clark gable carole lombard

From January 1941:

Baltimore–Dr. Louis Hamman said today Clark Gable would have a tooth extracted in an effort to cure a shoulder ailment that actor has suffered since 1937. 

Gable, who arrived Monday with Carole Lombard, said “present plans call for us to fly back to Hollywood Saturday or Sunday.”

__

Tooth extraction to cure a shoulder ailment?!

clark gable carole lombard

From November 1941:

The career question is no longer hot among the older, more established star marriages. The Robert Taylors rarely visit each other’s set, but Carole Lombard is a constant guest while Clark Gable is shooting, and at his express request. And if Miss Lombard ever wants really to tease the redoubtable Gable all she has to do is make a thoroughly professional crack–“Remember Parnell!” (That film is a sore subject with Clark–he wanted to do the part and it was his least successful!)

clark gable the misfits

Today, November 16, marks 56 years since Clark Gable passed away at the age of 59. You can read about his death and funeral here.

Below are the past years memorial tributes:

2015: Marilyn Monroe and John Huston Remember Clark Gable

2014: Goodbye, Mr. Gable (Clark’s final days, as told by his widow)

2013: In Memory

2012: Goodbye, Mr. Gable (Time Magazine)

2011: Hollywood Loses Its King

2010: In Tribute

2009: Rest in Peace

 

This newspaper article ran across the country on November 17:

Gable is Gone–And There is No One to Replace Him

by Vernon Scott

News of the death late Wednesday of Clark Gable, 59-year-old idol of the motion picture world, brought tearful, stunned reactions from actors and others around the world. The telephone at Hollywood Presbyterian Hospital switchboard was overloaded with calls from across the United States and from Europe.

One of those calling was Gary Cooper. Another was veteran director John Huston who cried on the telephone and said, “Tell Kay if she needs me I’ll be right here (at his hotel).”

Ann Sothern also called, offering whatever help she could to the grieving widow.

In Lausanne, Switzerland, actor George Sanders said, “I knew him quite well. I am very unhappy to hear of his death. He will be a great loss to the motion picture industry.”

It’s Terrible News

Sophia Loren, who costarred with Gable in “It Started in Naples,” gasped, “I am so shocked I can hardly breathe. This is really terrible news.”

Mickey Rooney said, “it’s a deep shock both to myself and the entire motion picture industry. I used to see him from time to time…he was a great star.”

Movie director Walter Wagner said Clark Gable’s death “will be mourned by the entire world.” Wanger, in London to direct “Cleopatra,” said Gable, “not only was a Hollywood great, but was a personification of everything that makes the motion picture industry great.”

Alone And Apart

Clark stood alone and apart from a community populated with inflated egos. No matter the factions, petty feuds and gossip that swirled around King Clark, he was much-beloved by those who knew him. He had no enemies.

His last co-star, Marilyn Monroe, typified Hollywood’s regard for the man early this month when she completed work with him.

“Clark, I found out, is a real king. It was an honor working with him,” she said on the final day of shooting “The Misfits.”

This feeling for the big guy penetrated throughout the industry. Grips, cameramen, electricians and all the others who help make movies were devoted to him.

Was Always Available

I had known the man and the actor for more than 12 years. He was always available to newsmen and concerned with helping them get a story. His attitude was personal and engaging.

To everyone who approached him, Clark flashed his warm grin. He gave you the feeling that at that particular moment you were the most important person he knew.

And it was sincere.

He worked hard at putting people at ease, whether they were visiting tourists on the set or an assistant prop man fidgeting around him just before a “take.”

Gable exuded masculinity. In his presence women became more feminine and men experienced a rare camaraderie. It was a magical quality about which he seemed entirely unaware.

First On the Set

More than 200 newsmen played bit parts with him 2 1/2 years ago in “Teacher’s Pet,” and we discovered the meaning of “the old pro” during the film. He invariably was the first actor on the set at 8am, in costume, makeup complete and with his lines memorized.

While other stars complained about lighting, unflattering camera angles and battled with directors, Gable held his peace.

He believed an actor should take direction and leave the script and technical supervision in the hands of the professionals.

If he found fault with co-stars and fellow workers he kept his thoughts to himself.

“This is business, like any other,” he once told me, “I’m an actor, not a genius. I do what they tell me and it works out pretty well.”

Devoted to His Wife

Gable cherished his private life and was devoted to his fifth wife, the former Kay Spreckels, and her two children.

