Monday, July 28, 2014

Rudy Vallee, 1901-1986

Rudy Vallee (r.) in The Palm Beach Story (1942)

Today marks the birth anniversary of sometimes actor Rudy Vallee. Originally known as a singing bandleader, Vallee made movies on and off throughout the 1930s and 1940s, often playing second male leads, as in The Palm Beach Story, which is pictured above, in which he plays the extremely wealthy man who meets and woos Claudette Colbert, not realizing that she's still married to Joel McCrea and that the "horrible husband" she's describing is about to show up in Palm Beach!

Vallee appeared in another Preston Sturges film, Unfaithfully Yours, which has him playing the brother-in-law of conductor Rex Harrison, and has him causing problems for the conductor when he looks after the conductor's wife (Linda Darnell) while the conductor is away. The photo above has Vallee, the actress playing his wife in the movie (Barbara Lawrence), and Rex Harrison.

Vallee played a doctor in I Remember Mama, but since the movie belongs almost exclusively to Irene Dunne, and Vallee's character isn't too big, it's difficult to find any good photos of Vallee from the movie. Another light comic role comes in Mother Is a Freshman, where he plays opposite Loretta Young.

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