Hollywood 1920s

Ramon Novarro (Fake News: Fact-Checking Hollywood Babylon Episode 19) by Karina Longworth

Listen, download this episode, or find on Apple Podcasts.

Ramon Novarro was a Mexican actor and singer whose stardom at MGM in the 1920s and 30s was not impeded by his offscreen life as a gay man. In Hollywood Babylon, Anger focuses only on Novarro’s grisly murder in 1968 -- which outed Novarro to a public that had largely forgotten him--and needlessly embellishes a crime scene that was already pretty horrible. Today, in our final episode of Fact-Checking Hollywood Babylon, we will explore the llife which Anger left out of Hollywood Babylon, and correct that book’s version of Novarro’s death.

Ramon Novarro, Francis X Bushman, and Kathleen Key in  Ben Hur: A Tale of the Christ , 1925

Ramon Novarro, Francis X Bushman, and Kathleen Key in Ben Hur: A Tale of the Christ, 1925

Ramon Novarro & Dorothy Janis in The Pagan, 1929

Ramon Novarro & Dorothy Janis in The Pagan, 1929

Music:

The music used in this episode, with the exception of the intro and outro, was sourced from royalty-free music libraries and licensed music collections. The intro includes a clip from the film Casablanca. The outro song this week is “Bye Bye Baby” by Madonna.

Novarro with Greta Garbo in  Mata Hari , 1931

Novarro with Greta Garbo in Mata Hari, 1931

Credits:

This episode was written, narrated and produced by Karina Longworth.

Editor: Cameron Drews.

Research and production assistant: Lindsey D. Schoenholtz.

Social media assistant: Brendan Whalen.

Logo design: Teddy Blanks.

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Clara Bow (Fake News: Fact Checking Hollywood Babylon Episode 11) by Karina Longworth

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We’ll close this half of our Hollywood Babylon season with one of that book’s most famously distorted stories: the tale of “It” Girl Clara Bow’s supposed nymphomania and alleged “tackling” of the entire USC football team. The real story of Clara Bow’s life and career is a much richer tale, involving changing sexual mores, and the change in the audience’s tastes that overlapped with the end of the silent era. Featuring special guest Natasha Lyonne!

Clara Bow and the WAMPAS Baby Stars of 1924

Clara Bow and the WAMPAS Baby Stars of 1924

Portrait of Clara Bow, 1920's

Portrait of Clara Bow, 1920's

SHOW NOTES:  

Sources:

This episode is a response to, and includes a brief excerpt from, Hollywood Babylon by Kenneth Anger.

Clara Bow: Runnin’ Wild by David Stenn

Directed by Dorothy Arzner by Judith Mayne

Silent Stars by Jeanine Basinger

Moving Pictures: Memories of a Hollywood Prince by Budd Schulberg

The New York Graphic: The World’s Zaniest Newspaper by Lester Cohen

Final Thoughts on The “It” Girl and the Secretary, derangedlacrimes.com

The Evening Graphic's Tabloid Reality By Bob Stepno, stepno.com

Clara Bow and Charles "Buddy" Rogers in Wings, 1927

Clara Bow and Charles "Buddy" Rogers in Wings, 1927

Music:

Original music was composed for this episode by Evan Viola. Most of the rest of the music used in this episode, with the exception of the intro and outro, was sourced from royalty-free music libraries and licensed music collections. The intro includes a clip from the film Casablanca. The outro song this week is “Daughter of a Child” by The Auteurs.

Excerpts from the following songs were used throughout the episode:

The Smoke Room - Gunnar Johnsen  
After the Freakshow - Jenny Roos
Cinema Romanza 14 - Jonatan Jarpehag
Bad News Piano 02 - Oscar Collin
Angry Cats - Hakan Ericsson
Loser - Anders Ekengren
My Simple Thing 2 - Peter Sandberg
Mississippi Ramble 1 - Martin Gauffin
I Don’t Smoke - Mythical Score Society
“Fight On” - Milo Sweet, 1922 (USC Fight Song) 
The Hepcat Swagger - Martin Landh
My Simple Thing - Peter Sandberg
Music from “The Wild Party” 1929 - John Leipold
French Girls - Hakan Eriksson
Dust Bowl 1 - Hakan Eriksson
Cluedo - Hakan Eriksson
People Falling Down 3 - Gavin Luke
Black and White Memories 3 - Martin Hall
Whiskey Rondo - Hakan Eriksson
Mas Cerca De Ti 5 - Martin Carlberg
Music from “Call Her Savage” 1932 - Peter Brunelli, Arthur Lange
Sad Piano Walk 1 - Oscar Collin  

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Credits:

Our special guest this week is Matt Bomer.

