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Blondie Goes to Hollywood, by Carol Lynn Scherling

 

Cartoonist Marat “Chic” Young had already produced several comic strips when “Blondie” debuted in 1930.  Like the others, “Blondie” had modest success until 1933, when she married Dagwood Bumstead.  Readers loved the young couple, and “Blondie” became one of the country’s most popular comic strips.  Columbia Pictures boss Harry Cohn was persuaded that the characters had potential for a series of second-feature films, and Columbia cut a deal with Young.  This resulted in 28 Blondie films between 1938 and 1950, all starring Penny Singleton and Arthur Lake.  This book chronicles those films as well as the short-lived television series and the more popular radio program that aired from 1938 to 1950.  Old time radio fans will remember the announcer saying, “Uh, uh, uh!  Don’t touch that dial.  It’s time for…” followed by Dagwood plaintively calling out: “B-l-o-o-o-o-o-o-n-d-i-e!!!”

 

Softcover, 6 x 9, 293 pgs.        
Price:  $24.95

 

Another Nice Mess: The Laurel & Hardy Story,  by Raymond Valinoti, Jr.
 
Arguably the greatest comedy duo in show business history, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy delighted filmgoers and theatregoers for over thirty years.  The public not only found Laurel's serene simpleton and Hardy's pompous buffoon hilarious, but they also thought of them as friends.  Laurel and Hardy may have been nitwits, but they were loveable nitwits.  Raymond Valinoti Jr.’s articles on film have been published in numerous magazines and an online film review publication.  In Another Nice Mess, he explores the lives and careers of Laurel and Hardy.  The book examines how the comedians teamed up and it explains why, nearly half a century after their deaths, their films continue to enchant people all over the world. 
 
Softcover, 6 x 9, 120 pgs.     
Price: $14.95 
 

Early Hollywood,  by Marc Wanamaker and Robert W. Nudelman

 
The image of Hollywood often is that of some otherworldly dreamscape filled with fantastic lives and fantasy fulfillment.  The real deal was carved from the Southern California desert as an outpost northwest of Los Angeles.  The movie industry arrived when tumbleweeds were not simply props and actual horsepower pulled the loads.  Everyday workers, civic management, and Main Street conventionalities nurtured Hollywood’s growth, as did a balmy climate that facilitated outdoor shooting schedules for filmmakers.  Vintage photographs from the renowned collections of the Hollywood Heritage Museum and Bison Archives illustrate Hollywood’s businesses, homes, and residents during the silent-film era and immediately after, as the Great Depression led up to World War II.  These images celebrate Hollywood before and after its annexation into the city of Los Angeles in 1910 and its subsequent ascension as the world’s greatest filmmaking center.
 
Softcover, 6 x 9, 128 pgs.    
Price: $21.00
 

Early Universal City,  by Robert S. Birchard

 

Known as much today for its theme park, Universal City is also the largest and the longest continuously operating movie studio in “Hollywood.”  The Universal Film Manufacturing Company was formed by a dozen independent producers in 1912, and Universal City was designed to provide a single facility in which to make their films.  Since its official opening on March 15, 1915, Universal City has served as a training ground for great directors such as John Ford, William Wyler, and James Whale and as home to stars like Hoot Gibson, Deanna Durbin, Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Lon Chaney Sr. and Jr., and Tom Mix.  This evocative volume explores the studio that brought The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923), The Phantom of the Opera (1925), All Quiet on the Western Front (1930), Dracula (1930), Frankenstein (1931), and 100 Men and a Girl (1936) to the screen.


Softcover, 6 x 9, 128 pgs.    

Price: $21.00

 

Fort Lee: Birthplace of the Motion Picture Industry,  Compiled by Fort Lee Film Commission

 

A favorite locale of such film pioneers as D. W. Griffith and Mary Pickford, the historic borough of Fort Lee, New Jersey, was the first center of the American motion picture industry.  Studios lined both sides of Main Street, and enormous film laboratories fed the nickelodeon market with thousands of reels of comedies and cliffhangers.  Broadway stars and producers came here to make many of their first feature-length films.  But by the 1920s, Theda Bara, Fatty Arbuckle, and Douglas Fairbanks were gone.  Yet even after the studios closed down, the film industry was still the backbone of the local economy, with hundreds working behind the scenes in the printing, storage, and distribution of movies being made in Hollywood.  The Fort Lee Film Commission aims to preserve the past through the Cliffhanger Film Festival.


