PHOTOS, Sunday Pic
Comments 95

Sunday Pic #1: MGM 1943

I’m sort of getting into a thing of using weekends to post the photos and other things sent in by readers. This Sunday we’re featuring an image sent in by Sophie. Sophie found it online and discovered its massive potential for enlargement while playing around with it on Photoshop, so she did some crops for us. The pic is an MGM publicity photo from 1943, after the Baz became a contract player there.

Here’s the full pic: If you download it and expand it to its full size it’s so detailed you can even see the little snags and bobbles on the fabric of his jacket.

And here’s a detail. At risk of being fangirly – wasn’t he fecking gorgeous?

A close-up of the pin he’s wearing. No idea what it is. Anyone?

And the back – with a little bit of blurb. Apparently he was a “consistent Sunday Nighter at the Hollywood Canteen?” 😀

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95 Comments

  1. Michael K says

    definitely you’re going to be a well-known blogger if you aren’t already. Cheers!

    Like

  2. Jerrell says

    He was a honey in his prime. I believe he played both ways and had a number of male and female lovers

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  3. Jennifer says

    “Box 29, Folder 6
    Rathbone, Ouida: “Cynthia Rathbone Story,” Draft”

    So has she like turned her life into fiction?

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  4. carolinapantherfan says

    HOT. I mean, where has he been all my life. I’m going to Lovefilm to find anything with Basil Rathbone in it.

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  5. Davis says

    I simply want to say what a treasure this site is to all fans of Mr Rathbone. I’v been lurking here since Sept, enjoying the articles and the comment discussions. Thank you,and hope your arm mends soon.

    Like

  6. penelope says

    Just want to say thank thank THANK YOU for this site. I love it so much and the comments are so interesting and I am learning so much new information about lovely Basil

    Like

  7. AnnaPindurka says

    Oh look, someone has just posted Basil’s 1930 pre-code Sin Takes A Holiday. The whole thing!

    Like

    • Hally says

      Oh wow thanks! I was wondering what I’d do after school today and now I know. It was a toss up between homework and helping my dad clean the garage. Now I know I’ll be “revizing” in my room until dinner 🙂

      Like

    • I’m always amazed by what they could get away with pre-code. All the men talking about cheating on their wives.

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      • Billi says

        Yes, and Basil actually says “they all think we’re having an affair.” Could they say that post-code?

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    • Vera Vague says

      Well, I think it’s not the best film Basil ever made. Dreadfully static and talkie without being witty.

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      • Janice says

        I agree. It was a bit boring and Basil didn’t even get to kiss the girl 😦 OMG – someone PLEASE do a fanvid of all his kissing scenes!!!!

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    • roesbette says

      This one’s on TCM tonight, so I’m watching it there because usually they have excellent prints, and I love Robert Osborne’s intros. Checkout the article on TCM.com today. User reviews and the article love Baz and say Constance should have dumped the boss for him.

      Like

    • Lissamylissa says

      headcanon for me is these two are shagging like weasels all the time she’s staying in his house! I mean, c’mon, unless she’s dead from waist down she just would wouldn’t she.

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  8. roesbette says

    Basil is very handsome, but those candids of Errol Flynn on your tumblr site are gorgeous! I’m sorry, but Flynn is almost godlike in his beauty. I guess my choice would be Flynn for a one-night stand (and it would be a great one, I hope!) and Basil for a long-term relationship. I think Basil and I could sit down at Starbuck’s and talk for hours about “Judas,” literature, philosophy, life, etc.

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    • Ah but they say Flynn was lousy in bed and actually a pretty impressive philosopher – so where does that leave us? 🙂 He was a godlike beauty though.

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      • Yolanda says

        I never heard Flynn was a philosopher, but I did hear he wasn’t that good in bed – still who cares when he looks like that hey girls?

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    • Ooh, I’d find it hard to choose which one I’d have for a one night stand! Can I have them on alternates? Or how about a threesome? 😀

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    • Jemima says

      Basil is more appealing to me. But I go for soulful poets over hunks every time. Rupert Everett (before he wrecked his face) rather than Bruce Willis.

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      • Molly Pinkerton says

        Oh God totally! Rupert Everett was my Ideal Man before I saw Basil in Mark of Zorro and my ovaries exploded!

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  9. Greg Rathbone says

    What relation was Basil to Frank Benson? I mean I know he was a “cousin” but how exactly? His photo suggests a family resemblance

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    • I keep thinking he’s holding an umbrella 😀 – but yes he does have a resemblance, though not as pretty. I’m afraid I don’t know how he was related to Basil though. Maybe one of our readers can help?

      Like

    • Hally says

      He does look a bit like Basil but much less good looking.I thought he was holding an umbrella too!

