Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Mae West: Russell Hopton

This evening — — on Tuesday, 10 April 2012 — — go and see “I’m No Angel” starring MAE WEST, directed by Wesley Ruggles and featuring Cary Grant. The venue is in The Garden State.
• • WHERE: Cranford Public Library, continuing its ongoing Classic Film Night every Tuesday, is here: 224 Walnut Avenue, Cranford, New Jersey 07016. If you need info, phone the library at 908-709-7272 and ask for Fran Housten.
• • Russell Hopton [18 February 1900 — 7 April 1945] • •
• • Born in New York City on 18 February 1900, Harry Russell Hopton did some work in the theatre, then made his way to the West Coast to try his luck as a film actor.
• • Cast in 113 projects for the silver screen, Russell Hopton was a busy bit parts player from 1926 — 1945. During his two decades of work in Hollywood, Hopton was seen in both credited and uncredited roles as a henchman, convict, gambler, inspector, G-man, detective, process server, lawyer, juror, reporter, barker, M.C., chauffeur, passenger, dispatch operator, radio announcer, sailor, physician, "a dip," etc.
• • Russell Hopton portrayed the street-smart character "Flea" Madigan in that comedy classic "I'm No Angel" [1933] starring Mae West.
• • Working in one release after another, Hopton hopped from dramas to comedies to adventure pictures. For instance, he was hired to be in half-a-dozen films produced in 1945 such as "Zombies on Broadway," "West of the Pecos," and "Johnny Angel" (RKO Radio Pictures) — — starring George Raft in the title role.
• • Russell Hopton died in North Hollywood, California in the month of April — — on 7 April 1945. He was only 45 years old when he took an overdose of pills and ended it all. So sad.
• • On Tuesday, 10 April 1928 in The N.Y. Times • •
• • The New York Times reported on "Diamond Lil" on 10 April 1928 on page 32. The review carried this headline and a sub-title: "'DIAMOND LIL' IS LURID AND OFTEN STIRRING" and "Mae West's Melodrama at the Royale Suffers From a Bad Third Act."
• • Opposite the coverage on page 33 was a small advertisement for the play at the Royale Theatre.
• • Until 10 April 1977 • •
• • The Salvador Dali artwork "Mae West's Face which May be Used as a Surrealist Apartment, 1934 — 1935" was on display in Philadelphia at the Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania during an exhibition called "Improbable Furniture."
• • The month-long exhibit ran from 10 March 1977 until 10 April 1977.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "You can be had."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • A newspaper item mentioned Mae West.
• • Dennis Hunt wrote: In case we forget, comic actress Mae West, who was born 100 years ago, was trying to do the same thing in the early 1930s, but in a severely sexually restrictive era. Since nudity and swearing were forbidden in those days, West had to work with innuendo — — so she became a master of the sexually suggestive one-liner. It's fun to watch her old movies with the notion that she was always trying to outwit the hard-nosed censors. . . .
• • Source: Review: "Mae West at Her Best" written by Dennis Hunt in The L.A. Times; published on Sunday, 29 August 1993
• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started seven years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 2266th blog post. Unlike many blogs, which draw upon reprinted content from a newspaper or a magazine and/ or summaries, links, or photos, the mainstay of this blog is its fresh material focused on the life and career of Mae West, herself an American original.
• • Come up and see Mae every day online: http://MaeWest.blogspot.com/
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• • Photo: • • Mae West • 1933 • •
• • Feed — — http://feeds2.feedburner.com/MaeWest
Mae West.

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