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Kay Francis: Articles


'Latin Lover' - The 2nd Valentino & 1st (and Best) Sam Spade: Q&A with Ricardo Cortez Biographer Dan Van Neste

“Latin Lover” Ricardo Cortez, who went on to play a series of all-American scoundrels and criminals, in addition to similar unsavory types of other nationalities. Although never as big a star as fellow silent era screen heartthrobs Rudolph Valentino, Ramon Novarro, and John Gilbert – or fellow Pre-Code era antiheroes Edward G. Robinson and James Cagney – Cortez had a long and, to some extent, prestigious film career, appearing in nearly 100 movies between 1923 and 1950. Among his directors were “Father of American Cinema” D.W. Griffith and Paramount's star filmmaker Cecil B. DeMille, in addition to eventual Oscar winners and nominees Frank Lloyd, Herbert Brenon, Gregory La Cava, William A. Wellman, Frank Capra, Walter Lang, Michael Curtiz, John Ford, […]


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'Latin Lover' - The 2nd Valentino & 1st (and Best) Sam Spade: Q&A with Ricardo Cortez Biographer Dan Van Neste



Kay Francis & William Powell, Myrna Loy & Jean Harlow Movies: LoC Screenings

William Powell, Kay Francis, Jewel Robbery Kay Francis, William Powell, Myrna Loy, Jean Harlow, John Barrymore, and Mary Astor are some of the stars featured in September at the Library of Congress' Packard Campus in Culpeper, Virg. Kay Francis and William Powell can be seen together in Jewel Robbery (1932), a charming pre-Code comedy directed by, of all people, William Dieterle. Dieterle would become closely associated with some of Warner Bros.' most tedious biopics, usually starring Paul Muni. The year of 1932 was a good one for the Francis-Powell combo, who also starred in Tay Garnett's highly successful – and quite moving – melodrama One Way Passage. William Powell can also be seen in another charming comedy, Libeled Lady (1936), […]


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Kay Francis & William Powell, Myrna Loy & Jean Harlow Movies: LoC Screenings



'Jewel Robbery' Movie: William Powell & Kay Francis in Sparkling Pre-Code Comedy

Film scholars consider the 1932 comedy Trouble in Paradise to be the best work of actress Kay Francis. I disagree. Francis was good in everything she did – and if one particular performance could be named her best, that would be found in another 1932 release, the romantic melodrama One Way Passage. That same year – no less than seven Francis vehicles were released in 1932 – Kay Francis starred in another naughty and noteworthy comedy, Jewel Robbery. Jewel Robbery, however, is not on the same level as Trouble in Paradise; in fact, it is much superior. Based on a play by Ladislaus Fodor and adapted for the screen by Erwin S. Gelsey, Jewel Robbery revolves around the affair between […]


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'Jewel Robbery' Movie: William Powell & Kay Francis in Sparkling Pre-Code Comedy