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26 August 2016

EFSP's Dazzling Dozen: Film actors flying in from around the world

I like this German postcard, 'Filmschauspieler aus aller Welt'. The caption translates as 'Film actors from around the world'. Photos of film stars posing glamorously in front of airplanes was a well known phenomenon in the 1950s, that 'Golden Age Of Travel'. Famous is a series created by Air France. But how was it really to fly during the 1950s? Dangerous, I guess, smoky, boozy, boring and very, very expensive.

Filmschauspeieler aus aller Welt
German postcard by Kunst und Film Verlag H. Lukow, Hannover, no. L2/1042.

Married in 1954


Who are these film stars on this postcard, posing on the stairs of an airplane or standing nearby? And from which side of the world were they coming?

The pictured film actors are from top left to down right:
Linda Darnell (USA), Tyrone Power (USA),  Elizabeth Taylor (UK/USA),
Robert Taylor (USA) and his wife Ursula Thiess (Germany), Gina Lollobrigida (Italy) and her husband, the  physician Milko Škofič (Slovenia), Audrey Hepburn (UK) and husband Mel Ferrer (USA),
Mona Baptiste (Trinidad), Mara Lane (UK/Austria) and Gloria DeHaven (USA).

So this curious postcard must date from the mid 1950s. Ursula Thiess and Robert Taylor married in 1954, and Audrey Hepburn and Mel Ferrer also became a couple in 1954.

Below I selected 10 dazzling pictures of these 'Filmschauspieler aus aller Welt' for you. When there was no postcard of a film actor in our collection available (yes, we try to specialise in European stars), I selected an image from that wonderful picture source Flickr. As an extra, I added a postcard with an Air France picture.

Gina Lollobrigida
German postcard by ISV, no. B 28. Photo: MGM.

Italian actress and photojournalist Gina Lollobrigida (1927), was one of Europe’s most prominent film stars of the 1950s. ‘La Lollo’ was the first European sex symbol of the post war years and she paved the way into Hollywood for her younger colleagues Sophia Loren and Claudia Cardinale.

Linda Darnell
Collection: Playboy75UK @ Flickr.

American film actress Linda Darnell (1923-1965) progressed from modeling as a child to acting in theatre and film as an adolescent. At the encouragement of her mother, she made her first film in 1939, and appeared in supporting roles in big budget films for 20th Century Fox throughout the 1940s and early 1950s. She rose to fame with co-starring roles opposite Tyrone Power in adventure films, and established a main character career after her role in Forever Amber (1947). She won critical acclaim for her work in Unfaithfully Yours (1948) and A Letter to Three Wives (1949).

Tyrone Power
German postcard by Wilhelm Schulze-Witteborg Grafischer Betrieb, Wanne-Eickel. Photo: 20th Century Fox.

Beloved Hollywood star Tyrone Power (1914-1958) may have been all-American, but he sure loved European ladies - he was married to both French Annabella and half-Dutch Linda Christian. 'Ty' was one of the great romantic film stars.

Elizabeth Taylor
German postcard by Krüger, no. 902/20.

British-American actress Elizabeth Taylor (1932-2011) is considered one of the great actresses of Hollywood's Golden Age. She began her career as a child star, and as an adult she became known for her acting talent and beauty. 'Liz' had a much publicised private life, including eight marriages and several near death experiences.

1943 ROBERT TAYLOR
Collection: Maria @ Flickr. Photo: Robert Taylor in 1943.

American film actor Robert Taylor (1911-1969) was one of the most popular leading men of his time. Taylor began his career in films in 1934 when he signed with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. His popularity increased during the late 1930s and 1940s with appearances in A Yank at Oxford (1938), Waterloo Bridge (1940), and Bataan (1943). Taylor married actress Ursula Thiess in 1954, and they had two children. He died of lung cancer at the age of 57.

Ursula Thiess
Mexican collectors card, no. 160. Photo: publicity still for The Iron Glove (1954).

German film star Ursula Thiess (1924–2010) was dubbed by Life magazine as the ‘most beautiful woman in the world’. Howard Hughes offered her a long-term contract to RKO, but five years later she gave up her acting career after marrying Robert Taylor. The glamorous, luscious looking actress had only starred in a handful of Hollywood movies.

Audrey Hepburn
German postcard by Ufa, Berlin-Tempelhof, no. CK-5. Retail price: 30 Pfg. Photo: Paramount Film.

