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Frances Dee Fans


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Hi, Feaito:

 

I realized I made a couple of typos. When talking about Frances Grandmother, I meant to use the word accent, not whatever word I did. Margaret Dee was Frances' and Margaret Dee's grandmother. Margaret's sister, Florence, was the girls' great Aunt.

 

I've seen Buddy Rogers in three films: "Wings," "Along Came Youth," and "Follow Thru," which wasn't the greatest copy. I do wish these Paramout films would become more readily available. If only the Universal/Paramount channel will come to pass.

 

Like I said, with these films, some of the realistic stuff you've got to put by the wayside. However, I would rather see a silly, enjoyable romantic comedy that makes me feel good than these awful movies put out by Hollywood today, movies about comic strip characters or movies with critters popping out all over the place. They have an "Alien-like" movie coming out called "Cave," with critters popping out of the cave ceiling. Then there are all the lousy remakes.

 

I'll take these enjoyable romantic comedies anyday, over comedies with potty and diaper jokes. I bet you the remake of "Yours, Mine, and Ours" will have a lot of that. I will go see the sequel to Zorro, as I adore Antonio and Catherine. It's funny, Fernando, but when I saw "Mark of Zorro" the first time, Tyrone Power was so believable to me as Zorro I did not realize he was not Spanish. Either way, he was wonderful in the film, as was Antonio in the remake. I also might see the Roman Polanski version of "Oliver Twist" with Ben Kingsley as Fagin. Tell me, Feaito, does Latin America get all the dreggy American films that are such hits here? I'm just curious if the rest of the world is as enamored with the garbage U.S. studios are putting out nowadays.

 

One more interesting th ing about "Along Came Youth" is the character actors in the film. Stuart Erwin is hilarious as Buddy Rogers' best pal. He is always giving Buddy asking questions like, "How can we work as cooks when we don't know the first thing about cooking." In a way, Buddy's schemes to get money reminded me a little of all of Ralph Kramden's money-making schemes on "Honeymooners."

 

There is also Frances' Aunt, who is hilarious as the woman trying to save the family fortune, as well as the name. I love the way Frances emphasizes the word "Old Toad." I'm going to watch it again on my older VCR to see if the tracking is better on it. I might catch more second time around.

 

Then there is the guy who played the husband Ginger Rogers is trying to divoce in "Gay Divorcee." He is living on the estate (more accurately, sponging off his relatives), although he has five charges whom he is tutoring, whose names all begin with the letter C (Cutherbert, Caspar, Cyril, etc.). He is really quite hilarious as well.

 

As I said, this is a wonderful, delightful little film, an early screwball comedy. The people may be wacky, but they are basically nice people, unlike most of the characters in film nowadays. One famous Chicago critic thinks an actor, sitting on a bed, starring into space, is enlightening. Well, I can do that myself. I'm sure you and everyone who as ever posted on the TCM threads can as well.

 

One final note. I have only seen Joel's film of "Bird Of Paradise," although I would like to see the other version in color. I love all three stars in the remake very much, especially Jeff Chandler, who left us way too soon. My heart still belongs to Joel, though. Well, at least back then, if the studios made a remake, they were usually good.

 

Take care.

 

Deborah

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Debbie,

 

With all you've told us, I'd really like to see "Along Came Youth"...I love screwball comedies; "My Man Godfrey", "Bringing Ub Baby", "The Young in Heart" and films of the sort.

 

As for films shown here, you are right, it's pretty much the same stuff you guys see in the U.S... the mainstream blockbusters et al. But we do get too some European, Oriental and Latin American films. I like Spanish, French and Chinese films.

 

Take Care

 

Fernando

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I didn't read through this whole thread but I was just out for a walk and something made me think about Rowland Brown's Blood Money with George Bancroft and Dee? I've heard so much about this film. Has anyone seen it or know if there's a specific reason for its unavailability? Is it just a case of being constantly overlooked or is there a legal reason? I very much liked Brown's Hell's Highway, with Richard Dix, and I think the man should have made more films but, from what I know, I believe his mouth got him into trouble.

