But those silents played an important role in establishing her confidence following the automobile accident that nearly wiped out her acting career. Lombard frequently credited Sennett with improving her comedic timing and sensibility -- something that would especially pay off in the mid-thirties, after she gained a reputation as a comic actress.
One of those Sennett shorts was released in the fall of 1928. Called "The Campus Vamp," it was a typical college comedy of the time, enabling Lombard to show off her late-teenage beauty and charm. Some of her footage was used in the 1985 Glenn Close fantasy comedy "Maxie" (http://community.livejournal.com/carole_and_co/34509.html). If you can track down the Lumivision DVD of "Nothing Sacred," you'll find "The Campus Vamp" as one of the extras.
And a publicity still from "The Campus Vamp" is now being auctioned at eBay:
That's Lombard, third from left; the small woman in the center of the photo is Daphne Pollard, the nominal star of this comic ensemble. (Her brother was the highly regarded silent comic Snub Pollard.)
The still already has one bid at $9.99, and bidding continues until 3:15 p.m. (Eastern) on Wednesday. If this catches your fancy, go to http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=230292363513&indexURL=0&photoDisplayType=2#ebayphotohosting