Elegant, talented and funny Audrey Hepburn (1929-1993) was a Belgian-born, British-Dutch actress and humanitarian. After a start in the European cinema she became one of the most successful Hollywood stars of the 1950s and 1960s.

mel ferrer & audrey hepburn
Collection: Fred Baby @ Flickr. Photo: Mel Ferrer and Audrey Hepburn.

Mel Ferrer (1917-2008) was an American actor, film director, and film producer. He made his screen acting debut in Lost Boundaries (1949), and is best remembered for his roles as the injured puppeteer in the musical Lili (1953), as the villainous Marquis de Maynes in Scaramouche (1952) and as Prince Andrei in War and Peace (1956), co-starring with his then-wife, Audrey Hepburn.

Mara Lane
German postcard by UFA, no. CK-200. Photo: Klaus Collignon / UFA.

British-Austrian actress Mara Lane (1930) was considered one of the most beautiful models in Great Britain during the early 1950s. She appeared in more than 30 English and German language films of the 1950s and early 1960s, but seems completely forgotten now.

Gloria DeHaven (1925-2016)
British postcard in the Celebrity Autographs Series, no. 192. Photo: Universal-International. Publicity still for So This Is Paris (Richard Quine, 1954).

Gloria DeHaven (1925-2016) was an American musical actress, with mostly supporting roles or leading lady in B movies. In Hollywood, she started as a child star then worked as a juvenile actress and finially became a leading-lady. During her long and varied career she would also perform as nightclub singer, as stage actress in Broadway and the West End and as a TV actress and hostess.

Jacques Brel
French postcard by Editions F. Nugeron, Star 134. Photo: Air France / Distribution VU. Caption: Jacques Brel, 20 Novembre 1964.

This is a post for Postcard Friendship Friday, hosted by Beth at the The Best Hearts are Crunchy. You can visit her by clicking on the button below.



Source: John Brownlee (Terminal Velocity), IMDb and Wikipedia.

25 August 2016

Heli Finkenzeller

German stage and film actress Heli Finkenzeller (1914-1991) had her greatest successes in popular Ufa comedies of the 1930s and 1940s. After the war she often played mother roles.

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Film-Foto-Verlag, no. G 125, Photo: Bavaria Filmkunst.

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Film-Foto-Verlag, no. G 216, 1941-1944. Photo: Star-Foto-Atelier / Tobis.

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Film-Foto-Verlag, no. K 1417. Photo: Tobis / Star-Foto-Atelier.

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Film-Foto-Verlag, no. A 3648/1, 1941-1944. Photo: Baumann / Terra.

Box-office Hits


Helene Finkenzeller was born in München (Munich), Germany in 1914 (according to some sources in 1911). She grew up in Munich where her parents ran a family business which sold office furniture. As a kid she was already interested in everything connected to the theatre and she wanted to become an opera singer.

After finishing school she attended a conservatory, but she soon realised that her voice was too weak for the opera stage. Instead she took acting classes from Otto Falkenberg at his newly established drama school in Munich. In 1934 she joined the Münchner Kammerspielen (Munich Chamber Plays) and for the next two years she performed there with such actors as Ferdinand Marian, Elizabeth Flickenschild, and her later husband Will Dohm.

In 1935 she made her first film appearance in a supporting part in the Ufa comedy Ehestreik/Matrimonial Strike (Georg Jacoby, 1935) with Paul Richter. She played her first lead for the Ufa in the comedy Weiberregiment/Petticoat Government (Karl Ritter, 1936).

Finkenzeller appeared with star comedian Heinz Rühmann in Der Mustergatte/Model Husband (Wolfgang Liebeneiner, 1937).

The box office hits Opernball/Opera Ball (Wolfgang Liebeneiner, 1939) with Paul Hörbiger, Kohlhiesels Töchter/Kohlhiesels daughters (Kurt Hoffmann, 1943) in which she played the double roles of Veronika and Annamirl Kohlhöfer, and especially Das Bad auf der Tenne/The bathroom in the barn (Volker von Collande, 1943) with her husband Will Dohm made her known to a large audience and she became one of Germany’s most popular film stars.

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Ross Verlag, no. 9490/1, 1935-1936. Photo: Atelier Anton Sahm, München.

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Das Programm von Heute für Film und Theater G.m.b.H., Berlin. Photo: Bieber, Berlin / Ross Verlag.

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Das Programm von Heute für Film und Theater G.m.b.H., Berlin. Photo: Bavaria / Ross Verlag.

Heli Finkenzeller and Willy Fritsch in Boccaccio (1936)
German postcard by Ross Verlag, no. 9677/1, 1935-1936. Photo: Ufa. Publicity still for Boccaccio (Herbert Maisch, 1936) with Willy Fritsch.

