studio lots, lavender and 1920s murals.

darlings

there are a Lot of photographs in this Post….

wait – hold on.

*counts*

sixteen, actually.

and we are really Not Sure how to tie them all together neatly, in one post.

*concerned_look*

do you have some tea?

we’re just going to make some.

of course.

see you in a moment……

*dashes_off_to_kitchenette*

okay.

here we go.

*might* well be a tiny bit rambling……a lot happened today (in a good way – we are Very much in an Action Mode you see) – shan’t be talking Specifics (always best to wait until things reveal themselves in due course – must not rush – anything – all in good time as they used to say – when was that?)

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so we were in the Valley (still Los Angeles, not Wales) this morning – bright n early – and this street always makes us wonder if the writer of Moonlighting lived here in the 1980sOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAone never must be too busy to stop and admire dew on a flower.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAor how blue, blue, blue the sky is. 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAwhile the clouds float gently atop of the trees like cotton wool in a Movie Starlet’s glass jar in the tiny bathroom (with pale lemon tile exactly like That at Chateau Marmont) in the apartment on North Sweetzer that she shares with the typist from Paramount.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAwe did a double-take too. 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAah. even in the Valley they like to quote Miss Woolf. 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAwanna be actors were Everywhere today – or are people in Los Angeles just pre-naturally good looking?

is that a chicken and egg sort of a conundrum thingy?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAonce forgotten ads for citrus get re-painted and make one smile when pulling into outdoor parking lots.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAmoments between meetings are always splendidly filled by popping into an emporium of stuff-donated-by-other-people

what’s that?

gosh.

no.

we can’t sew.

the one term (semester, for American friends) that they told us to do needle-work everyone made a nice pie-frill blouse (Lady Di days) and we ran up (badly) a pair of peachy-rose baby doll PJs with shorts (elasticated, small pearl button as we recall) and wore them to sleepovers at people’s houses much to the Amusement of Friends’ parents (who bought their pre-teen daughters nicer camomile lawn strewn Laura Ashley full length nightgowns – it was Clear that we didn’t grow up on that side of the purchasing tracks).

thereafter we did Latin.

which means we can read newspapers in Italy.

yes, we think that’s glorious too.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAthe lavender is in bloom (incongruously in the driveways to rental car lots). 

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talking of Lots.

here is The Lot.

(now they’ve become all dotcom-lower-case to      t h e   l o t)

why were we There (at the lot)?

good question. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAto which we cannot divulge the answer. 

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because we were told Not to.

*sighs*

yes.

we took the pictures and *squealed* at the United Artists stonework too. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAdo you know the History of the lot or The Lot as it once was?

FASCINATING. 

Around 1918, Jesse D. Hampton built a simple film studio at the corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and Formosa Avenue. Little did he know that his small studio would be passed to some of the greatest influences in film, including Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks, and Sam Goldwyn.

In 1947, looked what they filmed here! (if you can’t see this Transmission in your Territory, ask mr. google’s cousin there to give you “Bishop’s Wife, trailer” – you’re most welcome).

now we SAW The Bishop’s Wife with Miss Vickie Lester and the Mister (was it Christmas Eve? we think it might have been or just before that) and – in another Hollywood twist-ette – the staff at the Egyptian told us to Look Up as the original ceiling that Miss Mary Pickford and Mr. Charles Chaplin would have seen is still there. and they would most probably have been sitting near each other – or to one side of Mr. D. Fairbanks – as they all ran – yes – you guessed it – United Artists together – which was – keep up children – at the Studio Lot that is now called “the lot”.

phew.

do you know another place where Miss Pickford probably enjoyed a libation or two?

it’s right opposite what was her Studio and is called Formosa Cafe*

*rather more of a Bar because when we asked for coffee they paused for effect and went off to brew some, it’s not like many people ask for it, even at 4PM in the afternoon, darlings.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAdo you know what Formosa means?

it’s a Portuguese word that means “beautiful island” and was what the Portuguese called Taiwan. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAand the Formosa Cafe has a gloriously inspiring Mural.

we can’t recall if Taiwan had a mural.

we have been.

but not recently.

as you see there were Lots of things that all twisted (prettily) Together in this Post and one could (loosely) assume it was about Hollywood (with the lot and all) or Not.

perhaps it was just about a day where lots was achieved.

on the lot.

*looksintomiddledistance*

 

happy birthday to who-we-are-in-RL!

gosh.

you’ll never guess who just became “une femme d’un certain age”..

*winkstocamera3*

well.

*thinks*

maybe you would because, well, you’re Here.

45FORTY-FIVE?!

wowzer.

how did That happen?

*giggles*

thank goodness for Ponds Cold Cream and that nice soft pink tin of moisture morning cream from Boots The Chemist.

and a delicious wicked card from Mr. William Godwin featuring the cast of The Good Life from the BBC 1970s-era programme.

williambirthdaycardand some gorgeous blooms that we met yesterday while driving around in an urban farm flower grower’s van talking about Eastbourne (true story – we both went to school in the same town in England and here we are – the grower and who-we-are-in-RL – both in Los Angeles – isn’t the world completely magical?)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAnow there are many Deeply interesting people born on March 9th.

we wrote about some of them Last Year

while in 2012 who-we-are-in-RL was in PARIS, on very important Business.

what about March 2011?

you know we’re not Entirely sure what we were doing then.

it was (just) before we started to write here, as teamgloria.

which is when it all began…….

to be correct, for who-we-are-in-RL, it all began in 1969.

and That was a fine year for many others who also now live here (very near) to the Hollywood Studios to pack their celestial accoutrements, chose a set of parents (or more than one set, that happens too), a place to Start (and not, for us, to stay), and set out on the journey to becoming who-They-are this time around (doesn’t everyone think like this? it’s Delicious).

glorious.

we’ll say it again: GLORIAous.

so she’s getting ready as we’re taking her for Brunch and then there’ll be a small supper with friends later and perhaps a walk and generally a lot of lying around feeling glorious and Of A Certain Age.

because tomorrow in our role as a Foreign Correspondent we shall be Reporting at the Los Angeles Fashion Week so who-we-are-in-RL needs her beauty sleep for that.

and the dark glasses and probably the pearls too.

