Hollywood archeology: Digging DeMille’s “The Ten Commandments”

Film · Visual arts
arts·meme friend Mary Mallory alerts us to a new exhibition featuring prime California archeology: the recovery and reconstruction of a huge prop piece from Cecil B. DeMille’s silent movie classic “The Ten Commandments” (1923). A humongous face of an Egyptian sphinx-statue was recovered from the Central California sand dunes where DeMille directed his first (silent ...

The Barn’s ready for its close-up, Mr. DeMille!

Architecture & Design · Film
The events presented under the “Evenings @ the Barn” series are among my favorite in town — friendly, intimate and full of gossipy tidbits and info about Hollywood history. Here’s an event that focuses on the hugely historic building where the events take place — the Hollywood Heritage Museum on Highland Avenue across from the ...

spring holiday weekend at arts·meme

Film
Cecil B. DeMille lived right down the road from arts·meme global headquarters. His crossing-of-the-Red-Sea special effect in “The Ten Commandments” (1956) may have been inspired by crossing Los Feliz Boulevard. Just as tough. We wish you and yours a Happy Passover and Happy Easter! thank you jonathan rosenbaum for the photo   Like this? Read ...

Faded Los Angeles beauty to get a facelift: Lasky-DeMille Barn 1

Film
In keeping with the celebration of its 100th anniversary, Paramount Pictures is putting some loving care into the bricks and morter where their company was born – the Lasky-DeMille barn. Col. Robert Northam built the Hollywood structure  as horse stable, in 1901. The next owner, Jacob Stern was the owner when it became a film ...

Backward-leaning Bolsheviks, er…Bolshoi men

Dance · Film
The hiring of David Hallberg by the Bolshoi Ballet, founded in the late 18th century, is being trumpeted as a sign of Russian openness and progress. But an arts·meme investigation indicates that rather than Hallberg moving the stodgy Russians forward, they are already pulling him back. Please refer to the image at left in which ...

The Agnes & Cecil Show 1

Dance · Film
From Empire of Dreams: The Epic Life of Cecil B. DeMille, by Scott Eyman, published by Simon & Schuster, 2010, page 307-308. Agnes deMille was struggling in London to make ends meet when Cecil hired her for six weeks at $250 a week to create the dances for Cleopatra. It ended badly, but then it ...

C.B. directs “Cleopatra” (1934)

Film

Eyman hits a bull’s eye; his “Empire of Dreams” wins prestigious theater book award

Film · Language & ideas
Not just because he’s a friend of arts•meme, and a fellow toiler in the bowels of Brigham Young University’s Harold B. Lee Library, the resting place of the massive Cecil B. DeMille archives… [… a humongous trove of cinema-memorabilia prodigiously overseen by archivist James d’Arc...] The well regarded film historian, Scott Eyman (Lion of Hollywood: ...

Diaper changed, he’s ready for his close-up Mr. DeMille

Film
Foraging around the internet for information on Cecil B. DeMille’s great one, I was delighted to learn about Fraser Heston. A guy of my generation, Fraser, at the tender age of three months, made his film debut playing Baby Moses in “The Ten Commandments.” Now, Fraser mostly had to float around the bullrushes waiting for ...

A heady evening with Hedy Lamarr 2

Film
While he was growing up in Ottawa, Illinois, the film writer Stephen Shearer’s mother told him that in 1939 she and a girlfriend went to the local cinema to see Charles Boyer in “Algiers.” Co-starring with the Frenchman was MGM’s latest European import, Hedy Lamarr. In her first appearance in the film, cinematographer James Wong ...