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The Hollywood Premiere Radio Program

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41-04-26 Spot Ad for Hollywood Premiere
41-04-26 Spot Ad for Hollywood Premiere

Background

From the March 22nd, 1941 edition of the Mason City Globe-Gazette:

41-05-22 Hollywood Premiieres announcement

     Radio is going to have a real Hollywood premiere on the evening of Friday, March 28, when the new Columbia network program, "Hollywood Premieres," with Louella Parsons in her familiar role of hostess to the stars, has its gala opening.  It will be heard over KGLO from 9 to 9:30 p.m.
     The searchlights which blaze at filmland's big events will criss-cross the skies, Hollywood celebrities will face a battery of flashlight cameras--and autograph hounds will have a field day as the program is launched in the best Hollywood tradition.
41-05-22 Marelen Dietrich     The opening broadcast has two of the movie capital's favorites, Marlene Dietrich and Bruce Cabot, playing the roles they created in the new Universal picture, "Flame of New Orleans."
     The story is set in the crinoline and steamboat days of New Orleans, with Marlene Dietrich playing the role of an international adventureress who sets her bonnet for a rich banker.  However, when she meets a rough and tumble young man about town--played by Bruce Cabot--the bonnet gets pushed askew.

     Each weekly production thereafter will have Louella Parsons choosing he new "picture of the week" with Hollywood stars playing the same roles they created in the film.

     The announcer for the program is Howard Wilcox.  Felix Mills' orchestra supplies the musical background, and the scripts will be adapted for radio by Harry Kronman.
     Louella Parsons will introduce the stars to the listening audience, and devote a portion of the program to answering pertinent questions on Hollywood sent in by fans.
     "Hollywood Premieres," sponsored by the makers of Lifebuoy Health Soap, is to be heard every Fridays from 9 to 9:30 p.m. on KGLO.

Louella Parsons at typewriter


Series Derivatives:

None
Genre: Anthology of Golden Age Radio Movie Dramas
Network(s): CBS
Audition Date(s) and Title(s): Unknown
Premiere Date(s) and Title(s): 41-03-28 01 Flame Of New Orleans
Run Dates(s)/ Time(s): 41-03-28 to 41-11-28; CBS [KGLO]; Thirty-five, 30-minute programs;
Syndication: CBS
Sponsors: Lifebuoy Health Soap
Director(s): Charles Vanda [Producer]
Principal Actors: Marlene Dietrich, Bruce Cabot, Paulette Goddard, Judy Canova, Charles Grapewin, Gene Tierney, Humphrey Bogart, Eddie Albert, Joan Leslie, Jane Russell, Jack Beutel, Merle Oberon, Dennis Morgan, Jane Withers, Jackie Cooper, Illona Massey, Alan Curtis, Priscilla Lane, Jeffrey Lynn, Mary Beth Hughes, George Montgomery, Bob Hope, Greer Garson, Walter Pidgeon, Herbert Marshall, Gene Reynolds,Mary Martin, Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Richard Arlen, Jean Parker, Joan Bennett, Warren William, Charlie Ruggles, Phil Terry, Ellen Drew, Lionel Barrymore, Lew Ayres, Gene Tierney, Randolph Scott, Dorothy Lamour, Jon Hall, Gloria Swanson, Adolphe Menjou, Ruth Hussey, Robert Young, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Betty Grable, Victor Mature, Laird Cregar, Anne Shirley, Jackie Cooper, Susanna Foster, Alice Faye, John Payne, Gene Autry, Jack Oakie, Linda Darnell
Recurring Character(s):
Protagonist(s):
Author(s): None
Writer(s) Harry Kronman [Adapter]
Music Direction: Felix Mills
Musical Theme(s):
Announcer(s): Harlow Wilcox
Hostess: Louella Parsons
Estimated Scripts or
Broadcasts:
Episodes in Circulation:
Total Episodes in Collection:
Provenances:
Constributor Jerry Haendiges.

Notes on Provenances:

The most helpful provenances were newspaper listings.