*chuckling*

we are ready for our close-up, madam director.

darlings

such excitement today!

we went along to watch who-we-are-in-RL do the Promo Shoot for the Book!

there was a Lady director (so Modern, as William would say) and a young chap as “DP” and a glam MUP (make-up and hair artist).

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAthere was some waiting time while the lights were set up and sound checked and viewfinders found-the-right-view (it’s a “talking head” as they call it, hence the stool and angle-of-camera).

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAcan you see her script attached with gaffer tape *vocab_alert*?

would you like to see the script? it’s rather sweet and lovely (we can say that because we are mentioned Pretty early on).

SCRIPT:
I wrote How To Stay Sane In A Crazy World because it’s the book I wish I had had when everything fell apart.

I grew up in England and became a journalist on a national newspaper. In the mid-90s I got caught up in the world of emerging technology and ended up working in both Hollywood and then in the glossy magazine business, winning global awards and generally having a pretty glamorous life.

Then in 2011, I found myself sitting in front of a surgeon in New York. He told me I had three tumors in my throat with a 30 per cent chance of cancer. I said, “I’ve seen this movie, and I didn’t like it.” But he didn’t laugh. What happened next, with the surgery and medical leave, was so awful that I knew I had to find a way to get through it.

So I started a site called teamgloria.com to document all the glorious people, places and things that made me feel better. I wrote anonymously at first, using the pseudonym of Gloria, a character that came to me of an adorable trainee angel who hasn’t done her homework and gets into lots of scrapes. Seeing the world through gloria’s eyes made everything possible – and definitely more delicious.

How To Stay Sane In A Crazy World is in three sections: morning, afternoon, evening – sort of a modern “book of hours” and is designed to be something beautiful to dip into whenever you need a burst of inspiration, cheering up or a quiet moment of solace.

In the end I didn’t have cancer, but it was a wake-up call. After I wrote the book, I decided to walk away from my life as an executive in Manhattan, and start again, in Los Angeles, and build a new creative future.

Writing How To Stay Sane In A Crazy World changed my life – I hope you find something in it that helps you too.

*wipes_away_tear*

it was lovely to hear this spoken aloud.

even after many-many Takes *vocab_alert* to get a different “Feel” (which sounds rude but it’s about Mood and Tone, we were reliably informed when we asked Later)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAthis was the props table (note Light Meter/metre and Cans – headphones *vocab_alert* and hot-water-with-lemon #LAStyle) – with a copy of the Call Sheet (so many new words today – such Fun).

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAclose up of Light Meter/metre (and Prada-esque – said advisedly – sunnies as they call them in Oz – not Dorothy’s land – the one Down Under).

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAthis is Uno – always important to have a dog on set to keep things low in the blood pressure department (note Doctor Martens – you-know-who).

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ah…..

memories of Mack and Mabel

*wistfullookoffcamera*OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

ok. confession time.

we *didn’t* actually Shoot at the Mack Sennett Studios (but in our head, we did, if you know what we mean). OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAand – *sighs* – we *didn’t* actually shoot at Sunset-Gower either. but we think we Might one day.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAbecause the shoot had the Feel of both historic studio Lots.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAbecause, just for a brief few hours, while admiring the lighting equipment and enjoying all these new words spoken during the Shoot, while we toyed with the brushes at the make-up table (very near the props table), words like: SPEED! STRIKE! ROLLING! and, our personal “Fav” ACTION *giggle* – well, it FELT like we were doing a Mabel Normand (without the awful ending to her life poor lamb) impression.

you see we Heard who-we-are-in-RL Brief the MUP (make up artist if you forgot that bit of Vocab from higher up the page – not at all, our pleasure) and show her a picture – well – of………..
teamgloriaimage

and who-we-are-in-RL said, “I’d like to look a bit more like gloria”

we Nearly passed out with happiness. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

so she got a kiss curl.

just. like. us.

*happy_sigh*
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and now we Wait for the lady director to do the Edit.

most exciting.

*sinksintochaise*

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and close the iris lens and Fade To Black (please).

oooooo, more of this please.

we’re So into Hollywood (the nice bits).

4f03dafa781b11e3b7b80a0a660ee051_8 58eb3fdc781011e382980e85391c3639_8today was a Really Good Day.

*happy_sighs*

 

to tea with the duke at el royale.

darlings

such a delightful treat.

our friend – whom we must only refer obliquely to as the duke – has moved into rooms-at-the-El-Royale!

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well – we *sighed* (prettily and deeply) upon hearing this – we could not Resist the invitation to tea while taking in the sunset (all 360-degrees of it, from the roof terrace) – over los angeles.

