June 24th, 2011

carole lombard 05
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Hollywood's leggiest press agent

Carole Lombard does her own publicity...

...and, like most good press agents during the classic Hollywood era, fully understands the power of leg art (even at its most demure).

This photo was issued by Selznick International Pictures in September 1938. The snipe on the reverse reads as follows:

From Russell Birdwell
Selznick International Pictures
Culver City, California
PRESS AGENT LOMBARD -- Carole Lombard has turned from stardom to publicity work for a week, at Selznick International Studio in Culver City, California, "because," she says, "stars sit in on story conferences, wardrobe conferences, directorial conferences and others, but never on publicity and exploitation, which are equally important." Here is Miss Lombard at her desk on her first day's work. She is handling the advance material for her own picture, "Made for Each Other", co-starring James Stewart, and also publicity on "The Young in Heart," starring Janet Gaynor, Douglas Fairbanks Jr. and Paulette Goddard. So much interest was aroused by the fact that Miss Lombard is the first star in history to turn press agent, that she was busy all day being interviewed by reporters.

(More on Carole's week as a press agent can be found at http://carole-and-co.livejournal.com/17287.html, http://carole-and-co.livejournal.com/119764.html and http://carole-and-co.livejournal.com/401488.html.)

The "Made For Each Other" tie is obvious, but I was not aware that Lombard aided in the publicity for "The Young In Heart," a comedy she had nothing to do with otherwise. I guess she viewed star Janet Gaynor as a friend (those Oct. 6 babies gotta stick together, you know).

Note that Roland Young and Billie Burke are in the film, too, but they're not playing the Toppers (and there isn't a ghost, or Hal Roach, in sight).

The Lombard photo is an 8" x 10" original, with some creases on the corners; the seller also notes "Tack marks on all four corner borders."

It's being auctioned at eBay -- no bids have been made as of this writing, with the opening bid at $9.99. Bidding closes at 6:21 p.m. (Eastern) on Saturday, so you don't have much time. If interested in this leggy Lombard pic, visit http://cgi.ebay.com/CAROLE-LOMBARD-DOES-HER-OWN-PUBLICITY-/180683952092?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2a119a4fdc.
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