vp19 (vp19) wrote in carole_and_co,

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How soon they forget

We've occasionally discussed how several of Carole Lombard's films were reissued during her lifetime (http://community.livejournal.com/carole_and_co/95185.html and http://community.livejournal.com/carole_and_co/197254.html). Well, here's another example -- one that made a lot of sense.

To borrow that catchphrase from "Law & Order," it was based on something "torn from today's headlines" (that is, if you were looking for headlines from the likes of Hedda hopper and Louella Parsons) -- the romance of Lombard and Clark Gable, which had taken hold in 1936 and grown more intense by the spring of 1937.

So naturally, somebody got the idea, why not reissue that film Clark and Carole made together? And that's what happened, at least at the Ambassador Theatre in Indianapolis, as it showed their lone on-screen collaboration, "No Man Of Her Own":

The result -- boffo box office, or so we learn from Boxoffice of April 3, 1937. But examine this item carefully; what is wrong with it?

The answer, of course, is that the studio that made this film was incorrectly identified -- it's not an MGM film at all, but Paramount product. Of course, by this time Gable had become synonymous with Metro (though I doubt the same mistake would have been made with "It Happened One Night").

Here's what the Ambassador looked like, in a photo from June 1936. It's the building just to the left of the one on the corner:

The Ambassador began as a vaudeville house, eventually converting to motion picture use. It only seated about 850 or so, likely a bit smaller than newer palaces expressly built for the movies. It was razed some years ago.

Of course, in the nearly 4 1/2 years between the film's initial release and its reissue, a little thing called the Hays Code was being more emphatically enforced (http://community.livejournal.com/carole_and_co/31676.html). I'm sure the reissued version eliminated a scene in which Carole's character removed her dress in front of her husband, as well as one where Gable lasciviously looks up at Lombard's legs while she's on a ladder, shelving books (she plays a small-town librarian).

Elsewhere in the report from Boxoffice's Indianapolis correspondent was more evidence of Carole's popularity -- and this time, she did it without Gable. It occurred on the other side of the Ohio River:


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