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as you may know, the El Royale has an illustrious history dating from 1927 (Clark Gable was a resident) and even the taps (faucets) are similar to those at Chateau Marmont for twas the same architect we are reliably informed.

and yes, we took the grown-up camera to capture it for You.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAisn’t it d i v i n e?

all this – chandeliers, art deco faucets/taps, and sunset over the Hollywood Sign.

the duke is most happily in Residence now.

we did a little digging on the history.

apparently – according to this article in the Los Angeles Times – the famous neon sign was dark for many years due to the energy shortage in the 70s (not an easy time for many and very challenging in terms of fashion) and got switched on again as the money flowed into Town in the mid 80s.

also (our source here is again the L.A. Times):

There used to be a library where a fireplace glowed on chilly afternoons and a tea-and-reception room for the ladies to enjoy after an afternoon’s shopping.

in other sources we found that there were many Agents from CAA (like Mr. Huvane and Mr. Lourd) and moviestars (such as Ms. Uma Thurman) who moved in after the once-bright starlets and stage decorators from nearby Paramount, who had lived there since 1929 when it opened, had transitioned into other forms, glittering still, on the Sound Stage of beyond….

of course it is these people that we dreamed of as we drifted down the corridors under the chandeliers, past the service entrance (yes! each apartment had a separate service door so your Jeeves could slip into the kitchen quietly to make the coffee piping hot before rousing you from slumber in the boudoir beyond) and through the apartment door (a nice dark heavy wood).

people like, for instance, Virginia Fox, who appeared in silent pictures (with Mr. Buster Keaton), Mr. Clark Gable, Marian Nixon and the lovely Loretta Young.

couldn’t you just IMAGINE them all gathering over a soothing cup of cocoa on a winter’s night (or what passes for a winter’s night over on This Coast)?

MV5BMjE1NDY5MjM5Ml5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwNTU1OTQ2._V1_SY317_CR15,0,214,317_
MV5BMTkxOTA1MDc2OV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwNzgyNjU2._V1_SY317_CR11,0,214,317_

MV5BMTk5NTMwMzI2Ml5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwNzAyOTE2._V1_SY317_CR7,0,214,317_BishopsWife

gosh!

we *knew* we’d seen that picture of the lovely Loretta Young (with Mr. David Niven and Mr. Cary Grant) before – that’s because we just bought a ticket to a Special Screening that’s coming up here in Los Angeles.

just in case it’s not showing near you – here’s the trailer (or non-trailer as they amusingly might call it these days).

*sighs*

isn’t that delicious?

we bet the lovely Loretta Young went home to her apartment in the El Royale after making the Bishop’s Wife and had a nice cup of tea and loosened her corsets and starting to read scripts that her agent had sent over by Messenger for her consideration.

wonder if the duke has a script or two lying around……it’s entirely possible.

living at the El Royale inspires one to be simply gloriously Hollywood you see.

more movies #thehotflashes

darlings

just a short one today – we’re behind with Tasks…..

so we went to a screening the other day at the beautiful 1930s Laemmle Music Hall on Wilshire Boulevard (yes, the one near the Academy of Motion Pictures – do you know it?)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAwhat did we see?

thank you for asking…

it was called The Hot Flashes

the-hot-flashes-poster01

now, it’s only open at a Very Few Cinemas, sadly – so here’s the Trailer (if you can see this Transmission in your Territory).

oh!

wait!

looks like somebody-wrote-a-review…..

Screen Shot 2013-07-16 at 8.46.42 AMyes, you’re right.

we Did suggest that opening line.

To paraphrase the great Mary Poppins, if you want to deliver a serious message (such as, “When it comes to breast cancer, early detection saves lives“), try a spoonful of sugar.

you guessed, non?

*smilingwinningviatheinterweb*

it’s a lovely sweet and funny and heart-warming movie.

and we even got to meet some of the stars afterwards.

because Ms. Camryn Manheim, Ms. Daryl Hannah and Ms. Virginia Madsen were all there!

isn’t that delicious?

and when we went to speak to Ms. Virginia Madsen at the end of the screening we even managed to restrain the words on our lips which were:

we adored you in the final season of Moonlighting when you played Maddie’s cousin….

Moonlighting

because it’s considered Bad Form in Hollywood to talk about former roles when the Stars are there to Promote the current Product.

so we just talked about The Hot Flashes because we liked it, a lot, which is why we wrote a Review to say so, darlings.

and because we know that George enjoys an amusing set of keywords or “tags” as the dark-art-of-SEO-chaps call them – we added in “spandex” to the keyword/”tags” dialogue box on the Content Management System’s Dashboard at The Huffington Post when we “uploaded” our story.

such fun.

gelato with jessica denay @HotMomsClubBuzz and (another) incomprehensible french film.

darlings

our sweet little piece about gelato and Jessica Denay just hit the virtual newsstands so we Had to share it with you!

Screen Shot 2013-07-11 at 8.00.59 AM

and here’s a Helpful Link (because we do like to be Helpful) to Jessica’s books (we adore knowing other Authors).

WSWM071013A

and when the day’s work was done (earlier than expected – it’s summertime here – which is confusing because it’s Los Angeles which means it’s Always Summer Time – but people still get Summer Scheduling issues Here) we went to the Movies (because we like to do that).

what did we see?

to be honest we’re Not sure (what it was About).

565171260 but look who was in it!

hero_EB20130313REVIEWS130319987ARso we wrote a review anyway for our friend Arianna (because we are Enjoying doing so) and we’ll see if her Copy Editors like it (and don’t mind that we didn’t really grasp what we were seeing while thoroughly swooning at the Experience).