This episode was written, narrated and produced by Karina Longworth.

Editors: Sam Dingman and Jacob Smith.

Research and production assistant: Lindsey D. Schoenholtz.

Social media assistant: Brendan Whalen.

Logo design: Teddy Blanks.

Marilyn Monroe as Clara Bow, photographed by Richard Avedon

Marilyn Monroe as Clara Bow, photographed by Richard Avedon

Thomas Ince and the Hearst "Coverup" (Fake News: Fact-Checking Hollywood Babylon Episode 9) by Karina Longworth

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Listen, download this episode, or find on iTunes.

Thomas Ince was one of early Hollywood’s most pioneering producers—in fact, some credit him for popularizing “producer” as a job title and for codifying what it meant to do the job, as well as helping to develop the Western as a genre. But today, if Ince is remembered at all, it’s for his death aboard a yacht owned by William Randolph Hearst, amidst a star-studded party attended by Chaplin, writer Elinor Glyn, and actress/Hearst’s mistress Marion Davies. For decades, rumors have swirled that Ince was felled not by “acute indigestion,” as Hearst’s papers claimed, but by “a bullet hole in [his] head,” as Kenneth Anger put it. Who was Ince, what really happened on that yacht, and why have fictionalizations of his death (spread by Anger and others) flourished for so long?

Thomas Ince, Charlie Chaplin, Mack Sennett & D. W. Griffith, c. 1915

Thomas Ince, Charlie Chaplin, Mack Sennett & D. W. Griffith, c. 1915

SHOW NOTES:  

Sources:

This episode is a response to, and includes a brief excerpt from, Hollywood Babylon by Kenneth Anger.

Hearst Over Hollywood: Power, Passion, and Propaganda in the Movies (Film and Culture Series) by Louis Pizzitola

The First Lady of Hollywood: A Biography of Louella Parsons by Samantha Barbas

Thomas Ince: Hollywood's Independent Pioneer by Brian Taves  

Silent Stars by Jeanine Basinger

“The Chateau Elysee: Scientology's Celebrity Centre Before it Went Clear” by Hadley Meares, kcet.org, April 19, 2013

“Hollywood’s historic Villa Carlotta returns to rental market as upscale, Airbnb-style lodging, What about rent control?” by Jenna Chandler, la.curbed.com, June 1, 2018

Inceville, c. 1919

Inceville, c. 1919

Music:

Original music was composed for this episode by Evan Viola. Most of the rest of the music used in this episode, with the exception of the intro and outro, was sourced from royalty-free music libraries and licensed music collections. The intro includes a clip from the film Casablanca. The outro song this week is “Life Classes/Life Model” by The Auteurs.

Excerpts from the following songs were used throughout the episode:

The Smoke Room - Gunnar Johnsen  
Finkelstein’s Walk in the Rain - Per-Anders Nilsson
Dust Bowl 1 - Hakan Eriksson
Loser - Anders Ekengren
My Simple Thing 2 - Peter Sandberg
Whiskey Rondo - Hakan Eriksson
Paris Waltz - Hakan Eriksson
Time to Tango - Hakan Eriksson
Black and White - Magnus Ringblom Quartet
Bad News Piano 17 - Oscar Collin
Cluedo - Hakan Eriksson
Jazz and Blue Piano 1 - Jonaton Jarpehag

The Oneida, William Randolph Hearst's ship

The Oneida, William Randolph Hearst's ship

Credits:

Our special guest this week is Fred Savage.

This episode was written, narrated and produced by Karina Longworth.

Editors: Sam Dingman and Jacob Smith.

Research and production assistant: Lindsey D. Schoenholtz.

Social media assistant: Brendan Whalen.

Logo design: Teddy Blanks.

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