A Weekly Letter from Hollywood – Leslie Howard (1933)

A Weekly Letter from Hollywood – Leslie Howard

by Kathlyn Hayden

A cherry hour with Leslie Howard was one of the bright spots of the week.
At luncheon with Frank Borzage at the Brown Derby the day before, the director had invited me to go along to Palm Springs to watch the desert sequence of “Secrets,” Mary Pickford’s newest film, being shot. Mary herself, it developed, was not there, so I had an uninterrupted talk with Leslie about home–and how much we both missed it!
There is something down to earth about this sterling English actor that wins your admiration from the outset. He does not try to disguise, for instance, the fact that Hollywood film factories are much more lavish in the matter of salaries than Elstree has yet become, and he assured me that it was, indeed, a privilege and a pleasure to be playing opposite the one and only Mary. None the less, there was undercurrent in everything he said, that kind of pining for England–especially the stage of a West-End theatre–which only temporary exiles from all that is good can feel. As soon as his engagement is finished, he assured me, he will make tracks for London–and the stage.
His chief ambition is to persuade a West-End manager to undertake what, at the moment, is held to be the risky experiment of presenting the stage version of the great film success, “Animal Kingdom,” in which he starred with Ann Harding. Everybody tells him, so he says, that the play would never “go” with an English audience. But, having played the leading part for many months on the New York stage, he is certain that these pessimists are mistaken. At any rate, he is grimly determined to sandwich in between future film engagements an appearance in the flesh in a real play in London.
(Picture Show, April 1st, 1933)

Leslie Howard