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Day 25: Clark Gable

Thanks to everyone who participated in yesterday’s tribute to Charles Coburn. Please make sure to head over and check out all the wonderful contributions in honor of Coburn.

For the next 24 hours we honor the one and only King of Hollywood: Clark Gable.

Some trivia on Clark Gable:

  • According to TCM’s The 50 Most Unforgettable Actors of the Studio Era: Leading Men, one of Gable’s first screen tests was for the lead in Little Caesar (1931). Darryl F. Zanuck, then production chief at Warner Brothers famously quipped ” His ears are too big; He looks like an ape.” The role went to Edward G. Robinson, making him a star. Of course we all know Zanuck would be proven wrong… (p. 87)
  • In Frank Capra’s It Happened One Night (1934), Gable removed his shirt to only to reveal he wasn’t wearing anything underneath. Of course all the men in America wanted to be like Gable, so they stopped buying undershirts, therefore caused undershirt sales to plummet. Sounds believable, right? (p. 87)
  • Gable didn’t want to play the role of Rhett Butler in Gone with the Wind due to the failure of another period film he made in 1937- Parnell. He finally signed on when MGM agreed to pay his divorce settlement which would allow him to marry Carole Lombard. (p. 85)
  • Gable had a daughter out of wedlock with actress Loretta Young: Judy Young-Lewis. Due to a morality clause in their contracts with the studio, Young had to hide her pregnancy. When Judy was born, Young publicly stated that she had adopted a child. Gable knew he was the father but it wasn’t until after his death, when Judy was over 20 years old, before she knew he was her father. Loretta Young would continue to insist that Judy was adopted. (IMDb)

On to the blogging…

Returning to the Blogathon is Mary McCord of Classic Film Watch with a wonderful essay on the Pre-code Possessed.

Karen from Shadows and Satin returns with a look at Gable in another delicious Pre-code, Laughing Sinners (1931)

Over at The Moviola, Diana Drumm professes her love for The King of Hollywood in Clark Gable, My Passion For Living.

Brandie from True Classics is back with a piece on Gable’s role in the steamy Mogambo

Le from Critica Retro returns with her Top Ten Gable performances. (Make sure to hit translate!)

Aurora from Once Upon a Screen returns with a look at Gable’s performance in A Free Soul (a really great film, btw).

Jessica from Jess in a Yellow Dress is back with her take on Gable’s Oscar-winning role in It Happened One Night

Cliff from Immortal Ephemera discusses Gable and his inadvertent take-down of the undershirt industry.

Duke Mantee from Picture Spoilers returns with a look at Gable’s performance in Capra’s hilarious comedy It Happened One Night

There’s more to come, so stay tuned!

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Michael at @scribehard
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Jill Blake

Jill Blake is the owner of the classic film website Sittin’ on a Backyard Fence. She is also a co-founder and editor of the film site The Black Maria and film editor at CC2K. In 2012, she was interviewed on-air by Turner Classic Movies host Ben Mankiewicz. In 2013, she was a featured guest on the TCM podcast. In her spare time Jill is a stay-at-home mom, wife, fried okra connoisseur, and the neighborhood’s own L.B. Jeffries.

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Jill Blake
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Thanks, Sean. Looks like the post is down. I removed it.

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