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.
October 21
1973—Kidnappers Cut Off Getty's Ear
After holding Jean Paul Getty III for more than three months, kidnappers cut off his ear and mail it to a newspaper in Rome. Because of a postal strike it doesn't arrive until November 8. Along with the ear is a lock of hair and ransom note that says: "This is Paul’s ear. If we don’t get some money within 10 days, then the other ear will arrive. In other words, he will arrive in little bits." Getty's grandfather, billionaire oilman Jean Paul Getty, at first refused to pay the 3.2 million dollar ransom, then negotiated it down to 2.8 million, and finally agreed to pay as long as his grandson repaid the sum at 4% interest.
October 20
1947—HUAC Hearings Begin
The House Un-American Activities Committee begins its investigation into Communist infiltration of Hollywood, resulting in a witch hunt that destroys lives, ruins careers, and makes Senator Joseph McCarthy the most feared politician of the era.
1968—Jackie Kennedy Marries
Former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy marries Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis. The marriage comes as a total surprise to the American public, and results in a terrible backlash against her and also makes her the number one target of paparazzi for years.
October 19
1989—Guildford Four Exonerated
The men known as the Guildford Four, who were imprisoned for a series of bombs attacks on British pubs that left five dead and 100 injured, are decreed not guilty after an investigation reveals that police colluded in doctoring statements that appeared to incriminate the defendants.
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