Softcover, 6 x 9, 128 pgs. 

Price: $21.00

 

 

Hold That Joan: The Life, Laughs and Films of Joan Davis,  by Ben Ohmart

 

She was lanky, she was silly, she was man-hungry.  The star of television's I Married Joan and film classics Hold That Ghost, Show Business, Thin Ice and many more, Joan Davis was also one of the funniest, most versatile and most overlooked comediennes of the 20th Century. Very little has been documented about Joan's comical career¾ until now.  Full of photos, personal interviews, film facts and just plain yucks, this is the biography of a very funny lady that her fans have long awaited.


Softcover, 6 x 9, 170 pgs.    

Price:  $23.50

 

Hollywood in Vintage Postcards: 1900-1950,  by Marc Wanamaker and Robert W. Nudelman

 

With the advent of new, inexpensive photographic technology emerging in the United States during the late 1800s, communication by postcard became a very popular way to exchange travel stories, news, and gossip over the decades.  Drawing on a private collection of vintage postcards, this book features a history of Hollywood, spanning half a century.  Long before motion pictures arrived, when the area was a residential neighborhood of beautiful homes and lemon groves, Hollywood was just another suburb of Los Angeles striving to become a community.  Depicting Hollywood before and after it became the entertainment capital of the world, these pictures offer a glimpse of some of the city's most interesting places during its Golden Years.  From the familiar sights of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios and the Chinese Theater, to the horse-and-buggy dirt roads and pineapple fields at the turn of the century, they provide a guided tour through the city's progress in the first half of the 20th century.


Softcover, 6 x 9, 128 pgs. 

Price: $21.00   

 

Hollywood Studios,  by Tommy Dagcil

 

Just after the turn of the 20th century, the motion picture industry moved to the West Coast, and the largest land of make-believe was created in Hollywood, California.  From the silent-era beginnings of primitive, open-air stages, to the fabled back lots of the studios’ heyday, Hollywood Studios presents a bygone era of magical moviemaking in rare postcards.  Born and raised in Hollywood, the author has a bachelor of arts degree in radio/television/film.  Assembled from his private collection, these images from the Chaplin Studios to Metro-Goldwyn Mayer depict an insider’s look back at the dream factories known as the Hollywood studios.


Softcover, 6 x 9, 128 pgs.

Price: $19.95

 

 

Hollywood's Golden Age,  by Edward Dmytryk 

 

Edward Dmytryk is the legendary director of such films as The Caine Mutiny, Raintree County and Murder, My Sweet.  He remembers the silent film days when theatre organists accompanied various on-screen scenes with everything from snatches of The William Tell Overture to “Hearts and Flowers.”  Starting with his first job as a film editor, he recalls the arrival of sound and the glory days of Hollywood’s big studios.  Anyone who enjoys films, current or classic, will find this a powerful memoir, lovingly written, that is a joy to read.


Softcover, 6 x 9, 189 pgs.           

Price:  $17.95

 

In the Nick of Time: Motion Picture Serials,  by William C. Cline 

 

The late William C. Cline was a noted columnist for Big Reel and an avid fan of the multitude of serialized adventure films cranked out by most of the major Hollywood studios.  In the Nick of Time relates the story of those serials, from Universal’s 1930 The Indians Are Coming to Columbia’s 1956 Blazing the Overland Trail.  Fifteen fascinating chapters explain the importance of “cliff-hangers” to the industry as audience builders and “product leaders.”  The serials provided training for actors and served as a “technical university” for people who later made the television industry work.  Included are many superb photographs, and an appendix that lists, in order of release, all of the sound serials from 1930 through 1956, showing titles, releasing companies, chapter titles, directors and several cast members.

Softcover, 64 photos, 293pgs.   

