Inside facts of stage and screen (February 15, 1930)

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SATURDAY, FEB. 15, 1930 INSIDE FACTS OF STAGE AND SCREEN PAGE THREE RUMOR FOX COUP ON GRANDEUR REPORT HE’S SOI AMPLE EQUIPMENT KEPI UNDER COIR Reports have been going the rounds this week to the effect that William Fox is planning a grand coup on the film industry with his Grandeur film. With the announcements of the first Gran- deur, “Happy Days,” to be shown at the Carthay Circle Theatre, the question arose as to what would be done with the product follow- ing this run and the one in New York. It is known at the present time that there are only two houses in the country equipped to show the wide film. Remarks credited to high Fox officials have been to the effect that all of the future Fox pictures aside from being made in talking and silent ver- sions would also be made in Gran- deur. The new projectors and equip- ment for this product are made and controlled by the Grandeur Film Company, in which Fox is said to be heavily interested, in fact so much so as to have it believed that his capital in this project was the cause of his re- cent financial difficulty to a siza- ble extent. Able to Equip In reply to a query, the local representative of the Grandeur Film Company stated that they would be able to install and wire about as rapidly as did Western Electric when the Vitaphone vogue first came into its hectic flush in the industry. It is believed that Fox has been planning to top the Warner Brothers coup with the talkies by having taken advantage of the lesson gained in that instance by preparing long in advance to take care of the rush demand that may be made for the wide film installations immediately after the first showings prove up on them. There is no statement forthcom- ing as to the preparedness of the Grandeur Film Company to in- stall, although it has been said that they will not have any delay in installing the sound part of the device but the projectors may present a problem. Kept Under Cover Just how many of these ma- chines are at present available for houses other than the Fox thea- tres is not known, but it is be- lieved that Fox has seen to it that he will have no difficulty in placing full equipments in his own houses as rapidly as they are re- quired. If this is the case, and there is no doubt but that he will have a long jump on the rest of the in- dustry, which is mainly now try- ing to discourage as much as pos- sible the use of the widies. Then, too, it is known that sev- eral manufacturers of independent projectors have planned to put out a device of their own, wait- ing only until it is definitely set- tled as to the standardization of the double width film. It is be- lieved that the 70 mm film, will be accepted as the standard, in- asmuch as the film is originally made in that width and has to be cut into the 35 mm stock for regular use. What Is Fate? The changes in the laboratory and projection room, as well as the stage will not prove a handi- cap if the big films create the sensation that is predicted for them and the independent exhib- itors are already beginning to lay their plans for the new innova- tion in their houses. But what will be the immediate fate of the pictures that are now being made in the wide size, with only two houses to appear in is the question that is worrying the observers along the row. WRIGHT IN L. A. Andy Wright blew in from the East this week with a raft of plays and shorts. Among them is “Philadelphia” which ran seven weeks, in New York, fifteen weeks in Chicago and is now playing in the Middle West. A new show, “Souvenir Sadie,” may be pro- duced here, accoring to the New York producer, if suitable arrange- ments can be made for financing. Frederick Sylvester and |His Three Nephews Frederick and his three nephews, currently playing the local RKO house, are internationally known over all the major time vaude and production theatres both here and abroad. To qualify this attraction as a novelty would be inadequate in description. Employing unique acrobatics, Sylvester, who is of normal height, with his three diminu- tive partners, offers a sweet dish of entertainment. The three pint- size nephews sing and dance, too. Sylvester has been in many Euro- pean productions, notably Cochrane’s “Mayfair and Montmartre,” which was a big success at the Oxford in London. The four are great bets for some live-wire film producer who can visualize the fact that the present juvenile attendance in film palaces is cheated by being forced to view song and dance “chatterers” above their line of thought. This quartette of entertainers could be well considered for any picture based on such a standard as “Gulliver’s Travels.” CURT TO MAKE FEATURES. SHORTS The 1930 program of Colorart Synchrotone corporation, whose ac- tivities last year included twelve