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MrWriteLA

My Favorite Trivia

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Well, it's been six (6) days, and people seem to have gotten tired of guessing the answer to this question:

 

Name the Broadway musical star who was a great success on stage, then went to Hollywood and made three flop musicals in a row. This person only made five (5) movies overall, but then returned to Broadway and became, once again, the toast of the town.

 

 

The correct answer is: VIVIENNE SEGAL.

 

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0781876/bio

 

http://www.answers.com/topic/vivienne-segal

 

 

One respondent even said that this Broadway star who was a flop in Hollywood was "a figment of Dan's imagination." Some figment.

 

As her bios tell us, Vivienne was "the reigning musical diva of her time." She was "on stage by age 15 and found her early claim to fame as one of the Big Apple's most popular ing?nues." She went on to star in "The Yankee Princess," "Florida Girl," and Florenz Ziegfeld's production of "The Three Musketeers."

 

Hollywood beckoned, but they didn't give her much to work with. Her first three films -- "Song of the West," "Bride of the Regiment," and "Golden Dawn" (all 1930) were flops, especially the last one, which today is considered one of the worst films ever made. Vivienne was fine in "Golden Dawn," but the rest of that flick is unwatchable. I recorded it off TCM one time, but after watching it once, I deleted the recording.

 

After only five films, Vivienne returned to Broadway and was once again acclaimed as a major star. Vivienne's best years were yet to come as she made a triumphant return to Broadway with a fresh, cutting-edge image. Rodgers & Hart's "I Married an Angel" (1938) in which she sang "Spring Is Here" reopened the doors, and her witty interpretation of "Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered" in "Pal Joey" relit her star all over. Smart, elegant and devilishly dry, the 1943 revival of Lorenz Hart's "A Connecticut Yankee" allowed Vivienne to play the beautiful but deadly Morgan le Fey. She gave a deliciously wicked rendering of the song "To Keep My Love Alive" in which she expounds on her various husbands' unfortunate but necessary demises.

 

The following names were submitted by our team of trivia experts: Carol Channing, Ethel Barrymore, Marilyn Miller, Mary Martin, Julie Andrews, Dolores Gray, Ethel Merman, Kitty Carlisle, Gertrude Lawrence, Beatrice Lillie, Maxine Elliott, Fannie Brice, Jeanne Eagels, and Ruth Etting... all of them great stars, and all of them the wrong answer.

 

This reminds me of a Nero Wolfe mystery I once read. In it, the great detective explains his methods of deduction: Simply eliminate all the impossible solutions, and whatever is left must be the correct solution.

 

Vivienne Segal is the correct solution.

 

Oh, by the way, I mentioned that she lived a long life... and someone responded with the name Kitty Carlisle. But Vivienne didn't live as long as that. She died in 1992 at age 95. Kitty is now 96 and counting.

 

Thanks to all who participated.

 

Dan N.

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Here's a new question.

 

Name a tall, handsome western actor who was first envisioned and signed by a major studio as a "Gary Cooper" type leading man but after Cooper himself became a big star, was shunted and cast off before reaching his projected stardom.

 

Our hero appeared in a variety of roles, some major, some demeaningly uncredited, but nonetheless totaling well over 300. That's right: More than THREE HUNDRED!

 

Cheers,

Dan N.

 

http://www.silentfilmguide.com

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just a guess....

i think his name is Pierce Lyden....

i only know that because he is in a book i got my father about old westerns, and i was shocked at what a career he had.

karith :)

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just a guess....

i think his name is Pierce Lyden....

i only know that because he is in a book i got my father about old westerns, and i was shocked at what a career he had.

karith :)

 

 

Pierce Lyden is actually a good choice, karith. But he isn't our guy. Not quite enough movies.

 

Here's an additional clue, though: Our mystery guest's first film appearance was in a Charlie Chaplin movie.

 

Cheers,

Dan N.

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> According to the IMDb, Gertrude Lawrence, Beatrice

> Lillie, and Maxine Elliott all had longer movie and

> TV careers than did our MG. A run of the name Adah

> Isaacs Mencken came up empty.

>

Well, folks, poor Adah Isaacs Mencken (sometimes "Menken") deserves better than an empty IMBd run. She was a wildly popular and "scandalous" actress of the mid-19th Century. She claimed to be of various origins, seemingly as the mood struck her. She was oft-married, and participated in all sorts of theatrical events, including tightrope walking with Blondin, who was the most famous ropewalker of the day.

 

She toured the US in for years in various over-the-top dramas, the most notorious of which was a play based on Lord Byron's "Mazeppa" about a Polish national hero. In that play, in which she played the male title character, at one point she was tied to a real horse which galloped across the stage. Her costume consisted of a light-colored body stocking which made her look as though she had nothing on at all. The public loved it. George Cukor's film "Heller in Pink Tights," with Sophia Loren, has elements of Menken's career, and Menken was played by Ruth Roman in an episode of "Bonanza." I still remember that one. Virginia City was in an uproar over Menken's scandalous "nude" horseback riding.

 

Take that, Britney Spears.

