This Day in GINGEROLOGY - April 21st

1926: Ginger appeared on the stage of Hunt’s Craterian Theater (‘Craterian’ is a ‘play’ on the phrase ‘Criterion’ for theaters of the 20’s – nearby Crater Lake inspired the ‘unique spelling’) in Medford, Oregon, during her six-month tour as the winner of the Texas State Charleston Champion; today, the theatre (well, the stage, anyway… grrr…) bears her name, after she became a resident of the Rogue Valley area in which it is located.

1940: Richard Robles, who starred with Ginger in the film “Flying Down to Rio” (as Lackey), died in Los Angeles, California, at the age of 37.

1973: Merian C. Cooper (born Merian Caldwell Cooper), who produced the Ginger films “Professional Sweetheart”, “Rafter Romance”, “Chance at Heaven”, “Flying Down to Rio”, and “Finishing School”, died in San Diego, California, at the age of 79.

1975: Rex Moore, who starred with Ginger in the film “Flying Down to Rio” (as Dancer), died in Los Angeles, California, at the age of 75.

1982: Joe Sawyer (born Joseph Sauers), who starred with Ginger in the film “Campus Sweethearts” (as unnamed character), died in Ashland, Oregon, at the age of 75.


Next GingerFilm(s) (on TCM - all times Eastern):

April 30, 2018 @ 6:00 A.M. Stage Door
April 30, 2018 @ 12:15 P.M. Having Wonderful Time
May 13, 2018 @ 12:00 P.M. Bachelor Mother
June 5, 2018 @ 10:00 P.M. 42nd Street

Next GingerFilm(s) (on FXM Retro - all times Eastern) - NOTE - the FXM Retro site is kinda 'cryptic' as far as specific times, so please check local listings for 'specific times':

...No Films Scheduled...


Sunday, April 15, 2018

...Strange things afoot in the Rogue River Valley...

Well, this is a bit different, altho... it is ultimately GingeRelated, as it concerns the area of the country where her ranch is situated - the Rogue River Valley, around Medford, Oregon...
...with MUCHO thanks to Ms. Ginger Peachy for a gnarly 'then and now' pic of the 4R...

...and WHAT is this strangeness, you may ask? Well, it seems like the 'native varmints' around this region are not as plentiful as they used to be, and the ones that migrate thru there are not showing up much, either... which leads us to THIS link, from the site Earthfiles... now, anybody out there who watches the TV show Ancient Aliens should know the author of this site, Linda Moulton Howe... I'm sorta into all this 'paranormal' stuff (But I'm NOT going on the GingerHouse Ghost Hunt... as... ...well, let's just say I definitely fall into the 'Shaggy/Scooby' side of things as far as having the heebie-jeebies goes...), and this report is generally connecting these occurrences with a potential impending cataclysmic event on the West Coast.  It is a bit unnerving that there was a recent quake near L.A., but... they have quite a few on a 'normal' basis, it seems...
...well, not sure if this pic is at the Ranch, but...let's just say that it is (although that looks more like a lake than a river, especially a 'Rogue' type of river...) ...I never really get around to studying the background location of these type of pics, anyway, but concentrate solely on the FOREground images...

Well, that's about it... was just interesting how those folks were chiming in on the lack of varmints... and a few ranchers, so... maybe the current owner of 4R?  Maybe the critters have migrated elsewhere knowing Ginger is no longer around... that's MY take, and what I would think if I were a critter... ...even those which are most likely not native to the region, such as Baby Leo...

Hope y'all have a Gingery week!!!



Friday, April 6, 2018

2018 TCM Classic Film Festival... a couple of GingerFilms are on the docket...

...which are...



...each of which are to be presented on Thursday, April 26th... There are a few more 'TBA' slots on the SCHEDULE, so... who knows, maybe Hat Check Girl will get another spin... If anyone is lucky enough to attend, please reply - FaceBook is obviously the more 'accessible' avenue - but report in with any 'intro' stuff they may note for these films - I assume they do the 'intro dialogue' before each film like they typically do on TCM...

Unfortunately, I've never come CLOSE to attending the Festival... really wish they would have SOMEthing akin to it in Atlanta, which IS TCM's 'birthplace', after all... but hard to deny the setting of Hollywood for any type of film festival...

...and with that, here's wishing y'all a great big ol' GINGERY weekend!!


Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Rogers v. Grimaldi is forerunner of Olivia DeHavilland's Recent Lawsuit...