“Those kids are the greatest thing that ever happened to me. It’s almost as if they were my own,” he said earlier this year.

He had no illusions about his age and decided last year to leave romantic young lovers to the likes of Rock Hudson. “My days of playing dashing young heroes is over,” he told me recently.

“I don’t think the public likes watching older guys wooing leading ladies half their age. I don’t like it myself. The actresses I started out with 30 years ago have long since quit playing glamor girls. Now it’s time I acted my age–59 years old.”

Other Stars Became Fans

Gable was the movie star’s movie star. His appearance at a party or a premiere sent a tingle through the crowd. Other stars became fans in his presence. His natty mustache, the crows feet etched around his eyes and his lopsided grin were his trademark, both on and off the screen.

He had hoped to continue his career in character roles, patterning his future after that of his friend Spencer Tracy, whom he considered the greatest actor of his time.

Clark first was called “King” during his marriage to Carole Lombard when they were Hollywood’s reigning couple/

The “King” sonbriquet referred to his unequaled magnetism at the box office. But with the years the nickname “King”–which amused him–was applied to Gable, the actor, the gentleman, the warm human being.

The King is dead of a heart attack, and today Hollywood discovered there is no one to take his place. And the belief is that no one ever will.

clark gable the misfits

 

clark gable carole lombard

From June 1941:

There is one laugh in Hollywood you can never mistake–Carole Lombard’s. 

I hear it when I come onto the “Honky Tonk” set at MGM, and sure enough, there is Carole howling at Clark Gable’s get-up for his gambler’s role in the Alaskan melodrama.

Unperturbed, Gable takes her by the shoulders and kisses her upon the tip of her nose. 

“How are you, sweetie pie?” he asks.

Director Jack Conway and the roughly dressed actors in the saloon scene look on and grin appreciatively. 

“Papa,” says Carole, “I hear you really were hamming it up a few minutes ago.”

“Yeah,” says Clark. “You could smell the corn clear out on Washington Boulevard.”

At Conway’s suggestion, he reenacts for Carole the scene where he pulls one side of his coat open, then the other, revealing a gun strapped under each arm. 

“I can’t stand it!” exclaims Carole, letting out another screech of laughter. 

It’s always the same with these two.

In all the years I’ve known them, they never once have given me that business about their ART.

____

I looooove this one. <3

carole lombard

After they were married in 1939 and Carole Lombard had proficiently decorated and furnished their cozy Encino abode to suit her and her “moose” of a husband, Clark Gable, she set her sights on her next goal: motherhood. Unfortunately for the Gables, this was a wish that would remain unfulfilled.

The consensus these days seems to be that Carole had some sort of medical problem that prevented her from becoming pregnant. Nowadays, a doctor would have told her first and foremost that she needed to stop the chain-smoking and perhaps dial down the coffee and Coca-Cola chugging.

Clark fathered a daughter with Loretta Young and later on a son with his fifth wife Kay, so the claims that some friends of Carole’s made that he was the one with the fertility problem seem to be unfounded.

Since we’ll never know exactly why parenthood sadly eluded the Gables, let’s look at the pregnancy and miscarriage rumors that plagued the couple throughout their marriage.

August 3, 1939:

Enthused Over Son

Carole Lombard and Clark Gable are so enthused over the arrival of a six-pound baby son for the Walter Langs (Mrs. Lang was “Fieldsie” Carole’s long-time secretary and closest friend) that it is now no secret they’d like a little Gable themselves. The two paced the hospital corridors with the anxious father awaiting the birth of the baby–and when Carole first glimpsed it, she said, “Here’s your Auntie Carole, you beautiful little thing!”

The baby was Richard Lang, Clark and Carole’s godson, whom Clark eventually gave his Academy Award to because the child admired it.

August 5, 1939:

Carole Lombard, blonde screen star, had undergone an operation for acute appendicitis and is recovering satisfactorily, it was learned today.

The actress was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital by her film star husband, Clark Gable. She had been ill two days.

Dr. Norman Williams performed the operation and reported that Miss Lombard’s condition was excellent.

Miss Lombard when she became ill was in midst of production in a picture called “Vigil in the Night” in which she plays the role of a nurse.  RKO-Radio Studio said that production will be postponed until Miss Lombard recovers.

Many sources say that this was not an appendectomy and that in fact Carole had miscarried after horseback riding.

carole lombard baby

By November, the adoption rumors were circulating.