shorts and one feature “Mamba,” soon to be released by Tiffany, all in Technicolor, has been an- nounced. The schedule will include a series of 24 shorts and three features, a comedy called “Unkissed,” a my- stery drama titled “The Thrill Killer,” and an original musical extravaganza “The Beggars of Bagdad,” by Perry Newberry and L. B. Jacobs, with music by Thomas Vincent Cator. All to be done in color. Colorart Synchrotone possess what is probably the only complete library of Technicolor subjects in existence taken in various parts of the world showing native life in perhaps 200 foreign countries. In this library there are over 100,000 feet of negative of scenic and na- tive scenes. It is proposed to com- pile these shots into single reel travelogues and synchronize them with music and descriptive talks for an early release. Cutters and editors are at present at work pre- paring this series. “Satanesque,” a feature com- pleted last year, a part of which was destroyed in the Consolidated Laboratory fire, has been recut with the missing section com- pletely restored and is now being prepared for summer release. This picture, while shot in black and white, is to be treated by a secret color process which accomplishes effective tints and color tones. It is expected that the program will be. under way within sixty days. Directors and casts are being negotiated for. FORMER P. A. NOW A. P. Julian Johnson, former news- paper man, press representative and playwright and for ten years affiliated with the picture indus- try, has been made an associate producer at Paramount. Readers’ Views Musicians’ Union, Local No. 6. American Federation of Musicians, San Francisco, Calif., February 6, 1930. Editor, Inside Fasts, Los Angeles, Calif. I want to tell you how much I appreciate your splendid editorial in the issue of the first instant. I see no reason why people in our line of business should be made the goats for radical fanat- ics. I did not see “Bad Babies” but at least the members of the cast were acquitted in court, yet Captain Lane, one of the snoopiest of the snoopies, takes it upon himself to so harrass the members of the' cast that the play closed. I think the idea of an Actors’ Political organization for the Pa- cific Coast is first class, but there should be a combination of the interests interested in the theatre. The only way that the sane ele- ment is ever going to get any place is to become militant, ag- gressive, and particularly articu- late. We all let the fanatic and puritan do all the shouting, while we remain quiet, with the result that the political office-holders, who live with their ears to the ground, become of the opinion that a vociferous and noisy minority represents the views of everybody. I am, with best wishes for the continued success of your paper, (Signed) Albert A. Greenbaum, Recording Secretary. Los Angeles, Calif. Editor, Inside Facts, Los Angeles, Calif. I noted in your paper a couple of weeks ago a letter from some- one saying that radio performers sounded like amateurs and that they wondered why you gave space to their doings. I noticed the letter came from some place out in the sticks, where most amateurs come from, so your correspondent doubtless knows really what an amateur sounds like. He is probably one who could not make the grade himself; he sounds disappointed, anyway. Lots of country boys make good OPENING 0111 MYSTERY PLAY IT FIGUEROA FEB, 21 Ellis and Atkinson are produc- ing an original, “The Latest Mur- der” to open at the Figueroa Play- house February 21 for a two- weeks’ run. The play is by Hampton Del Ruth, and is described as “a sa- tirical comedy drama of the unex- pected” and “ a new shooting rid- dle with a happy answer.” Del Ruth formerly produced “Cher- chez La Femme” with Blanche Sweet at the Beaux Arts, and the present play is said to somewhat' follow the lines of the former one. In the cast are Dudley Ayers, Theodora Warfield, a Dell S. Law- rence, Ben -Erway, ‘Lydia Knott, George Ford, Rhea Del Ruth, Wil- liam Colvin, Howard Foster, Jack Cheatam, Jack Weatherbee, Garry Bernard and Arthur Allard. OPEBETfTSE STROK 00 CODS! For almost all of last year Los Angeles was entirely without mu- sical shows. During the year previous, there seemed to De noth- ing but girl shows, they opened and closed rapidly both downtown and in Hollywood. Morosco had one at the Hollywood Playhouse; a comic opera company started at the Vine Street; there were sev- eral tried to make it snap at the Hollywood Music Box; the Mayan had a batch of them in a row and there were two or so tried at the Figueroa Playhouse and, of course, “The Desert Song at the Majestice, and the light opera sea- son at the Shrine Auditorium. This does not take into account the eastern shows that came to the Biltmore and the Mason. Nineteen twenty-eight seems to have been replete with girls and music