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Hollywood Premiere Radio Program Log

Date Episode Title Avail. Notes
41-03-21
--
41-03-21 Mason City Globe-Gazette - KGLO 8:45 District Tournament--Oelwein vs. Nevada, Coca Cola

41-03-28
1
Flame Of New Orleans
N
41-03-28 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Louella Parsons comes to KGLO listeners, via the Columbia network, Friday at 9 p.m. with a brand new series of Friday night programs titled "Hollywood Premiere." In her familiar role of hostess to filmdom's favorites, Miss Parsons will present Hollywood's greatest stars each week in a radio preview of the hit motion pictures before they reach the screen. For the opener Friday evening, two of the movie capital's favorites will perform. They are Marlene Dietrich and Bruce Cabot, playing the roles they created in the new Universal picture, "
Flame of New Orleans." Miss Parsons will introduce the stars, and devote a portion of the program to answering pertinent questions on Hollywood sent in by fans. Felix Mills' orchestra will furnish the music.

41-04-04
2
Pot O' Gold
N
41-04-04 Mason City Globe-Gazett
Filmdom's lovely Paulette Goddard steps in and takes over starring honors in the second production of Columbia network's new "Hollywood Premiere" series when she plays her motion picture role in a radio adaptation of "
Pot o' Gold" on Friday over KGLO from 9 to 9:30 p.m. "Pot o' Gold," produced by James Roosevelt, the president's son, and released only recently, tells the story of the musical difficulties of an amateur harmonica virtuoso. Louella Parsons, who is hostess on "Hollywood Premiere" will introduce Miss Goddard and her supporting cast of Hollywood actors to the radio audience. Miss Parsons also answers qustions about movies which have been sent her by the listening audience.

41-04-11
3
Sis Hopkins
N
41-04-11 Mason City Globe-Gazette
The third star-studded production of Columbia network's new "Hollywood Premiere" series, presents the hillbilly comedienne and singer, Judy Canova, over KGLO Friday at 9 p.m. in a radio version of her new Republic picture, "
Sis Hopkins." The character of Sis Hopkins, which Judy Canova plays for radio and the screen, has a long and interesting background. When Republic pictures, casting about for a new vehicle for Judy Canova, came across "Sis Hopkins," they knew they had uncovered a "natural." The radio version, which gives CBS listeners an early preview of the film, will have a cast of Hollywood stars supporting Judy Canova--all to be introduced by Louella Parsons, hostess of the program. Music is under the direction of Felix Mills, with Harlow Wilcox as announcer.

41-04-18
4
Tobacco Road
N
41-04-18 Mason City Globe-Gazette
"
Tobacco Road" is in its eighth year on Broadway--it has recently been made into a motion picture--and now, for the first time, that down-to-earth story of the turnip-eating Lesters will be heard over the air. The occasion is another in the KGLO-CBS "Hollywood Premiere" series heard Friday at 9 pm., and the production will have Charles Grapewin playing his movie role of the water-shy Jeeter Leslie and Gene Tierney, also recruited from the motion picture in the part of Ellie May. Grapewin will be remembered for his realisltic portrayal of Gramp in "The Grapes of Wrath," but his list of successes covers more than 35 years experience in vaudeville, on the stage and in motion pictures. Louella Parsons will introduce the stars to the radio audience in her capacity as hostess on "Hollywood Premiere." She also will answer behind-the-scenes questions about screenland sent in by listeners.

41-04-25
5
Wagons Roll At Night
N
41-04-25 Mason City Globe-Gazette
"Hollywood Premiere," the KGLO-CBS series which brings radio listeners previews of motion pictures with the screen stars playing their original roles, presents "Wagons Roll at Night," starring Humphrey Bogart, Eddie Albert and Joan Leslie on the broadcast of Friday from 9 to 9:30 p.m. "Wagons Roll at Night" is a story of carnival life. Humphrey Bogart will be heard in the role of Nick Coster, the hard-boiled, cynical owner of a third-rate carnival. Eddie Albert discards his crew haircut of "Brother Rat" and appears as a tough guy too--Mat Varney who runs a lion-taming act. Louella Parsons, hostess on the program, will introduce the stars to the radio audience as well as answer questions on Hollywood life sent in by listeners.