November 29, 1939:

Carole Lombard and Clark Gable are not going to adopt a baby–because they’ve decided in favor of the Gable brand.

Odd choice of words.

carole lombard babies

By 1940, reports circulated constantly about Carole and her various illnesses. Which seems strange since she was constantly pictured on her movie sets laughing and seemingly in the greatest of health, pictured hunting and fishing with Clark joyously. The rumors of Carole’s ill health had become so rampant that she felt compelled to give an interview to Screenland magazine proclaiming she was not sick and to stop worrying about her: “Help Kill Crazy Rumors About Me!”

Carole, all wrapped up in a white robe, was seated at her dressing table while the ever faithful Loretta fussed with her hair. She did look a bit peaked. Poor child. My heart simply overflowed with sympathy and I fought to keep the tears out of my eyes.

“Did you have a good rest, darling?” I asked softly and solicitously.

“Rest?” screamed Carole. “Are you crazy? Did you ever shoot quail? Do you know how fast they can dart over the mountains? And with me right after them with eight pounds of gun and three pounds of shells over my shoulder? Rest? I’ll have you know I walked ten miles a day, every day. Look at the blisters on my heels.”

“But, darling,” I said, so quietly and patiently, the way one speaks to a petulant invalid, “do you think you ought to do that? So much exercise isn’t good for your health, you know.”

“What’s wrong with you?” Carole demanded indignantly. “You can talk louder than that. There’s no one sleeping around here. Unless it’s Loretta.” (Loretta gave her dome a none too gentle whack with the hair brush). “And what, may I ask, is all this hooey about my health? When we got in from Mexico this morning I found a whole stack of letters from fans saying they were so worried about me. Several of them suggested specialists I should see, and different medicines which they guaranteed would cure me. I appreciate their interest. But I’m not sick. Maybe I’m a little goofy. I’ll even admit that maybe I’m a little dopey, at time. But I certainly am not sick. Why are people worried about me? Why are you giving me the Camille business? What’s it all about?”

“It was on the radio,” I gulped. “And in all the newspapers: Your health is supposed to be completely wrecked. You’re run down, your nerves are shattered, you haven’t any red corpuscles, and you’re in the last stages of something. You’re dying, too, or something like that. Anyway, you have to retire from the screen for at least a year. You’re—“

“Oh, so I’m retiring from the screen, am I? Well that is news! You don’t think that rumor could have been started by some people who say ‘Vigil in the Night’ do you? No, it can’t be that bad. In fact I think it’s rather good. If I were going to retire from the screen because of bad pictures I should have retired after ‘Fools for Scandal.’ See this—“ she showed me a slip which had a message on it that Mr. Pasternak had called. “Well, that means that I am going to do a picture at Universal in a few months. As soon as Boyer is available. And maybe before that even I have to do the Norman Krasna story which David Selznick will produce. And I have just signed a new contract with RKO which calls for three pictures. So please stop worrying about me retiring from the screen. Or, maybe you aren’t.”

….

“If it means so much to you,” said Carole with one of those Lombard guffaws, “I’ll be big about it and admit that maybe I am just a teensy weensy bit off-color. Now—does that make you and the radio commentators and the newspaper columnists feel better? But I fey any of you to go through what I have been through for the past few months and not look a little pale. You, cutie-pie, would look bedraggled.  As you know, I had an acute attack of appendicitis last August and was rushed to the hospital for an emergency appendectomy. Three weeks later I reported to RKO for ‘Vigil in the Night,’ the Cronin story with Brian Aherne and Anne Shirley, who, by the way, is a grand actress. For seventy-eight days I worked from nine to six on that picture without one single day off, didn’t I, Loretta? And me fresh out of a hospital. The studio kept planning for me to have a collapse, but I fooled em. I didn’t miss a day.”

If the appendectomy was a tall tale, she was riding with it, anyway!

The Gables went on an extensive hunting and fishing trip after Clark finished filming Boom Town and Carole finished They Knew What They Wanted. After some intimate moments in the duck blind, Carole was sure she was pregnant and rushed to the doctor for a test upon their return. But it was negative.

 

clark gable carole lombard

Carole had slowed down her filming schedule in hopes she’d become pregnant–making only two films in 1940.When she still wasn’t expecting at the end of the year, the Gables crossed the country to John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. I’m guessing this was at Carole’s insistence. It was spun that Carole was having a “minor operation” and that Clark was being seen for an old shoulder injury.