...both of which were unsuccessful...
(...I'm pretty sure this is Olivia in this pic, but... might be Joan Fontaine as well... well, for our purposes here, let's just say it's either Olivia, or her sister portraying Olivia... ) ***EDIT: Chief GingerHistorian Monica Kelly has informed that the lady in question is neither Olivia DeHavilland OR Joan Fontaine, but some...OTHER woman... so, let's just note in finality that this is a lady portraying Olivia DeHavilland... or perhaps Joan Fontaine... er.... yeah. 

In 1986, Federico Fellini's film "Ginger and Fred" was released, and set for distribution in the United States; however, Ginger (the REAL one) was NOT amused. She sued distributor M-G-M and Italian film producer Federico Fellini on the grounds of defamation, right of publicity, and her 'trademark rights', which is known as the Lanham Act (which was somewhat ironically signed into law by her fellow Independence citizen, President Harry Truman).
Ginger did not win the case, with the court noting that "The Lanham Act does not bar a minimally relevant use of a celebrity's name in the title of an artistic work where the title does not explicitly denote authorship, sponsorship, or endorsement by the celebrity or explicitly mislead as to content."
The case did spawn a new 'legal term', The Rogers Test; in general, one must show that the use of an image, name, or other 'feature' of an entity is of a 'minimal nature', such that the entity would not be adversely affected by said use.  OK - it's getting pretty tedious in here, so, I'm gonna go all Huey on y'all...

The image shown above for the film in question is QUITE misleading as to whether this is actually Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire, at least to someone who isn't all that familiar with Ginger and Fred (at least they got the name billing right ;-) ) - of course, there's no question for Gingerologists as to the 'phony' pic above, but... how about someone who is looking for new films, with no idea about what Ginger and Fred looks like (pretty hard to believe, but... work with me here), and assumes this is a true Rogers - Astaire film? Anyway, Ginger lost the case, which doesn't sit well with me... HOWEVER... the general concept of 'how much can one use an image before it is either confusing to the public, and/or defamatory to the person's public image' is not quite as easy as it seems... the Ol' First Amendment comes into play...
(...Yeah, I know Abe didn't have much to do with the First Amendment, but... he probably would have if he would have been back in 1787... and Ginger looks so cool here... interesting she didn't have a pic beside a Washington statue, as she is in George's lineage, it is said (I would like to run that generational line down for verification, but... I'm assuming it's true...))

 ...There are quite a few instances where it makes sense that an image can be used in a 'general' sense without citing copyright infringement...otherwise, it would be purt near impossible to produce ANY movies, books, music, etc. - Lord knows that blogs would be in BIG trouble... An interesting example from right here in South Gingerville is that of the University of Alabama v. New Life Art, who produced paintings of 'great plays' in Alabama football games...  ultimately, the paintings were not considered a 'trademark infringement'. Check out around halfway down the case study, where it cites The Rogers Test. (BTW, the owner of New Life Art (Daniel A. Moore), had his kids graduate from the same school (private) as the one mine go to... so... cool, eh?)

So, the Olivia suit also generally fell victim to The Rogers Test - here's the Variety article on it, which, while not specifically citing The Rogers Test, looks to have the same reasoning described for the dismissal of the case. Even though Olivia claims she was portrayed in a demeaning manner by the FX Networks production "Feud!", it appears that unless one makes false claims against you (which IS kinda what happened here), the First Amendment overrides any grievances... in Olivia's case, the character is specifically HER, whereas the character(s) in the Ginger and Fred film were not actually supposed to be Ginger (or Fred), but a couple who 'emulated' the pair...

 With that... that is THAT.

hope y'all are having a great week... and Keep It Gingery... oh yes, be certain you also pass The Rogers Test as well... ;-)


Sunday, March 25, 2018

Ginger Rogers Festival is a GO!!! Tickets now available...

Hey, y'all!!!

First off, long time no hear, eh? Hu has been pretty busy lately, which is not a great excuse, but... it's the one I have nevertheless...  ANYWAY, thanks to all who have been checking on the site time-to-time... keeping up with folks on FB, so we're all still Gingery, right?

now, the BIG news!!!

The Ginger Rogers Festival is set in Independence Missouri for the weekend of July 14-15, 2018!!! tickets are now available for purchase HERE.  Miss Missouri Marge Padgitt and her crew have done a magnificent job in the restoration of Ginger's birth house on 100 West Moore Street... and there will be many great presentations and events during the weekend, including keynote speaker Roberta Olden, who should need no introduction to a Gingerologist...   ...BTW, that pic is from yours truly, on GingerTennial Day, July 16, 2011... met Kat and Annaliese there, and got to speak with the owner a bit...

