Friday, October 28, 2016

Hung Up

To be honest, we're sort of phoning it in today. A little while ago I made a little montage of actors from The Towering Inferno speaking on the telephone (shown below) for use on Facebook and later it occurred to me that shots of celebrities speaking on the phone might make for a fun installment in my series of occasional photo essays here. I do think the world of entertainment, drama and comedy both, lost a little bit of something once corded phones went out of style (and don't even get me started on using a dial or, better yet, dialing the phone with a pencil! LOL) So today we're going to observe some famous faces chatting on the telephone. Perhaps one of your favorites will have called in? Our cover girl is, of course, Ann-Margret in 1963's Bye Bye Birdie.
The montage that started off this whole random post. So many great quotes from Inferno take place on the phone from "It's out of control... and it's coming your way" to "There's no way for a fire on 81 to reach up here. Not in this building" to "We've got a FIRE here!!"
A ringle for "Der Bingle," Bing Crosby, in Two for Tonight (1935.)
Child actor Jackie Cooper, who later turned director and portrayed Perry White in the Superman movies.
Elegant Kay Francis, who can be read about further here.
An abnormally-shellacked Miss Barbara Stanwyck. Of course, Babs' greatest known phone calls took place within her 1948 thriller Sorry, Wrong Number.
1940s cinema starlet and B-movie leading lady Ella Raines.
"The Great One," looking svelte in comparison to his later years, Jackie Gleason.
Mr. Cary Grant in one very wide-legged set of trousers!
Famed cinematic sex symbol Marilyn Monroe.
Love goddess Rita Hayworth during the period around The Lady from Shanghai (1947) in which hubby Orson Welles sheared off her auburn locks and had them bleached blonde temporarily.
I don't know about you, but I was a bit taken aback at how handsome veteran Hollywood columnist Army Archerd looked in this shot. (Love the portraits adorning his office walls!)
A rather distraught Hayley Mills.
Teen singing sensation and sort-of actor Paul Anka. (He reminds me of Milania Guidice here! LOL)
Another teen singing sensation whose acting career was a bit more successful, Frankie Avalon.
Silken vocalist Johnny Mathis. (Is that Moses the Lawgiver on his bedside table?! Or maybe Socrates...?)
Mr. Entertainment, Sammy Davis Jr.
The ever-brooding Warren Beatty.
A very fit and trim Clint Eastwood, during his days on Rawhide.
Lauren Bacall and the world's tightest belt.
A very young Peter Fonda.
Grant Williams, who remains a source of fascination to contemporary fans of old movies and is the subject of at least one book in the works.
Eva Marie Saint after being transformed into a Hitchcock blonde. (She was always blonde, but Hitch wanted to yank her out of the "kitchen sink" dramas she was known for - heck, even won an Oscar for!)
British funny man Terry-Thomas.
Angie Dickinson, who's still alive and kickin' at - would you believe it - eighty-five!
Cranky Jason Robards, one-time husband of Lauren Bacall.
A rather cute Gary Lockwood, noted for 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) among other things.
Linda Kaye Henning (lucky to get a phone that actually WORKS down at Petticoat Junction!)
Kathleen Nolan of The Real McCoys. Although it sometimes seems as if she fell off the face of the earth after that show's demise in 1962, she actually remained a steadily working actress, was heavily involved in The Screen Actors Guild and even acted as recently as this year at age eighty-three!
Busy, busy character actress Lois Nettleton, who won a permanent place in our heart for portraying Pat, the infamous lesbian friend of Dorothy's, on a key episode of The Golden Girls.
Connery... Sean Connery... as James Bond. You can see quite a bit of Mr. C. here.
Miss Shirley Eaton, who was a famous Bond Girl in Goldfinger (1964) before becoming Bob Hope's leading lady in Eight on the Lam (1967), which also costarred a future Bond Girl, Jill St. John!  (You got all that straight?!)
Bond Girl Claudine Auger of 1965's Thunderball.
Walter Matthau during The Secret Life of an American Wife (1968), a film whose original title was to be "The Feminine Mistake." Mr. Matthau's final film role was, coincidentally to today's subject matter, Hanging Up (2000)!
Italian actress Pier Angeli during a (rare?) happy moment.
Sir Michael Caine during the 1960s when these heavy spectacles appeared in several of his movie roles.
"The King" Elvis Presley, drawing a crowd, chatting on a then-new car phone and having his sports car filled with gas from perhaps the most grizzled service station attendant imaginable for a glossy Presley musical movie!
1950s hunk (chiefly known for Adventures in Paradise) Gardner McKay, who walked away from his career out of boredom and displeasure to become a writer. Note the stack of fan mail on the floor behind him (which was more than is shown in this crop of the picture.) One role he turned down was that of Marilyn Monroe's shipwrecked cohabitant on a deserted island in the unfinished "Something's Got to Give" (1962), a role Tom Tryon then inherited.
Miss Shelley Winters seems rather disturbed here and we don't think it's due to her strangely crepe-y and wrinkled looking facial skin, something previously unnoticed that is doubly-strange since she was but forty-two at the time of this photo!
Miss Debbie Reynolds, still going today at eighty-four, may be calling around to see where in the hell errant hubby Eddie Fisher is...
No, this is not a photo of Wayland Flowers & Madame. LOL  This one really surprised me, though, so I'm not going to reveal just yet who the person on the line is. Answer will appear at the bottom of the post.
Let's hope Phyllis Diller keeps better house than she does hair!
Audrey Hepburn listens through her head kerchief in this tense scene.
Elke Sommer (who's almost about to flash a boob!) is having a nice time on the phone. I thus presume that the person on the other end is NOT Zsa Zsa Gabor!
