~Was Barbara Apollonia's hunchback.
~Three of his best known films were remade in the 1970s and 1980s.
~Famous for "Shakespearean" comedy.
~Famous for Swedish/Russian comedy.
~Schindler was on his list. In context! Eerie coincidence.
~Did not direct many films by the standard of his era, but directed only prestige projects.
~Not aboard Athenia, but directly connected to it.
~Connected to JFK by six degrees of separation game.
~His connection to JFK was given surprisingly risque dialogue, co-written by him, in a film which sdomehow slipped a lot by the censors.
~"I'm SURE Clark was just helping him adjust his cumberbund in the stall at the Ambassador." "Yeah, okay, seems credible. Places everyone"
~Detested by major star, who set out to destroy his American silent masterpiece, and would have succeeded were it not for those commies.
I might be away for a day or two so, alas, will end this lest I be away longer.
Barbara Apollonia/Apollina was Pola Negri.
Pola's Hunchback was none other than Ernst Lubitsch; who starred opposite her (as The Hunchback)and also directed her in her German silent masterpiece, Sumurun.
Pola, as you'll recall played the "Euro star" role to the hilt back in the 1920s, denouncing her American output as stupid in comparison to her German work. The combination of great star and great director soon brought Sumurun and Lubitsch to the attention of Mary Pickford.
She imported him to the US to direct her in Rosita. The collaboration was a disaster; Miss Pickford not having worked with anyone who did not kowtow to her since well before her first septic abortion.
The experience of working with a director who was not afraid of her was not a good one for America's favorite adulterous drunkard. DECADES later she decreed that Rosita should cease to exist, and when she paid to have her catalogue preserved the restorers and archivists were told, flat out, that if any preservation work was done on Rosita, Miss Pickford would personally sue the bejesus out of them. And so all US prints vanished. She bashed the film, and director, in a few interviews.
THEN in the 1960s a print was found in a Soviet archive, beyond the legal claws of the gin swilling girl next door. Turns out that Rosita was the first film Pickford did since ca 1915 in which A) she ACTED and B) the end result waasn't trash.
Lubitsch emerged from the fiasco intact. He did lots of prestige work, including To Be Or Not To Be, in which JFK's former room mate, and friend, Robert Stack starred opposite Carole Lombard. Miss Lombard's husband at the time was touchy about the fact that as a young hopeful he had...uhhhh.... 'serviced' William Haines to get his foot in the proverbial door. Set in Poland, this dramatic comedy is possibly the only worthwhile film to emerge since 1933, and in a weird touch, there is an insert shot of the head Nazi in occupied Poland's appointment book showing the name of Carole Lombard's character and, on the line above hers, the name O. Schindler.
Jumping back to 1939, Lubitsch was riding high on the success of Garbo's film Ninotchka. His family's summer sojourn in Europe was curtailed by the invasion of Poland, and Mrs. Lubitsch placed their daughter, Nicole, and Nicole's governess, aboard the Athenia in Glasgow to get them safely back to the US as quickly as possible.
Both survived, although I THINK they may have been in one of the lifeboats sucked into the propeller of the rescue ship, which began moving, unannounced, without giving time to the Athenia's tethered lifeboats to cast off.
Neat story! I would of never guess it was Negri. She's the one who always slips off my radar for some reason.
I don't know why Pickford was so put out with Rosita. She had wanted Mr. Lubitsch to help her break away from her little girl roles. Lubitsch had wanted to do Faust but Ma Pickford had a cow when she found out that Mary's character Marguerite in Faust strangles her illegitimate child so they did Rosita instead and it didn't make any money because Mary and her fans thought the film a steaming pile of you know what. But the critics at the time of the film's release liked the movie and praised it.
Next up in the liner/actor quiz. I think this will be easier:
~A stage career, and much later a film career, both ended tragically.
~A song associated with April 15, 1912, a clue.
~A persistent ghost story in anthologies.
~Many by the same name.
~Controversial 1916 film, which survives.
~Lost without a trace.
~Disastrous encounter with a president, real life and not reel life or stage life.
~Clues pertain to any one of three.
~One knew the king's secret.
~Fateful encounter with a cow.
~May have owned Madison Square "Garden." Linked to Madison Square Garden.
~Never known to have slept with William Haines. See, now I've eliminated all but three actors of a specific era!
~Ship set a precedent.
~Last appearance in a rainstorm highly doubted, by some.
~Lost at sea.
~Died romancing a real sheba.
~Rudolph Valentino; Lila Lee; Nita Naldi....but not him. Yet.
~Dynasty continues into its third century.
~Born to good luck.
~A lost heir and a prediction.
~How many can play "Six Degrees of Separation" between Racquel Welch and Prince Edward Augustus/Victoria Regina and succeed? This may be the only actor who fits the bill.
>I don't know why Pickford was so put out with Rosita.
Because she was working with a director who was not afraid of her, and who knew that he was better as a director than she was as an actress.
As a legendary control freak, she must have been rendered senseless by the presense of a director who insisted that she take direction. And, although the end result was her best work of the 1920s, she obviously harbored resentment over the film for the rest of her life.