January 1, 1941:

Movie actress Carole Lombard will undergo a minor operation tomorrow at John Hopkins Hospital.

She entered the hospital Monday with her husband, Clark Gable, who said at the time he would have an injured shoulder examined.  Miss Lombard said the operation was decided upon after a general physical checkup.

Dr. Richard W. Telinde, chief gynecologist at the hospital, will perform the operation, which was described as not serious.

 

From a Baltimore Sun article:

Gable…visited Baltimore in December 1940, when he and his third wife, screen actress Carole Lombard, whom he married in 1939, arrived at Johns Hopkins Hospital for a medical checkup.

Gable, injured when a wall toppled on him while he was filming “San Francisco,” complained of a dull ache in his shoulder.

Gable stood on the steps of the hospital’s administration building next to Lombard, who was dressed in a mink coat and black hat, talking with photographers and reporters.

“Please speed it up, I’m not feeling very well,” he said.

“We probably will have adjoining rooms in the Marburg building. The rest will be good for me, too,” Lombard said.

The treatment

Dr. B. Lucien Brun, surgeonin-chief and head of the oral surgical staff, later removed a tooth and part of the jaw in an hour-and-a-half operation that left the actor saying he felt “rotten.”

“Dr. Louis Hamman, who examined both Gable and his wife, Carole Lombard, said today he believed the decayed tooth root had been poisoning the actor’s system and affecting particularly shoulder muscles injured in the filming of ‘San Francisco,’ ” reported The Evening Sun.

Before leaving Baltimore for Hollywood, the celebrated couple visited Gov. and Mrs. Herbert R. O’Conor for a tour of the State House and the Naval Academy.

As they left the State House, they posed for pictures. “Miss Lombard then stopped and played with Bobby, the Governor’s 4-year-old son who was airing his new bull pup on the lawn,” reported The Sun.

They also visited Children’s Hospital, where they autographed the body cast of 11-year-old Agnes Valentine, a Frederick County resident who was recuperating in the hospital.

A few days later, a huge package arrived from Hollywood for the little patients at Children’s Hospital.

Inside was 68 pounds of chocolate candy and a note: “For the children, from Carole and Clark.”

We’ll never know what the diagnosis was or what her operation was exactly. Back in those days, fertility testing was not near as extensive as it is today and there were no options such as IVF.  There were also many things that Carole would have probably been told by her doctor about conceiving that we know nowadays are completely false. Like I said above, the ill effects of cigarettes, alcohol and caffeine were unknown then, for starters. At this point, the lack of positive news was causing Carole quite a great deal of stress and causing friction in the Gable marriage. By all accounts though, they weren’t told the situation was hopeless and by summer, the rumors were rampant again that a little Gable was on the way:

clark gable carole lombard

From May 1941:

The staff at New York Hospital is agog over Carole Lombard’s reservation. A baby Gable, they say.

New York Hospital? Odd.

From June 1941:

There have also been reports that C. Gable and Carole Lombard are expecting. The forthright Carole says, “I’m sorry it isn’t true. And when it is I’ll be the first to know about it and I’ll be the first to tell about it.”

From July 1941:

My, how that Carole Lombard baby rumor does persist, despite Carole’s vehement denials!

From August 1941:

A little bird (stork?) tells me that a little Gable is expected next spring.

From August 1941:

“It’s not true, I’m afraid,” Carole Lombard tells me about the news of an impending little Gable.

I often see it mentioned that Carole suffered two miscarriages. It is a safe bet that the second occurred in summer-fall 1941. It’s rather funny how the blurbs of the Gables expecting were quickly swept under the rug a short time later, either with no comment or a swift denial by Lombard.

In December 1941, the United States was swept into World War II and there were more important things to worry about than a little Gable on the way. I’ve heard some people say that Carole was pregnant when she died; I sincerely doubt that. If she’d known she was pregnant, no way she’d take on such an arduous trip, especially after two miscarriages. I’ve heard the romantic tale that she found out she was pregnant while on the bond tour and took the plane home because she wanted to tell Clark in person. Rubbish. This was 1942, she couldn’t pick up a pregnancy test at a drug store.

Unfortunately for us all, the world was not graced with a sassy little Lombard-Gable with blonde ringlets, big blue eyes and big ears!

clark gable carole lombard

Clark and Carole with a little girl in Atlanta for the premiere of Gone with the Wind

 

clark gable carole lombard

Much to the surprise of her friends, when Carole Lombard fell in love with Clark Gable she traded in her high heels and fur coats for rubber boots and shotguns. There was the glamorous movie star Carole Lombard, wading through swamps and crouching in duck blinds.