THIS JUST IN: our review Hot Off the Interweb Press

back to today

*yawnsgently*

(only through the first few sips of coffee thus far)

we HOPE we’re going to meet one of our Hollywood Producer (business) crushes today – but one never knows – it’s been rescheduled *thinks* a Lot.

so we’ll see.

but we’ve read the book and are ready with-the-questions so here’s hoping, darlings.

see you later?

oh, that’s lovely.

yes, wear that one.

it suits your eyes and fair complexion.

those boots?

gosh.

where Are you going today?

do. tell.

@missjulesberlin in #hollywood, darlings.

darlings

guess who came to town!

oh.

wait.

it was in the Title.

*lookstocamera*

oops.

yes! – – – – – –  > missjulesberlin

it was a lovely day.

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we drove from the hollywood hills to silver lake.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

yes. this is silver lake. and we went to visit @tjenamoss at Yolk!

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and past the hollywood studios. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

warner bros, disney and paramount and universal (but only from the freeway)OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

and miss jules took lots of pictures.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

and we went to admire the art at LacmaOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

and she gave us beautiful gifts from berlinOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAas did another glorious person in BERLIN (who had sent the small package of wonderful pieces with miss jules herself! thank you!)

and – wait……

*peersintointerweb*

why, yes.

we DID make a little movie of today.

you are Most Kind.

we adore working with Professionals. 

gladys hall’s journalism, auden’s reading list and planning a 4th (or is it 7th) career….

darlings

we’re driving to the Valley (the bit over Laurel Canyon) today as on Thursdays we work for a photographer (did we tell you that before?) – it’s a lovely thing to do – we re-touch pictures (adjusting contrast, exposure, tints and so forth – yes, a New Skill), and “consult” on blog posts and other social media ‘feeds’ and build a database for marketing ‘blasts’ and be nice and helpful in a general way.

it’s the beginning of what we hope is a 4th (or is 7th?) career (we have had Other Lives) to run alongside the Lady Novelist and photographer life.

you see we’ve Noticed that a lot of Smart People in Hollywood (and elsewhere – but this is where we live, right now) might need some careful (and always kind) help with the new fangled world of how to present oneself on the Interweb (we have done this Ad Hoc from time to time but never, as the Americans say ‘formalized it’ – which means, get-paid-for-it).

all this reading in the Academy of Motion Picture Library got us thinking about Gladys Hall.

hall

you see gladys hall was really the world’s first social media consultant.

we can explain…….

in the 1920s and 30s, famous movie stars were owned by the Studio System who controlled their image, love life and creation-of-a-persona (right down to the eyebrow shape and one’s Name).

but then the Movie Stars would take tea with gladys hall who wrote for ALL (and we mean all – there were a Lot in those days) the Syndicated Press (sometimes dismissed as the Fan Magazines but make no mistake, they were as powerful as People Magazine in their day).

a subtle manipulation of image would take place – breasts (metaphorically) bared, divorces explained, the adoption notices of children smoothly released to the adoring fans, weight loss encouraged, new wardrobes applauded, Transatlantic Travel tips dispensed.

if you watch the emergence of a storyline it’s clear that gladys hall was helping Certain Stars.

Now back to today (we’ll give you a moment to pull focus and go into colo(u)r – welcome back).

MBA types write Long Reports about “Direct To Consumer” to encourage WOM – word of mouth – and you can find Hefty Binders all over town with documents ‘explaining’ this – perhaps not as clearly as one would like as in –

“since the destruction of traditional  distribution networks controlling syndication and the shorter viewing window rights assigned to properties bought and sold there is an opportunity for Talent Owners to go communicate directly with multiple audiences on various platforms using the mechanism of electronic commerce – ‘ecommerce’ and digital payments systems like PayPal and build their own platform.”

phew!

what it really means is this:

Movie Stars can go straight to their audience today (but they still need a modern gladys hall to carefully tease out the message and protect one’s private life without seeming to do so).

the interweb is about community – sharing – approving – discussing – adoring certain things – not liking others (and some pretty tough criticism that one needs to be careful to look the other way if one is Very Sensitive) – but one needs to have one’s own place-on-the-interweb from which to start (not a ‘feed’ that populates someone else’s ‘aggregator’ when they’ll put suspiciously low rent advertising next to one’s very expensive image ;-) It Happens. *sighs*

anyway – we’re still Developing this idea.

thoughts most welcomed.

one always appreciates guidance…..and something else to do while one’s Literary Agent in Manhattan (such a lovely phrase) is reading one’s 3rd book.

for example – Mr. Auden taught creative writing while He was waiting for his Literary Agent to sell His books – and Auden’s Reading List helped many people discover a deeper meaning behind not only the great works of literature but also themselves.

audenso there you go.

a post about a future career (or at least getting paid for something one has done for free a lot ;-) and gladys hall mixed with auden and an exposition of how MBA types explain away the destructive force of the interweb laying waste to the middle man.

where else could you get such a melange?

right?

have a beautiful day darlings – the sun is already rising in the sky over here on This Coast.

movie nights and screenwriting days #LifeInLosAngeles.

darlings

los angeles is lovely at twilight.

7bbfb170c67a11e28e8322000a1f9686_7

even when it’s a strip mall.

