5 Things You Didn't Know About Bing Crosby | Mental Floss
Bob Hope and Bing Crosby, separately, were two such stars. His personality was casual and comfortable, but there was an edge to him. On Crosby and Hope's real-life relationship. They were friends and they loved working together, but they were not close friends. They were very. Explore Carol Anselmo's board "Hope and Crosby road pics!" on Pinterest. | See more ideas about Bing crosby, Classic hollywood and Dorothy lamour.The Road to Hong Kong 1962 720p Bing Crosby, Bob Hope, Joan Collins
It was somewhat improvisational because there was no adlibs in the road pictures, but they would kind of take the script and then just build on gags. They would bring in their own writers to sort of try out different gags and do them on the set and just see what worked. And there was just so much, you know, chemistry there that was - they were terrific. Richard Zoglin will be back in the second half of the show.
His new biography of Bob Hope is called "Hope.
Whether you agree with that appraisal or not, it's indisputable that he had a huge impact on popular culture through his movies, radio and TV shows, entertaining the troops and hosting the Oscars more times than anyone else.
When we left off, we were talking about Bob Hope's on-screen relationship with Bing Crosby in the seven "Road" movies they made together, in which they were buddies and rivals.
What was the relationship like in real life? And was it anything like it was in the films? You know, it they were friends, and they loved working together, but they were not close friends. They were very different personality types, not - they were clashing in a sense - not in the way they were in the movies, but in this sense, Bob was someone who loved being famous and loved being out there as a star.
And he loved talking to fans, and he was basically a happy guy. Bing was a much more ambivalent about his stardom, I think. He didn't like the Hollywood scene. He moved up to Northern California halfway through his career. And he didn't like showing up at things. There was a famous Friars Club roast for Bob Hope in the late '40s, and every major, you know, comedy star from, you know, Milton Berle, George Jessel, et cetera, were there on the dais.
Bing was supposed to be there, and he didn't show up. And I think that bothered Bob little bit. So at the end - and at the end of his life, you know, laughter Bob confessed to a colleague.
He said, you know, in all the time I knew Bing and his wife - his two wives - he says, they never once invited me and Dolores to dinner. You know, I think there was a little - a slight bit of resentment there. And I think, also, Bob envied Bing in the early years, particularly. Bing was more successful, and Bing was a smart businessman.
And I think that there was a little bit of a rivalry, and maybe some of that rivalry is reflected in the "Road" pictures. It was rivalry of a different kind. But, you know, the bottom line was they loved working together. They kept trying to work together, even to the end. There were seven "Road" pictures. The last one was made in and probably shouldn't have been made 'cause it wasn't very good. And up - they still were trying to make yet another "Road" picture inwhen Bing died.
So any team that, you know, enjoys working together that much is pretty great. Why don't we hear them sing together? And we'll listen to something from the soundtrack of "The Road To Morocco. They end up stranded on a raft in the middle of the ocean, and they wash up on land and take the road to Morocco, laughter where they're in, suddenly, a very exotic place. And they're - in this scene, they're riding on a camel, taking the path with the sign on it that says "Road To Morocco. As Orville Jackson You think we've got enough gas?
As Jeff Peters I got a carburetor cut down to nothing. Where do you suppose we are? As Orville Jackson This must be the place where they empty all the old hourglasses.
As Jeff Peters I think this is what's left after I clean my spinach. As Orville Jackson Could've thought of another way to get us here. As Jeff Peters Here we go again, Junior. This taxi is tough on the spine. As Jeff Peters Beats the bus, huh, Junior? As Orville Jackson Beats me How can we be sure? I'll lay you eight to five that we meet Dorothy Lamour. Hang on till the end of the line. As Jeff Peters I hear this country's where they do the dance of the seven veils. As Orville Jackson We'd tell you more, but we would have the censor on our tails.
Like "Webster's Dictionary," we're Morocco-bound. My guest, Richard Zoglin, is the author of a new biography of Bob Hope. They're singing together, which is really just, like, so much - so much fun.
And I'm wondering if Bing Crosby felt that he was the superior singer and ever resented singing with Bob Hope, although I actually really love Bob Hope's singing. But, you know, Bob Hope starts as a vaudevillian. Bing Crosby starts as a singer. That was - that was always his thing. He was a singer.
Well, Bing - yeah, sure. And Bing always got the big ballot in the film. And they usually had a buddy number like that. I don't think there was any, you know - I think Bing was very comfortable singing with Bob. The other thing that's, you know, important to note in that number is the self-referential stuff - the reference to the censors, the reference - you know, meeting Dorothy Lamour.
And that was new. Who's their star in the movie. She's the female lead. Who is the costar. So it's step - meta, exactly - stepping outside, breaking the fourth wall, talking about the film.
You're seeing a film, folks, and we're actors. You know, that was something very new at the time. When you think - you have to think back to the s' very stylized romantic comedies, which were very scripted - you know, "Bringing Up Baby," "His Girl Friday," the Preston Sturges films. They were terrific films. They were very, very scripted in style - high style. You could never imagine those people. They were actors doing lines.
