This photo of Carole (or, as she went by at that time, "Carol") Lombard as a Pathe player, wearing a shirt emblazoned with the studio's famed rooster logo, is a fairly common image of her in the late 1920s. But here's another one, almost certain from the same session, that many of you many never have seen before:
Her figure is certainly thrust more front and center here, a visual explanation of why the Lombard of that period was nicknamed "Carol of the curves"...at least until Pathe officials had her shed the few pounds she had gained while working for Mack Sennett. Compared to the "superstructures" of buxom 1950s actresses, her bustline is rather meager, but it's certainly shapelier than the lithe Lombard of the 1930s.
That's one of the goodies recently sent my way by Tally Haugen, and if it turns out one of her new year's resolutions was to supply "Carole & Co." with some more interesting pix from her considerable collection, who are we to say no?
Here's another one -- p1202-1027, which would likely put it somewhere in 1934:
This one has no p1202 number (assuming it was taken at Paramount at all); it's from the early '30s, showing Lombard's gown sheathed in black fur:
While the real-life Lombard was renowned in the film community for her generosity and ability to be "one of the guys" (albeit a very feminine "guy"), place her in front of a still photographer in the early '30s and she exuded an entirely different, otherworldly aura, as in "what's an ethereal creature like that doing among us mere little mortals?" We've likely run these two before, but they are splendid examples of Carole, actress transformed into goddess:
By 1940, Lombard still looked lovely, but her allure now was far more informal. For proof, view this RKO portrait:
This romantic image of Carole with Fred MacMurray is probably from their first film together, "Hands Across The Table":
And finally, a look back to the start of Carole's career at Paramount, as she's among the Buddy Rogers harem in the male fantasy "Safety In Numbers," from 1930:
Thanks for these images, Tally. We await many more during 2012.