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better when it’s an apartment building with neon and naughtiness (in yesteryears, perhaps now – who knows…….)

talking of plots:

we’ve seen three movies in the past *looksvaguelytocamera* day or so.

because we’ve been writing a LOT and needed a break (well, one doesn’t need an excuse for a moment of celluloid dreaming, darlings).

one of them we’re going to skip over swiftly because we were heartbreakingly disappointed (the only thing worse than having a row with someone once loved is watching two people one has loved through both of the earlier movies bicker non stop for 108 minutes – devastating).

moving swiftly on ——

now THIS was Astonishing.

bravo Mr. Douglas and Mr. Damon.

thank you from all of us in West Hollywood and Crenshaw Adjacent (and Palm Springs and Chelsea, NYC and Old Compton Street, London and probably a small Via Glorioso near Versace’s Atelier in Milano where that tiny perfect cafe resides where you stand with all the male models at the bar and knock back a darkly rich espresso).

George had Movie Night chez 1904 towers for the Candelabra One with a little light brie and a sumptuous bowl of antioxidant-bursting-berries and we laughed, cried and whooped over the Outfits.

and now to the third film (actually this was the first one we saw…..) – breathtaking – BREATHTAKING – the acting, the premise, the Humanity, the longing, the pain – oh – OH!

a fine piece of theatre rendered onto film stock (or was it digital – it looked gorgeous anyway, talent was most definitely involved behind, in front and to the side of that film).

but you’ll never look at a naughty site or give out your information on-the-interweb again.

not that You would.

but we’re just saying……..

d a n g e r o u s.

talking of movies and Hollywood – we’ve been reading a FINE MANUSCRIPT (oh, tis good) – a page-turner – and thoroughly enjoying lounging on the sofa chaise or lying back against the pillows in a little Elizabeth Taylor slip (very Tennessee Williams but only sipping a weak tea with lemon) – letting the pages fall onto the small rug as we race Eagerly through the story. 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAwe can’t possibly tell you who wrote it.

it’s not yet published.

but we promised to write a small blurb for the author’s site – so exciting.

also talking of Hollywood – we’re starting to plot too – and work out where our 4 x female characters from 1929 might have lived. 
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there’s a Very Clever (or horrifying, depending on your view of privacy) site-on-the-interweb called The Movieland Directory which has “triangulated” (geek/word) data sets encompassing Los Angeles (public) telephone directories from the 1930s+, Travel Manifests from Atlantic-crossing-great-ships, the Census (which becomes public – what – *looksvaguelytothemiddledistance* at some Point, clearly) and mapping software – voila!

you can find out all the places where Louise Brooks, for instance, once resided.

isn’t that astonishing?

especially if you live here and always felt strange tingling feelings outside Certain Blocks on disparate streets………

*significantlook*

one. might. have. done.

talking of Louise Brooks (as we were) – we were back at the Academy of Motion Pictures Library with the LETTERS of Louise Brooks.

yes.

the actual letters.

astonishing to hold them in one’s modern day hand and experience the thrill of opening a portal into a former Time.

she was awfully naughty.

lots of terrifying gossip about hollywood and the Mob and what men-with-money-and-zero-skills used to demand of Talent.

she was also Very Witty:

(writing in advanced age by this point)

7 North Goodman Street                 10 March 1977
Rochester, NY 14607

My darling Herman Mankiewicz who once (1925) assigned me to review No No Nanette (lousy) while he slept in the next seat….

When I was in Paris in 1958 for a month of homage by the Cinematheque Francaise and wouldn’t leave my bed and gin and tomatoe (sic) juice to go anyway, Lotte Eisner came every day to see me……………Returning to Paris one night Lotti and I went to Man Ray’s where he was entertaining a strange couple who had come to look at his paintings.

……..My last visitor was Christopher Isherwood on a friendly call combined with film watching at Eastman House (8 Feb). I hope you get more nourishing stuff out of me on Keaton and Schenck than I got out of Ish-Ish on Auden and Vidal.

Then we Returned that File to the Special Collections Desk and took the next Manilla folder – the correspondence of a certain Kate Hepburn. Sadly it was mostly Correspondence Received by K. Hepburn but there were a few scrawled notes, probably to her faithful secretary, on how to Respond. We whooped (silently, as it was the Library) to hold in our hands a letter from Someone We Have Met (in Palm Springs – the director and writer Gerald Ayres who directed this which we Adored) to K. Hepburn (such fun!)

Gerald Ayres                July 2, 1981

“I pretend to be a writer and I paused over the keys, debating what qualifying adjective to put in front of ‘pleasure’, and like most writers, I wanted all the words, so I let it stand, pleasure. for that is what it was.

It seems that Mr. Ayres met Kate in the Library at Mr. Cukor’s house – which is where Ms. Dorothy Arzner wrote to K. Hepburn in this note (below).

Dorothy Arzer                         Nov 11 1976 PM        13c stamp
Box F
La Quinta, CAL 92253

Katherine Hepburn
c/o George Cukor
9166 Cordell Drive
Hollywood, California 90069

PLEASE FORWARD

“Do come if you are of a mind to, I’d love having you.”

“I love knowing you are in my world and my time”

The final Manilla Envelope contained two sheafs of yellowing paper from the Screen Directors Guild – one was called:

Suggestions for Writing A Film Play
from the notebook of Dorothy Arzner

sadly this was not dated.

but she had some Excellent Advice:

A knowledge of human character is the bed rock on which the higher form of drama rest.

But more than this: the dramatist must have a philosophy of life.

Contrast Helps Movement
If one nature strikes fire from another than the air is tingling with movement.

The test of a dramatic theme is that it can be expressed in no way so well as in visible action on film.