41-05-02
6
The Outlaw
N
41-05-02 Mason City Globe-Gazette
"Hollywood Premiere," which presents previews of the latest motion pictures, is strapping on its shootin' irons for a rip-roaring production of "The Outlaw" over KGLO-CBS Friday, 8 p.m., an hour earlier than formerly. Jane Russell and Jack Buetel will play the roles they created in the screen play. "The Outlaw" tells the story of Billy the Kid (played by Jack Buetel), the smooth-faced, easy-going youngster famed throughout the old west for his speed at the trigger. Jane Russell plays the role of Rio McDonald, part Mexican, who is out to get the Kid because he killed her brothe. Hostess of the program is Louella Parsons, who will introduce the stars to the radio audience. Music for the program is under the direction of Felix Mills.

41-05-09
7
Affectionately Yours
N
41-05-09 Mason City Globe-Gazette
This time it's a fast-moving, laugh-provoking play on the Columbia network's "Hollywood Premiere," with two of Hollywood's stellar actors at he microphone, coming in over KGLO-CBS Friday at 8 p.m. The new screen play to be previewed is "Affectionately Yours," with Merle Oberon and Dennis Morgan in the radio adaptation, enacting the roles they created for the film. Hostess of "Hollywood Premiere" is Louella Parsons, who has the enviable job of introducing the stars to the radio audience. Music for the program is under the direction of Felix Mills, Harlow Wilcox is the announcer.

41-05-16
8
Her First Beau
N
41-05-16 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Remember those heart-breaking, nerve-racking, wonderful days of puppy love? Serious, wasn't it? And romance is no less serious to a young girl named Penelope Wood . . . Penelope's case is to be brought to the springtime attention of the KGLO-CBS audience Friday at 8 p.m., when "Hollywood Premiere" presents "Her First Beau" with Jane Withers and Jackie Cooper. "Her First Beau" concerns itself with the extremely serious problems of Penelope Wood and Church Harris--played by Jane Withers and Jackie Cooper in both the radio and screen versions. Columnist Louella Parsons, hostess of Hollywood Premiere," introduces the stars and answers questions about filmland.

41-05-23
9
New Wine
N
41-05-23 Mason City Globe-Gazette
"New Wine," a new screen play starring Illona Massey and Alan Curtis, will be given a radio preview on "Hollywood Premiere" over KGLO-CBS Friday from 8 to 8:30 p.m. Illona Massey and Alan Curtis will be heard in the two leading roles, playing the same characters they created in the motion picture. "New Wine" is the romantic story of Franz Schubert and his fight for recognition of his music. Schubert, played by Alan Curtis, vows time and again to give up his music because he sees no hope of making a living at it, but he is driven on. Finally, on a farm in Hungary where he has taken refuge, he meets and falls in love with Anna, played by Illona Massey. From then on the story centers on their love, which Anna uses to spur Schubert to musical greatness. Louella Parsons is the hostess of "Hollywood Premiere," introducing the stars and answering questions on Hollywood life sent in by listeners.

41-05-30
10
Million Dollar Baby
N
41-05-30 Mason City Globe-Gazette
The movie team of Priscilla Lane and Jeffrey Lynn stars in a CBS "Hollywood Premiere" preview production of the new Warner Brothers' picture, "Million Dollar Baby" over KGLO-CBS Friday from 8 to 8:30 p.m., in the same roles they played for the screen. In "Million Dollar Baby" a wealthy old lady learns that her father cheated his deceased partner out of a million dollars, and determines to restore it to the surviving relatives.

41-06-06
11
The Cowboy and the Blonde
N
41-06-06 Mason City Globe-Gazette
"The Cowboy and The Blonde," starring Mary Beth Hughs and George Montgomery, will be given a radio production on CBS's "Hollywood Premiere" over KGLO Friday from 8 to 8:30 p.m. In "The Cowboy and The Blonde" Mary Beth Hughs plays the role of a temperamental star on a movie lot. But when George Montgomery, in the role of a champion broncho-buster, shows up at the studio for a screen test, a period of calm sets in as love turns the hard-to-handle star into a reasonable woman. Louella Parsons, as hostess of "Hollywood Premiere," also answers questions on the film studios sent in by listeners.