The Rise And Fall Of Comedian Bob Hope | Maine Public
But here were two guys who were doing lines, but they were also stepping outside of their characters and reminding you that they're actors and again, enlisting the audience in having fun and having fun with watching them do a movie.
And all that self-referential stuff they carried out through the entire "Road" pictures, and that's what made them so fun. You know, the "Road" movies - parts of them are really fun. Parts of them are really cringe-y because they take place in places like Zanzibar and Morocco. And there's something so ethnophobic about them.
I mean, they're really - all the exotica stuff - it's really kind of embarrassing to watch.
You know, you have to - it's true. And the cannibals in Africa want to eat - you know, capture Hope and Crosby and want to eat them. And when you watch them, you know, dancing around like, you know, classic stereotyped, you know, African savages, it is a little cringe-producing. But you do have to get past some of that.
And I think influences in part on their own personas as not being this suave, handsome, macho guy. Woody Allen - probably the most famous acolyte of Bob Hope - talked, even in the years when Bob was not so favored by most comedians - you know, Woody continually said, this was the guy who influenced me more than anyone else.
And that character - that kind of scared character, the guy talk - nervous, talking his way through, you know, bad times and scary times. So definitely that character - that resonates at least in Woody Allen films and lots of films. That kind of comic character - that's a very common comic character.
If you're just joining us, my guest is Richard Zoglin. He's the author of the new book "Hope," which is a biography of Bob Hope.
Let's take a short break, then we'll talk some more. And if you're just turning us, we're talking about Bob Hope. My guest Richard Zoglin is the author of a new biography of Hope that's called "Hope. How did he start doing it?
He just suddenly - one day somebody suggested that he go down to March Field and entertain the troops there. We were bored, you know, that we were not in the war yet. And Bob went there and got just an amazing reaction. And when the war started, Hollywood banded together, and everybody felt they had to cooperate, you know, in the war effort. Some stars, as we know, enlisted, and the ones who didn't enlist volunteered to entertain at, you know, the bases around the country. He wasn't one of the very first.
And that trip was so amazing. And even - he took risks. He went into - three days after Patton had succeeded in conquering Sicily - three days after that, Bob Hope and his entertainment troop were there. And there was still bombing raids going on.
The Rise And Fall Of Comedian Bob Hope
They survived bombing raids. And the reaction of the troops - I mean, imagine you're a soldier, you know, fighting for democracy overseas at a time when, you know, really the country felt its existence threatened.
This was - and to see a big Hollywood star show up, you know, days after you've been in battle. And performing for the troops really enhanced - deeply enhanced Bob Hope's popularity and got him the gratitude of so many Americans. And then during the war in Vietnam, he performed for the troops, too. But I'm not sure Bob Hope really understood how unpopular that war had become.
Can you talk a little bit about those shows during the Vietnam era? Well, you know, Bob had done his work in World War II and then started up again in doing Christmas shows for the troops - did it through the '50s. When Vietnam came along, he was - it was a routine. It was a yearly thing. At Christmas he would go overseas and his specials would be televised. He - again, he was like maybe a lot of people from that generation.
He was from the World War II generation. He could not conceive of a war that the United States wouldn't, you know, pursue to victory, that wouldn't be backed by everyone the way it was in World War II. He was at that point such a big star and such sort of Hollywood royalty.
He was friends with every president from Truman - you know, Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, and he was in the inner circles. He was, you know, a star that was on the public stage in the way that no one else was. But he, I think, was not in touch with what was happening in the country. He was surrounded by his entourage, and he was, you know, whisked from show to show and he didn't really connect with the controversy that that war was creating.
So Bob Hope started entertaining in Vietnam in At the beginning, the war was not, you know - it was sort of a little under the radar for most Americans. This was right around the time maybe the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution.
Bing Crosby Biography
And, you know, we had quote, unquote "advisers" there. So this was just another kind of trouble spot on the globe that Bob went to entertain the troops. Little did he know that he would go there for nine straight years.
And, you know, Bob, when he went to Vietnam, he would pal around with the generals. He would entertain the troops, he would get cheers and he would go talk to the generals. And they would complain to him that the - you know, the politicians are hamstringing us, that sort of attitude.
And Bob ingrained that attitude. So he went back home, and when he saw protesters - war protesters - he just couldn't understand it.
This was just something new to him.
And he was not in touch enough with what was going on in the country to really realize that this was a different kind of war, a different era. And so he sort of crossed a line from being a patriot - a patriot and a hero in World War II - to being a partisan and, of course, a very controversial figure during the Vietnam War.
You know, Bob Hope is such an interesting figure, and, you know, speaking personally, there's things about Bob Hope's performances that I just love. And there's other things that I find just, like, so not only cringe-worthy, but kind of hateful. And I thought I'd play example of that. And this is from It's a Bob Hope special, and this is - I just want to prepare people - this is going to be very, very homophobic.
And so this is Bob Hope inan example of why I think a lot of people grew up deeply disliking Bob Hope. You know, a new movement - a new movement has appeared on the American scene. First women's liberation demanded the rights of women. Then the hardhats demanded the rights of men. And now gay liberation is demanding the rights of - whatever they are. Now we've got something else to worry about - sissy power.