And, what the film also highlights is that even with a great director, Pickford was only very good as an actress. THAT had to have been an ego blow as well~ the man who brought a brilliant performance out of Pola, who later brought career defining performances out of nearly everyone with whom he worked, coaxed the best of all possible performances out of Mary, but it still wasn't of legendary quality. Ouch.
If only Lubitsch had worked with her 10 years earlier. I think by the twenties Mary was pretty well locked into her goody little girl roles and her talent suffered for it. That's why she used the "Nobody wants me to do any roles except little girl roles" excuse. That's why Pickford was also keen to see the destruction of her early work with Griffith. Because she knew that some of it was of better quality acting wise although her claim that acting technique had changed so much from the early days of silents to late days of silents had merit too. A lot of the early films were hokey. Especially Griffith's Films, But Griffith had let Mary play a wide range of roles.
~Actor was lost at sea.
~Part of a still extant 'name' dynasty.
~He knew the king's secret.
~Was first of many, to the present day.
to which may be added...
~Disastrous encounter with a president.
~Ship definitely set a precedent.
~Death while romancing a sheba
~A deadly encounter with a cow.
~Controversial 1916 film.
~Consort to Mrs. Louis XVI
~The name can link Queen Victoria's predecessor to Racquel Welch, if you play the six degrees game.
~Yet another ghost story in lots of anthologies.
~Deadly encounter with a Ford.
~Well known in old Chicago.
~Familiar at Lloyd's of London.
December 1839: Would-be Samuel Cunard, Junius Smith, launches his second steamship, the President. The liner is fitted out in far more elegant style than the Cunard ships.
Her August 1840 debut is not is auspicious as it might be. Her 16 day crossing is three days longer than that of her Cunard rival, Acadia.
November 1840, she begins to run low on coal five days out from New York, and her captain announces to her passengers that she is turning back. Her passengers arrive in NYC days short of the day on which she should have arrived in Liverpool. She returns to England under a cloud of bad publicity, and is laid up.
She returns to service in February 1841. A friend of the captain's brings it to his attention that he President shows evident signs of "hogging."
She departs from NYC on March 11, 1841, with 136 on board. Among her passengers is the son of the Duke of Richmond, and actor Tyrone Power:
Great grandfather of Tyrone Power, star of In Old Chicago; Lloyds of London; Jesse James, who played the role of Solomon in Solomon and Sheba until he collapsed and died of a heart attack on set. Retained in long shots, to save the cost of reshooting his footage. His son has had a consistent, if not spectacular, career in film. Appeared opposite Racquel Welch's daughter, Tahnee, in Cocoon...while his father, Tyrone Power Sr., was a film star in his own right, including the 1916 pro-birth control, anti-abortion film "Where Are My Children?"
Anyway, hours after departing New York, the President is set upon by a storm of the century type of gale. The Orpheus, which departed with her, survives to report that the President made it as far as the Nantucket Shoals, but beyond that she is never reliably seen again.
The brig, Poultney, later finds a 60' x 30' section of the side of what they assume to be a steamship drifting at sea. It is painted black, with a white band. The schooner Moniko eventually finds the President's stern boat.
The Duke of Richmond, and Queen Victoria, are none too pleased.
The President sets a precedent, as the first 'celebrity fatality' ship of the steam era. The press keeps the story alive for months, including the inevitible 'note in a bottle' story, involving Tyrone Power.
Passenger totals on steamships suffer in the wake of this disaster. The discovery of what is probably her side drifting at sea; paired with the dual facts that a friend of the captain's was on record as having noted that the ship had hogged, and that the President departed NYC out of trim, caused the general public to believe that she had broken up in the storm of March 11.
Victorians loved a good ghost story, and one involving the President is still recycled nearly 170 years later. The servant of a friend of Tyrone Power's reports to said friend, on March 13, 1841, that he has answered repeated knocks on the door accompanied by a voice requesting to be let in, but that no one has been at the door when it has been opened. The puzzled servant opines that the voice sounds like that of Mr. Power. Etc. etc. etc.
~Actor was lost at sea. (TYRONE POWER)
~Part of a still extant 'name' dynasty. (DITTO)
~He knew the king's secret. (Best known of several books Tyrone Power published)
~Was first of many, to the present day. (Four actors by same name)
to which may be added...
~Disastrous encounter with a president. (Name of the ship contained in clue)
~Ship definitely set a precedent. (Factual, but also a horrible play on the name President)
~Death while romancing a sheba (Tyrone III's famous on set death)
~A deadly encounter with a cow. (In Old Chicago. Tyrone III's disaster epic. He played Dion O'Leary, of homicidal cow fame)
~Controversial 1916 film. (Where Are My Children? discussed on Gilded Age thread, starred Tyrone II)
~Consort to Mrs. Louis XVI (Tyrone III starred opposite Norma Shearer in Marie Antoinette)
~Deadly encounter with a Ford. (Tyrone III played Jesse James)
~Well known in old Chicago. (Film title in clue)
~Familiar at Lloyd's of London. (Film title in clue)
Dear LORD, George, how could I have made so obvious a mistake? I guess that I have to do penance....somehow. Twas indeed Ricardo Cortez. Of couse, I cannot blame myself, and so will deflect, and attribute the mistake to societal pressure and then go on to blame my parents.
Yup. I never really believed the connection between the famous shipwreck casualty and the likeable actor was legit, until the advent of the internet.