This Day in GINGEROLOGY - April 25th
1995: Ginger Rogers died in Rancho Mirage, California of congestive heart failure; she was 83. She was cremated and her ashes interred alongside Lela’s at the Oakwood Memorial Park Cemetery in Chatsworth, California. It is fitting that Fred Astaire’s gravesite is relatively close to hers.
2011: FMC aired “Roxie Hart”.
2015: FXM RETRO aired “Dreamboat”.2016: FXM RETRO aired “Tales of Manhattan”.
Next GingerFilm(s) (on TCM - all times Eastern):
May 4, 2017 @ 12:45 P.M. Gold Diggers of 1933
May 4, 2017 @ 6:15 P.M. 42nd Street
May 17, 2017 @ 4:15 A.M. Finishing School
Next GingerFilm(s) (on FXM Retro - all times Eastern) - NOTE - the FXM Retro site is kinda 'cryptic' as far as specific times, so please check local listings for 'specific times':
None Currently Scheduled...
Monday, December 30, 2013
...as to what's ahead in 2014, the biggest news is... it appears that the lone 'lost' GingerFilm has...been FOUND!!!
Yes, not only has "Hat Check Girl" been found to exist, it is also being restored, according to Molly Brown (a.k.a. GingerPeachy). GP actually broke the news a week or so ago over on FaceBook - her blog is "The Trade Corner for Ginger Rogers" .
Now, what happens with the restored copy afterwards is not specifically known... at minimum, the film may be shown at film festivals... maybe a TCM Festival? Which would be awesome... but of course, the OPTIMUM situation would be to sell the rights to 20th Century-Fox (HCG was a 'Fox Films' production) so they can distribute it as part of their "Cinema Archives" collection (if they could also get a restored copy of 'Broadway Bad' out in this series, life would be REAL good!) ...anyway, stay tuned for further details regarding HCG and its potential 'access'... I will definitely post updates about it!
...and regarding the future of this blog...to put it in the most emphatic phrasing I can muster: ...it ain't going NOwhere, y'all... ...although there's no doubt that the awesome community of Gingerologists over on FaceBook has 'demanded' a good chunk of the author's time which heretofore was allotted for blogging.
However, there's still a heap to do here at Gingerology!!! I roughly posted an entry a week in 2013, which is a bit below average, but I also made some headway on the GingerFilm Blogs...but lots more work to do on those... and there's lots of topics and 'features' still untouched which I need to get going on here - and we won't even mention the purt near dormant state of the HueyReviews...so, PLEASE stay tuned!!!
...finally, there are a few other things which may be popping up here in 2014, which have not been finalized yet, and may NOT, but... time will tell... again, stay tuned!
Finally, on this last post for 2013, I again wish to thank ALL of y'all who support this blog...hopefully it is of interest, entertainment, and education regarding all things Ginger Rogers... and remember, feedback is MOST welcome!!!
Have a Appy Noo Jeer, Y'all!!!
Sunday, December 22, 2013
Well, I was guided by a fellow Gingerologist to recall one of the more memorable Christmases for Ginger in her bio... and even though most of y'all know it well, I still thought I'd transcribe it here, just to get in the spirit of things, and for those who haven't seen it... but the setup is as follows... Christmas 1942... The U.S. had been in WWII for just over a year, and Ginger was planning on marrying Jack Briggs the following January. He was enlisted, and was spending the holidays with his relatives before marrying Ginger and then waiting for 'the call' for being sent into battle... So Ginger and Lela entertained some of their relatives at her Gilcrest home... From her bio (starting on p. 251 - silver hardcover), and a few awesome pics of Ginger, Lela, and Smokey on the set of "The Major and the Minor":
"Despite the dreadful shadow of war, my house on Gilcrest was full of the Christmas spirit, as well as bulging presents waiting to be opened. My mother, whose birthday was December 25, squealed with delight at having her father, Smokey, as our guest for the day. Family and friends gathered around the Christmas tree, and I was the master of ceremonies for this part of the presentation. When the presents from under the silver-tip pine dwindled to nothing but empty space, Smokey's face became very long and very sad. He must have thought we'd forgotten about a present for him."
"I drew my mother's attention to the clouded expression on his face, and she nodded to me that we had better take him outside before he pouted. Mother and I planned his present and its presentation together. I reached down to the base of the tree and picked up a huge ball of red string. I announced to Smokey, "Here's your present but you'll have to follow wherever it leads you.""
"He immediately caught the humor of it, saying, "This is just what I needed." He wound the string into a red ball and he repeated his remark each time the string would be wrapped around a lamp or a book. The whole group got caught up in his search and as soon as the string stopped at any item, in unison they would repeat with him, "This is just what I needed.""
