Hollywoodland Sep 30 2011
CALIFORNIA RED WOOD
Rare Russian tree takes root in Tinseltown.


You may not recognize her because the old Yugoslav magazine Filmski Svet, aka Film World was a little heavy handed with the retouching, but the crimson clad figure below is Natalia Nikolaevna Zakharenko. You’re thinking, “Nata Zaka who?” Well, maybe you know her better as Natalie Wood, the great American actress of Russian descent who was born in California. Filmski Svet has made her into a mannequin, but we still find this a striking cover. It appeared in September 1964.

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Hollywoodland | Vintage Pulp Apr 16 2011
THE LAST LEGEND
1963 post mortem on Marilyn Monroe’s life and career leaves plenty out but is still worth a viewing.


This nice poster was made for the Yugoslavian release of Marilyn, a 1963 documentary about her life and death. When Monroe died during the filming of Something's Got To Give, this feature was hastily cobbled together and rushed into cinemas to fill the gap that had appeared in Twentieth Century Fox's release schedule. It was narrated by Rock Hudson, which is why he appears on the art, and featured Monore's most memorable screen moments, including her song and dance "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" from the film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. These days, more is known about Monroe’s life than was the case in 1963, so those looking for tabloid style dish will be disappointed. This is a tribute intended to burnish her legend, rather than a real documentary designed dig into it. But it’s a good movie, not least because it gives a clear portrait of her unmatched stature as a celebrity at that time. Marilyn premiered in the U.S. today in 1963. As a bonus, below are some images of Monroe at her most alluring. 

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Vintage Pulp Jul 1 2010
POKER FACES
Everything’s coming up aces.

Above is a promo poster from the former Yugoslavia for 1965’s The Cincinnati Kid, with Steve McQueen and Ann-Margret. The movie is actually set not in Cincinnati, but in depression-era New Orleans, with McQueen playing an up and coming poker player whose goal is to be recognized as the best in the world. But one man stands in his way—invincible poker master Lancey Howard, played by Edward G. Robinson. It’s The Hustler with cards. Highly recommended.  

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Vintage Pulp Jun 1 2010
KOSCINA SCENE
Assume the superimposition.

That’s Sylva Koscina on a June 1969 cover of Filmski Svet, aka Movie World, from the former Yugoslavia. The photo would be what publicists call a “handout”, which is simply an image given upon request to a publication planning a story or photo essay on a certain celeb. All the second tier publications are given handout photos, and similar images from the same photographic series will often appear in other publications. Obviously, second-tier magazines prefer to look as though celeb photos were taken just for them, so in this case Filmski Svet cleverly solved that problem by superimposing Koscina onto a new background and reversing the negative (notice how her pinky ring changes hands?). Once we figured that out, we were able to locate another couple of shots from the same session. It’s hard work, all this sleuthing, but if we don’t do it, who will? 

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Modern Pulp Apr 30 2010
SUPER HEROES
Dinara for ten, please.

Assorted Super comics from the former Yugoslavia, circa late 1980s. 

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Intl. Notebook Nov 16 2009
GOGGLE IMAGES
Through the looking glasses.

Tunisian/Italian actress Claudia Cardinale on the cover of the Yugoslavian movie magazine Filmski Svet, 1967. 

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Hollywoodland Jul 16 2009
JIMMY JAZZ
He ain't here, but he sure went past.

Above is American star James Dean on the cover of two issues of Filmski Svet, aka Movie World, from the former Yugoslavia. Dean’s unexpected death still ranks as one of the most shocking in Hollywood history. In September 1955 he was driving his convertible Porsche 550 Spyder on U.S. Route 466 when a sedan in an oncoming lane turned in front of him and struck his small sports car head-on. Dean was alive when he was loaded into an ambulance, but was pronounced DOA at Paso Robles War Memorial Hospital, aged twenty-four. Both of the above covers were published posthumously in 1967 (top) and 1957.

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Hollywoodland May 21 2009
MISS SARAJEVO ’67
American stars regularly graced the covers of ’60s-era Yugoslav mags.

This nice issue of Ilustrovana Politika, or Illustrated Politic, was published in the former Yugoslavia. During that unpleasantness known as the Cold War the country was communist ruled but non-aligned, a political stance that resulted in an influx of both Soviet and Western European influences. Movie stars such as Sofia Loren, Brigitte Bardot, and Virna Lisi were featured on hundreds of Yugoslav magazines. American stars snuck in too. This particular cover, featuring Jane Fonda, appeared forty-two years ago this month.

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Vintage Pulp Mar 21 2009
YU GO GIRL
Whatever happened to handpainted movie posters?

We’re rating these promo posters triple-A. They’re from the former Yugoslavia, circa 1962 and 1956, for the films Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? and Sudden Fear. Baby Jane co-starred Bette Davis and Joan Crawford in extremely creepy roles as washed-up actress/sisters living in an old mansion together, while Sudden Fear showcased Crawford in a standard noir set mostly on a New York to San Francisco train. The Baby Jane role earned Davis an Academy Award nomination, but Crawford more than held her own in the movie, and it’s her you see on both posters here. We have other incredible examples of Yugoslav art we’ll be sharing in the future.

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History Rewind
The headlines that mattered yesteryear.
May 11
1960—Adolf Eichmann Is Captured
In Buenos Aires, Argentina, four Israeli Mossad agents abduct fugitive Nazi Adolf Eichmann, who had been living under the assumed name and working for Mercedes-Benz. Eichman is taken to Israel to face trial on 15 criminal charges, including crimes against humanity and war crimes. He is found guilty and executed by hanging in 1962, and is the only person to have been executed in Israel on conviction by a civilian court.
2010—Last Ziegfeld Follies Girl Dies
Doris Eaton Travis, who was the last surviving Ziegfeld Follies chorus girl, dies at age 106. The Ziegfeld Follies were a series of elaborate theatrical productions on Broadway in New York City from 1907 through 1931. Inspired by the Folies Bergères of Paris, they enjoyed a successful run on Broadway, became a radio program in 1932 and 1936, and were adapted into a musical motion picture in 1946 starring Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, Lucille Ball, and Lena Horne.
May 10
1924—Hoover Becomes FBI Director
In the U.S., J. Edgar Hoover is appointed director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a position he retains until his death in 1972. Hoover is credited with building the FBI into a large and efficient crime-fighting agency, and with instituting a number of modern innovations to police technology, such as a centralized fingerprint file and forensic laboratories. But he also used the agency to grind a number of personal axes and far exceeded its legal mandate to amass secret files on political and civil rights leaders. Because of his abuses, FBI directors are now limited to 10-year terms.
1977—Joan Crawford Dies
American actress Joan Crawford, who began her show business career as a dancer in traveling theatrical companies, but soon became one of Hollywood's most prominent movie stars and one of the highest paid women in the United States, dies of a heart attack at her New York City apartment while ill with pancreatic cancer.
May 09
1949—Rainier Becomes Prince of Monaco
In Monaco, upon upon the death of Prince Louis II, twenty-six year old Rainier Louis Henri Maxence Bertrand Grimaldi, aka Rainier III, is crowned Prince of Monaco. Rainier later becomes an international household name by marrying American cinema sweetheart Grace Kelly in 1956.
1950—Dianetics is Published
After having told a gathering of science fiction writers two years earlier that the best way to become a millionaire was to start a new religion, American author L. Ron Hubbard publishes Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health. The book is today one of the canonical texts of Scientology, referred to as "Book One", and its publication date serves as the first day of the Scientology calendar, making today the beginning of year 52 AD (After Dianetics).
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