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  10. All the argument about Basil’s personal life going on here atm, has anyone researched the papers at NYU?

    http://dlib.nyu.edu/findingaids/search/?q=basil+rathbone&collectionId=tamwag&start=0

    Here’s a list of just some of what’s there:

    Box 29, Folder 3
    Rathbone, Basil: Contracts

    Box 29, Folder 4
    Rathbone, Basil: In and Out of Character, Galley Proofs

    Box 29, Folder 5
    Rathbone, Basil: In and Out of Character, Page Proofs

    Box 28, Folder 32
    Correspondence: Rathbone, Cynthia (from Basil)

    Box 28, Folder 34
    Correspondence: Rathbone, Ouida (from Basil)

    Box 28, Folder 35
    Correspondence: Rathbone, Ouida (from Basil)

    Box 29, Folder 6
    Rathbone, Ouida: “Cynthia Rathbone Story,” Draft

    From the titles it looks as if there might well be answers to a few of the more frequently debated points. If I was within easy access of New York I’d roll along there this weekend. But Doncaster is a tidy journey away 😀

    Like

    • Hi Ken – yes we know about this archive. If I was in NYC I’d have visited it by now, but it’s going to have to wait. I’m in the UK and Marcia is in PA. But you’re right it needs to be checked out and will be ASAP. If we have any readers living in NY – why not go along and take a look? the correspondence between Basil and Ouida might be very informative.

      Like

    • AnnaPindurka says

      You mention the Spitfire, which reminded me of a little radio play with Basil Rathbone playing its designer. It is mostly focused on R. J. Mitchell’s own story and could be called melodramatic, I can’t judge that, but I like these plays and found it very interesting to realise that the major stars played in these very compact radio versions of big movie hits. You can listen to them here: http://archive.org/details/ScreenGuildTheater, just search the name Rathbone. (There seems to be a bit of a mistake in the numbering, the Spitfire story is no. 139, not no. 156 as shown in the list.)

      Like

  11. Katoodlel Lolly says

    BTW, I love men with big noses? Is that weird? My mom thinks so, but I don’t! LOL! Alan Rickman, Adrien Brody, Giorgio Chiellini(An Italian footballer/soccer player), and,,,,,DRUM ROLL! BASIL RATHBONE! Remember Basil’s line from “The Woman in Green”, “Throughout history, prominent men have had prominent noses”, or something like that, please correct my mistake if I did make a mistake! LOL! Thanks for reading.

    Like

  12. Katoodlel Lolly says

    I’m dreaming tonight, of a man I love, even more than I usually do!
    And his name is Basil Rathbone! Love that nose, love that nose! Lovely guy!

    Like

    • Lissamylissa says

      And his eyes and his mouth. God I think he has such a sexy mouth. Ascetic and delicate and with that hint of a volcanic sexuality buried inside him. He was one of the hottest Holmeses ever.

      Like

      • Sarah says

        I know what you mean about his mouth. Sometimes he pulls it all thin and tight, but then sometimes, when he says some words there’s almost like a pout, and it’s so sexy! You just think about kissing that mouth don’t you. I wonder if he was a good kisser.In my imagination he sure is!

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  13. At the risk of not gushing over his looks, might I add that Clarence Sinclair Bull made the photo–right up there with Hurrell as the greatest portrait artists of the golden era. And I checked my photos shot this year at the Bellagio Road estate and believe this is where the photo was taken. I think the low iron fence is still there.

    Like

    • Hally says

      Does the house Basil lived in still exist? God I’d love to go there. Who lives in it now?

      Like

  14. Elvira says

    His skin is amazing, given he’s been a smoker all his life. Even magnified, you can catch a hint of stubble but other than that, almost flawless.

    Like

  15. Peder says

    The pin looks like a plane flying over a building. Was Basil in the RAF in the first war?

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    • Margaret G says

      No he was in the Liverpool Scottish, an infantry regiment. The RAF didn’t exist as an outfit until after the Great War. It was termed the Royal Flying Corps before then. As in Dawn Patrol.

      Like

  16. AnnaPindurka says

    The Hollywood Canteen had an East Coast counterpart (both entertained and served servicemen before they went out to the war, there are useful wikipedia articles about these charitable events/places). Films were made about both, and the “Stage Door Canteen” has this lovely bit with a charming Katharine Cornell reciting from Romeo and Juliet. Another leading lady of Basil’s is right next to her, Aline MacMahon.

    Like

    • Oh yes – there’s Aline! Was she predominantly a Broadway gal? I think she is breathtakingly marvellous in the early scenes of KIND LADY. She and Basil play one of the best exchanges ever. All that whispered sexual tension and struggle for dominance. It’s so modern and expectation-defying. Reminds me of the Coen brothers. The rest of the movie doesn’t measure up unfortunately – but those opening scenes are fan-fecking-tastic.

      Like

    • Hally says

      So, like with Hollywood Canteen and Stage Door Canteen were the stars actually serving in the canteen and stuff? That’d be so cool.

      Like

    • Helen Granger says

      Wow Baz and Katherine Cornell as Romeo and Juliet – though I still think the perfect pairing would have been Basil and Eva Le Gallienne!

      Like

  17. Louise says

    amazingly detailed pictures. He was indeed completely stunningly gorgeous. I’m curious why the words “Basil Rathbones celebrating” look like they’ve been crossed out?

    Like

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