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Joseph Egan author of The Purple Diaries: Mary Astor And The Most Sensational Hollywood Scandal of the 1930s will visit us this weekend, Saturday, January 21, and Sunday, January 22.




Joseph Egan, an editor and conceptual artist, is also a close personal friend of Marylyn Thorpe Roh, the child at the center of this famous custody battle between Mary Astor, and her husband, Dr. Franklyn Thorpe. Joseph Egan has written for and edited a weekly entertainment newspaper, edited a privately printed anthology and edited several college literary magazines. He has also worked as a free-lance editor, as a professional researcher, worked in motion picture promotion, as a free-lance video editor and has had had several film scripts optioned. In addition, as a conceptual artist he has presented installations in New York City as well as in the Midwest. One installations was displayed at Lincoln Center.


Mr. Egan is expert on a wide range of diverse subjects including the motion picture Heaven’s Gate, producer David O. Selznick, inventor, Nikola Tesla and of course, Mary Astor.


Preferring the private life, Mr. Egan and his wife live on the side of a mountain in Dutchess County, New York, where their daily visitors are restricted to white tail deer, wild turkeys, chipmunks, rabbits, raccoons and a rather reclusive family of possums.


You can visit him and learn more about his laterst book, The Purple Diaries: Mary Astor And The Most Sensational Hollywood Scandal of the 1930s online at http://thepurplediaries.com or TheMaryAstorCollection.com and of course the Author’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/josephegan01?ref=ts&fref=ts


Why did Joseph Egan write the book? Read his fascinating response here:


"A number of years ago I put together a massive conceptual installation consisting of a series of paper collage works dealing with the American film Industry from the 20s through the 90s. For the 1930s I chose the Mary Astor Custody Battle. Over the years the Astor material intrigued me. It was basically the story of a woman who, for the sake of her little baby, took on the American media and the Hollywood establishment to do what she believed was best for her child. I soon discovered that every book, and even magazine article, written years after the trial had never gotten the story correctly. What is worse, they often printed rumor as fact.


The idea of writing about the custody battle was sparked when I read the Mary Astor chapter in Kenneth Anger’s hugely successful book, Hollywood Babylon. It was Anger’s intention to scandalize and he succeeded quite well at this. Thus, the piece on Astor was filled with so many falsehoods—often substituting the salacious for the truth—that I felt the record needed to be set straight. This idea languished until I read a short piece on the trial in New York Magazine for which Anger’s book was the principal source. In short, Hollywood Babylon and its many falsehoods had, and would continue to be, source material for any writer wanting to discuss the Mary Astor-Franklyn Thorpe Custody Trial. This provided me with just the motivation I needed to write a book that would finally ‘set the record straight’. The result is an exhaustively researched and compelling courtroom drama."


Egan's book has been featured or reviewed in the following venues:

The Huffington Post

Angle News

The Sun (New York)

Closer magazine

The New York Post


The Library Journal

And many more....


Please join us in welcoming Joseph Egan to The Silver Screen Oasis, a classic film website for fans. To register, all you need is an email address and a username: http://silverscreenoasis.com/oasis3/ucp.php?mode=register


Several of Mary Astor's films have appeared at the TCM Film Festivals like "The Maltese Falcon," "Dodsworth," and "Meet Me in St. Louis." Many of her films continue to be screened on our favorite channel, TCM. Astor appeared in films from 1921 to 1964, amassing a screen career with more than 150 credits, and also enjoyed popularity as a writer and novelist.

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