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Johnnyweekes--

Is "Blood Money" the one in which she describes herself (in the documentary "Complicated Women") as a nymphmaniac and a kelptomaniac?

 

Anyone--

If not, what is that movie called? Because I'd like to see it. I only remember seeing her in "Little Women" and there's a big difference between Meg and the girl she describes!

 

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Tracey, I believe Dee is how you describe her in Blood Money. I'd love to see that film but I don't really like picking up films off ebay when I don't know what I'm paying for, and that's about the only place one can find this film, I think. The comparison between Little Women and Brown's film is interesting because most of what I've seen Dee in is similar, 'goodie' roles. It's great to see actresses usually cast in such roles break free and dive into debauchery.

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Hi, Johnnyweekes70:

 

I waited a little bit to reply to your question, because I wanted to check out a couple of things. I also had a problem posting this the other day, but I think it will work today. I saw it listed on this site, in the shopping section.

 

I know that for a long time, "Blood Money" was considered a lost film, but then it was discovered in the 1980's sometime. I had always thought it was a Fox Film, hence the reason it is not shown on TCM. However, I recently found out it was a Fox/United Artists film (at least that is what it says in my book); so, I guess United Artists distributed it.

 

Clips from it were shown on the "Complicated Women" special Frances Dee was a part of. She participated in the TCM archival project, for which she was interviewed back in 1998. The tapes are on VHS, although I don't know if they will ever be made available to the public or not. I know at one time, based on what I read in "Classic Images," I thought they were going to be, but since then I have not heard anything. I think they are using it mainly for their own specials. Since it is Joel McCrea's centenniel in November, I was kind of hoping they would have a special on him then, although they might wait until the book or books come out. You never know with these things. I know most of these "Word Of Mouths" were taped quite awhile back.

 

Frances Dee talked about how she made this film right after completing "Little Women." The director, Rowland Brown, asked for Frances specifically for the role. She said, "I was flattered being asked. It is what is known as a plumb role. I had just finished playing Meg in 'Little Women," and this was quite a departure from Meg as you can get. She was a rather weird character: a nymphomaniac, a kleptomaniac, and everything in between."

 

It's interesting Rowland Brown asked for her to do this part, since for the most part, Frances had played good girls. However, he must have thought she could have done it, and it is supposedly one of her best acting jobs, although I have never seen the film myself. It was certainly against type, that's for sure.

 

I looked up on the shopping tab on this post. I see that Movies Unlimted has the film "Blood Money" on sale for $14.99. I clicked on the actor's tab and typed in Frances Dee. I guess it's on sale from $19.99. I have purchased movies from Movies Unlimited in the past, and with one exception, they have been pretty good quality. However, this was some time ago.

 

I like Rowland Brown as a director. He has these gritty films I like. Unfortunately, he is one of these directors not so well remembered today. I keep hoping TCM will show "Blood Money" in its entirity, since they had a clip of it in "Complicated Women."

 

You can maybe get it for auction on Ebay as well.

 

I would really love to see this film. I find it interesting to see an actress play such a dichotomy in characters, one right after the other. In an interview she did in the late 1990's, she said Joel McCrea proposed to her on the set of "Little Women." I've often wondered if either Joel or Frances' parents ever saw this film. It sure sounds, interesting to say the least. She also seems to have had a fun time making it. She sure remembered it fondly, calling it a plumb role. That it was.

Take care.

 

Deborah

 

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Deborah,

 

Thanks for your investigation into the availability of Blood Money. I missed the Complicated Women documentary but I have the book which, apart from the film clips, is probably just as good, if not better with everything in print. I like what I've seen of Rowland Brown's work, which is only Hell's Highway. I believe he only made two other pictures, and Quick Millions, with Spencer Tracy, is another film I'd love to see. Brown's story credits are impressive, State's Attorney (one of my favourite John Barrymore films, though more from a sentimental aspect than a cinematic one), Angels with Dirty Faces, Johnny Apollo, and What Price Hollywood just a few. There's so many figures of old Hollywood like Brown who seem to have been bypassed by time in favour of the more commerical, prominent personalities. Always a shame though, at least, some people don't forget.