There was something so Wondrous about holding these materials close and making pencil marks in one’s notebook (No Pens Allowed at the Library) and reaching back into the past to get saturated in ideas for something-to-write-in-the-near-future (before we have to get a Proper Job – which might be fun actually – we sort of miss it).

talking of ideas.

we really want to find an agent on This Coast who sells screenplays to Movie Studios – because we have written several (although we noticed that we haven’t written one for a little while because when we went to open Final Draft it gave us a nasty scary notice about the Version we Have not being Compatible with the Upgrade of the OS we just did *sighs* and there was an activation code but the Automated Telephony Service did not have that Option Available *sighs* – thank goodness we are Calm and can call the Helpdesk at Final Draft tomorrow (it’s Memorial Day in the United States today) and then Fix the Situation.

thank goodness that we also save everything as in Portable Document Format or we couldn’t share this with you now.

The Goddess of Donal Bay | 

The head of the Muses freaks out when she finds out “life coaches”, have replaced them in modern life. She comes to earth to restore her reputation. But she has no idea that the eternal soul, Liam, is now in possession of a hot new television writer as his latest incarnation and is determined to thwart her plans and take over L.A for his own heady desires.

INT – VIRTUAL COPY OF ST. PANCRAS STATION, LONDON DAY

Steam blows into the Victorian rafters. An eternal soul, LIAM, 45, unshaven, unkempt and deeply sexy, is irritated.

LIAM
I was promised I could be a man.

A GUIDE, an ethereal being, checks her clipboard. She hands Liam a slip. He does not read it. The guide swings a globe round to the USA and points to Los Angeles.

LIAM (CONT’D)
There was nothing there last time I went down.

Another soul, CORNELIUS, 70, very elegant, takes the Guide’s clipboard and reads.

CORNELIUS
Donal Bay, beautiful place.

He consults the clipboard.

CORNELIUS (CONT’D)
You are terrible at being female.

LIAM What are you?

CORNELIUS
An entertainment attorney. I can’t wait. All power offices, sharp suits and fast cars. Divine.

LIAM
I’m going to decline this mission.

The first guide stabs his hand with the information slip.

CORNELIUS
You can’t – until you read your extra information slip.

Liam glances at the piece of paper. A slow, sexy grin appears on his face. He drops it to the floor and saunters to catch the train that just pulled in.

INT. OLD-FASHIONED STEAM TRAIN CARRIAGE – MOMENTS LATER Brown leather seats, luggage racks overhead. Liam grins.

LIAM
I’ve never been a lesbian.

He looks around at the others on the train.

LIAM (CONT’D)
I wonder who else is a lesbian on this trip. Apparently it’s so hard to tell these days.

Cornelius looks amused.

LIAM (CONT’D) You’re not one are you?

CORNELIUS
No, I’m a straight man this time around. I took all the right lessons on buying electronics.

LIAM
I never take the classes.

CORNELIUS
You’re going to be a lesbian without any training at all?

LIAM
As if I need classes on dating women.

GUIDES enter the train carriage and sit down next to each eternal soul and the carriage fills with white light.

we LOVED writing this one.

at the time of writing *looksvaguelytotheOtherCoast* we thought of This Actor for Liam and This man for Cornelius – still keen on Terence – but who would you cast as Liam?

need a bit more dialogue?

*blush*

you are Most Kind.

here you go —–

EXT. BODHI TREE ANNEX – EVENING

A line is forming round the block for the life coach speech. Liam and Cornelius walk past. Liam taps his finger on a flyer featuring Calliope stuck to the wall.

LIAM
What’s the ice maiden doing now?

CORNELIUS Oh. How clever!

Liam rips the flyer off the wall to read.

LIAM
What’s a “life coach”?

CORNELIUS
An inspirational speaker and personal advisor who helps you move towards your goals.

LIAM
Not one word of that sentence made sense to me.

CORNELIUS
They are calling life coaches the modern muses. (beat) So an ancient muse just became a modern muse! She is super smart.

Gina is in line. Liam looks curiously at Gina.

LIAM Why is Gina here?

CORNELIUS
I told you. Calliope is your competition.

LIAM
Then she better be prepared for a fight.

CORNELIUS
I had no idea you cared about Gina.

LIAM
I don’t want that muse making my life complicated.

CORNELIUS
I’m going inside to hear her speak.

LIAM
Public lectures remind me of the Victorian era – not my favorite period.

Cornelius exits into the annex. Liam spots a gorgeous sports car being parked by a valet.

LIAM (CONT’D) Now that’s more like it.

Liam takes the keys from the valet’s hands. He slides into the seat, turns on the engine. It purrs. So does he. He blasts on loud rock music and screeches off, fast.

so – actors for Liam ideas please.

two more quick scenes – just to give you a broader reach of character (although he’s an open book and Such Fun to write):

EXT. MULLHOLLAND DRIVE – MOMENTS LATER

Gina and Calliope are parked at the spot where you can see all the lights of Los Angeles below. The car’s retractable roof is back. Liam is sprawled on the back seat with a beer and his feet over the side of the car.

LIAM
This is a glorious place.

CALLIOPE
When did you stop writing fiction?

GINA
When I had to start paying rent and eating.

CALLIOPE
Not all novelists are poor.

GINA
The benevolence of wealthy patrons supporting writers and poets died out years ago.

CALLIOPE
It did?

LIAM
That was a racket anyway.

Liam looks around and suddenly notices the couples in other cars making out.

and a bit more with Terence Stamp, we mean, Cornelius (but couldn’t you just see Terence being delicious in this?)

LIAM
So where’s your work?

He opens a few cupboard drawers.