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Film-Foto-Verlag, no. A 3434/1, 1941-1944. Photo: Tobis / Haenchen.

Big World Allure


After the Second World War, Heli Finkenzeller continued her film career, often in mother roles. Thus she played the wife of Heinz Rühmann in Briefträger Müller/Postman Müller (John Reinhardt, 1953) and Emil’s mother in Emil und die Detektive/Emil and the Detectives (Robert A. Stemmle, 1954) based on the classic children’s book by Erich Kästner.

In the German-Dutch coproduction Ciske - Ein Kind braucht Liebe/Ciske – A Child Needs Love (Wolfgang Staudte, 1955) with Kees Brusse, she was the aunt of the title figure. She was also seen in another Dutch-German coproduction Jenny (Alfred Bittins, Willy van Hemert, 1959) featuring Ellen van Hemert.

On stage, she appeared in the musical Gigi at the Theater des Westens (Theatre of the West) in Berlin, and in many plays. She also can be heard on records with songs and texts.

From the early 1960s on, the former Ufa star played mainly on stage and in many TV films and series, such as Unser Pauker/Our Crammer (Otto Meyer, 1965) with Georg Thomalla, the comedy Meine Schwiegersöhne und ich/My sons-in-law and I (Rudolf Jugert, 1969) opposite Hans Söhnker, the Krimi Der Kommissar/The Commissioner (1974) starring Erik Ode, Das Traumschiff/The Dream Boat (Fritz Umgelter, 1981), Der Gerichtsvollzieher/The Bailiff (Peter Weck, 1981) and finally, three years before her death in Lorentz & Söhne/Lorentz and Sons (Claus Peter Witt, 1988).

In between, she played in one final film, the black comedy Satansbraten/Satan’s Brew (Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1976). Heli Finkenzeller and Will Dohm had a daughter, actress Gaby Dohm (1943) who is well known in the German language countries. After Will Dohm’s death in 1948, Heli remarried in 1950 to film producer Alfred Bittin. They stayed together till his death in 1971.

Heli Finkenzeller died from cancer in 1991 in her hometown Munich. She was 76. The German weekly Der Spiegel wrote in an obituary: “Her type was much in demand at the UFA: charm with distance, elegance without any wickedness. She even had big world allure, but on a small Pan-German scale. It made Heli Finkenzeller in the middle of the thirties a star in light entertainment films.”

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Film-Foto-Verlag, no. A 3958/1, 1941-1944. Photo: Star-Foto-Atelier / Tobis.

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Film-Foto-Verlag, no. A 3746/1, 1941-1944. Photo: Star-Foto-Atelier / Tobis.

Heli Finkenzeller in Briefträger Müller (1953)
German postcard by Film und Bild, Berlin, no. A 916. Photo: Berolina / Herzog-Film / Wesel. Publicity still for Briefträger Müller/Mailman Mueller (John Reinhardt, 1953).

Heli Finkenzeller and Wolfgang Lukschy
German postcard by Kunst und Bild, Berlin, no. A 1235. Photo: Berolina / Herzog-Film / Wesel. Publicity still for Emil und die Detektive/Emil and the Detectives (Robert A. Stemmle, 1954) with Wolfgang Lukschy.

Heli Finkenzeller
German postcard by Franz Josef Rüdel, Filmpostkartenverlag, Hamburg. Photo: Christian Pantel, Hamburg.


Heli Finkenzeller sings Heute möchte ich, with Theo Lingen and Marte Harell in Opernball/Opera Ball (1939). Source: BD 130 (YouTube).

Sources: Stephanie D’Heil (Steffi-Line) (German), Thomas Staedeli (Cyranos), Der Spiegel (German), Wikipedia (German), and IMDb.

24 August 2016

New episode unveiled of Floris (1969)

Nearly 47 years after the broadcast of the twelfth and final episode of the legendary TV series Floris, a hitherto unknown thirteenth episode premiered last Friday. The premiere happened at Doornenburg castle, one of the locations of the Dutch television series. Floris started three of the most successful careers in the history of the Dutch cinema. It's directed by Paul Verhoeven, written by Gerard Soeteman and starring the young Rutger Hauer. Hauer, now 72, was present at the belated premiere.

Rutger Hauer in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 4, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969). Rutger Hauer as Floris van Rosemondt.

Hans Culeman in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 5 (?), 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969). Hans Culeman as Maarten van Rossum.

Hans Boskamp in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 7, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969). Hans Boskamp as Lange Pier.

Hans Boskamp in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 10, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969). Hans Boskamp as Lange Pier.

Rutger Hauer in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 14, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969).