 

As for Dee, I think my favourite Dee film is Souls at Sea, though that's maybe because I think she's surrounded by a magnificent cast, and it's great to watch Henry Wilcoxon as the heavy. I like Henry Wilcoxon.

 

Johnny

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Johnnyweeks and Deborah--

Wow, Deborah--you have a good memory. I couldn't remember the exact quote. And thanks from me too about "Blood Money." I'll have to look for it.

 

Johnnyweeks, one of the most interesting things about the "Complicated Women" documentary, which is not in the book (I have it and Dangerous Men, the follow-up--not quite as good)is the interveiws with some of the actual women from that era--Karen Morley, Kitty Carlisle, Mae Marsh (is that the right one?) and Frances Dee. All of them were in their 70's or 80's and they were talking about their roles and how much fun it was, running around in skimpy costumes and doing risque things...and, not to bring down the tone of the boards, Karen Morley's memories of John Barrymore leering at her in "Arsine Lupin" and of Jean Harlow's breasts are a hoot.

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Hi, Tracy65K:

 

I loved the "Complicated Women" documentary as well. What a hoot! I just wish they had let the ladies involved talk a little longer; so, we would have less of Jane Fonda's lackluster narration. As far as I was concerned, she was the weak link in the chain.

 

I don't know if they interviewed these ladies in 2003, late 2002, or earlier. I know that both Frances Dee and Karen Morley participated in the TCM Archival Project in 1998, and their tapes are on VHS. I don't know if these tapes are ever going to be for sale. From what I read in "Classic Images," at one time I thought they were going to be for sale, but now I think they are just going to be for archival projects.

 

I remember very well Karen Morley's discussion of "Aresene Lupine" and talking about being photographed in her underwear and what great fun it was. She died in March 2003, a couple of months before the special aired. Frances Dee died almost exactly a year later, in March 2004.

 

The other actress you were talking about is not Mae Marsh. Mae Marsh was mainly a silent screen actress. The actress you were trying to remember, Tracy, was Mae Madison. She talked about making "So Big" with Barbara Stanywck. She died in November 2004; so, the only one of the ladies still living is Kitty Carlisle Hart. Hart's saying she thought "Marijuana," a number in this musical she was in, was a Mexican musical instrument was hilarious.

 

Frances was also wonderful talking about her memories of making a film like "Blood Money!" What a difference between that and "Little Women!" She said, "There was no code; so, they could say and do whatever they liked to, and they did." I also got a real hoot of Frances' impersonation of fellow Paramount Player Mae West. Frances really had it down pat, with the swaying of her head, the running of her fingers through her hair, and kind of shaking her body while sitting down. I especially liked the winking she did. Frances said, "You know, she (Mae) could flirt. She would flirt with herself. When she entered the Paramount cafeteria, the doors would swing open and all eyes would be on Mae. That is the power of Mae West."

 

I always got the impression that Paramount was a fun place to work. Carole Lombard called the Paramount Funhouse. I found this wonderful picture in my collection of Frances, posing as a banker's wife in the picture. Well, as a banker's wife, Frances is sitting on a stool, holding a checkbook, about to write a check. I especially like the outfit she is wearing, a lounging outfit known as a bathroom. She is sitting with her legs crossed; so, her long legs are in full view of the camera. Quite a cheesecake photo. I just wonder for what movie it was. I wonder how many people have had banker's who had wives who looked like that?

