Joan Crawford Robert Young, and Franchot Tone, The Bride Wore Red (1937)
Loretta Young and Franchot Tone, The Unguarded Hour
Many stars from Old (or Classic, whichever term you prefer) Hollywood are universally – or nearly universally – loved. It seems like most people love Humphrey Bogart, James Stewart, Marilyn Monroe, Lucille Ball, James Cagney, Ava Gardner, Maureen O’Hara, Cary Grant, Rita Hayworth, etc. Then there are the underrated (but wonderful) stars who aren’t household names and are, truth be told, often only known by those of us who devote so much time to old films – Paul Henreid, S.Z. Sakall, Thomas Mitchell, Louise Beavers, Claude Rains, Loretta Young, Una Merkel…
THEN, there are the stars who are what I call the “dividers” they generally have a clearly drawn line separating their fans and their… well… not haters, exactly, but… well, let’s call them “non fans.” Franchot Tone, for whatever reasons, is a divider. Seems like most Old Hollywood fans either love him or hate him. Me? I love the guy! While I love him most when paired with Joan Crawford (she brought out a fun side to him), I love him in all of his roles, including the one pictured above – Sir Alan Dearden in The Unguarded Hour (link to the dvd on Amazon). He and Loretta Young had a lovely chemistry between them… not quite on par with his and Joan’s, but it’s pretty close!