Less than five years ago a very interesting blurb was posted on a Laurel and Hardy website’s message board. The posting made the startling declaration that the long-lost 1927 L&H film Hats Off had been discovered and was tied up in negotiations with various video companies for future release. This was not the first and I expect it will not be the last time that a rumor or claim is made that this film has been found.
Laurel and Hardy fans have had the rug pulled out from under them so many times when it comes to the discovery of this film that it seems impossible that it will ever turn up. But let me be the first to say that I will almost guarantee that Hats Off will be found in my lifetime (I can’t speak for yours). Just look at Laurel and Hardy history and see that the odds are stacked in our favor. (more…)
Viola Richard has been one of the most asked-about and frequently misinformed-about co-stars in the entire Laurel and Hardy repertoire. With a face and physique like Viola’s, it’s easy to see why. She understandably fluttered the hearts of fans everywhere with her appearances alongside the boys in six of their silent films: Why Girls Love Sailors, Sailors Beware, Do Detectives Think?, Flying Elephants, Leave ‘Em Laughing, and Should Married Men Go Home? She is also featured most notably in the 1928 Charley Chase silent Limousine Love.
But outside of her film appearances in 1927 and 1928 at the Hal Roach Studios, Viola seemed to have all-but-vanished into thin air. Why would this actress destined to break the hearts of many young men in film fandom drop completely out of sight after such an auspicious career beginning? It is my distinct privilege to bring you the up-until-now unknown facts about one of the fairest of them all. (more…)
There once was an alley in Culver City made famous as the location where two guys were caught with their pants down. If you’re reading this because Google erroneously brought you to this site, you may be intrigued by that statement. But if you’re a Laurel & Hardy fan, you know that I am referring to a scene from the film Liberty in which the boys, as escaped convicts, attempt to exchange their plain clothes for their prison uniforms. In their haste, the boys mix up the pants and wind up wearing one another’s trousers. While searching for a secluded place to exchange pants, they duck down an unassuming alleyway. (more…)