An Enchanting Annie Laurie in a Black Velvet Dress (Chicago Tribune 1926)

Chicago Tribune – July, Sunday 18, 1926 – Page 57

Too Much for the Dog

Many and lively were the goings-on of a recent afternoon on the “Annie Laurie” set at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s. Lillian Gish and Norman Kerry were enacting a scene in the huge hall of the castle of Glencoe wherein Lillian as Annie Laurie comes to warn Norman Kerry as Ferguson that he must sign the treaty of the clans or Scotland will be lost. It was a serious moment, Ferguson in love with Annie, but nettled with her, and she trying to talk above the din of the bagpipes. A large Scottish stag hound raised in America was lying at Kerry’s side, and the pipers proved much too much for him. The stag hound lifted his muzzle and told high heaven what he thought of the pipers. Lillian giggled, Kerry grinned, and the hound finally had to be led out and calmed.

Scotch jokes seemed to be in the order of the day. Holbrook Blinn, a Scotchman himself, who is playing the laird of Glencoe, was recounting several. One that raised a general laugh was that of the two Scotchmen, one of whom complained of a large sliver in his tongue. “Mon,” said Angus, “how come ye to get a sliver in the tongue?” “Weel,” said Sandy, “Ah was joost aboot to take a drink when Ah dropped the bottle.” “Wood alcohol,” remarked a bystander.

Lillian Gish was an enchanting picture as Annie Laurie in a black velvet dress with tiny fitted bodice and huge hoop skirts and white lace collar. A cape, long, with tiny shoulder capes bound in mink was accompanied by a bonnet of brown, shaped much like a sunbonnet, with loose hanging cloth to protect the curls of the wearer against the inclement weather of the highlands. Many long blonde curls were bunched on each side of her face, which increased the fragile ethereal look of her in the old fashioned garments.

Norman Kerry, wearing bobbed hair and with his six feet something clad in the swaying plaited kilt, was no less striking. He proudly displayed some antique Scottish cutlery he was wearing in the form of a long horn knife case trimmed with silver, jeweled and engraved. The case carried the short sword which served as a weapon and also a knife, and the fork and spoon, each with a large jewel in the end of the handle, that made a perfect camper’s kit for a highlander of wealth in those days. In castle or on the heath each man had his own cutlery, which helped make up for lack of tooth brushes in those times.

Up From the Keys

Patricia Avery, the stenographer who pounded her keys unnoticed in two offices of the studio for several years and who was selected to go higher and become a film actress recently, is playing Lillian Gish’s sister, Enid. She, too, had her hair dressed in the short curls worn at that time, but when she went to the wardrobe to have another dress selected for her she pulled her curls back straight from her face and said laughingly, “There, pull my hair back tight. I’m going to give Lillian all the breaks.”

A few minutes later Norman Kerry came up to admire the large and extremely thick wedding ring she was wearing as the wife of James Striker, in the picture. “My gosh, you are married with that ring aren’t you?” asked Kerry. “O, that’s not a wedding ring,” she came back, “that’s the band off a peanut butter jar.”

Something New.

Incidentally, Hollywood dope says Anita Loos had Lillian Gish in mind when she wrote “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes,” getting an unholy kick out of the thought of Lillian speaking the lines of the heroine. Peg Talmadge, mother of Constance and Norma, is also supposed to be represented as the Dorothy in the book. Miss Loos once took a sea trip with Peg – who is a most interesting character, and used a lot of the lines Peg spoke in the real life.

At a recent party of girls in Hollywood which included some women writers and picture actresses the conversation began to drift towards slightly naughty stories. Lillian Gish is said to have been present and when the party had begun to get interesting Lillian said, “O, let’s talk about birds; I just adore wild life!”

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