 

I am really anxious to see "Blood Money," not just for Frances, but for George Bancroft, who plays one of several love interests of Frances in the film. In an earlier film ("Rich Man's Folly"), Frances plays Bancroft's daughter. The ironic thing is Bancroft was the same age as Frances's real-life father, which has to be one of the few times that age actually made a difference in Hollywood with those things. I wonder whether George preferred Frances being his daughter or girlfriend. I do know that Ann Trumbull is about as far away from Elaine Talbert as you can get.

 

In spite of the fact that neither of her parents were crazy about their daughter going into pictures, they let her follow her dreams. I think her father wanted her to finish her education at University of Chicago, but let his daughter have one year to make it in motion pictures, which she did originally for some kind of lark, not ever really thinking that she was going to make it.

 

Being originally from Chicago, I do know one thing: Frances must have been a very intelligent woman in real life. Of course, just by reading her interviews, I can tell that. I had a professor who was more familiar with the Hyde Park area than I was; so, I was asking him some questions about the area. I mentioned I was researching this actress who used to live here. I told him she had gone to Univesity of Chicago for a couple of years before becoming an actress.

 

Well, when I told him that, he seemed surprised. He said, "This lady could not have been your typical actress. She must have been very, veyr smart to get into that school because it's very hard to get into it." I know this one columnist, Dan Thomas, wnet there, and he said she had been in good standing when she went to go to Hollywood, making her an atypical Hollywood star.

 

Frances was sure a very talented and intelligent person. She and her husband, Joel McCrea, were both very modest, down-to-earth, kind people, who never let Hollywood get to their heads (due, in all liklihood, at least in part, to their family backgrounds). I guess that is why I like them so much, besides their talent.

 

Take care.

 

Deborah

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deborah--

I agree. Jane Fonda was not a good choice to narrate. I don't know what she was thinking, but it seemed at times she got an attack of the cutes. I kept thinking, "OMG, Jane. Will you stop trying to be clever and just read the d-mn script??"

 

Thanks for the background on Frances Dee. Her line about Mae West was funny. I remember laughing about it. I do think my favorite part was Karen Morley--I read somewhere that she got mixed up in the Communist witchhunts of the 50's and had to stop making movies. That must have been a terrible time in Hollywood.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi, Tracy65K

 

Let me know if you get "Blood Money" from Movies Unlimited. Tell me whether it is a good copy or not. There have been a few times I've almost bought it off Ebay, but hesitated because I found some fan magazines I preferred. I got a great price on one old magazine I've been trying to get for awhile that I got real cheap on Joel. There is another one I'm looking at.

 

There is also one that has an article on Frances Dee. However, it starts at $25; so, I just don't know. It is from 1932, with Jean Harlow on the cover. It's called, "I'll Marry if the Right Man Comes Along." She believed love was more important than anything else, which she proved by how she lived her life because the right man did come along. So, let me know if you get the tape.

 

Now that school has begun, I'm going to try to contact the Hyde Park Historical Society to see if I can get on any information on her high school or grammar school, including any yearbook photos.

 

My two favorites in the "Complicated Women" special were Frances and Karen. They were both quite hilarious. You could tell they were both having a lot of fun, going down memory lane. The way Frances described her character (Elaine Talbert) as being a nymphomaniac, a kleptomaniac, and everything in between; in other words, a rather weird character. That film looks like a lot of fun.

 

Well, take care.

 

Deborah

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Hi, everyone:

 

I wanted to ask you guys a question about the "TCM Remembers" segment that they have when celebrities die. I'm not referring to the year-end one because I have a copy of that. Actually, I have copies of both.

 

I'm referring to the little segments they do immediately after a celebrity dies. Much to my amazement last March, after Frances Dee died, they did have about a one to two- minute individual tribute to her on TCM.

 

Most of the films I knew, such as "I Walked With a Zombie," "Love Is a Racket," "Little Women," and "Finishing School." I especially loved the scene where she and Kate Hepburn are dancing around, with Frances wearing a rose in her hair. I also like where she talks about wanting a part because it's a grand part.