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Well, folks, poor Adah Isaacs Mencken (sometimes "Menken") deserves better than an empty IMBd run. She was a wildly popular and "scandalous" actress of the mid-19th Century. She claimed to be of various origins, seemingly as the mood struck her. She was oft-married, and participated in all sorts of theatrical events, including tightrope walking with Blondin, who was the most famous ropewalker of the day.

 

George Cukor's film "Heller in Pink Tights," with Sophia Loren, has elements of Menken's career, and Menken was played by Ruth Roman in an episode of "Bonanza." I still remember that one. Virginia City was in an uproar over Menken's scandalous "nude" horseback riding.

 

Take that, Britney Spears.

 

 

But was she bald, as Britney is now?

 

Dan N.

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Ward Bond?

 

 

Tall and tough, Ward Bond had a nice run in films, appearing in more than 260 movies. But that isn't as many as our mystery guest appeared in. Also, he was never in a film with Charlie Chaplin.

 

Who could our mystery guest be?

 

Dan N.

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this is a very very huge shot in the dark.

but here it is.

Gilbert M. "broncho billy" Anderson

karith

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although i don't think he was in a chaplin film...

but he did start essanay studios with George K. Spoor.

and they worked with chaplin, and a variety of other famous film stars of that period.

karith :)

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this is a very very huge shot in the dark.

but here it is.

Gilbert M. "broncho billy" Anderson

karith

 

 

Actually, that's not a bad guess. Broncho Billy Anderson made more than 300 films, as our hero did. But Anderson was already appearing in the movies when Gary Cooper was only two years old... thus, he could not be the man the studio hired as a "Gary Cooper type."

 

Actually, G.M. Anderson's career as a movie star ended before Cooper made his first film. So no, it isn't him.

 

Dan N.

 

http://www.silentfilmguide.com

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John Carradine?

 

 

This is a pretty good guess. John Carradine appeared in over 300 films and TV appearances, as our mystery guest also did. And, he was TALL.

 

But if you recall, one of the clues is that our hero's first appearance was in a Charlie Chaplin film. Carradine and Chaplin never worked in a film together.

 

Dan N.

 

http://www.silentfilmguide.com

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Okay, here's another clue to the identity of our mystery guest.

 

He was born in EITHER North Dakota, South Dakota, or Montana. The identity of his birthplace varies between bios.

 

Who could it be?

 

Remember: He was tall and handsome, picked by a major studio as a "Gary Cooper" type leading man, but never attained star status. Nevertheless, he continued to work in pictures, eventually making over 300 films.

 

Who he?

 

Dan N.

 

http://www.silentfilmguide.com

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FINALLY!!!!!

man this one was sooooo good dan.

this has literally been driving me nuts,no joke it was really about to get me.

but here it is....

drum roll please:)

LANE CHANDLER!!!!!!!!!!!!!

karith:)

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thanks dan.

so do i have to do one now?

if so, would you mind if i pass on my turn.

you are much better at that than i am.

really i just like guessing :)

as long as everybody is okay with that.

karith

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I've got one:

 

The turn of the 20th Century saw the introduction of a talented movie actress who became instantly and immensely popular. She worked for an NYC film studio and made dozens movies, some as star, some as co-star. Her manager had complete control of her career and wrote, produced and directed most, if not all, of her movies. She is considered the first movie star of her type, but she did not live long. After her death, her manager made more films with another, similar performer, which also did quite well. This genre of film remains popular to this day.

 

Can you identify the star, and for extra points, her manager?

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Here's a nudge: this star worked primarily out of Vitagraph's Brooklyn studio, and also made many films on location. Although she had a lot of screen time in each film, she rarely had any dialog.

 

I referred to her as an actress, but it's unlikely she was called that in her own day. Nevertheless, she was definitely a star.

 

Admittedly, she is essentially forgotten today, but she is a very important part of the history of films. (You will find references to her if you use the right sources.)

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are you talking about jean the"vitagraph dog"

the first dog hero

here manager would be laurence trimble.

and after her death in 1916, he later went on to work with another dog star "strongheart"

both paved the way for later stars like rin tin tin, lassie, and airbud :)

this is my daughters favorite genre of film...

karith

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Fantastic! I was indeed speaking of Jean, the Vitagraph Dog. She and her owner, Laurence Trimble set the pattern for all future "animal pictures." Jean was a major movie star in the early 1900s.

Jean

jean.jpg

Strongheart

strongheart.jpg

Shep, the Wonder Dog

shep.jpg

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sorry for not posting....i am in the middle of moving...

if someone would like to post that would be great....

thanks for the wonderful question by the way:)

karith

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sorry for not posting....i am in the middle of moving...

if someone would like to post that would be great....

 

 

Okay, here's a new one:

 

Name the actor who had a lengthy film career, achieved great success, and set (or helped to set) a number of records. In one of his movies, he was known simply as "the man in the white suit."

 

Who he?

 

Dan

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Alec Guinness?

 

 

No. In his film "The Man in the White Suit" (1951), Alec Guinness was known as Sidney Stratton.

 

The gent we are looking for was born in Nevada.

 

Cheers,

Dan

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