41-06-13
12
Caught In the Draft
N
41-06-13 Washington DC Evening Star
WJSV, 9:00--Hollywood Premiere: Comedian Bob Hope in a preview of the new movie comedy, "
Caught In the Draft."

41-06-20
13
Blossoms In the Dust
N
41-06-20 Mason City Globe Gazette
NEW TIME FOR HOLLYWOOD PREMIERE 7:30 TONIGHT STATION KGLO Featuring Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's "BLOSSOMS IN THE DUST" with GREER GARSON and WALTER PIDGEON

41-06-20 Wisconsin State Journal
7:30 p.m.--Hollywood Premiere (WBBM): Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon in "
Blossoms in the Dust."

41-06-27
14
Blood and Sand
Y
41-06-27 Wisconsin State Journal
7:30 p.m.--Hollywood Premiere (WBBM): Tyrone Power in "
Blood and Sand." Program announces there will be no broadcast of Hollywood Premiere July 4.

41-07-04
--
Pre-Empted
-
41-07-04 Mason City Globe-Gazette
7:30 Senator Josiah W. Bailey, CBS 41-07-04 Wisconsin State Journal - 7:30 Sen. J.W. Bailey--WBBM KMOX

41-07-11
15
Adventure In Washington
N
41-07-11 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Louella Parsons will take her "Hollywood Premiere" audience behind the scenes at the nation's capital on KGLO-CBS Friday at 7:30 p.m. when she presents Herbert Marshall and Gene Reynolds in the radio version of Columbia's forthcoming film, "
Adventures in Washington." The story involves the private life of one of the country's senators and his part in the regeneration of one of the senate's page boys. Felix Mill's orchestra will be featured. Charles Vanda produces, and Harlow Wilcox announces.

41-07-18
16
Puddin' Head
N
41-07-18 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Judy Canova plays the leading role in a radio adaptation of her new picture, "
Puddin' Head," on "Hollywood Premiere Friday at 7:30 p.m. "Puddin' Head" is the story of a backwoods girl, Judy Goober, who goes "hog wild" in the big city when she inherits a plot of valuable property. Louella Parsons is hostess of "Hollywood Premiere."

41-07-18 Wisconsin State Journal
7:30 p.m.--Hollywood Premiere (WBBM): Judy Canova in "Puddin' Head."

41-07-25
17
Kiss the Boys Goodbye
N
41-07-25 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Mary Martin, the girl who skyrocketed to stardom because her "heart belonged to Daddy," will be heard in a radio adaptation of her latest motion picture, "
Kiss the Boys Goodbye," on KGLO-CBS "Hollywood Premiere" Friday, from 7:30 to 8 p.m. "Kiss the Boys Goodbye" is based on Clare Boothe's satirical comedy which was a broadway hit two seasons ago. The plot concerns the search for a southern belle to play the leading role in a broadway play. "Hollywood Premiere," which each week presents a screen star in a radio adaptation of a new film, is produced by Charles Vanda, west coast program director for CBS. Louella Parsons, as hostess of the program, answers qustions sent in to her on Hollywood life.

41-08-01
18
Hold That Ghost
N
41-08-01 Mason City Globe-Gazette
That wacky pair of radio and the screen, Abbott and Costello, share the spotlight on Columbia network's "Hollywood Premiere" when they appear in a radio adaptation of their new film, "
Hold That Ghost," over KGLO-CBS Friday from 7:30 to 8 p.m. In "Hold That Ghost" Abbott and Costello inherit a hotel--but it isn't just an ordinary hotel. It is willed to them by a gangster and turns out to be a hideaway in the wilderness. Money has been hidden in the place by the gangster, and when members of his gang try to get it--the fun starts for the comedy team. "Hollywood Premiere" is produced by Charles Vanda, west coast program director for CBS. Louella Parsons, hostess of the program, answers questons sent in to her on Hollywood life. Music is by Felix Mills' orchestra, with Harlow Wilcox as announcer.

