Friday, August 10, 2012

Carole Lombard and Fred MacMurray star in 1938 film, True Confession, introducing "Miss Typical America" Eleanor Fisher.

Here is an example of how the Hollywood Studio/Star System worked in the 1930's.  Paramount Studio's promoted True Confession, a 1937 screwball comedy film starring Carole LombardFred MacMurray, and John Barrymore, by running a "Miss Typical America" contest in a Maybelline advertisement.  The winner, Eleanor Fisher is given a small part in the film and the big teen story is splashed in True Confession magazine.

Eleanor Fisher, now Miss True Confession as well as Miss Typical America has not only become a Maybelline Model, she has a chance of becoming a Movie Star.

Eleanor Fisher and Fred MacMurray in a publicity shot for True Confessions magazine, promoting themselves, the film,  Paramount Studios, Carole Lombard and director Wesley Ruggles, which is a what it's all about in Hollywood.

This article in True Confessions Magazine, promotes make-up artist Max Factor, transforming Eleanor Fisher, from a simple school girl into a glamorous actress ready for her closeup with Carole Lombard. 

 True Confession.
Lombard's career had been flying high since the release of Twentieth Century in 1934, which had begun her friendship with Barrymore. Although Barrymore, by 1937, had become an uncontrollable alcoholic and his career was severely fumbling, Lombard personally requested him for the role of Charley Jasper.

Helen and Ken are a pretty strange couple. She is a pathological liar, and he is a scrupulously honest (and therefore unsuccessful) lawyer... See full summary »

This poster was painted by the famous Pin-Up artist Zoe Mozart, who's work was known for being glamorous and sexy, it was perfect for ad campaigns for cosmetics such as Maybelline and for Hollywood films. In 1937 Zoe was hired by Paramount Pictures to create this poster for   

Cover also painted by Zoe Mozart.  Carole Lombard appeared in the February 1938 True Confessions Magazine, which came out at the same time as the film was being shown at neighborhood movie houses.

In the end, the film was not a great success and Eleanor Fisher went back to being anonymous.  However the Hollywood Studio-Star System was great as far as publicity was concerned. Maybelline sold truck loads of mascara, the Stars added more luster to their famous names and Paramount continued to be an ever expanding movie factory. So I guess in this instance, I can't say anything bad about The System, because there's actually no such thing as bad publicity... Why?...

because it's still PUBLICITY.

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