’39 De Soto at Carthay Circle movie premiere…maybe…um, no

“I don’t think they actually shot this at Carthay Circle – that tented walkway was much longer and I doubt that neon sign was green and pink, but for the uninitiated, it certainly looks like the real thing.”

Martin Turnbull, expert on the golden age of Hollywood, posted this on his facebook page (link is below). He has written some excellent historical fiction novels about this time and has a lot of interesting posts on his page.

Image and excerpt from https://www.facebook.com/gardenofallahnovels/photos/a.219221078144642/3469588083107909/?type=3&theater .

Learn more about the Carthay Circle movie theater here: http://cinematreasures.org/theaters/1158 .

Industrial activities mural in Long Beach

20sep07industrial_activities_in_Long_BeachImage: incomplete view of mural by Ivan Bartlett and Jean Swiggert at Long Beach Polytechnic High School from http://digitallibrary.usc.edu/cdm/compoundobject/collection/p15799coll15/id/1956/show/1251/rec/5 .

TitleIndustrial activities in Long Beach, Long Beach, 1939
DescriptionIndustrial activities in Long Beach, Long Beach, 1939. Polytechnic High School, interior stairwell between buildings 300 and 400, 1600 Atlantic Avenue (between 15th and 17th Streets), Long Beach. A crowded scene of the local community at work and play along the harbor. Both Bartlett and Swiggett were alumni of the school. Fresco using casein tempera, 17x 35‘, by Ivan Bartlett and Jean Swiggett. Sponsored by Federal Art Project. Dunitz, Street gallery, rev. 2nd ed., p. 253, #5.
Subject (corporate name)Long Beach Polytechnic High School
Subject (topic)Street art
Mural painting and decoration
Social history
Geographic subject (street address)1600 Atlantic Avenue
Geographic subject (city or populated place)Long Beach
Geographic subject (county)Los Angeles
Geographic subject (state/province)California
Geographic subject (country)USA
Geographic subject (other)Long Beach Polytechnic High School
Geographic coordinates33.78703,-118.184545
ArtistBartlett, Ivan; Swiggert, Jean
PhotographerDunitz, Robin J.
Other contributorFederal Art Project
Publisher (of the digital version)University of Southern California. Libraries
Date created (for display)1939
Format3 slides : col. ; 2 x 2 in.
Format (aat)color slides
slides (photographs)
Contributing entityUniversity of Southern California
Identifying numberdunitz-1250; dunitz-1251; dunitz-1252
ReferencesDunitz, Robin J. Street Gallery: a guide to 1000 Los Angeles Murals. Los Angeles, CA: RJD Enterprises, c1993; Dunitz, Robin J. Street gallery: a guide to 1000 Los Angeles Murals. Rev. 2nd ed. Los Angeles, CA: RJD Enterprises, c1998;
RightsThe images are accessible for fair use. However, muralists retain all rights to their work, and Robin Dunitz retains copyright for the images. Any requests for permission to reproduce the images must be directed to: Robin Dunitz, 503-577-3842, rjdunitz@comcast.net
Physical accessThe files represent Ms. Dunitzpersonal collection of materials collected over the years of her involvement in documenting and preserving Los Angeles murals. They are available for consultation in the Helen Topping Architecture and Fine Arts Library, University of Southern California. For an appointment, contact the Library at (213) 740-1956.
Repository nameUSC Helen Topping Architecture and Fine Arts Library
Repository addressWatt Hall 4d, USC, Los Angeles, CA 90089-0294
Repository emailafa@usc.edu
Filenamedunitz-1250.tif; dunitz-1251.tif; dunitz-1252.tif
Part of collectionRobin Dunitz Slides of Los Angeles Murals, 1925-2002



Keystone Cops in 1939 film


Image: photographer/source not identified, probably was a studio promotional photo

In what is probably a publicity still for the Hollywood Cavalcade movie, the Keystone Cops emerge from between two trolley cars in a “tight squeeze” auto that has been specially modified. Most likely, the movie showed them riding on a full-width car as they approached the trolleys then switched to this one as they departed. After editing, it would look like their car had been squeezed between the trolleys. The trolleys are from the Los Angeles Railway and the location may have be on 2nd St. near the Subway Terminal.

Aug. 10, 2020 update: […location] was on Douglas Street at Ridge Way about a block north of Edgeware Road in Los Angeles.*

Normally you wouldn’t find the silent-era Keystone Cops appearing in a movie as late as 1939 but Hollywood Cavalcade depicts the transition time from silent to “talkie” films. Learn more about the film at https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0031433/ .

“The Keystone Cops (often spelled “Keystone Kops”) are fictional, humorously incompetent policemen featured in silent film slapstick comedies produced by Mack Sennett for his Keystone Film Company between 1912 and 1917.” Excerpt from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keystone_Cops . See the link to learn more about them.

On this day in 1939, this photo was approved by the Advertising Advisory Council. The full name was Advertising Advisory Council of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America, Inc. that decreed that “only such advertising or publicity material or trailers, approved by such Council shall be used in advertising and exploiting” a movie that had been approved for release. This was part of the movie industry’s self-policing practices in response to pressure from some members of the public and governments regarding the moral content of films.

Watch a 31 second video of this scene from the movie :


* Thanks to the Ralph Cantos update here: https://www.pacificelectric.org/los-angeles-railway/a-tale-of-two-maggies-lary-nos-1-and-7/ that shows a different pose of the Keystone Cops at the same location. Thanks, too, to John Bengtson of https://silentlocations.com/ for his assistance in providing similar photos, one of which showed a street sign that wasn’t visible in other pictures. And thanks to Steve Crise, Los Angeles trolley historian and co-author of this “then and now” book on PE red cars who may use this blog photo in his upcoming “then and now” book on Los Angeles Railway cars.