41-08-08
19
Flying Blind
N
41-08-08 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Jean Parker and Richard Arlen will be starred in the radio dramatization of their recently completed film "
Flying Blind" on the Hollywood Premiere at 7:30 p.m. Felix Mills' orchestra and an all star radio cast will support the stars.

41-08-08 Wisconsin State Journa
7:30 p.m.--Hollywood Premiere (WBBM): Richard Arlen and Jean Parker in "Flying Blind."

41-08-15
20
Wild Geese Calling
N
41-08-15 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Joan Bennett, one of the screen's most glamorous stars, will appear in a radio dramatization of her recemtly completed film, "
Wild Geese Calling," on the Hollywood Premiere program at 7:30 p.m. Warren William will play opposite Miss Bennett. It is a story of Alaska. Louella Parsons, mistress of ceremonies, will offer Hollywood sidelights and Felix Mills' orchestra will supply the musical background.

41-08-22
21
The Parson Of Panamint
N
41-08-22 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Charlie Ruggles, Phil Terry and Ellen Drew will be co-starred in a radio dramatization of "
The Parson of Panamint" on the Hollywood Premiere program at 7:30 p.m. The Parson of Panamint is the story of a mining town and the "parson's" fight for better working conditions for the men working in the mine. Louella Parsons will femmocee the program and Felix Mills' orchestra will provide the musical background.

41-08-29
22
Dr. Kildare's Wedding Day
N
41-08-29 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Barrymore and Lew Ayres will star in "
Dr. Kildare's Wedding Day," a motion picture adapted for radio. Felix Mills' orchestra will be heard on the program which is presided over by the prominent Hollywood columnist, Louella Parsons.

41-08-29 Wisconsin State Journal
7:30 p.m.--Hollywood Premiere (WBBM): Lionel Barrymore and Lew Ayres in "Dr. Kildare's Wedding Day."

41-09-05
23
Ride 'em Cowboy

41-09-05 Spot Ad Ride'em Cowboy

N
41-09-05 Mason City Globe-Gazette
A 13 week renewal for Louella Parsons and the entire Hollywood Premiere crew will be celebrated on KGLO-CBS Friday from 7:30 to 8 p.m. with a repeat engagement of Abbott and Costello, who will be back on the show by popular request after a guest shot less than a month ago.

41-09-12
24
Belle Starr
N
41-09-12 Lima News
Gene Tierney, the society deb who skyrocketed to movie fame in "
Tobacco Road", will be co-starred with Randolph Scott in a radio adaptation of "Belle Starr," story of a gun-shooting moll and life in the wild west on Hollywood Premiere, Friday, 8:30 p.m. over WABC.

41-09-19
25
Aloma Of the South Seas
N
41-09-19 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Jon Hall will co-star with Dorothy Lamour in a radio dramatization of the film "
Aloma of the South Seas," on the Hollywood Premiere program over KGLO-CBS Friday from 8 to 8:30 p.m. In addition, Igor Gorin, Russian Baritone, appears as an epilog attraction. This program also is heard a half hour later than usual.

41-09-26
26
Father Takes A Wife
N
41-09-26 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Adolphe Menjou and Gloria Swanson share the spotlight on Columbia network's "Hollywood Premiere" over KGLO-CBS Friday from 8 to 8:30 p.m. in a radio adaptation of their latest motion picture, "
Father Takes a Wife." This is Gloria Swanson's first picture in more than six years, and is the vehicle with which she resums her motion picture career. "Father Takes a Wife" is a comedy-crammed story of what happens when a business tycoon, who has a mind of his own, marries a stage star--who also has a mind of her own. Adolphe Menjou plays the business tycoon, Miss Swanson the role of the stage star. Louella Parsons is hostess. Music is under the direction of Felix Mills.

