March 20th, 2013

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The latest from Capitolfest

carole lombard p1202-1153

Spring is here (why isn't my heart dancing?), and in just a few months, summer will take its seasonal place. And one of the highlights for any Carole Lombard fan (that's her above in Paramount p1202-1153) will take place in Rome, N.Y., this August, as Carole is the featured star at this year's Capitolfest.

The event is held at the Capitol Theatre, built in 1928, which seats about 1,800. Here's its interior, which looks pretty sumptuous:

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Most of the titles have been announced for the three-day event (Aug. 9 to 11), including half a dozen where Lombard appears:

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* 7 p.m. Friday -- "The Campus Vamp" (1928), a Mack Sennett two-reeler where "Carole-of-the-curves" portrays the title character.

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* 7:20 p.m. Friday -- "Power" (1928). Lombard has a small role (as does Joan Bennett, making her film debut) in this Pathe silent comedy about a pair of two-fisted dam workers played by William Boyd, shown with Lombard, and Alan Hale. It was written by Tay Garnett, later a successful director.

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* 8:55 p.m. Friday -- "Nothing Sacred" (1937), one of Carole's most memorable movies (and her only film in three-strip Technicolor), co-starring Fredric March. This acerbic satire, written by Ben Hecht, will be seen in a recently restored 35mm print.

carole lombard from hell to heaven 03b jack oakie

* 9:30 a.m. Saturday -- "From Hell To Heaven" (1933). Or, if you will, "Grand Hotel" gone equine -- several occupants of a resort hotel (including Lombard and Jack Oakie) await the results of a major horse race. This is rarely shown at repertory houses.

* 2:10 p.m. Sunday -- "Voice Of Hollywood No. 12" (1931). I know absoltely nothing about this short, other than that William Powell (whom she married in '31) is also featured, so I'm guessing her footage might be from when she and Bill arrived at the opening of the Warners Western Theater on Oct. 7 of that year.

carole lombard it pays to advertise 02a

* 2:30 p.m. Sunday -- "It Pays To Advertise" (1931). This comedy about advertising was Lombard's third film for Paramount, and her first as a leading lady (opposite Norman Foster). Eugene Pallette, her future "My Man Godfrey" father, has a supporting role, and late-silent icon Louise Brooks is also in the cast...but she and Carole share no scenes and in fact may never have met (

For more on Capitolfest -- including a full schedule (which will include several DeForest talking "phonofilms" from the early and mid-1920s), ticket information and links to lodging, visit

rome ny capitol theatre capitolfest 2013 logo

And just as a last-minute reminder: You have only a few hours left to vote for Carole in the "Funny Ladies" final of the 2013 Favorite Classic Movie Actress Tourney; go to As of 10:45 a.m. (Eastern), she currently has a 56-21 lead over Myrna Loy. In other division finals from the 1930s bracket, Joan Blondell continues her impressive run with a 51-25 edge on Eleanor Powell in "Singers/Dancers"; Barbara Stanwyck is routing Norma Shearer, 69-9, in the "Pre-Code Babes" division; and the "They Had Faces" final finds Greta Garbo with a 44-33 advantage on Lillian Gish.
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