"The string led us outdoors to the parking space in front of my three-car garage, and, as planned, there was a brand-new Ford. When the crowd saw this shiny new car, they let out an audible "Oh, no!" since the string had just stopped at the radiator on the front of the car. In his amazement, Smokey again repeated, "This is just what I needed!" Smokey sat down on the running board of his Ford and began to cry like a baby, he was so overcome. Everyone in the crowd got caught up in the emotion of the moment, and there wasn't a dry eye in the group. Lelee and I presented him with the right gift, and it really surprised him. It was a thrill for me to know that. He took my mother into a corner later that evening and said, "You two didn't have to get me such an extravagant present.""
"Mother rightly answered him, "But, Daddy, you are the most important man in our lives.""
"With that, Granddaddy cried again. He was an emotional Welshman. Bless him!"
...hopefully this story will strike a chord with you as you reflect on Christmases Past, which are hopefully great memories of loved ones (it had that effect on me...) ...and to also inspire you NOW to make the most of the season with family...which is what it REALLY should be all about, right?
...with that, here's wishing all Gingerologists out there a VERY Gingery Holiday Season!!!
Sunday, December 8, 2013
"The Gibson Girl" was to be a major vehicle for Ginger courtesy of her 'home studio', RKO... but the production was scrapped at the last minute because....well, we'll explore that in a bit... but first...
...what IS a Gibson Girl?
Well, glad ya asked!
The year was '86...1886, that is... and a young illustrator from Roxbury, Massachusetts named Charles Dana Gibson was doing quite well in NYC selling his illustrations to magazines such as Collier's Journal, Harper's Weekly, and Scribners.
Wiki: "Next to the beauty of a Gibson Girl, men often appeared as simpletons or bumblers..." yeah, if that doesn't describe our girl Ginger, nothing does... especially when you consider her gooberhead hubbies... but I digress...
The real life model for the 'prototypical' Gibson Girl was Charles' wife, Irene Langhorne...who was the sister of Lady Mary Astor - yes, THOSE Astors...
Here is a cool Pintrest site with all things Gibson Girl...including a neat item regarding this film (and honestly, I 'nabbed' the pic at the top from this site, so...thanks to the site owner...)
OK, so, how's about this film which was to star Miss Rogers which was to begin production in 1943-ish? Well...
...a 'younger' Ginger, looking quite Gibson Girl-ish, no?
...as to the film script, from gleaning various sources, most notably a former RKO employee who claims to have actually thumbed thru the script, it was not very well done. RKO had quite a bit of investment in the project, including purchasing of the rights of Gibson's drawings for use in the film and general reference.
RKO, although still producing great films in the early 40's, including arguably one of the best EVER, Citizen Kane in 1941, as well as some Hitchcock films, including Suspicion, and of course Kitty Foyle :-) had some bad investments which caused the bottom line to dip a good bit... although the studio would rebound by the mid-40s. This financial 'hiccup', along with Ginger's looming 'freelance' deal, AND the marginal script, all probably conspired as to why this GingerFilm...WASN'T.
All we have regarding the 'general plot' can be gleaned from this 'preliminary publicity catalog' which was on display at BU... and yes, it's the same drawing, but...DANG someone did a GREAT job drawing Ginger here... too bad this wasn't the artist for the GandF posters... ALTHOUGH... Ginger looks VERY 1940's-style here...AWESOME, of course, but... not really the style of the Gibson Girl...
"A glorious singing, dancing, romantic comedy based on the heyday times of Charles Dana Gibson, the artist who made the American girl famous...bringing back in all their good-time sparkle and lusty glamour those gay, colorful, high-living days that ushered in the Twentieth Century...it's the natural of all naturals for the talents of Ginger and the big-time screen musical and specialty cast soon to be announced".
...I wonder what the tunes were, if any had been written for it?
...also note the film was to be in Technicolor...dang it! An opportunity for a GingerFilm in color lost...
The general story line was considered again in the 1950's as a Jane Russell vehicle, when Howard Hughes was in control of RKO Studios. The reasoning behind the 'mothballing' at that time is unclear. For all we know, the script is still in a file somewhere out there in Hollywood... would be great to peruse, no matter the quality.
I think this would have been a cool GingerFilm, IF it were given to the correct director... George Stephens or Greg LaCava would have done quite nicely... actually, it kinda seems made for LaCava, perhaps minus any big musical numbers...
In fact, it could be a pretty cool project TODAY, with a totally revamped script, of course...whom would y'all suggest play the part of the 'textbook' Gibson Girl?
Well, hope y'all enjoyed this post... it was cool to research! AAANNNDDD, please comment with any more info regarding this one!
It is my hope that I can continue to make 'G-ology' interesting and informative regarding the 'Beautiful Science' of VKM, which is SUCH a great topic!!! ...And remember, your comments are what make Gingerology click - so keep cranking them out!
Thanks again, JW