Lauren Bacall, 1924-2014

‘The Last of Robin Hood’ – New Movie Depicts Errol Flynn’s Late Life Affair with Teenager Beverly Aadland

“The Last of Robin Hood” is a new film scheduled for a fall 2014 release about Errol Flynn’s late-life affair with teenager Beverly Aadland, which was a major Hollywood scandal in the latter days of the golden age. Kevin Kline plays Flynn, with Dakota Fanning as Aadland and Susan Sarandon playing her mother.

The caption says this photo was taken “at the Garden,” but it does not appear to be the Sunset Strip’s Garden of Allah, where the facings were all stucco, not brick

After the film played at the Toronto Film Festival in the fall of 2013, Vanity Fair published this tick-tock of the affair:

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Portrait of L.A. Crime Boss Guy McAfee after He Reinvented Himself as a Leading Citizen in Las Vegas

Guy McAfee was one of the preeminent crime bosses in Los Angeles in the 1920s and 1930s. He spent his early career as an LAPD officer, rising to captain on the vice squad. In the 1920s, he married a madam named Marie, who worked in the sphere of crime lords Albert Marco and Charlie Crawford, top operators in a powerful organized crime racket known as “the Combination” and, because of its entanglements in civic institutions, “the City Hall Gang.” McAfee left the LAPD for a much more lucrative career as a vice lord and soon controlled a criminal operation that included dozen of brothels, bootleg liquor operations and the most lucrative underground casino in town, the Clover Club on the Sunset Strip.

A wave of reform swept the city in the late 1930s, resulting in the recall election of Mayor Frank Shaw, who was defeated by Fletcher Bowron, a former journalist and sitting judge in superior court. Once in power, the forces of reform targeted operations like McAfee’s, and he quickly decided to move east to Las Vegas, where gambling was legal. In an interview with a newspaper there in 1939, however, McAfee, who was by then remarried to actress June Brewster, denied he’d been driven out of Los Angeles:
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Rare Shot from 1949 of the Trocadero Nightclub on the Sunset Strip Before the Building Was Demolished

Screen capture from the 1949 film “The Crooked Way” showing La Rue restaurant in Sunset Plaza on the Strip with the Trocadero building across the street behind what appears to be a construction barricade; note also Mocambo in the upper right

This shot from a 1949 film may well be the last existing photograph of the building that housed the world-famous Trocadero nightclub on the Sunset Strip.

Located at 8610 Sunset in the Strip’s Sunset Plaza section, Hollywood Reporter founder and publisher Billy Wilkerson opened Cafe Trocadero in 1934. Wilkerson was a compulsive gambler and the ground floor of the building (below the street level shown here) was devoted to high-stakes gaming. He sold the club in 1938 to Nola Hahn, who ran Wilkerson’s gambling operations. Hahn sold it within months to showman and former movie producer Felix Young, who, like Wilkerson, was a compulsive gambler and doubtless continued the illegal gaming operations downstairs.

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Felix Young, the Sunset Strip Impresario Who Killed Cafe Trocadero, Launched Mocambo and Discovered Lena Horne

A rare photo of Felix Young,1941

Felix Young was an active player on the Sunset Strip in its heyday. His most significant actions included:

  • Closing Cafe Trocadero, 8610 Sunset [site], the Strip’s most famous and popular nightspot at the time, in October 1939 during a lease dispute
  • Launching Mocambo, 8588 Sunset [site], the Strip’s third and last marquee nightclub in the Hollywood era, with agent Charlie Morrison in January 1941
  • Introducing 25-year-old Lena Horne to Hollywood at his final nightclub on the Strip, Little Troc, 9263 Sunset [site], in January 1942

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Happy Birthday, Sunset Strip, 108 Years Old on April 29

Early residents: Los Angeles Mayor A.C. Harper, left, and Victor Ponet

On April 29, 1906, a consortium of real-estate investors announced plans for Hacienda Park, a new residential development to be built on 140 acres of farmland in the “county strip” west of Hollywood. The first order of business would be grading an extension of Sunset Boulevard westward from the Hollywood city limits into the new development. This extension of Sunset Boulevard would be the mother road of the Sunset Strip.

Here is a portion of the Sunset Strip’s birth announcement from the April 29, 1906, Sunday Times:

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Early Footage of the Sunset Strip

Via Vintage Los Angeles: Most of this was taken around Sunset Plaza.

Bogart on Bette Davis

Bette Davis and Humphrey Bogart in a still from “Marked Woman” (1937). At center is Mayo Methot, who would become the third Mrs. Bogart the following year

“Even when I had a gun, she scared the be-Jesus out of me.”

– Humphrey Bogart on working with Bette Davis

Video: The Wrong Door Raid

Read more: Wrong Door Raid: The Celebrity Scandal That Irked Sinatra, Made a Fool of DiMaggio – All at Marilyn Monroe’s Expense

Then & Now: 8300 Block of the Sunset Strip Looking West in the 1930s & Today

Top: Looking west down the 8300 block of Sunset Boulevard on the Strip in the late 1930s; bottom: the same view in 2014

Both these photos were taken around Sweetzer Avenue and Sunset on the Strip looking west map]. The Art Deco tower to the left in both shots is the Sunset Tower, which was completed in 1931.

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