in most of the theatres but as 1929 rolled in, musicals ran out and not one did we have until “Follow Thru” closed the year at the Mason. But with the birth of 1930, operettas seem to have become the vogue again. Starting with “Oh Susanna,” following with the Macloon’s “New Moon” on top of which we get “Bambina” and in preparation is “Going Holly- wood,” a play which Roger Gray is sponsoring; and in contempla- tion is “Bitter Sweet,” another of the Macloon series. “Bagdad” Soon Then too, there is the extrava- ganza, “The Beggers of Bagdad,” which is being seriously considered (Continued on Page 5) on radio, and this fellow should learn to be a sport. It was gen- erous of you to print a letter like that, attacking the good work you are doing to build radio up to a high professional grade. There is no room for crabbers in a lusty _ young industry like radio, suffering enough from growing pains as it is. Everybody interested in broad- casting is heart and soul behind Inside Facts’ constructive policy. More power to you. (Signed) Joseph Robertson. San Francisco, Feb. 8, 1930. Editor, Inside Facts, Los Angeles. I have been a reader of your magazine since its inception and believe it to be the best of its kind in the entire field, covering matters pertaining to the stage and screen. There is one subject I believe needs attention, i. e., new songs. Among several arrangers I have heard the statement that “I just completed a wonderful arrange- ment for voice and orchestra of a new song, with wonderful words,” but the owner of it was unable, fiancially, to have the song published. The same statement was made by several other ar- rangers. Is it possible that the organiza- tion now being perfected to or- ganize all arrangers of music will help these composers who are un- able to publish their own compo- sitions? (Signed) A. E. Lindley. Flo Belle and Charlie Flo Belle and Charlie are the featured dancers in Fanchon and Marco’s “M a r b 1 e Idea.” They have recently returned from Mex- ico, where they established them- selves as great favorites with the theatre-goers of our sister repub- lic. They are very popular over the RKO time, which they toured in the act “Whirl of Thrills,” and are also big favorites on the east- ern Loew time, where they have been featured on many bills. act ii srin lAIBCE PICTURES (Continued from Page 2) a report from the Foreign Produc- tions Committee, “to use in Span- ish talking picture the Spanish of the stage, following the best prac- tices of the Spanish-speaking thea- tre in all countries of the world.” Not Academic The Spanish dialogue used will not be purely academic but will be written to suit the characters of the particular picture in ques- tion. Also it is understood that if the locale is definitely confined to one particular country the" in- flection and diction peculiar to that country will be used. In other words, a character definitely portrayed in a story as one from the Argentine or from Mexico will speak the inflection of that coun- try, just as in an English talking picture* an Irish character will talk with an Irish inflection when required. Close attention, too, will be paid to technical details such as costumes, customs, atmo- sphere and locale. Two leaders of the Spanish- speaking colony, James MacDer- mott Sheridan, vice-consul of Brazil at Los Angeles and offi- cially representing the Spanish- American Cultural Association, and the Marquis de Villa Alcazar, representing the group formed under the auspices of the Del Amo Foundation and called, “The As- sociation Pro-Spanish Language,” conferred with Fred W. Beetson, Col. Jason S. Joy, and J. V. Wil- son, all of the Hays organization. To Have Cooperation As a result of the meeting, a plan was outlined which will in- clude cooperation and support of the Association of Motion Picture Producers in making available the best histrionic and technical talent obtainable. Authentic information regarding matters of custom, cos- tume, locale, as well as the lan- guage itself will be supplied to the producers and a method will be devised for bringing to the atten- tion of all studios all Spanish- speaking actors who have had a stage _ experience in the Spanish- speaking countries. “The significance of this move- ment,” said Colonel Joy, head of the Hays public relations depart- ment, “can be fully appreciated when it is understood that next to films made in the English lan- guage, the largest revenue from pictures accrues to the industry from productions shown in coun- tries in which Spanish is the na- tive tongue. This includes, in ad- dition to Spain, all of the South American countries excepting Bra- zil; also Mexico, Cuba, Porto Rico and Central American coun- tries. The studios, naturally, will welcome this opportunity to pre- serve the cultural integrity in Spanish-spoken films of all Span- ish-language countries.”