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Hollywood Boulevard (1936)

Approved | | Drama | 21 August 1936 (USA)
With a full Hollywood background and settings but more an expose of scandal-and-gossip magazines of the era, has-been actor John Blakeford agrees to write his memoirs for magazine-publisher... See full summary »

Director:

Robert Florey

Writers:

Faith Thomas (story), Max Marcin (story) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
John Halliday ... John Wellington Blakeford
Marsha Hunt ... Patricia Blakeford
Robert Cummings ... Jay Wallace
C. Henry Gordon ... Jordan Winslow
Esther Ralston ... Flora Moore
Esther Dale ... Martha
Frieda Inescort ... Alice Winslow
Albert Conti ... Bill Sanford - Trocadero Manager
Thomas E. Jackson ... Detective
Oscar Apfel ... Dr. Inslow
Purnell Pratt ... Mr. Steinman
Irving Bacon ... Gus - Trocadero Bartender
Richard Powell Richard Powell ... Pete Moran
Rita La Roy ... Nella
Francis X. Bushman ... Frank - Director, Desert Scene
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Storyline

With a full Hollywood background and settings but more an expose of scandal-and-gossip magazines of the era, has-been actor John Blakeford agrees to write his memoirs for magazine-publisher Jordan Winston. When Blakeford's daughter, Patricia, ask him to desist for the sake of his ex-wife, Carlotta Blakeford, he attempts to break his contract with Winston. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 August 1936 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Boulevard de Hollywood See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Gary Cooper did the cameo appearance as "man at bar" as a favor to his friend John Halliday, who's career was sinking at the time . See more »

Connections

Remake of The Life and Death of 9413, a Hollywood Extra (1928) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Who today has heard of Eleanor Whitney?...
2 December 2016 | by AlsExGalSee all my reviews

... because that was the point of Hollywood Boulevard, before it lost its focus.

A little remembered Paramount drama directed by Robert Florey about a washed up but vain silent film star (John Halliday) who agrees to have his life story (much embellished) told in a series of scandal magazine articles, much to the chagrin of his daughter whom he hasn't seen in years.

The film starts promisingly, with many on location shots (some at interesting off kilter camera angles) of Hollywood, its studio sets, streets and famous nightclubs, providing a genuine feeling for old time Hollywood sure to bring some pleasure to a film buff's heart. Even more interestingly, the film is chock-full of many silent stars many of them largely out of commission but brought back for this project. Among them: Esther Ralston (still very attractive), Francis X. Bushman, Betty Compson, Roy D'Arcy, Jack Mulhall and Mae Marsh. In addition, Gary Cooper can be seen sitting on a bar stool at the Trocadero.

But a film that initially appears to be about the cruelties of Hollywood in the manner in which the town turns its back on former stars soon loses focus as its story goes off in different directions. Far too much screen time is devoted to the romance between the washed up star's daughter (a pretty Marsha Hunt) and an overly eager screenwriter (Robert Cummings) who never stops spouting his obviously self adoring comments and trying to project "charm." The young Cummings is a genuinely irksome presence in this film.

In the final analysis, Hollywood Boulevard is a curiosity with flashes of potential, its writing its letdown, but lovers of old time Hollywood will still get a kick out of the frequent flashes of the town as it appeared in 1936, as well as an interesting cast, including those frequent silent film star cameos.

A prophetic irony: just minutes into this film Eleanore Whitney, a real actress dancer newly arrived in the film capital and playing herself here, is seen signing her name in cement, with cameras flashing and crowds cheering. A spokesperson says to the actress, "And now, my dear, you have left your immortal mark in Hollywood." "I wonder," Whitney says to herself.


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