Sunday, August 31, 2014

Rudolph Valentino Tribute, Pt. 3



Now we reach the portion of this trilogy that covers the 87th Memorial Service for the 88th Anniversary of silent screen actor Rudolph Valentino's passing.



The journey down the hallway to Valentino's crypt in the Cathedral Mausoleum of the Hollywood Forever Cemetery:



The final resting place, surrounded with floral tributes:



On the first anniversary of Valentino’s death, a woman by the name of Ditra FlamÄ— began appearing at his gravesite in mourning clothes clutching a single red rose, beginning the tradition of the “Lady in Black.” She showed up annually 1926—1954, then stopped coming because she said there were too many "Ladies in Black," all crowding each other out for a little publicity. She changed her mind in 1977 and got in the papers again. The vintage publicity blurb that accompanied this particular photo from 1937 reads:

Much interest centered around the arrival of a woman in black who mysteriously arrives each year on this date. She is unidentified but always brings flowers and says a prayer on bended knees before the crypt of the former screen lover. She is shown placing flowers in a vase on the crypt.



The current one is Karie A. Bible, who was born on Halloween and is a cemetery tour guide. She considers herself a "Historian in Black."



Opening remarks for the tribute were by Valentino fan Tracy Ryan Terhune:



Michael Di Giuro gave an interesting talk about visiting Castellaneta, Italy, the hometown of Valentino:



Allison Francis read a poem from Day Dreams, written in 1923 by Valentino himself:



The Wegter family (Rachel is shown here) performed two songs that they had composed as a tribute to Valentino:



Garrett Bryant read a vintage newspaper article about an auction preview held in Falcon Lair, the Hollywood home of Valentino:



Christopher Riordan was the keynote speaker, giving an emotional talk about living in the guest house of Falcon Lair. Sadly, most of the estate has been demolished.



Stella Grace concluded the program with a reading of the 23rd Psalm:



Afterwards, guests were able to look at Valentino artifacts on display:



It was an interesting hour to say the least.

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See more Daveland Hollywood Forever Cemetery photos at my main website.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Rudolph Valentino Tribute, Pt. 2



I found myself at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery last Saturday for the 87th Annual Rudolph Valentino Memorial Service. The name of the location has always seemed slightly tacky to me, so I was very surprised to see just how beautiful and tasteful the grounds were. A veritable "who's who" of Hollywood, Mickey Rooney is one of the most recent buried here:



Johnny Ramone's not-so-subtle plot:



Hattie McDaniel, best known for her Oscar-winning role of Mammy in "Gone with the Wind":





Where Douglas Fairbanks and his son are buried:



The Cathedral Mausoleum, where Valentino resides:





The interior:



Many beautiful stained glass windows lend a splash of color to the white marble:





Silent Screen Director William Deane-Tanner (aka William Desmond Taylor), best known for his still unsolved murder back in 1922:



Statuary can also be found throughout:



Actor Perry Lopez's final resting place:



A shot of Lopez with Natalie Wood and James Dean:



and with Jack Nicholson in "Chinatown":



David White, best known as Larry Tait from "Bewitched":



Part 3 tomorrow!

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See more Daveland Hollywood Forever Cemetery photos at my main website.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Rudolph Valentino Tribute, Pt. 1



Last Saturday, August 23, marked the 88th anniversary of the passing of silent screen star legend Rudolph Valentino at the age of 31. Those of you who visited Disneyland's Main Street Cinema back when it showed silent movies may have caught a glimpse of the latin lover in one of his movies, such as "The Sheik," "The Eagle," or his final film, "The Son of the Sheik."





Here he is with costar Vilma Banky in "Son of the Sheik."



His smoldering eyes made women go bananas.



Two more images from the same film:





Valentino's untimely death from peritonitis, due to a botched appendectomy, prevented him from making any talkies. Whether he would have survived the transition into the new medium can only be speculated upon, but the mass hysteria exhibited by his throngs of fans when he passed would seem to indicate that he had a good chance. A number of suicides (both sexes) were reported as a result of Valentino's death, and more than 100,000 people showed up for his New York City funeral.

In Hollywood, two tributes to Valentino can be found in DeLongpre Park, just a few blocks from Sunset Boulevard. This Art Deco statue called "Aspiration," sculpted by Roger Noble Burnham, was dedicated on the 35th anniversary of Valentino's birthday, May 6, 1930.



The statue is still there, although its surroundings have definitely not weathered the years quite as well. Mainly a hangout for the homeless, this is not exactly a place you'd want to spend the afternoon.



A bust of Valentino can also be found in DeLongpre park, which was sculpted by Richard Ellis in 1979.



Which one do you think looks more like Valentino?



More to come…

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Thursday, August 28, 2014

July 1959 at the Red Wagon Inn



A few more photos from the July 1959 batch that gave us the "Matterhorn Closed" post yesterday, all shot at the Red Wagon Inn (now the Plaza Inn Restaurant). Image #1 gives us a view from the restaurant looking towards Central Plaza.

How about those paper hats!



A front view of the Red Wagon Inn:



With the state flag poles in front and the restaurant in the background:



And back to the restaurant again:



Gotta' zoom in for the t-shirts and cat-eye sunglasses!



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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

No Matterhorn For You



Imagine how frustrating it can be when visit Disneyland, plunk down your money, and one of your favorite attractions is not in operation. This is not a new issue, as you can see from these July 1959 images of the Matterhorn.

Let's zoom in to look at the signage. Yup. It's closed.



At least the water features are still running. The poor lady leaning against the fence just doesn't know what to do. How can a brand new attraction be closed already?



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See more Daveland vintage (& current) Disneyland Matterhorn photos at my main website.