Here are the Gables in their very finest:

ccarole259 clark gable carole lombard clark gable carole lombard clark gable carole lombard clark gable carole lombard clark gable carole lombardclark gable carole lombard

The screenshots from the infamous “duck dance” home video are adorable (if you ignore the poor dead ducks hanging around them):

clark gable carole lombard clark gable carole lombard clark gable carole lombard clark gable carole lombard clark gable carole lombard

 

And…my favorite:

clark gable carole lombard

Here is the final portion of Frederick Othman’s series on Carole Lombard, published on January 21, 1942. In this segment we learn she buried shrunken skulls in her yard!

clark gable carole lombard ranch

Carole Lombard and Gable Gave Up ‘Flossy’ Dwelling

Happy Film Couple Lived in Simple Home Without Swimming Pool or Guest Rooms

When Carole Lombard married Clark Gable in 1939, there was no whoop-de-do. They drove to Kingman, Ariz., in the coupe of their good friend and press agent, Otto Winkler, said their vows, and came home again.

Then they held a reception at Carole’s house. The only guests were their old friends, the newspaper reporters. Everybody had a big time, host and hostess included, and that was all there was to the marriage of Mr. and Mrs. G. Nearly all, anyhow.

Carole tried to sell the house, but there were no takers. According to her the folks were a little leery about the human heads buried in the backyard. She wasn’t spoofing, either. They were genuine shrunken heads from the wilds of South America, presented her by an admiring explorer. She buried ’em under the petunias after he left.

Rented Big House

Eventually she rented the place to Director Alfred Hitchcock. Not until he signed the lease did she tell him about the skulls under his bedroom window.

Mr. and Mrs. G., meantime, had moved into a home of their own, like no other movie star’s house. Their combined income approached $1,000,000 a year and they could have had solid gold door knobs and a Roman bath if they’d wanted it. They didn’t.

“You get enough of that flossy business on the sound stages.” Carole explained in showing visitors around the establishment, which wasn’t any larger nor any fancier than yours or mine.

They had no swimming pool, because Miss Lombard said pools were good only for breeding mosquitoes. They had one bedroom, because she said what was the use of house guests, anyhow? they did have an elegant front porch, though, for sitting down purposes, and a living room furnished with some of the biggest, softest couches ever seen in these parts.

Carole liked to jump on ’em.

She liked company, too, so long as the company went home at bedtime. She served scotch and soda in glasses the size of mason jars, while she drank soda pop and figured out ways the amuse the man she called “Pappy.”

Theirs was a genuinely happy marriage. This was proven by the fact that the radio oracles constantly were announcing their impending divorce.

Miss Lombard, ever reticent, lamented the fact that it was not in the cards for her to be a mother. Her childlessness was her second real sorrow. The World War was the other. She could not understand why men insisted on shooting each other.

Died in the Service

But that was before the United States joined in the fray. Once that happened, Miss Lombard forgot her idealism. She forgot everything–even life itself, as it developed–in her effort to help win the war. She quit the comforts of her home for the gloom of the sound stages, simply to earn more money so she could pay more taxes. When she was invited to Indianapolis to sell defense bonds, she whooped as only Lombard could whoop, and headed east. She peddled $2,000,000 worth of bonds and flew home–and you know the rest of the story.

The Treasury Department said she died in the service of her country. And so she did. There isn’t any more for us to say.

 

carole lombard

Over the next three days, I’ll be sharing the three-part series United Press Hollywood correspondent Frederick Othman wrote after Carole Lombard’s death in January 1942.

This first piece was syndicated in newspapers across the country on January 19, 1942.

Carole’s Off-Screen Fun Equaled Screwball Roles

Writer Friend Describes Pranks, Career of Actress; Carole Also Had Serious Side

Of the press corps in the movie capital, none knew Carole Lombard better than Frederick C. Othman, United Press Hollywood correspondent. He reported her professional career, and, in addition, was a close friend. Therefore, he is particularly qualified to write of her life and her personality.

The first of his three dispatches on Carole Lombard follows:

It is difficult even now to realize that the Lombard laughter never will be heard again, that the Lombard jokes have ended, that the beautiful and gay Carole is gone.

