprenticeship at Twentieth Century. Five hours after his arrival in Hollywood he went to work in a windy problem movie called “Sins of Man” Next he supported Loretta Young in Ramona, a trio of beauties in “Ladies in Love,” was the shadowy romantic background for Sonja Henie’s figure scating in “One in a Million” and dropped to a villainous foil for Tyrone Power in “Love Is News.”

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The Happiness Boy

by Dora Albert
Modern Screen
October 1939

Ty Powers feels no one has a right to be as glad as Don perpetually is!

HE IS said to receive more fan mail than any other actor on his lot except Shirley Temple. Recently he was chosen by the deaf people of this country as the actor with the finest voice. (What they really meant was that his lips were the easiest to read.) He has a fan in Oakland, California, who has seen every picture in which he has appeared from fifty-five to one hundred and thirty times. A woman in Warren, Pennsylvania named a pig after him and entered it in a contest of the Ladies’ Aid Society.

Read more…