All posts filed under: MAGAZINE ARTICLES

“Folies-Bergere” – 1940

this article first appeared in TIME on February 26 1940. Click on the pdf button to download a copy of the original article Folies-Bergère Time Magazine, February 26, 1940 Mention of the word party brings to Ouida Bergère’s baby brown eyes a weird, predaceous glitter. Ouida Bergère (nee Ida Berger) is chubby, red-headed Mrs. Basil Rathbone. Once something of a scriptress, for seven years she was head of Paramount’s scenario department. Now, with her tall, dark, talented, professionally sinister, personally amiable cinemactor husband she inhabits an overstuffed stronghold in Hollywood’s fashionable Bel Air quarter. There she contrives her parties. They are said to being as a fulmination of her blood, a bounding along the veins, which eventually detonates in something pyrotechnic, exotic, ingenious and rare. At their most grandiose, they combine the best elements of annual maneuvers, a meeting of the Soviet of Nationalities and the New York World’s fair. Of late a run of foul California weather has dashed Ouida Rathbone’s efforts. It began with her Charity Ball last December. The project was sumptuous. …

“It’s Cheers for Basil Rathbone now” – 1935

As promised, here is the article quoted in the comments. It's from the magazine Motion Picture, August 1935, and is part of a promotion for Rathbone's new film ANNA KARENINA (1935). Click the pdf button on the left to download a photocopy of the original article It’s Cheers for BASIL RATHBONE Now Motion Picture August 15 1935 Basil Rathbone’s performance, as Copperfield’s stepfather, was a cameo of cruelty, but it made a name for him. And Garbo, recognizing genius, quickly made him her leading man By Paula Harrison When I heard that Basil Rathbone was to play David’s sadistic stepfather in Copperfield, I recoiled. Not that attractive actor, I protested to myself, not the man who’d played the greatest lover of them all opposite Katherine Cornell. Not Romeo as Murdstone, I pleaded wildly, if silently, to the powers that be. Say it ain’t so, Joe. Murdstone is the villainous uncle in David Copperfield. I saw the picture and ate dirt – once in apology, once in homage to an inspired piece of casting and acting. …

“The Jew on the Stage and the Screen” – 1929

A photo recently surfaced on Tumblr, of the Baz from the 1929 stage play Judas (co-written by Rathbone and Walter Ferris). I’ve decided to feature it here because it signifies a notable period in Basil’s life. It’s very high res, click on the images and enlarge them to full size and you can see all the details of the dust on the floor, the vein running over his forearm, and the homespun weave of…whatever that thing is he’s wearing. It makes it all quite immediate and real. A frozen moment in great clarity. The moment was in January 1929. Things must have looked pretty great to him right then. Judas might not have been a hit with the critics (it only ran for twelve performances), but his theatre career was riding high; the year before he’d been touring The Command to Love all over America and playing in a festival of Shakespeare in New York. At 37 he was looking forward to a long and distinguished stage life on both sides of the Atlantic. Later …