CORNELIUS
They are still using actual hardware, curious.

Liam walks over to her desk.

LIAM
What is this machine?

CORNELIUS
We used to have these. Let me see if I can remember how it works.

LIAM
Move over. It can’t be hard if they use it.

He taps randomly until he finds the On button and opens folders in quick succession until he sees a new short story.

LIAM (CONT’D)
Now it’s all making sense.

Cornelius peers at the screen.

CORNELIUS
What did you find?

LIAM
A new story – and just guess who it is about.

CORNELIUS
Her job is to inspire.

LIAM
She’s highly manipulative.

Cornelius slaps him playfully.

LIAM (CONT’D)
As well as being unbelievably sexy.

Liam points to the screen.

LIAM (CONT’D)
An opinion that my incarnation shares. This is hot.

Liam finds the Calliope story engaging.

LIAM (CONT’D)
At least she’s good. I hate it when the incarnations turn out to be stupid.

Liam looks around her room. It’s spare, lacking in charm, a make-shift life.

CORNELIUS
You like her! You never like your incarnations!

LIAM
Not yet I don’t. But after I’ve finished with her, it’ll be fun. And I’m not letting that goddess ruin it.

Liam rifles through her closet.

LIAM (CONT’D)
We are going for an upgrade. Let’s kick this life up a gear. Tomorrow – we shop.

and if you know any agents (nobody is going to return our call until the Book Comes Out – that’s how this town works – although CAA sent a lovely vermillion logo embossed Rejection Letter which was chilling and yet fun) – do let us know ;-)

twinkle lights on laurel avenue, a screening of #TheEnglishTeacher and somebody Important arrives at The House On Church Row

darlings

happy sunday!

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isn’t sunday just a lovely day?

we won’t see much of it until later because we have Lots to Do (column to write, the last section of The House on Church Row and a fresh copy of a magazine from the languid and luscious South has arrived) – but we shall venture out around 5PM for a light supper and meeting up with friends in the Hollywood Hills. 95594e7ac02611e2a73822000aaa08a0_7

so last night the Light here was Luminous.

we left the car and took a walk up steep’ish streets and slipped into quieter back roads and got Quite exhausted but happily creatively enhanced by looking at all the nice houses….

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some were Very Roman.

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and others had slightly sad threadbare and troublesome histories (the one at the top straight ahead was the last apartment of a certain Mr. F. Scott Fitzgerald at 1403 North Laurel Avenue, Los Angeles, California) – an ignominious end – although he did not expire here, he ended his hours with us in this world not far at another apartment owned by his lover of the time Sheilah Graham – an English writer who had come to America to find her own fortune with a Life in Ink.

The curriculum for my College of One was lost. I discovered its disappearance in 1954 when a magazine editor visited me in Beverly Hills and suggested I write the story of my life. He knows, I thought. “What you really want,” I said, “is an account of my time with Scott Fitzgerald.” In recent years editors had approached me about this, and my answer had always been “No.” “We want to know aboutyou,’ this one assured me, “an English girl who came to America. Why did you come and did you find what you came for? Of course”—casually — ‘anything you’d write about Fitzgerald would be interesting.” I would think about it, I promised.

I had been thinking about it ever since I had read Arthur Mizener’s biography of Scott, The Far Side of Paradise, and Budd Schulberg’s unsympathetic portrait in his novel The Disenchanted. It seemed to me that both books had given the wrong impression of Scott as I knew him in Hollywood. Perhaps the time had come to tell my story.

When the editor left, I went into my garage, lifted the lid of the trunk, and for the first time since I had placed it there in June of 1941 I held the bulging brown manuscript envelope marked Scott. It contained the visible fragments of the three and a half years we had spent almost continuously together, until his fatal heart attack in my Hollywood apartment on 21 December 1940. I carried the package to my desk, untied the thin brown ribbon that barely held the flaps together, and, with some apprehension but more curiosity, sifted at random though the material. Ah, here were the two acts and the prologue of our unproduced play, Dame Rumor. His letters and poems to me. I had forgotten how beautiful they were. Scraps of paper with scribbled messages in his loose straight—up handwriting. The recording he had made one evening of “Ode to a Nightingale”. Some short stories I had written, my fictional account of our meeting and falling in love. I had titled it Beloved Infidel after his poem to me. I had forgotten the story and his severe editing. Here was the entire lecture he had written for me. He was on the wagon, or so I thought, when I made the tour, and I had kept the telegrams he had sent to the various cities, humorous but also intended to reassure me that I was capable of lecturing and to convince me he was sober.

But where was the detailed curriculum we had called my College of One, the twenty—odd closely typewritten pages that had absorbed us and given us so much satisfaction in the last two years of his life? I searched through the envelope again. I went back to the trunk to see if they had fallen out. Incredibly they were missing.

we have Requested these materials from the Library Service of Los Angeles County so we may well Return to this period of Hollywood lore (especially as we’re sure we’re going to write at least a short story about 4 x girls in 1920s Hollywood with a backdrop of the silent movies – it’s all starting to gel in the Mind’s eye you see, in a most delicious way).

unlike Sheilah, we’ve never had a relationship that had a curriculum of Improving Oneself  therein.

*looktocamera*

oh. right. there was One (maybe two). but that’s for another blog and probably ought to remain entwined and enclosed in fiction………

movingswiftlyon.

no. you see. Our Curriculum comes from books and movies and Director’s Q&A post-film-screenings (we adore a director’s Q&A) and last night was a TREAT!