Lovely Linda Harrison takes time out from being pawed by simian tormentors in Planet of the Apes (1968) to take a quick call (perhaps from studio head and live-in Richard Zanuck?)
Don Adams, whose more famous phone was contained in one of his shoes, during Get Smart.
Adam West uses the Bat-Phone during and episode of Batman. My question is... why is is bat-belt riding up so high?! It usually sits just above his dark satin trunks, but we can see a large piece of his shirt under it in this photo.
Could West be chatting with one of the series' most memorable villains, Julie Newmar's Catwoman? Our Julie is now eighty-three, which seems impossible.
At the time Ed Bishop of UFO was using this cordless device to speak on the phone, just a thing was mere science fiction, not fact as it is now!
An exasperated Doris Day gets an earful from Rock Hudson in this shot from Lover Come Back (1961.)
In Rock & Doris' prior collaboration Pillow Talk (1959), they memorably shared a party line and chit-chatted during their baths.
Buxom starlet Edy Williams cuddles up with someone on the other line during this photo shoot.
Not that I don't adore Eve Arden, but she looks a tad like a drag queen in this get-up for a Laugh-In episode!
Mannix's gal Friday Gail Fisher takes down some pertinent information for her boss. Ms. Fisher won one Emmy and was nominated for three more during her tenure on the private eye series.
Kindly, if intrusive, Marcus Welby, M.D. (as played by Robert Young) metes out some medical advice to one of his patients over the phone.
As Young's trusty receptionist, Elena Verdugo found herself Emmy-nominated twice herself, but didn't wind up taking home statuette. (Both Fisher and Verdugo worked on the campy TV show Celebrity Bowling!)
1940s leading man Dana Andrews during the time he was headlining the short-lived daytime soap Bright Promise.
Herschel Bernardi starred in the sitcom Arnie as a blue collar factory worker suddenly promoted to an executive position.
Guest star Ruth Buzzi has a spirited phone conversation as "Geraldine" of The Flip Wilson Show listens.
Edie Adams, in a rare villainess role, guest stars on Robert Conrad's spy series A Man Called Sloane.
Another short-lived and now-obscure TV series was Doctors' Hospital, which starred George Peppard as Chief of Neurosurgery.
As a kid, I can remember loving to watch the David Wayne mystery series Ellery Queen, but apparently only about two dozen others cared to tune in!
More successful ratings-wise (if not behind the scenes!) was Good Times, which featured then-hot Jimmie "J.J." Walker.
Hugely popular Henry Winkler made a national impression as "The Fonz" on Happy Days.
James Garner seemed to get beaten up in nearly every episode of The Rockford Files.
Mariette Hartley, seen here in the short-lived show Goodnight, Beantown, had so much chemistry with Garner in a long-running, extensive series of commercials for Polaroid cameras and film that many people believed that the couple was married in real life!
Richard Gere takes a call in 1983's Breathless.
Ordinarily found in far lighter fare, Karen Valentine is tormented in the 1985 TV-movie Illusions.
Stefanie Powers gets some sobering information from someone in the 1988 telefilm Deadly Vows.
John Ritter starred in the cop show Hooperman, touted at the time as a new breed of show, a "dramedy."
Before achieving lasting success on Two and a Half Men, John Cryer met with failure on The Famous Teddy Z.
In one of the last projects before her untimely demise, Elizabeth Montgomery played a reporter who helps to solves murder cases in what was meant to be a sequence of TV-movies. This one, The Corpse Had a Familiar Face was the first, followed by only one more a year later.
Eight years after the smash success of their first teaming, Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy paired up again for Another 48 Hours (1990.)
Alexis seems to be getting a key bit of news over the phone during this scene with Joan Collins during Dynasty.
Some disturbing events (and phone calls) are beginning to shake loose Anthony Perkins' Norman Bates in Psycho II (1983.)
Although she has continued to work sporadically since The Drew Carey Show ended in 2004, Kathy Kinney is another person who seems to have dropped off the face of the earth since portraying Mimi. Then again, with residuals on 214 episodes, she probably doesn't have to ever work again!
I'm glad "The Queen of Soul" Aretha Franklin is having a good time, but heavens to Betsy she needed some help upstairs!
As far as Poseidon's Underworld is concerned, Speed (1994) was Keanu Reeves' finest hour!
In 1996's The Mirror Has Two Faces, Mimi Rogers was the sister of Barbra Streisand (who were both the daughters of Lauren Bacall.) What a gene pool that swirled around this time out!
Our five minutes are nearly up and we don't have another dime to insert into the payphone, so we're close to disconnecting from this post. But, lest I forget, that mystery shot of the woman up above - seen with actor Ron Harper - is none other than 1930s big screen leading lady Jean Arthur, who had her very own (brief) TV series in 1966 called The Jean Arthur Show. She played a widowed attorney who accepts her son Harper into the family practice. And now just another few shots.
There's this one of Ava Gardner from back in the day (thanking someone for those flowers, perhaps?)
But weirdo that I am, I prefer the blowsy, hyperdramatic Ava who could be found in Earthquake (1974), pleading over the phone with her father Lorne Greene to meet with her for lunch to discuss her marital problems with Charlton Heston.
Of course, one of our very, very favorite movie phone conversations ever is the one-sided one we hear in The Best of Everything, which hysterically culminates with Joan Crawford telling her married lover, "Now you and your rabbit-faced wife can both go to HELL!" before slamming the receiver down like an H-bomb!
And with that, Gina Lollobrigida and I bid you goodbye! (For now.)

