vp19 (vp19) wrote in carole_and_co,
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A number from 'Numbers' (a photo, too)



Above is a clip from Carole Lombard's first Paramount movie, 1930's "Safety In Numbers"...though, truth be told, you won't find much Lombard in this sequence (I'm not sure you even hear her speak in this clip.) But it certainly gives you an idea of what the film was about, as it focuses around a number called "The Pick-Up" for a musical act. It's nowhere as memorable as some of the other songs from the film, such as "My Future Just Passed" or the charmingly silly "I'd Like To Be A Bee In Your Boudoir."

This also gives you a feel for the appeal of Buddy Rogers and why he was nicknamed "America's Boyfriend" -- he has some real vivacity here. (Louise Beavers, the noted black actress, even gets to sing a bit; as you might expect from those stereotyped days, she's playing a domestic.) Moreover, check out some of the dance footage near the end, using silhouettes and all sorts of weirdly angled photography that must have knocked audiences out in mid-1930 (Busby Berkeley-style inventiveness minus the huge stages). All in all, it's the last vestiges of 1920s peppiness and optimism; within a year, it would seem hopelessly outdated.

And speaking of "Safety In Numbers," here's a still photo from the film that's being auctioned at eBay:



Kathryn Crawford and Josephine Dunn join Lombard and Rogers in the picture. Given the dialogue printed at the bottom of the photo, I'm guessing this was distributed to theaters to use as a sort of lobby card. There's also a stamp indicating that it was once the property of someone in Trois Rivieres, Quebec. (The seller is from Montreal.)

You don't have much time to get this photo -- bidding closes at 6:50 p.m. (Eastern) tonight -- but even though two bids have already been made, the top offer as I write this is a very reasonable $3.14. Want to try your luck at landing this? Go to http://cgi.ebay.com/Charles-BUDDY-RODGERS-Carole-LOMBARD-Safety-in-Numbers_W0QQitemZ300359623433QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_DefaultDomain_2?hash=item45eed42309
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