41-10-03
27
Married Bachelor
N
41-10-03 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Ruth Hussey and Robert Young share stellar honors on Columbia network's "Hollywood Premiere" over KGLO-CBS Friday at 9 p.m., when they appear in a radio adaptationof their newest motion picture, "
Married Bachelor." "Married Bachelor" is a fast-moving comedy of married life that gets increasingly complicated as the husband goes his merry way. Randy, the husband, dislikes any kind of work that smacks of regularity. The thought of punching a time clock leaves him slightly ill. What he likes is any kind of wild scheme which he can work on on his own time. This hand to mouth existence naturally leaves the young pair one jump ahead of the sheriff, and Norma, the wife, finally cracks down--until she at last sees the futility of trying to change her wayward husband.

41-10-10
28
The Corsican Brothers
N
41-10-10 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., joins "Hollywood Premiere" in the type of role long associated with his family when he appears in a radio adaptation of his new motion picture "
The Corsican Brothers," over KGLO-CBS Friday from 9 to 9:30 p.m. The new Fairbanks film is taken from a book by Alexander Dumas and has the actor playing a dual "twin" role. "The Corsican Brothers" is the story of twins who were separated at birth and who grew up in entirely different atmosphere. One lived in Paris and became a suave, sophisticated Parisian, while the other remained in his native Corsica and became an outlaw. Louella Parsons is the program hostess.

41-10-17
29
Hot Spot
N
41-10-17 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Betty Grable, Laird Cregar, and Victor Mature headline "Hollywood Premiere" over KGLO-CBS Friday at 9 p.m. when they appear in a radio adaptation of their new motion picture "
Hot Spot." Louella Parsons is hostess, with music under the direction of Felix Mills.

41-10-24
30
Four Jacks and A Jill
N
41-10-24 Mason City Globe-Gazette
One of Hollywood's newest film musicals, "
Four Jacks and a Jill," is given a radio preview on "Hollywood Premiere" over KGLO-CBS Friday

41-10-31
31
Glamour Boy
N
41-10-31 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Jackie Cooper and the young screen star Susanna Foster, are co-starred on "Hollywood Premiere" on KGLO at 9 p.m. Friday in a radio adaptation of their latest motion picture, "
Glamour Boy." The screen play is built against a Hollywood background, with Jackie Cooper playing the role of a one-time child star who has fallen into obscurity and is trying desperately to make a comeback. His opportunity comes when he is hired by the studio to coach a budding child star in a re-make of one of his successful pictures, but he almost muffs his chances when he falls in love with one of the studio's ingenues, Joan Winslow--played by Susanna Foster.

41-11-07
32
Nothing But the Truth
N
41-11-07 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Bob Hope and Paulette Goddard are co-starred in a radio adaptation of their newest motion picture, "
Nothing But the Truth" on "Hollywood Premiere" over KGLO-CBS Friday from 9 to 9:30 p.m. Hope plays the role of a stock broker who bets $10,000 he can tell the truth for 24 hours. Being a broker with the accent on "broke," he uses $10,000 which Paulette Goddard has unwittingly invested through his office. Hostess of "Hollywood Premiere" is Louella Parsons.

41-11-14
33
Weekend In Havana
N
41-11-14 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Alice Faye and John Payne, two of Hollywood's brighter lights, share the "Hollywood Premiere" stage on KGLO-CBS Friday from 9 to 9:30 p.m. in a radio adaptation of their recently released picture, "
Weekend in Havana." Music for "Hollywood Premiere" is under the direction of Felix Mills, with Louella Parsons as hostess.

41-11-21
34
Down Mexico Way
Y
41-11-21 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Gene Autry, number one cowboy of motion pictures and radio, plays the leading role on "Hollywood Premiere" over KGLO-CBS Friday from 9 to 9:30 p.m., in a radio adaptation of his newest film, "
Down Mexico Way." Autry is to sing a few of the numbers he introduced in this new screen play, which takes Autry and his buddies on adventures below the border. Louella Parsons is hostess.