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it was at the Sundance Sunset (started by that nice Mr. Robert Redford) which is a 21+ movie theatre (because some people – like Mr. Robert Redford and his friends – prefer to watch films without screaming children or teenagers and with a glass of a potent beverage – they certainly do a very strong and glorious Iced Coffee – black – which is what we sip there).

because it’s a 21+ theatre – they “card” as the americans call it.

and we got carded last night!

we *giggled* massively.

who-we-are-in-RL raised a (well-groomed) eyebrow and handed over her driving license (they won’t give us one because we’re a Virtual character, you see, so we hung back and looked out over the chinese lanterns and waited) and the sweet young man on the door did a double take at her date of birth (1969 – she’s not shy about her age, we can tell you – we are among friends here) and said:

“god, you look Good.”

and did a sly French/Irish smile and wrinkled up her (freckled) nose and said:

“thanks ;-)”

and we laughed all the way into the theatre and through the iced coffee (black) purchasing and finding-our-seat.

what was the movie?

gosh!

we forgot to mention in the excitement about getting carded!

TheEnglishTeacher

It was SUPERB!

witty and winsome and dark (in places) and Very Understanding about being female and what-that-means-about-choices (Julianna Moore is a comedic genius – we had no idea  and luminous and earthy) and Nathan Lane is GLORIOUS and it was a Romp!

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and after the movie the director was meant to be there to answer our Questions but he just did a few moments Before as apparently there was a small person emergency at home and he needed to go and be a dad which was sweet and sort of refreshing actually.

so the husband-and-wife-team-of-screenwriters (how 1930s Hollywood!) stopped by to do the Q&A and it was funny because people who spend time sitting in a room with virtual characters are often quite Strange when they are allowed out into public venues to interact

*lookstocameraironically*

and they had a nice Patter going back and forth between them – one could imagine their adjoining desks and bits of half-eaten toast and vast vats of coffee to sustain them and pacing up and down and shouting out bits of dialogue or running to the centre of the room to say “No! then This happens!” and acting out scenes.

it was fun.

and the movie was Most Excellent.

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on the way back the twinkle lights and hummingbird feeders were all aglow.

and we stopped by the late night grocery store and carried our two brown bags (just like in Woody Allen films in NYC) back home and smiled a lot at the fact that we are Back Here.

and writing.

taking photographs.

and watching a lot of movies.

because That’s delicious.

we’re up to 75,000 words on The House on Church Row and can see the Horizon now (and we don’t mean the Literary Magazine edited by Mr. Cyril Connolly in the 1940s)

now we’d like to share a tiny snippet with you – we’ve been Very Careful about not revealing too much of how-the-plot-gets-worked-out with these little excerpts we’ve been pasting (and anyway, once we do the first Edit a Lot will probably change).

but we thought you’d enjoy this new character who only arrives towards the very end……..

He went down to the kitchen and saw his mother standing at the French windows staring out into the garden.

“What on earth are you doing here?” he said, half-hoping she had got up early enough to make coffee. His headache was splitting now. He searched in the kitchen drawers for an Aspirin.

Then he realized his mother was still staring out of the window and had not responded to him. He felt irritated by all the women in his life right now – either they were flakey, stunned, hurt or possibly queer. It was all too much. He slammed the kitchen drawer shut, took a cup from the coffee tree stand and poured some coffee. At least his mother had had the decency to make coffee.

He joined her at the window. And could not believe his eyes. There was a crater in his garden where the fence between his house and the garden next door had collapsed into a dark pit.

“What the hell were you women doing last night?” he said loudly letting all the frustration out of his body in a sudden burst of rage. Did they have any idea how much a fence cost to repair?

The doorbell rang. Simon left his mother in shock at the French windows and stormed into the hallway. He opened the door to the world’s press standing behind a group of men in white coats with the sort of visors and protective helmets he remembered from the film E. T.

“Annabelle!” he shouted. His wife and children appeared at the top of the stairs in seconds. They blinked as a thousand flash bulbs went off.

A man in a 1940s tweed suit stepped forward, ignoring the global press corp. and handed Simon his card. It said:

 The Honourable Nigel Blackcastle-Jones-Smythe
 The Agency
Hampstead
The Empire
 

Charlotte took the card from her son’s hand and studied it for a second and then looked up at The Honourable Nigel Blackcastle-Jones-Smythe and said, “Gosh, we meet at last.” Nigel looked carefully at Charlotte and realized it was Deneuve. She did look good in the flesh, he had to admit, a dashed shame that the Agency had cut back on lunching its operatives at The Savoy; they could have had a splendid time.

Simon stared at his mother as Nigel walked smoothly into the house, seemingly gliding on his bespoke Church’s lace-up Oxfords in Oxblood. “Who is that?” he hissed as his wife’s boarding school manners took over and she started rustling up a tea while the men in radioactive clothing swarmed into her house. She wondered if she had enough cups.

“That, darling,” said Charlotte, with a smile, “Is the last remaining member of The Establishment – and my boss.” With that, she followed Annabelle into the kitchen and started putting out Arrowroot biscuits onto Spode plates. Simon was dumbfounded. He closed the door firmly against the world’s press and sat on the bottom stair with his son and daughter. Two very strange pieces of information swam in his head – his mother had a job – and there was only One Man Left in the Establishment. Where did that leave him?

It all feels Rather Thrilling.

we’re going to make a second pot of coffee, snack on a few italian crackers and Get Cracking on the rest.

we maybe    s o m e   t i m e

until then.

did we mention how lovely you are to Visit?

and that’s a delicious hat.