 

Prizzlesprung, since your Frances Dee collection seems to be as large as mine is, perhaps you can answer this question. I love all of the pictures you gave Susan. They are simply gorgeous. I don't know if you saw the segment in question or not.

 

Well, the scene I'm talking about is right close to the end of the segment. It's the only one I don't know where it came from. About the only thing I can say is that in it, Frances looks very young, around nineteen or twenty.

 

In the scene, she is wearing this very long gown with a print on it, I think a flower print. Her hair is very short. The most noticeable thing about her gown is that right around the elbows, the sleeves expand out. They are almost like Japanese Lantern sleeves.

 

Anyway, Frances is turning around in this dress looking at the camera. It appears that she is standing at some kind of door, perhaps a sliding door. She turns around and blows a kiss, before going on.

 

This is not the scene from "Of Human Bondage," the last scene in the segment (the one they used at the end of the year), where she is standing by the fence and waving goodbye. This appears about two or three scenes before.

 

Prizzlesprung, do you have any idea what movie that scene is from? Anyone else out there have any ideas, that is, if you have seen the scene.

 

Thanks.

 

Deborah

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Greetings Deborah:

 

Alas I cannot answer your question about the provenance of the movie clip that made you curious. Most of my collection are pictures; it is skimpy where movies are concerned. Perhaps I would have more movies if I had not purchased bad bootleg copies of ?Blood Money? TWICE. Susan is vastly my superior when it comes to knowledge of Frances Dee in the cinema. (I wonder if TCM would answer an E Mail about the film sequence you asked about?)

One good question deserves another. I have raised this with Susan but so far we are stumped. In the movie ?Wheel of Fortune? aka ?A Man Betrayed? there are a couple of pictures of note. One of them appears on political boss Tom Cameron?s desk late in the movie when ?boy loses girl?, John Wayne and Frances Dee seemingly have a parting of the ways. Susan has a copy of a print of that image; that is not a complete puzzle.

The more difficult question concerns a picture in the nightclub called the Inferno. Early in the movie the simpleton portrayed by Ward Bond is seen gazing at a picture of a woman in white then someone comes into the room and he puts the picture behind his back before discretely placing it on a table. Late in the movie John Wayne confronts Ward Bond in the now moribund Inferno and as Ward Bond is leaving the club John Wayne induces him to stay. In part of that sequence you can again see the picture of the woman in white over through the door way that John Wayne was exiting. Can you or anyone identify that picture? (A Frances Dee picture must have been used?).

To compensate in a small way for being unable to answer your question let me mention something from ?Hollywood Glamor Portraits? edited by John Kobol. (The book is new to me but perhaps old to you; it contains only one picture (an Otto Dyer) of Frances.) It is trite to note that perhaps the most famous of the old movie photographers was George Hurrell. He took the picture of Frances Dee that appears in the December 1936 issue of Esquire magazine (and in Galley 7 of Susan?s now revamped, no pun intended, web site). The picture shows Frances wistfully touching her lip with a finger. Here is a Hurrell quote from the book:

 

?There was such a dramatic quality in those days ? we were all such romantics. The stars were really wonderful about stills ? they?d cooperate. There wasn?t any false pretence of ?dignity?- just a naturalness. They were electric, full of sexual qualities, alluring. Our world was a storybook ? a romantic fantasy. We were talented. We were working. We were making money and assumed it would always be so. We didn?t fret and worry about it like they do today. We were too busy being alive. We were the children of the gods.?

 

 

Cordially,

prizzlesprung

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi, Prizzlesprung:

 

Sorry it took so long to respond to your email. I've been having trouble posting. First, I wanted to ask you this: Who would I email to ask about that Frances clip. I had thought of that idea, too, but I don't know who or where I would email, except on those boards. I suppose I could pose the question on the IMDB boards.