4 comments:

joel65913 said...

Marvelously fun and well put together post! Love how the different listeners lead from one to another by dare I say "a connection"!

Far, far too many to comment on each but I have to ask how Betty Bacall could breathe with that belt so tight?

Another couple of stray observations:

Jean Arthur is giving off a very Mabel Albertson vibe in her picture.

I adore that Julie Newmar's phone emanates from a kitty kat stand.

Eve Arden's wig and Edie Adams actual hairstyle are disturbingly close.

Love that Joan Collins's phone compliments's her gown (SO old Hollywood!)

Agreed that Speed is Keanu's best showcase followed by A Walk in the Clouds.

It just doesn't get much better than Crawford caressing the phone before slamming it down with that last line in Best of Everything.

Love that picture of Debbie Reynolds and I think I can even place it as coming from My Six Loves-a cute movie from near the end of her toplining feature career. I just saw a very brief snippet of a recent interview with her from Carrie Fisher's new documentary about the two of them. I knew she had been having some health problems last year but I hadn't realized the severity and she seems so terribly diminished. So sad, she was always so incredibly vibrant that I assumed she's be like Betty White and Angela Lansbury and remain that way until she just keeled over one day on stage at 110!

And finally....why Aretha WHY!!

Gingerguy said...

Hello? Hello? Ha! thanks for dialing in Poseidon. I think the ultimate phone scene in a movie is "Sorry Wrong Number" but I LOVE the crazy phone calls in "Midnight Lace" and Doris' hysterical reactions(hysterical laughing on my end of that line). I think that picture of Lois Nettleton might have been from a "Twilight Zone" episode that she did, always stuck in my memory. The Shelley Pic is strange but wondering if that wrinkles are actually fine blond hair that the camera is picking up? I know fair skinned people can have quite a lot of it, even the ladies. LOL the Elke pic! That lawsuit between she and Zsa Zsa (and that "Prince") was super weird. I would have guessed the mystery lady was Mary Martin.

Dave in Alamitos Beach said...

I'm probably the only one to be obsessed with the phones themselves. Before boring AT&T took over and forced people to rent phones from them, they seemed to have a lot more variety. Certainly more embellishment. Has anyone ever used a working two piece phone like the earliest photos of Bing & Jackie? I'd love to try one.

PS I don't think you can have a blog like this and mis-spell Barbra's name. She'll come after you! :-)

Poseidon3 said...

Hi, Joel! I enjoyed your reactions to some of these photos. I wish I had had the time and patience to make certain that every single picture connected to one after it, but I'm afraid I had neither one. :::sigh::: I don't know how people choose to view these, but on my screen if you click one, then all the rest are available to scroll through like a gallery using the arrow keys and, that way, you can pop though them without captions and quickly and it's sort of amusing. The Debbie Reynolds photo is supposedly from a 1968 film of hers with James Garner called "How Sweet It Is." It's one of the few I didn't denote the source of and I don't know why! I just saw that movie, too, and cannot recall this particular moment... Definitely getting old. LOL

Gingerguy, is this the party to whom I am speaking? LOL I left our poor Lily Tomlin and her Ernestine creation!!!! Shame on me... "Midnight Lace" is so bizarre... beautiful settings and clothes, but a tragically ripe story and unsubtle direction for our Doris. Not to be Mr. Correction today (for as you've no doubt seen, I make my share of mistakes!), but supposedly Miss Nettleton's picture is from an episode of "The FBI." I really don't know about Shelley's pic. I tried looking at it several ways and it has confounded me! I will NEVER forget watching Zsa Zsa on TV one night and hearing her remarks about Elke having to scrub floors to make a living (!), which led to the lawsuit. So hysterically funny... And I ALSO thought that Jean Arthur was Mary Martin!

Dave!! OMG... I can't even blame autocorrect for that horrible misspelling! I'm surprised I haven't been approached to shut the whole site down. LOL I'll be fixing that asap (and, yes, I did know the difference... just had to have been under pressure to get the darn post up before leaving work on Friday.) Thanks!!