Yes, we’re back with another classic star and another classic auto.
This is Tyrone Power in the 1930s with his Dusenberg.
These cars were special. They weren’t nicknamed “Duesies” for nothing. Very expensive, they reeked of luxury. Interestingly, they were not European made but hand built (from 1913 to 1937) in a factory in Indiana.
Hello everybody. Your classic movie guys Mr. Joe Morella and Mr. Frank Segers here. MRS. Norman Maine is out getting gas.
As we’ve noted before, during the Great Depression people admired (envied?) stars AND absolutely love spiffy cars. What better for studio publicity purposes than to pair the two?
The problem in this case may be that Power, one of the most handsome of Hollywood actors, is upstaged by his marvelous car.
But to give Power his due, this shot was taken at around the time he signed with Twentieth Century Fox, and his film career was taking off in earnest.
In 1936 he costarred with British star Madeleine Carroll in the historical romance Lloyd’s of London. In a change of pace, he appeared a year later with Alice Faye and Don Ameche in the musical drama In Old Chicago.
Heading toward full-fledged matinee idol status by the end of the Thirties, the Cincinnati-born star-on-the-rise was paired with Loretta Young in Cafe Metropole, also in 1937. Still in his future were his starring performances in The Mark of Zorro and The Razor’s Edge. And also in the future was Power’s service from 1942 to 1946 as a pilot in the U.S. Marine Corps.
In his 1960 book about himself — Memoirs of a Professional Cad — actor George Sanders noted that when stars became producers, their attachment to money grew. They started saving and acquiring financial acumen.
This of course was not true of all of them — Ty Power’s attitude for instance was different. He spent his money freely. He had a yacht, a private aeroplane, and gave lavish parties (not to mention owning that Dusenberg). And women, who are usually more expensive than yachts and aeroplanes, found ways of spending his money when he ran out of ideas.
Ty didn’t seem to mind. Perhaps he had some premonition that he did not need to save for his old age.
Sanders was a Power costar in director King Vidor’s biblical epic, Solomon and Sheba, filmed in Spain and released in 1959. After several stenuous sword-fight scenes with Sanders, Power — who also co-produced the picture — collapsed complaining of pains in his chest and arms.
The end came on Nov. 15, 1958, before the movie was completed. (Yul Brynner stepped in to refilm the actor’s scenes as Power’s replacement.) Power was just 44 when he died.