...a few years later, the owner contacted me and wanted to know if I wanted to purchase the house, or knew of anyone who did... was an interesting proposal, but would have been impossible to maintain it from 500+ miles away...but I was worried it fall into the wrong hands, as far as someone who wouldn't appreciate the historic significance of the house.  That's why I am SO glad Marge ended up with it, and has brought it into fully restored status!

I've made my reservations - hope to see y'all there! Only 75 slots available, so... get to it!!!

AND, hope to get more GingerPosts going...

Until then,

KIG, Y'all!!!


Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Gold Diggers of 1933 - Busby Berkeley Blogathon, Hosted by Hometowns to Hollywood

Hi y'all! First off, it's an honor to be part of the Hometowns to Hollywood Busby Berkeley Blogathon - and also awesome that I was able to grab the classic film "Gold Diggers of 1933", which is a special one to Ginger fans, if for nothing else, the first 10 or so minutes. That's where the film begins, in a rehearsal of the best known tune from the film, "We're In the Money", which features Ginger in full tilt vocal mode, along with the Busby Girls (not sure if that's what they were actually called, but hey, it worked for Ziegfeld, right?) doing the "Durga Arms" (see Wiki)... with Ginger literally front and center...
Ginger sang one verse in Pig Latin, which resulted from the producer hearing her just goofing on the lyrics off-stage; he liked the sound of it, and not only told her to do a stanza in that mode, but did an EXTREME close-up of her during said stanza (obviously MY fave extreme close-up of  all time!)
Of course, this tune was a result of the 'dawg days' of The Great Depression, with folks really ready to get things cranked up again - it became a nice 'theme song' for the recovery. Not a lot of Berkeley 'trademarks' here, as the number really never has a 'proper' ending, as the law comes in and busts up the joint... on top of it being a 'rehearsal' deal.
...but personally, this one's my fave... if I have to explain that to you, you are JUST not paying attention...


This historic, righteous performance is book-ended at the end of the film by an epic and powerful tune, "Remember My Forgotten Man", performed by Joan Blondell and Etta Moten.
This tune deals with the plight of the American WWI veterans, and how they were disregarded by society, as well as the government. The imagery in this number is obviously not all unicorns and rainbows as the 'typical' Berkeley production is, but rather shows the general plight of the vet and how the Depression obviously augmented what was already a pretty tough existence...
...this snippet is pretty powerful, as we see 'new soldiers' heading into battle in the 'back row', whilst the 'survivors' of the last round of battles stumble in the foreground away from the action... both lines are on 'treadmills', which allow for a 'stretching' of a given 'set' scene while giving the illusion of full movement... pretty neat for the day.
The final strains of the tune also provide the finale of the film, with Joan reaching for the heavens in petition for her "Forgotten Man", whilst silhouettes of soldiers march over a semicircle backdrop.
...actually, this number wasn't going to be the final scene (which was originally slated to be Pettin' in the Park, with a 'reprise' of "We're in the Money"), but after reviewing all the numbers, this one was the most powerful, thus a memorable 'end', especially for a Warner Brothers joint, known for their 'gritty' themes and typically not-so-happy endings...


And, in-between these two numbers are two more classic and 'textbook' Berkeley productions, "Pettin' in the Park" and "The Shadow Waltz", each vocalized by Dick Powell and Ruby Keeler.

Pettin' in the Park is a light-hearted, sassy little tune which is, as expected, about a young man's efforts to find a proper place to 'pitch woo' (among other things) with his ladyfriend. Powell and Keeler make a painfully cute couple, and their back and forth leaves no doubt as to the intent of the tune.
The Berkeley production starts off more or less like a Berkeley number, with a snowball fight captured from above...
...but soon 'progresses' (or 'regresses', depending upon your viewpoint) into a quite provocative number, as rain-soaked dames are shown retreating behind VERY well back-lit curtains in order to disrobe and re-robe, thus pitching (there's that word again) quite fantabulous silhouettes amongst said curtains.
They reappear in suits of armor, for lack of a better description, which regretfully announce ceasing of the woo-pitching... and the number gets a bit odd, if not even a bit creepy, with the installation of Billy Barty, playing a unfettered toddler...
...who gets loose and leers at the ladies throughout the number... and who also produces a can opener out of nowhere (remember, this is Warner Brothers, future home of ACME products, masters of supplying ANYthing instantaneously) and slips it to Powell for use on Keeler's metal-clad garb. Overall, this number was one of the ones that probably got in 'just under the line' in terms of new censorship rules slapped out by the Hays Office...
...this image, for example, probably was nixed in later versions (although it's a pretty nice image, no? ... not sure what the cricket ball is all about...)