Unforgettable screen debut


I was able to lay my hands on some vintage collectors cards of Floris (1969). These small cards, produced in 1970, are quite rare these days, and therefor my series is not complete yet.

The Dutch television series, set in the Middle Ages, is the favourite series for many of my generation in the Netherlands and also in Belgium. At the time, all kinds of merchandise was produced for the kids and of course they are a cult now.

In the series, blonde, athletic and the then incredibly young Rutger Hauer made his screen debut as the exiled knight Floris van Rosemondt. His performance is unforgettable, Hauer is the ultimate knight.

With his Indian friend Sindala (Jos Bergman), Floris tries to get his birth right papers back from Maarten van Rossem (Hans Culeman), an evil lord.

During their quest they get help from Wolter van Oldenstein (Ton Vos), a noble man who offers them a place in his castle. They also meet the imposing pirate Lange Pier (Hans Boskamp).

Apart from Sindala and Floris, all the characters are based on historical figures. Scriptwriter Gerard Soeteman did an amazingly inventive job and it is one of the reasons why many adults love to see this children's series too.

Rutger Hauer in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 17, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969).

Rutger Hauer in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 19, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969).

Rutger Hauer and Jos Bergman in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 23, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969).

Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 26, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969). Caption: Soldaat van Gelre (Soldier Van Gelre).

Ton Vos in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 29 (?), 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969). Ton Vos als Wolter van Oldenstein.

In the best Robin Hood style


In 1967, the success of television series like the British Ivanhoe (1958-1959) with Roger Moore, the French Thierry La Fronde/Thierry the Sling (1963-1966) with Jean-Claude Drouot, and the Flemish Johan en de Alverman (1965) with Frank Aendenboom inspired Carel Enkelaar, manager of NTS Television to make a similar series, set in the Netherlands.

Hanne Aboe Derwort highly recommends the series at IMDb: "One of the first Middle Age series ever, the stories of the adventures of Floris in medieval Holland are also among the most funny tv-series ever.

The budget was very low, which can be seen, but the interaction between the actors is nothing less but wonderful. Floris and his trusty companion Sindala is in best Robin Hood style, but with the addition of Eastern magic to the sword fighting skills and sheer strength (and luck) of our hero. (...)

The fact that the series is in b/w actually helps, no need to mess around with anything when somebody's wounded. If you can locate the tapes, watch it."

Rutger Hauer in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 30, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969).

Jacco van Renesse in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 31, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969). Caption: Vaandrig Rogier (Ensign-bearer Rogier). Rogier was played by Jacco van Renesse.

Jos Bergman and Rutger Hauer in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 38, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969).

Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 39, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969). Caption: Kanonnier van Van Rossum (Gunner of Van Rossum).

Rutger Hauer and Jos Bergman in Floris (1969)
Dutch collectors card, no. 50, 1970. Photo: Gerard Soeteman. Publicity still for the TV series Floris (Paul Verhoeven, 1969).

The most popular TV series in the Netherlands


In 1969, Floris was the most popular TV series in the Netherlands. The series had many reruns through the years.

Floris has also been shown in East Germany (as Floris - Der Mann mit dem Schwert) and Scotland dubbed in English. In the UK, the series aired on Yorkshire Television in 1970 as The Adventures of Floris. None of the English dubbed episodes survive.

1975 saw a German remake of the series, Floris von Rosenmund (Ferry Radax, 1975), again starring Rutger Hauer, but with German actor Derval de Faria as Sindala. This version put much more emphasis on the comedic aspects of the stories.

The series also lead to the film Floris (Jean van de Velde, 2004) which features Michiel Huisman (known for his role in Game of Thrones) as the grandson of the original Floris. Some of the footage from the 1969 series with Hauer and Bergman is included. Rutger Hauer was originally asked to play the father of young Floris, but he declined.

A thirteenth episode of the series, entitled Het gericht/Targeting was never finished for several reasons. The raw footage was owned by the writer of the series, Gerard Soeteman. To get a full episode, there are now between the images black and white drawings assembled by artist Gerrit Stapel, who previously has made the Floris comics together with Soeteman. In addition to the thirteenth episode, a documentary about the legendary series was presented last Friday, in which both Verhoeven and Soeteman provide insight into the development of Floris.


Episode Het brandende water (The burning water). Sorry, no subtitles. Source: eikcid (YouTube).


Dutch TV documentary in the series Andere tijden (Other times). Sorry, no subtitles. Source: 192TVideo (YouTube).

Source: Hanne Aboe Derwort (IMDb), Wikipedia and IMDb.