Wednesday, December 13, 2017

On the slopes, or in the studio?

Ann Blyth poses with skis in this wintry photo, though those of us in the northern climes don't need reminding that snow is piling on the back steps.  This photo shoot was likely another publicity chore, as the studio publicity departments kept a constant agenda of supplying newspapers and magazines with pictures and news tidbits to keep a star's name in front of the public eye in between movies.  This photo was released in 1946, a year of great tribulation for Ann when, after the triumph of her Oscar-nominated performance in Mildred Pierce (1945), she suffered a serious back injury, and then the death of her mother, as she tried to pick up the pieces and continue with her career.  She was 17, and would turn 18 this year.

I wonder if any of the "snow" melted under the hot lights?  Still, it's a lovely illusion.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Paperback Book Sale!

SALE!!! - For the month of December only, the paperback version of my book Ann Blyth: Actress. Singer. Star. will be reduced from its regular price of $25 to $15!  Hurry to pick up your copy at this low price, as there are only five copies available at this sale price.  When the supply is gone, the sale is over, and future restocked items will be sold at the regular price of $25.  All my books in paperback are on sale at my Etsy shop this month - both fiction and non-fiction. 

Go to LynchTwinsPublishing here.  Payment can be made through credit card, PayPal, or by check or money order.  Your book can be signed if you wish, or any special message enclosed either written in the book or on a card.

Ann Blyth: Actress. Singer. Star. is a big book - 8 1/2 x 11 "coffee table" size, 398 pages with over 250 photographs.  It's a fine holiday gift for the loved one on your list who loves classic films -- especially for one who admires this splendid actress.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Brute Force - Ann Blyth and Burt Lancaster

Ann Blyth and Burt Lancaster in a publicity photo for Brute Force (1947).  They were cast together for the only time, but producer Mark Hellinger apparently voiced plans to create a new movie romantic team.  From my book, Ann Blyth: Actress. Singer. Star.:

Producer Mark Hellinger may have had yet another reason for putting Ann Blyth and Burt Lancaster together.  He had hired her for Swell Guy (1947), and him for The Killers (1946).  They were two of Universal’s most talented up and coming stars, and he may have wanted to turn them into a team.  According to syndicated gossip columnist Dorothy Manners who wrote this in May 1946:

Mark Hellinger, always good for a bright idea, said to me, “Where are those swell romantic teams that used to make the fans goggle-eyed over their love scenes…It’s time the love team is revived on screen,” and Mark is the boy who is going to do it with his two young stars, Ann Blyth and Burt Lancaster…he wants to make three or four with Ann and Burt....

Their romantic team never did materialize.  Both went on to other films, and Mark Hellinger, who might have made a pet project of bringing them together again on screen, tragically died about six months after Brute Force was released.   

Brute Force will be shown on Turner Classic Movies this coming Monday, December 4th, at 6:15 p.m. ET.

Monday, November 27, 2017


LAST DAY SALE- Ann Blyth: Actress. Singer. Star. eBook at half price! Available at Amazon including new "X-Ray" function with descriptions of names, places, & events. In case you didn't know what the Copacabana was.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving...and a sale!

Here's Ann Blyth with the fall harvest --  and I wish American readers a Happy Thanksgiving. It's a festive studio publicity photo, notable for its lack of cheesecake posing and cornball posturing with such props as a turkey on a leash, a musket, or an ax with which to kill the unsuspecting turkey. There was nothing like holidays to bring out the zaniness of studio photographers.

I'll take this opportunity to mention as well that for the next several days, through Monday, November 27th, the eBook version of Ann Blyth: Actress. Singer. Star. will be available at Amazon for half price.  Amazon has also included my book in its new "X-Ray" function for eBooks which will allow for descriptions and explanations of names, places, and events by holding down on a highlighted word, to enhance your reading experience.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Ann Blyth at premiere of Mr. Peabody and the Mermaid

Here's a shot of Ann Blyth at the premiere of Mr. Peabody and the Mermaid (1948).  Among the attendees here are Susan Hayward and her husband Jess Barker.  Note the formal dress in more glamorous days, though we might wonder at the fur stole in what was likely the summer of 1948.

We discuss Mr. Peabody and the Mermaid at my Another Old Movie Blog here, and in my book Ann Blyth: Actress. Singer. Star.  Ann is considerably more covered up at the premiere than she was in the water.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Ann Blyth on Most Beautiful Women in Hollywood List

Ann Blyth was featured on a list of "The 12 Most Beautiful Women in Hollywood" by Photoplay magazine in December 1951.  It's an interesting list, and she appears in the number 2 slot after Ava Gardner.  The rest, in order behind her are Elizabeth Taylor, Arlene Dahl, Linda Darnell, Joan Crawford, Mona Freeman, Loretta Young, Marlene Dietrich, Susan Hayward, Rita Hayworth, and Deborah Kerr.

Though articles involving "experts" panels, even among photographers, more likely reflect popularity contests among the fans or effective barracking by the studios, we do see a reflection of what made for popular appeal in 1951 (though classic film fans today would regard glamour as timeless, surely).

From the article by Vicky Riley:

"Ann Blyth has flawless facial attributes," said one photographer, "but it is something beyond her bone structure and her exquisite, dusky coloring that makes her a great beauty -- an inner spiritual beauty which illumines her face."

Another said, "Ann symbolizes the dream of all of us.  Sher personifies everything that girls of her age want to be.  She is the girl boys desire for a wife.  And she is the girl parents want for a daughter."

She was also a photographer's dream.