The Shadow Waltz is truly the 'showcase' number for Berkeley in this film, as it has pretty much all the 'trademark' Berkeley moves, including 'overhead' views of the ladies forming symmetrical patterns in a most effective manner...
...as well as a 'lush' set with ladies donning 'hoop skirts' for lack of a better description...
...along with violins... but not just ANY violins... NEON violins! Don't believe it? Well, let's dim the lights and see...
yupyupyup...those are most definitely NEON... BTW, the Smithsonian has one of these in their American History Museum... hopefully still on display SOMEwhere... also, a cool (but a bit scary at the time) event occurred during the filming of this scene - an earthquake happened right when the 'neon in the dark' scene was taking place... reportedly, Berkeley was shaken off his perch on a boom, but hung onto it and maintained enough wits to calm the crew down and resume the filming... I wonder if the film 'strip' which was being shot when the quake hit is still around... doubt it, but... would be interesting to view, I guess...
Overall, this number captures the 'over the top' yet pretty dang awesome arrangements Berkeley is known for, and is truly the 'centerpiece' of the production tunes.


A fifth production number, "I've Got to Sing a Torch Song", was to be performed by Ginger but was cut from the film (much to the chagrin of Gingerologists everywhere); the tune itself did make the final cut, in the form of a solo at an upright piano by Powell. The 'official' explanation for cutting the 'full number' was due to film length... which unfortunately, was probably true, as it seemed like 90 minutes was the 'sweet spot' studios tried to hit in those days. This omission also cut a Berkeley sequence, and who knows for sure what he had in mind for the tune (generally reported that it was to 'just' be Ginger atop a piano singing...sounds pretty epic to me!) - here's Ginger in the costume for the ill-fated number:
...yeah, now you see why Gingerologists are miffed... along with the 'scheduled' reprise of "We're in the Money" to wrap the film up - assumed to be sung by Ginger, if not the whole cast - and it's kinda tough for your average Gingerologist to not get a bit huffy about these exclusions. Anyway, it's still a great film!!!

Berkeley actually has a brief cameo appearance in the film, as a 'director' of sorts - well, maybe better described as a 'backstage traffic cop', who shouts out to the performers to hit their spots for the Forgotten Man number.
...it's all of 2 seconds... but he's in there...

Well, hope this review was entertaining, or at least informative regarding the Busby Berkeley sequences in this classic film... if you haven't seen it, I would TRULY say it's a 'required view' for ANY classic film fan, as well as you Gingerologists out there...or any Blondell fans (of which I also count myself VERY much among) and it does give a good overview of Berkeley's style and production level, which obviously inspired future film production, not the least of which is RKO's Ginger and Freddie films... thanks to BB!!!

Again, thanks to Annette at Hometowns to Hollywood, who compiled a great lineup of blogs to participate in this 'blogathon'... here's another spot you can LINK to for the list of entries - the Banner at the top of the Gingerology homepage also links to the H2H site.

Keep It Gingery, y'all!!!


Awards...Thanks, Y'all!!!

...I TRULY appreciate these, and the kind words regarding this blog...thanks for all the inspiration I have drawn from each of your blog sites, which are all awesome in their unique ways!!!
It is my hope that I can continue to make 'G-ology' interesting and informative regarding the 'Beautiful Science' of VKM, which is SUCH a great topic!!! ...And remember, your comments are what make Gingerology click - so keep cranking them out!

Thanks again, JW

Awarded by Gingerella on 11/18/09 AND by Sally on 01/31/10

Awarded by Gingerella on 11/18/09 AND by Sally on 01/31/10
Thanks, Gingerella and Sally!!!

Awarded by Amanda Cooper on 11/21/09

Awarded by Amanda Cooper on 11/21/09
Thanks, AC!!!

Awarded by Maggie on 02/10/10 AND by Kate Gabrielle on 02/11/10

Awarded by Maggie on 02/10/10 AND by Kate Gabrielle on 02/11/10
Thanks, Maggie and Kate Gabrielle!!!

Awarded by Camille on 03/25/11 AND by Anna on 03/29/11

Awarded by Camille on 03/25/11 AND by Anna on 03/29/11
Thanks, Camille and Anna!!!

Hometowns to Hollywood Busby Berkeley Blogathon 2018

Hometowns to Hollywood Busby Berkeley Blogathon 2018
...including the Gingerology entry of 'Gold Diggers of 1933'...