41-11-28
35
Rise and Shine
Y
41-11-28 Mason City Globe-Gazette
Jack Oakie and Linda Darnell bring laughs to "Hollywood Premiere" over KGLO-CBS at 9 p.m., when they play in a radio adaptation of their new musi-comedy "
Rise and Shine." Oakie, who brought fame to the sweatshirt and Hollywood through wearing one to almost every function, finds a sweatshirt strictly in character in "Rise and Shine." He appears as Boley Bolencjewcsz, potential All-American halfback . . . Louella Parsons is hostess for the broadcast.

41-11-28 Wisconsin State Journal
9:00 p.m.--Hollywood Premiere (WBBM): Jack Oakie and Linda Darnell in the musical, "Rise and Shine."

41-12-05
--
--
41-12-05 Mason City Globe-Gazette
KGLO 9:00 Christmas Shopper Program 41-12-05 Wisconsin State Journal - 9:00 Shirley Temple--WBBM KMOX







Hollywood Premiere Radio Program Biographies




Louella Parsons [Louella Rose Oettinger]
(Hostess)

(1881-1972)

Birthplace: Freeport, IL

Education: Dickson High School

Radiography:

1931 Sunkist Musical Cocktail
1934 Hollywood Hotel
1937 Premiere Of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
1938 A Tribute To Irving Berlin
1941 Hollywood Premiere
1942 The Charlie McCarthy Show
1942 Stage Door Canteen
1943 Chamber Music Society Of Lower Basin Street
1944 Texaco Star Theater
1944 The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show
1944 G.I. Journal
1945 Maxwell House Coffee Time
1945 The Lucky Strike Program
1946 Woodbury Hollywood News
1946 Duffy's Tavern
1947 The Victor Borge Show
1948 The Woodbury Journal
1951 The Louella Parsons Show
1951 Hear It Now
1952 Life With Luigi
1954 Bud's Bandwagon
1957 The Best Of Benny



Luella Parsons 1941
From the December 10th, 1972 edition of the Santa Cruz Sentinel:
Film Columnist
Louella Parsons
Succumbs At 91

     HOLLYWOOD (AP) -- Louella Parsons, queen of movie gossip columnists during Hollywood's golden years, died Saturday at the age of 91.
     Attendants said death came as she slept in her room at a Santa Monica convalescent home.
     Miss Parsons, a powerful figure in the motion picture industry for 40 years, had suffered since 1962 from a series of ailments including pneumonia, shingles of the optic nerve, fractures of hip and shoulder and the debilities of advanced age.  Earlier she had suffered two heart attacks and tuberculosis.
     She is survived by a daughter Harriet of Hollywood.
     Funeral Mass will be said at 10 a.m. Wednesday at Good Shepherd Church in Beverly Hills with burial in Holy Cross Cemetery, a Rosary will be said at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Church.
     Miss Parsons gave up her column on Dec 1, 1969, to long time assistant Dorothy Manners when she was confined to a rest home.
     She was widely known as Lolly.  But editors exchanging messages about her scoops had only to mention LOP.
     Just two months after that Hedda Hopper, Louella's perennial rival, who in the 1950s and 60s successfully challenged Miss Parsons' dominance, died at the age of 75.
     During her years as arbiter of movieland society Miss Parsons demanded from the principals themselves first tips about stars' marriages, quarrels, divorces and love affairs.
     She considered it treason if the tip went instead to arch rival Hedda Hopper, who entered the field as a columnist in 1942.
     She conducted at one time a nationwide radio show, "Hollywood Hotel," instituting a trademark phrase since often mimicked by night club comics.
     "This is Louella Parsons from Hollywood.  My first exclusive is . . ."
     Indefatigably she often attended three our four parties a night to gather her items--until she was hospitalized in April 1962 with shingles and pneumonia.  The night before she had missed her first Academy Awards program in its then 34-year history.  The illness put her out of commission for four months.
     Several times in her last years Miss Parsons was believed dying, but each time she tapped some reservoir of stamina to amaze doctors and intimates.
     As a teen-ager she was the beautiful belle of Dixon, Ill., where she wrote social notes for the local paper, the Star.  After journalistic sojourns in Chicago and New York, she came to Hollywood in 1925 as its first syndicated writer.  Publisher William Randolph Hearst started her at $250 a week to write for his chain of papers.
     Louella soon became a dominant member of the film colony.  Her column dealt in production news and intimate items about the stars.
     She expected actresses to tip her practically from the doctor's office when they became pregnant.  Parting husbands and wives were supposed to telephone her almost before calling their lawyers.
     "Tell it to Louella" was the order from producers--themselves grateful for mention in her column.
     Another reason for the power of her column was that it was pro-Hollywood.  She had a buoyant faith in "our wonderful industry" and gave syndicated scoldings to stars for what she considered their shortcomings.
     After Judy Garland failed to lose 15 pounds as ordered by MGM in 1949, Louella wrote:  "This is the first time I have publicly spanked Judy, but I can't understand her attitude after all that has been done for her.
     But her greatest weapon was the silent treatment, for which Orson Welles holds the record.  Miss Parsons felt that his movie "Citizen Kane" took undue liberties with the life of Hearst, whom she rated a "wonderful boss" and noble man.
     "The only way I can get in Louella's column, Welles said a quarter century later, "is to get picked up in a vice raid."