 

It has been awhile since I saw "Man Betrayed"/"Wheel of Fortune"; so, I don't know if I exactly remember the scenes you are talking about. That one picture you talked about, where Duke is on the outs with Frances. I remember that scene very well. He says to Edward Ellis, "You and your daughter make a good team, with all of that stuff about polo ponies." That picture on the desk is the same picture of Frances hanging on the wall in "Sullivan's Travels." I'm thinking it was probably a personal photo Joel had of Frances that found it's way to both of those films. I could be wrong or write.

 

As for the other photos, I really don't remember for sure. I would have to watch the film again to tell you the answer. I do have it on VHS somewhere; so, I will dig it out and watch it again. It is one of my favorite Frances and Duke Wayne movies. I do not remember those photographs at all.

 

The only other photograph I remember that looked like it was of Frances occurred after Ellis had went to all his old political allies, who were all running away from him and abandoning him. Frances is in a bathrobe and has cooked him an omelet. Ellis stars talking about Sabra's (Frances' character's mother). He said, "Things would have been a lot different if she had lived." You look up and there is this painting on the wall, a painting that looks a lot like Frances posed for it. Of course, at the time another thought occurred to me, considering the outfit and everything: it might have been a picture of Frances' mother when she was young that they borrowed for the film. It could have also been a picture that looked like her.

 

I wanted to also ask you about your photographs. Where did you get most of them from? Were they stills? Do you collect them from movie magazines? How long have you been collecting them. I was especially curious about the one picture where Frances was sitting at a table, with Joel standing behind her, holding on to her chair. What caught my eye about the picture is that it appeared that Frances was wearing glasses. That surprised me, because I had never read or heard she wore glasses, and I had never seen any pictures of her with glasses before? Do you remember if there was any writing with the picture.

 

Well, got to be going. We're going out for supper. Take care.

 

Deborah

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  • 2 months later...

Hi, everyone:

 

Prizzlesprung, I finally found that copy of "Wheel of Fortune" of mine; so, sometime during the Christmas Holiday I will try to watch it and see if I can spot those pictures you are talking about in the film. Did you see Susan's interview with Peter McCrea on her website. It was pretty neat. She asked him about "Becky Sharp" and "Come and Get It," among other films. He said his Aunt Margaret was in Becky Sharp, but he didn't know where.

 

He also didn't remember either his mom or dad mentioning her having a bit in "Come and Get"; so, perhaps it didn't have it. The only place I ever saw it mentioned was in a book I had called "Films of Sam Goldwyn." It listed Frances as a dining car guest. It also said that she did a radio version of "Come and Get It" that aired on Campbell Playhouse (not Lux Radio Theater, like I thought), and it aired on December 31, 1939, I believe (although I could be wrong about the year).

 

Some friend also had another interesting note on the film "Wheel of Fortune." They told me that the basis for the city where Sabra Cameron lives, Capital City (I believe) was actually Chicago, Illinois. I know Duke Wayne's character, Lynn Hollister was from a place called Spring Valley. Since there is, in fact, a town named Spring Valley (I think in Central, Illinois), it might possibly be true. I know the town in the Sturges film the "Great McGinty" was Chicago because they kept referring to Clark Street, and Sturges was from Chicago, just like Frances grew up there. After the holidays, when the weather gets better, I'm going to try to go to HPHS to see if I can see any yearbooks from the 1920's. I don't want to go with all this snow and cold in Chicago.

 

Oh, by the way, Tracey, I got the "Blood Money" from Movies Unlimted, and it was a pretty good VHS copy. A couple of the scenes of the sets seemed dark, but other than that, it was a good copy. It was also an excellent little film.

 

All you have to do is view "Blood Money" next to "Little Women" to see what a versatile actress Frances was. Talk about polar opposites: Meg would have been frightened of Elaine (with good reason), and Elaine would have found Meg a bore. As Frances said, she was complimented Roland Brown wanted her for the film because she had just finished "Little Women," and this was quite a departure.

 

Elaine certainly was a naughty little girl, to put it delicately. Unfortunately, I'm sure there are a lot of bored rich girls out there who do things like shoplifiting for the kicks; so, I don't think at least that part of Elaine Talbert is that unusual.

