ANNABELLA-2a

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ANNABELLA-2a - A By Lucie Neville HOLLYWOOD NNABELLA has had a...
A By Lucie Neville HOLLYWOOD NNABELLA has had a hair cut. Her blond curls can't be shorn too short to please her, because now nobody nobody can mistake her for a glamor girl. It means more than just a change in hair styles to her—it's a change in roles. The French star with a single name made her American debut debut in a long bob and long speeches, and the combination nearly tripped up her career. With the return to the close-crop, she's back in the tomboy parts she likes. "Suez," Twentieth-Fox's Twentieth-Fox's next epic, casts her as the waif of a French army post. 1 Annabella's case is another of Hollywood's attempts to cram a ncw'personalily into the stock mold. Not content with the- looks and lines that prompt them .to offer movie contracts in.the first place, studios almost invariably want to experiment experiment and the result usually is just Glamor Girl 24 79A. To her studio's credit, it needed only one mistake Vo make it quit trying to gild its lily of France. That mistake was "The Baroness- and the Butlsr," though the film is making money. The ... Baroness looked quite lovely , and \Vas completely completely unintelligible. Disappointed movie audiences audiences said, "Ho-huml Another import." Even move disappointed and bewildered were fans who had seen Annabella in English-speaking English-speaking and London-made pictures. Notable among these was "Wings of the Morning," in which she starred in 1936; its box office receipts have topped $5,000,000. With a double-name import, Simone Simon, already on its books as a non-profit-sharing in-." vestment, Twentieth-Fox held a conference on its one-name star almost before the preview cards had finished rolling in. It seemed incredible incredible that the unintelligible dialog had not been discovered in the daily rushes early in the film's making^ But the diagnosis was: too many long speeches and too hysterical, rapid-fire ones. The cure was Stanley Logan, dialog director for such pictures as "Midsummer Night's Dream" and "Charge of the Light Brigade." Appointed as coach to the French star, he worked^with her two months before "Suez" started rolling, and has been dialog director of nil her scenes in it. Quite as important in the cure was trimming and shearing the tomboy'* lines as closely as her hair. I A NNABELLA herself agrees with the diag- -^~*- hosis but has more to say, some of it blaming blaming herself. "It was such a good chance—to play opposite William Powell," she said. "But his was such a good part, too, that he made them forget mine. I was so excited to work with him and be in a big American film that I would read the script only a little and want to flart right away. I had to talk too fast, too. "They would make one take, then say, 'Let's do that once more.' So we would. And again. And again. By the fourth time, with such fast lines, I didn't know n>/iaf I was saying. "But it was not the part for me—the Baroness. Baroness. 'Have I played glamor girls in France?' No, I was married in only one picture. It is not my type. 'Besides, there arc so many glamor ones here -—all so perfect—there is no use for me to try to be like them. I like only comfortable clothes, not to dress up except for maybe 10 minutes. I leave that to the others." In the "Suez" role of the daughter of a French army sergeant, stationed at Alexandria, she plays an appealing, swaggering youngster with bravura and, in the end, bravery. Between Between galloping on donkeys and battling sandstorms, sandstorms, she took some merciless treatment but was only pleased tiiat she acquired a fine suntan suntan on the studio's back-lot Libyan Desert. Neither she nor Tyrone Power used a double, and they had some bad momcnls in sandstorms and when a water tower fell too soon. "I didn't want a double," Annabella said. "If it were a picture I didn't like, or a part I cared nothing about, that would have been different. different. But this one I love! It is the best part

Clipped from The Salt Lake Tribune04 Sep 1938, SunPage 27

The Salt Lake Tribune (Salt Lake City, Utah)04 Sep 1938, SunPage 27
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