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Tuesday, April 03, 2007

TCM Lost & Found

Old bootlegs of Double Harness 1933 can now be discarded.

From TCM:

"During the film's TCM restoration, it was discovered that for its television showings and some international screenings, two and one-half minutes had been taken out of the seduction scene. In the TV print, after promising to slip into "something cooler," Harding later reappears wearing the same dress. Now we see the uncensored version, with an interlude in which Joan is dressed in sexy pajamas for the "business" of seducing John. In pre-Code days, it was acceptable to acknowledge that she was not above granting pre-marital favors to get what she wants.

Joan's ploy works, but backfires when John catches on, becomes resentful and takes up with a pretty brunette (Lilian Bond). As a divorce looms, Joan sets out to win her husband's love honestly. She even helps him turn his business around and become profitable again. Matters are resolved with a screwball dinner scene in which the guests withdraw because of drunkenness or other emergencies, the cook and butler get into a fight, and the couple manages to iron out its differences.

Jean Malin, who had gained fame as a female impersonator in the 1920s and was part of the so-called "pansy craze" of the early 1930s, was originally cast as dress-shop owner Bruno in the opening scenes. He filmed the sequence and can still be seen in some publicity stills. But the scenes were reshot with Fredric Santley, at the then-sizeable cost of $1,669, after RKO executives ruled that Malin was too flamboyant a presence even for those liberal times. Studio president B.B. Kahane wrote in an inter-studio memo that "I do not think we ought to have this man on the lot on any picture -- shorts or features.""

Jean Malin died at age 25 in 1933, the year Double Harness was released. For more information about Jean Malin's life, career, and circumstances surrounding his tragic death, read Richard Lamparski's Hollywood Diary.

More from TCM:

"RKO: LOST AND FOUND -- THE REDISCOVERY In early April 2006, a viewer inquiry came in to Turner Classic Movies’ (TCM) Senior Programming Manager Dennis Millay as to why Double Harness, a 1933 RKO pre-code drama, was never shown on the channel. Millay addressed the inquiry to Lee Tsiantis, a Rights Analyst in the Turner Entertainment Group’s Legal Department. Examining the Double Harness paperwork, Tsiantis was surprised to discover that the film was part of a group of six RKO releases dating from 1933-38 whose rights had been sold out of the studio’s holdings to producer Merian C. Cooper in November, 1946; as such, the films were never part of the feature inventory that Ted Turner acquired when he purchased his distribution rights to the RKO library in 1987. The titles in the group were: Double Harness (1933), Rafter Romance (1933), One Man’s Journey (1933), Stingaree (1934), Living on Love (1937) and A Man to Remember (1938)."

The complete article along with photos, movie trailers, and publicity material can be found at The TCM Lost & Found website.

TCM Lost & Found

8 Comments:

Blogger monescu said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

1:50 AM  
Blogger jtk said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

12:49 PM  
Blogger monescu said...

Well, now I've watched the restored film, and it's still not quite the film I want it to be. I was hoping that once I saw it in its gleaming pristine glory, a film that I only kinda liked would leap to among my favorite William Powell flicks (which include JEWEL ROBBERY, THE KENNEL MURDER CASE, THIN MAN, THE SENATOR WAS INDISCREET, MY MAN GODREY, I LOVE YOU AGAIN, and ONE WAY PASSAGE-- even FASHIONS OF 1934). But despite the fact that Powell is my favorite actor, and Lilian Bond is one of my favorite '30's actress, and I admire (though I don't adore) Ann Harding, I'm just not too crazy about it. It's admirably acted, directed and photographed-- I just don't find it that interesting a story. Not a clinker by any standards, but not as compelling as I want it to be.

Of course, I'm not crazy about Philip Barry plays, and DOUBLE HARNESS is clearly Barry-ish.

11:33 PM  
Blogger Gypsy Purple said...

Wishing you a happy and blessed Easter

10:49 PM  
Blogger jtk said...

I agree. It was a solid production, a very watchable film, no complaints there, Powell and Harding were fine together(I wish they would have worked with each other again), and Lillian Bond was excellent, but no, it's not quite in the class of Jewell Robbery or One Way Passage - but I never saw a Powell I didnt like.

11:01 PM  
Blogger jtk said...

Hi gypsy purple,

Thank you very much, and I wish the same to you and yours.

11:05 PM  
Blogger Mariana said...

Hi Jack, a Happy Easter to your and your loved ones. :)

11:15 AM  
Blogger jtk said...

Hi Mariana,

thanks very much, and the same to you and your :)

10:21 PM  

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