December 30th, 2020

carole lombard 03
  • vp19

Carole goes maskless (but it's OK -- it's 1938)

If Carole Lombard somehow were around in 2020 (and let's assume some magical spell brought her here, since it's nearly impossible to picture a 112-year-old Lombard), I have no doubt she'd do the right thing to protect others and wear a mask, just as her nurse character did in the 1940 drama "Vigil In The Night." Two years earlier, however, Carole didn't wear a mask while making another film:

It's from 1938's "Fools For Scandal," where Lombard portrays an actress attending a masquerade party in Paris. All the other actors in this shot (I'm guessing more than a few were extras) had to disguise themselves; alas, Carole didn't have that option. "Fools" drew so-so reviews and tepid box office, and she and Warners soon split company.

Nevertheless, it's an offbeat pic (the seller notes, "some of the masks are quite incredible") and this 8" x 10" glossy sing;e-weight, from the George Smoots collection, is in excellent condition. (The back side is blank.)

It's up for auction at eBay; as of this writing, one bid has been made (for $39.99), and the auction closes at 10:33 p.m. (Eastern) Tuesday. If you're interested in this oddity (while shooting it, one wonders if Lombard thought of Paramount's 1933 "Alice In Wonderland," where many of her fellow stars wore masks designed to evoke John Tenniel's famed illustrations), visit

And please wear your mask during these difficult days. America has lost more than a third of a million people during this pandemic.
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