Price: $34.95

 

Kings of the Jungle,  by David Fury

 

This book is a "must have" for all fans of Edgar Rice Burroughs' famed Lord of the Jungle. It covers release date, cast, credits and running time for every Tarzan movie from the early Elmo Lincoln silent films through 1984's "Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan." Includes plot synopses and behind-the-scenes information.  A bonus section looks at the TV series and a made-for-television movie.


Softcover, 7 x 10, 92 photos, 248 pgs. 

Price: $34.75 

 

Location Filming in Los Angeles,  by Karie Bible, Marc Wanamaker & Harry Medved

 

Los Angeles has reigned for more than a century as the world capital of the film industry, a unique and ever-changing city that has been molded and recast thousands of times through the artistic visions and cinematic dreams of Hollywood's elite. As early as 1907, filmmakers migrated west to avoid lengthy eastern winters. In Los Angeles, they discovered an ideal world of abundant and diverse locales blessed with a mild and sunny climate ideal for filming. Location Filming in Los Angeles provides a historic view of the diversity of locations that provided the backdrop for Hollywood's greatest films, from the silent era to the modern age.


Softcover, 6 x 9, 128 pgs.    

Price:  $21.00

 

 

Marilyn,  by Richard Havers 

 

Was there ever anyone else quite like Marilyn?  It's more than 50 years since her untimely death, and no one has been able to step into her shoes.  Her career, indeed her life, was marked by personal problems, and a reputation for being unreliable and difficult to work with.  Yet she remains one of Hollywood’s most glamorous and adored actresses, remembered for such enduring film favorites as Some Like it Hot, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, and The Seven Year Itch.  Included with this book is a CD of songs that accompany the story of Marilyn's life.  Beautifully illustrated by classic photography.


Hardcover, 10½ x 10½, 160 Pages

Price: $24.95

 

Road to the Box Office,  by Randall G. Mielke 

Starting with Road to Singapore in 1940, Paramount Pictures teamed Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, and Dorothy Lamour to star in one of the most successful series of movies ever made.  All seven "road" films followed the same basic format: adventurers Hope and Crosby would be caught in a seemingly impossible situation, they would defeat the bad guys, all the while vying with one another for Dottie’s attention.  A few ballads, duets, and comedy numbers were added for musical flavor and it all worked to perfection.  This book is a fond look back on three screen stars, all with successful careers of their own, who traveled seven "roads" together and left audiences with miles of movie memories.


Softcover, 6 x 9, 241 pgs.       
Price:  $19.95

 

Rocking Horse: A Personal Biography of Betty Hutton, by Gene Arceri 

 

At the top she made millions¾at the bottom she scrubbed floors in a parish priest house.  All the while she made headlines around the world.  What really happened?  There was never a more boisterous or vivacious movie star than Betty Hutton.  Her 1940s Big Band hit recordings demonstrated a boundless vocal range from zany romps to tear-stained ballads. During the 40's and 50's she bulldozed her way in Hollywood with spirit, spunk, good humor and a string of hits, from a singing Annie Oakley in Annie Get Your Gun to a high flying trapeze artist in The Greatest Show On Earth.  Now, through recorded interviews, Betty tells her story from her own point of view.  Often misinterpreted, misquoted or fictionalized, it is the story of one of the most popular Hollywood performers of her generation¾ told by the one who lived it!

Softcover, 6 x 9, 118 pgs.        
Price:  $19.95
 

Stooges Among Us,  edited by Lon & Debra Davis 

 

Well into the 1970s, the surviving members of the Three Stooges comedy team, Moe Howard, Larry Fine, Curly-Joe DeRita and Joe Besser delighted in meeting and corresponding with younger fans, even inviting them into their homes.  Stooges Among Us is a record of the friendships thus formed in the words of those fans.  Also sharing their insights are Stooges' family members, colleagues and close personal friends.  With this back-stage pass to vaudeville theatres, movie sets and television studios, you will be there for touching, personal moments, as well as hilarious antics that showcase the on-screen Stooge personas. A treasure to read for classic comedy fans of all ages, with never-before published Stooges photographs.


Softcover, 6 x 9, 217 pgs.        
Price:  $19.95