From the 72-12-11 Freeport Journal Standard:

Louella Parsons
Had Few Ties Here

     Louella Parsons, Freeport's most famous and enduring contribution to the tinsel world of Hollywood, never had much association with the city of her birth.
     Miss Parsons, 91, moviedom's first and most famous gossip columnist, died Saturday in a Santa Monica, Calif., rest home after a lengthy illness.
     The one-time queen of the Hollywood columnists was born Aug. 6, 1881, in Freeport as Louella Oettinger.  Her father was a partner in a family-operated clothing business.
     She was born in a house on the south side of Clark Street between Galena and Walnut avenues and as a child attended the old River School.  When she was in grade school the Oettinger family moved to Sterling, where her father opened a store, and the family came back to Freeport after he died at the age of 31.
     Family Moves To Dixon
     Her mother then married John Edwards, a salesman, and the family lived in Freeport until moving to Dixon in 1897.  The fledgling writer and reporter showed an early literary bent and a few of her efforts appeared in the Freeport Daily Democrat while she was a Freeport High School Student.
     Louella once recalled that she used to accompany her mother on trips to the theater in Chicago.  She graduated from Dixon High School and got her formal start in journalism as a $5 a week society editor for the old Dixon Morning Star.
     She later moved to Chicago, wrote publicity for a film studio and initiated the Chicago Herald's first movie column in 1914.  Later she moved to New York and in 1925 went to Hollywood.
     At the height of her career she detailed the private lives of Hollywood stars to millions through her syndicated column and a nationwide radio show.
     Visited By Freeporters
     Probably the closest Freeporters to Miss Parsons were the late Charles Young and his family.  He was a cousin of the columnist.
     Mrs. Diane Carter, a daughter of Young, recalled today that the Young family was treated royally by Miss Parsons when they visited her in Hollywood in 1954.
     "We had a dream vacation out there," Mrs. Carter said, who at that time was a 15-year-old schoolgirl.  "She (Miss Parsons) was still in her prime and all the stars bowed down to her.  She was busy continually.  I cuoldn't believe it at her age."
     The Youngs went to a dinner party at Miss Parsons' home and then were whisked to choice ringside seats at the Coconut Grove after Diane expressed a desire to see Eddie Fisher perform.
     Held Up Show
     She got us seats even though the place was full.  They held up the show for 40 minutes until we arrived," recalls Mrs. Carter.
     Miss Parsons sent cards to the Young family and Diane received a silver serving piece from her when she was married nine years ago.
     When Miss Parsons received an honorary degree from Quincy College in 1959 a group of Freeporters attended the ceremony and presented her with a gold key.
     The columnist had not visited Freeport in recent years and has always considered Dixon more her "home town" than Freeport.
     Miss Parsons married three times.  Her only child, Harriett, survives.  She became a movie producer and helped with her mother's columns.



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