Friday, July 05, 2019

Blind Items Revealed #20 - Old Hollywood - Mr. X

January 27, 2019

Hollywood stars and moguls meeting and performing for dictators isn't a new thing. The first ones to do so were this acting power couple, considered to be the first of such, and co-founders of a movie studio wined and dined with Mussolini pre WWII.

Among the others:

1. The newspaper magnate and his actress mistress/possible wife dined with Hitler and Joseph Goebbels.

2. That comedy producer/mogul whose films still get played on TV had a signed picture of Mussolini in his office . He even brought two of his biggest stars who are the subject of a recent biopic for a photo op. A deal with the Cinecitta Studios, then under fascist control, eventually fell through.

3. It has been debated whether that mogul whose last name and creations you see everywhere met with Mussolini for a photo op! but most evidence points to yes, he did. But he did not support fascism, as many people want you to believe

4. This A++ list Oscar winning director, who many people forget is foreign born, met with Mussolini numerous times and had a big oil painting commissioned of Il Duce to hang on the wall of his living room. That painting mysteriously disappeared once the US entered WWII and the director went on to direct propaganda films for the US government.

5. This mogul badly wanted to meet Mussolini and Hitler, but he did get a visit at his studio from Mussolini's son Vittorio who did a photo op with the mogul and his biggest star of the studio's first decade. Vittorio was also friends with #2 and #3

Mary Pickford & Douglas Fairbanks
#1 - William Randolph Hearst/Marion Davies
#2 - Hal Roach/Laurel & Hardy
#3 - Walt Disney
#4 - Frank Capra
#5 - Daryl Zanuck/20th Century Fox/Shirley Temple


HushHush said...

Yet two decades later the committee for unAmerican Activities ran amuck in Hollywood looking for commies and destroying carriers completely was blind to the former fascist's. And at the same time former Nazis were brought in under Operation Paperclip to work on the space/missile program.

Hanniam said...

That’s the thing. Prior to World War II, Hitler’s continuing annexation of neighboring countries, and especially prior to news of the Holocaust ramping up, a lot of Americans and Brits saw Hitler and Mussolini as figures bringing pride back to their nations/nationality/national identity and were drawn to their cults of personality.

Reading diaries, newspapers, and old letters from the 30s is fascinating.

Henriette said...

These are not blinds. The real reason George abdicated the English throne was due to his super close friendship with Hitler.

gauloise said...

@Hanniam, also communism was a massive threat to the upper and upper-middle classes. The Russian revolution was less than two decades ago. Fascism was attractive to the rich and poor alike.

Mussolini brought Italy from a backwater to a modern nation, and while a lot of italians suffered from the racial laws, it wasnt as absolultely devastating as in other european countries, It wasn't Mussolini's focus like it was Hitler's and a lot of Italians were protected from being in the axis.

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Unknown said...

so what? they were just politicians at the time ...


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