She was the only strictly honest glamour girl in Hollywood, and certainly, the only one who said what she thought when she thought it. She was the girl who opposed a war on principle, who once threatened to chain Clark Gable to a barn door if he tried to enlist, but, when her country became involved in war, became one of the most indefatigable war workers in Hollywood.

And she died in the service of her country. She had gone to Indianapolis to aid in the campaign to sell defense bonds, sold $2,000,000 worth, and died in the airplane that was returning her home from that tour of duty on the home front.

Sacrificed Home for Country

The greatest thing she sacrificed was her home to which she had retired while her movie career was at its height. She returned to the screen in order to pay the huge taxes on he huge income she could earn and thus aid her country’s war effort.

Carole Lombard had two sides, and this serious idealistic side was the one her public didn’t know. The one it did know–the gay, laughing blond girl impelled by high spirits into endless impish pranks, was just as much a part of her. Indeed, her sense of fun off the screen, in her private life, equaled the sense of fun so evident in her last movies.

Once at a Hollywood party, the guests played follow-the-leader and Miss Lombard was the leader. Her boss, a leader of the industry, a gentleman of millions and of dignity, she felt was too stiff and grand.

She spoke to a servant and then began leading the guests on a merry chase through the big house. She led them at last to a bathroom where a filled tub awaited her. She waded through it, and, of course, those who followed, including the magnate, had to do likewise.

“You should have seen him,” she was exclaiming for weeks afterward, “when he found he had to put his pretty pants in the drink.”

She rode around her studio on a motor scooter. If anybody carried a packet of sneeze powder, she told him where to distribute it,

Montgomery Subject of Pranks

Robert Montgomery learned something of her pranks in the 1940 presidential campaign. he was one of Wendell Willkie’s most ardent supporters in Hollywood. At the time he was co-starring with Miss Lombard in a movie. Every night, before he could start home from the studio, he had to scrape the Roosevelt stickers from the windows and windshield of his car with a razor blade. Otherwise, he couldn’t have seen where he was driving. He will learn from this that Miss Lombard was the culprit.

No one around her escaped these pranks, not even Clark Gable. He had finished a picture in which he had a role of which he was particularly fond. He probably showed it a little too much. Any rate, a package, impressively wrapped, was delivered to him. Inside was a ham, done up in a blue ribbon.

When he had finished his part in “Parnell,” one of the worst movies of all time, she showered him with congratulatory messages from an airplane.

She was born in Fort Wayne, Ind., in 1908 and her mother brought her here while she still was a child. She served two apprenticeships–the first in an exclusive finishing school for young ladies, at the behest of her mother; the second in Mack Sennett’s academy for hurling custard pies and wearing a bathing suit with grace and spirit, but only after she had talked her family into letting her be an actress.

Was Horse Opry Queen

The rest of her years she retained an uncanny accuracy in hurling a pie and was willing to demonstrate. But professionally, her career as a bathing queen and pie thrower was not long.She graduated to the horse opry, and became the screen sweetie of such mighty males as Buck Jones and Tom Mix.

“But they never would let me get in the fight,” she would lament, recalling those days. “I had to simper at the hero and scream with terror when the heavy came after me. they never would let me get in there and give the villain a good kick in the bustle.”

Miss Lombard was paid $75 a week as a horse opry queen. But her reign didn’t last long for she came in demand in all the studios as a kind of blond rival to Clara Bow. Those were the years when the Brooklyn bonfire was at her height. Miss Lombard wore skin tight dresses, which revealed every curve, and when she danced for the cameras, she used so much energy she seemed to quiver all over. She was gay always then. She hot all the hot spots; went to all the parties.

Started Screwball Comedies

In 1931, in the midst of this phase of her career, she married William Powell–you know, “The Thin Man”–and, when another phase was beginning, divorced him four years later. It wasn’t until them, when they no longer were man and wife, that she co-starred with him in a movie that represented a new type comedy. It gave the indistry new pep and increased Carole’s check to $400,000 a year. The picture was “My Man Godfrey.” It was the first of the screwball comedies.

Tomorrow: How to become a screwball, and, more importantly, how to make it pay.

 

 

A few errors in this piece. The ham was given to Clark by Carole as a joke at the end of shooting their lone joint feature, No Man of Her Own.  I also think calling Parnell “one of the worst movies of all time” is a bit of a stretch! She was only married to William Powell for a little over two years.

Part Two coming up tomorrow….