 

I agree with George Bancroft's assesssment of her when he tells Elaine she needs a good thrashing. It's obvious that Elaine is doing this for attention, and her father is not bright enough to figure it out because he is too busy working. So, to make up for it, her father spoils her by throwing weekly parties. However, that does not excuse Elaine's behavior.

 

Both Frances and Joel did not seem to have the predilection for making the headlines like some other more flamboyant stars did. Then again, when your living at home, perhaps you are less likely to misbehave than if you are by yourself; then again, maybe not. This is, I'm sure, partly their background and how they were raised. Then again, if when Frances had behaved as teenager like Elaine, she would have been appropriately disciplined, shall we say.

 

Altogether, "Blood Money" is a fun, thriller, taut film noir classic, with excellent performances by Frances, George Bancroft, and Judith Anderson (in her film debut). I never thought I'd see the day where the hero would be better off with someone like Judith Anderson (who played Mrs. Danvers so wonderfully) and sweet little Frances (who was not so sweet as little Elaine Talbert). And, you just know that one day, little Elaine is going to find herself in more serious trouble than just occasional kleptomania.

 

Take care.

 

Deborah

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Tracey -

 

I got rid of mt credit cards years ago - would you please tell me what PayPal is? I saw something for sale on the internet once and they took PayPal - I didn't know what it was.

 

Also, do you know who this "Susan" is who Deborah mentions - is it someone with a website?

 

Thanks a lot -

 

Ralph

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  • 1 month later...

Hi, everyone:

 

Long time since I've been on the boards. I keep having trouble logging on from home computer; so, I'm doing it at school.

 

Any of you been to Ebay lately? They have had a lot of lovely pictures of Frances Dee, with and without husband Joel McCrea, up for auction. Among the ones with her husband include one where the two of them are attending the Oscars. Another time they are at some premier or whatnot. Then there is one on their ranch. In fact, there was a nice article recently in the "Moorpark Acorn," where they interviewed their grandson, Wyatt, who talked about his famous grandparents and how one time the ranch will be open to the public. It is now on list of historic places.

 

However, the most interesting item up for auction was something that Susan brought to my attention. A couple of weeks back they had a high school yearbook from Hyde Park High School from the year 1927. I lost the bid at the last minute, but then later on I found it was a reprint; so, I wasn't as disappointed. Besides there are historical societies where I might be able to see the real one.

 

Anyway, among all the many graduates of Hyde Park High School in 1927, one of them was the subject of this thread, Frances Dee. It seems Frances was not only popular with moviegoers, but she was also popular with her fellow classmates at Hyde Park High School. Among other things, Frances was Senior Class Vice President of her graduating class. She supposedly also had the lead in the senior play, although whoever was auctioning off the yearbook didn't notice that. Of course, since it was a reprint, maybe it accidentally got left off.

 

Of course, in the graduating class, their fellow classmates also vote various awards, like most stylish dressed, most collegiate, etc. I think Fernando will especially like this, a well as some of the others, since they are big fans of la belle Frances. Well, Frances Dee got voted an award by her fellow classmates as well. Guess for what? Frances was voted Belle of the Year by her graduating class.

 

Since Frances has a late birthday (November) like myself, she would have been only seventeen years old when the yearbook picture was taken. However, even at seventeen, she had that certain something, including beauty, style, and grace, that moviegoers of her era and even some in the current era, know her for. Even at seventeen, you can see why she was voted Belle of the Year. However, instead of the shoulder-length hair she wore for most of her films, Frances had a Billie Dove-style bob in her yearbook picture.

 

That is why I think it is so great that Susan has this website for Frances Dee; so, future film goers can get to know this lovely lady's life and work. There is also a lovely interview with her youngest son, Peter McCrea, on her website, if anyone is interested in reading it.

 

Take care.

 

Deborah

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