I want to tell you their leaders are really tough. They wear leather pantyhose. No, the gay liberation had a big parade in New York, and they floated down the avenue like Macy's Thanksgiving balloons.
I'm not sure where the parade was. I think it was over in Queens. They actually tried to take over Alpine County out here in northern California.
They had their own sheriff, and he looked real good. He had boots, chaps, buckskin jackets and pearls. And instead of handcuffs, he carried a slave bracelet. And that's just really horrible. Well, it's tough to defend that, I know, I know. But, you know, he was an old-style comedian who used kind of standard comic targets. In the old days it would be the cheap Scotsman, and here it was the effeminate homosexual. And he just didn't realize - he crossed the line into, you know, real world political But that's the thing, it's like it's not only homophobic jokes; it's like he didn't get it.
She had just come out of the shower and she grabbed her raincoat and there she was. She said, 'It's pretty lively over here.
He said, 'These are my brothers, Sean and Michael and Danny Ted Rogers, the comedian, was also there. Ted was a political satirist. The guys looked at him and said, 'Good routine. Let's see how you go tonight. He whispered, 'That was the IRA. Long after Bing had passed away, Rosemary, Dolores and Kathryn would get together frequently for card playing and cocktails.
But Kathryn was always kind of in there and enjoyed everybody. And Rosemary said, 'I never drink before a show. She had come in and advised about what doors needed to be taken down, and which ones needed to be widened, how things should be done. Very much so," Hope publicist Grant said.
So many people called and sent flowers. Everybody was doing that. It was a terrible time for me.
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Bob and Dolores were very concerned though, oh yeah. It was a party, and Rosie was there and giving hugs and talking to everybody. It was a surprise to me that she died so soon after that.
It was fairly recently, a couple of years ago. She told Larry King that two years ago, at Bob's 98th Birthday party, she witnessed Rosemary's comeraderie with the family. Of course, he always knew Dolores' voice. Dante remembers one such birthday party vividly. Every year they would do that. The last time they did it, the cowboy singer, the millionaire, Gene Autry, he came in with his wife, Jackie.
We all sat at the same table outside, on the patio. I said, 'You know, one of my very favorite songs that you recorded was 'The One Rose. Dolores had started her singing career in the s, well before she met Bob. Her show business career was put on hold after her marriage, however. With the exception of a few singing engagements on her husband's TV specials, Dolores maintained a fairly low profile publicly.
But in the early s she returned to the recording studio and released a handful of charming classic pop CDs on the Hope Enterprises label. Rosemary hoped to extend a similar invitation to her old friend Kathryn. But she was going to do the next tour of New York and she was going to take me, as a gift to Bing, I think. We went on with her at what was then the Uris Theater in New York and the Palladium for two years, in '76 and Then every time she went into New York she'd call me up and we'd do a song together, right up through her 70th birthday and a couple of years after that.
He just decided he wasn't going on and he flew home. After witnessing the public spectacle that had been made out of his first wife Dixie's funeral inBing had been determined to keep his own services under tight control.
Only 20 friends and family members were invited to his services, which were held at 4 a. Still, according to a close Clooney family friend, a tabloid photographer had managed to snap a photo of Bing lying in his casket. When her time came at the end of June,Rosemary's arrangements allowed for crowds of hundreds to attend her funeral in Maysville, but she had long ago stipulated that her services would be closed-casket.
She did not want a repeat of what had happened to her dear friend Bing. Bob Hope's astounding vitality allowed him to continue performing well into his 90s, and occasionally appeared in public to accept major awards and honors as late as the early 00s, but it was clear that he was becoming increasingly frail as he approached his th birthday.
Among the handful of public appearances Bob made after age 94 was the wedding of Rosemary to Dante DiPaolo. He looked like Bob Hope quite a bit. He came in and everybody was smiling at him and looking at him, and he thought, 'Why is everybody looking at me? He bowed to them and waved to them and all that. About ten minutes later Bob Hope came in, and everybody was just bewildered.
People came up to him and he talked to everybody and had a lot of fun. Many of his fans and friends said they could not imagine a world without Bob Hope. In a telephone interview for this story in June ofKathryn said Dolores, at 94, was becoming increasingly private and that Bob was having problems with his vision and hearing.
But that's her choice. Bob still responds to her, and he can still hear her, when he can't hear many other people. There's not much wrong with him. His brain is just fine. He was on the shortlist to succeed Tom Baker, but was passed over in favor of Peter Davison. However, Davies had no real pull with the casting decision, as he turned the show over to Steven Moffat inwho in turn ushered in the reign of Matt Smith and his bow ties.
But her name made headlines yet again in when, after announcing his departure from the show, Twelfth Doctor Peter Capaldi said that de la Tour was his personal pick to replace him. Though neither voice netted him the job, he appeared as Captain Zhukov in the revived series.
He found even greater fame on the small screen as Davos Seaworth in Game of Thrones. Though he was shortlisted for the part, it seems the decision was never his to make. I would have loved it. I'd have taken it. In a double blow to Mark, he didn't get the part—but his brother did.