Thursday, June 27, 2013

Mae West: Frank Mayo

MAE WEST played Cleo Borden in "Goin' to Town" [1935] — — and Frank Mayo was seen as Rand.
• • Frank Mayo [28 June 1886 — 9 July 1963] • •
• • Born in New York City, New York on Monday, 28 June 1886 was the versatile thespian of stage and silent screen fame Frank Mayo. He launched his career as a spunky six-year-old in the play "Davy Crockett" (which starred his grandfather).
• • He had a very serious face for a 25-year-old when, in 1911 during the silent film era, he began appearing in flickers and snagging supporting roles. Mayo first linked up with the World Film Company of New Jersey; after that, he was most closely linked with Universal Pictures. He was busiest and most successful before talkies came into being.
• • According to film historian Hal Erickson, Frank Mayo was credible and commanding whether in a dinner jacket or rugged outdoor garb. Directors thought of him as a dependable strong-and-stalwart hero.  "Confined to bit and extra roles in the 1930s and 1940s, Frank Mayo was frequently hired by producer Jack Warner and director Cecil B. DeMille, both of whom regularly employed the faded stars of the silent years," noted Hal  Erickson.
• • From 1911 — 1949, Frank Mayo had roles in 338 motion pictures. The trim 6-footer was 49 years old when he had a minor scene with Mae West in "Goin' to Town" [1935]. This is the picture in which Mae, costumed as Delilah, sings in an opera. 
• • How's this for an amusing coincidence? Mayo's final film was "Samson and Delilah" [1949]. While making this picture, he socialized with several cast mates who had also had the privilege of working with Mae West: John Miljan (Ace Lamont from "Belle of the Nineties"), Lane Chandler (a porter in "My Little Chickadee"), and Francis J. McDonald (a henchman in "Every Day's a Holiday") — — among others. 
• • Frank Mayo had a heart attack. He died in Laguna Beach, California on Tuesday, 9 July 1963. He was 77. On Wednesday, 10 July 1963, The N.Y. Times ran an obit with this title:  "Frank Mayo, Actor in Films Since 1915."
• • On Monday, 27 June 1949 • •
• • Richard Coogan was still appearing on Broadway in the role of Captain Cummings opposite Mae West in "Diamond Lil" when he auditioned for a TV series.  Coogan was cast as Captain Video on the DuMont Television Network on Monday, 27 June 1949.
• • On Sunday, 27 June 1954 • •
• • On Sunday night, 27 June 1954, Mae West delighted the Las Vegas club goers — —  and the female patrons stormed the stage — — when the bodybuilders in "The Mae West Revue" filed into the Sahara's Congo Room.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "I have had to do my share of outsmarting men through necessity."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • Motion Picture Daily mentioned Mae West.
• • "Paramount Will Get 'No Angel' on Oct. 13" • • 
• • Motion Picture Daily wrote: Mae West in "I'm No Angel" will alight at the New York Paramount instead of the Rivoli, the picture going into the Times Square house on Oct. 13, following "The Torch Singer." Originally allotted as one of the four Paramount films for the Rivoli for 1933 — 1934, the picture was set to go into the U. A. house following "Emperor Jones." ...
• • Source: News Item:  Motion Picture Daily; published on Tuesday, 3 October 1933   
• • By the Numbers • • 
• • The Mae West Blog was started eight years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 2680th 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.

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• • Mae West as Delilah in 1935

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