Louise Lovely: Tasmania's Silent Film Star

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Brooksie

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Louise Lovely: Tasmania's Silent Film Star

PostSun Sep 10, 2017 6:27 pm

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-09-10/remembering-louise-lovely-silent-film-star/8875284

I recommend visiting the article at the original website, as there are some sound and video components. Louise Lovely was probably last in the news when there was an ill-fated attempt to rename Australia's equivalent of the Oscars 'the Lovelies' - doubly ironic, as it it was a name that was given to her by the higher-ups at Universal without her consultation, and she loathed it.

Louise Lovely: The silent film star who tried to bring Hollywood to Tasmania
ABC Radio Hobart By Paul McIntyre
Posted Sat at 2:00pm

Long before Rosehaven and The Kettering Incident, Hollywood silent film starlet Louise Lovely tried to kickstart the Australian film industry in Tasmania, yet she's almost forgotten in time.

Lovely was the first Australian actor to have a successful career in Hollywood, appearing in 50 films between 1914 and 1924.

She returned home in the mid 1920s with the idea of getting the local film industry going.

Lovely only managed to make about 10 films, including the now somewhat celebrated Jewelled Nights which was set and filmed in Tasmania.

Kim Dudson has become something of a Lovely expert after she unknowingly bought her house in the Hobart suburb of Lower Sandy Bay.

"She was clever and far-sighted and courageous and determined," Ms Dudson told Chris Wisbey on ABC Radio Hobart.

When Ms Dudson purchased her house she had no idea it originally belonged to Lovely and had little knowledge of who she was.

Ms Dudson said she later discovered Lovely was "a very special person" whom she now wants recognised for her resilience and achievements.

Trying to bring Hollywood to Australia

Lovely was born Nellie Louise Carbasse in Paddington, Sydney, in 1895.

She changed her name to Lovely when she signed with Universal Studios in 1914.

The actress enjoyed a successful silent film career and married her first husband Wilton Welch.

The pair toured Australia with a performance called A Day In The Studio.

And it was while on tour in Hobart in 1924 that Lovely was approached by author Marie Bjelke Petersen about turning her book Jewelled Nights into a film.

Lovely took on the project and was involved with writing the screenplay, directing, producing and starring in the film, which was mostly filmed at Savage River on Tasmania's west coast.

The film was popular but was unable to recoup its large costs and it proved to be Lovely's final role.

Ironically, Jewelled Nights is now regarded as a lost Australian classic, with only two minutes of the feature surviving.

Years later, and this time with second husband Burt Cowan, Lovely returned to Hobart.

She wanted to make it her home.

"She and her husband moved here in 1948 and constructed on this very steep slope," Ms Dudson said.

"It's a butterfly-winged house with a fabulous view over the Derwent."

Reminiscent of a Californian bungalow, the house built by Lovely remains close to its original form.

Ms Dudson is painstakingly returning the garden to its initial design.

"The garden has caused me a lot of challenges but a lot of fun as well," she said.

One of the more salacious rumours Ms Dudson unearthed in her research about Lovely concerned the origins of the separate living areas featured in the house.

"Apparently Louise had a beau who would moor on the decking and climb up the hill here," she explained.

"The neighbours weren't best pleased with this cohabitation so she had to separate the house into two distinct living quarters to appease them."

These days Lovely is best remembered in Hobart as the little old lady who ran the sweet shop at the Prince of Wales Theatre.

Yet to Ms Dudson and movies aficionados around the world, the name Louise Lovely means so much more.
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Donald Binks

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Re: Louise Lovely: Tasmania's Silent Film Star

PostSun Sep 10, 2017 7:39 pm

Thanks for this. I actually live not too far away from the former home of another silent star - Claire Adams. It's now a National Truss property.

(I had a laugh at the use of a bit of Ketelby's "In a Persian Market" (or as we used to call it - "In a Perishing Market") as the accompaniment to the fragment of film.
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"I was in love with a beautiful blonde one time. She led me to drink. It's the only thing I'm thankful to her for."
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moviepas

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Re: Louise Lovely: Tasmania's Silent Film Star

PostThu Sep 14, 2017 5:03 am

Story went that Jewelled Nights was in the projection room of the Victory Theatre(Hoyts) in Carlisle Street/St Kilda/Victoria and was used by a projectionist to burn pieces for fun. May well be an urban myth. However, across the street(in Barkly Street) was a building that had been used by US Admiral TV when they sold black and white TVs here which later had a film lab at the back and a video film rental shop in the front. The lab did some lab work for the NFSA and I was told, but no proof, that material comprising the original Bush Christmas was destroyed in a fire there some many years ago.

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