Author: NeveR

Sunday Pic #16

Marcia has suggested I post this and see if any of the fans out there has suggestions and answers. So….. Is the person above Basil?….. I mean the guy on the right, not one of the people wearing hats. The photo is being sold HERE, and has this description: “8h824 STAGE DOOR candid 8×10 still ’37 visitor Basil Rathbone talking to showgirls on set by Miehle!” The seller also adds this: “….Note that this is an incredibly perplexing still! Why do I say that? Because it has the still code “SD”, and it is identified on the back as being an RKO still from 1937. Stage Door WAS made by RKO in 1937, but the front of the still shows Basil Rathbone, who had nothing to do with this movie! Plus the showgirls on the still are no one we recognize. So what movie is this from? Rathbone didn’t make any movies for RKO during this time, and the ones he did make don’t look right for this. Our guess is that he was a …

“Fight Your Husband & Win Success!” – 1922

This article first appeared in THE DANVILLE BEE, JULY 20 1922. Ouida Bergere was married to her second (or third) husband, George FitzMaurice. Click on pdf button to download a copy of the original article Well, those who have been following the eventful career of Basil’s second wife, the incomparable Ouida, will probably not be too surprised that this was a concept she stood by. But for the record, we now have it in writing. “Fight your husband and win success” says Ouida. Indeed. Click on the button above to download a pdf of the original article from 1922. She wouldn’t meet Basil for another year and wouldn’t marry him him for another four years, but we can guess her philosophy didn’t change too much over time. ***

Cynthia at Hockaday – by David Leddick

In the first real post of 2014, we’re looking at the brief memoir of Cynthia Rathbone given to us by David Leddick her friend and colleague at Hockaday Associates. Answering some of our questions, though also adding several more, David tells us Cynthia died of “drink and drugs.” I think more investigation is needed to explain how this poor girl’s life could have imploded like this, aged just 30! Much thanks to David for letting us use this… I worked with Cynthia Rathbone at Hockaday Associates in the early 1960s. Perhaps 1962 and 1963. Hockaday was then one of the new small front-edge advertising agencies in New York. We had perhaps 30 to 40 small clients, all of them selling expensive top-of-the-line products. Crane Papers, Elizabeth Arden, Grant’s Scotch. Miss Hockaday, the President, wanted her staff to be young, smart, fashionable. Clients liked the agency as much as they liked the advertising. Cynthia Rathbone was part of this young but adult world. Rock and Roll, The Beatles, and Mick Jagger hadn’t come on the scene …

Happy New Year

The blog has been quiet lately. Sorry guys, I’ve been sick and all alone except for the cat. I missed a blogathon. Bad blogging person. But here are some stats. The Baz had around 70,000 visitors this year, from 106 countries! Average of around 6,000 per month. 200 per day. That’s pretty cool. Please keep visiting – there’ll be lots of great stuff to come in the New Year.

Ouida’s Sherlock Hits the Presses…

Just a quick post to tell you all the Baker Street Journal sent out a reminder today that people have until Saturday to sign up for their Christmas edition which features the text of Ouida’s ill-fated 1953 stage play, SHERLOCK HOLMES.So go along and order a copy and discover whether it really was as hair-tearingly bad as everyone said. http://bakerstreetjournal.com/itemsforsale/subscriptions.html.

Pre-Code Rathbone

An occasional series giving you a chance to see and discuss some of Basil Rathbone’s pre-1934 talking films. The period in filmmaking known as “pre-code” because it predates the enforcement of the highly constraining Motion Picture Production Code in 1934. This code had actually been put on the statute books in 1930, but remained all but unenforced until the Production Code Administration was established – on Basil Rathbone’s 42nd birthday – and Joseph Breen was appointed to run it, with powers to censor or suppress any film it considered to have inappropriate content. Breen enforced these powers to the max. The effect this had on filmmaking was sweeping and fairly horrendous, and resulted in the butchering and infantilising of many story lines. Remember how in REBECCA (1940) Maxim de Winter doesn’t kill his first wife, but instead she dies by the totally lame method of falling down and hitting her head? Thank the Code which stated “the sympathy of the audience should never be thrown to the side of crime, wrongdoing, evil or sin,” requiring …