Clark Gable


Actor
Clark Gable

About

Also Known As
William Clark Gable, Billy Gable, W C Gable, Lst Lieut. Clark Gable
Birth Place
Cadiz, Ohio, USA
Born
February 01, 1901
Died
November 16, 1960
Cause of Death
Heart Attack

Biography

The definition of American masculinity, Clark Gable was officially proclaimed the "King of Hollywood" during his Golden Age heyday. Initially considered too rough-hewn to play the romantic lead, Gable's virile persona soon earned him scores of fans in films like "A Free Soul" (1931), "Red Dust" (1932) and "San Francisco" (1936). He won an Oscar for his role in Frank Capra's "It Happened ...

Photos & Videos

Boom Town - Publicity Stills
Comrade X - Kapralik Trade Ad
Hold Your Man - Behind-the-Scenes Photos

Family & Companions

Josephine Dillon
Wife
Actor. Married in December 1924; divorced in April 1930; born c. 1889.
Joan Crawford
Companion
Actor. Reportedly had an on-again, off-again relationship over a 10-year period; frequently co-starred together in such films as "Dancing Lady" (1933) and "Strange Cargo" (1940).
Rhea Langham
Wife
Married on June 19, 1931; divorced in March 1939.
Loretta Young
Companion
Actor. Had affair during filming of 1935's "The Call of the Wild"; gave birth to Gable's daughter Mary Judith but passed her off as an adopted child; daughter did not learn truth of parentage until she was an adult.

Biography

The definition of American masculinity, Clark Gable was officially proclaimed the "King of Hollywood" during his Golden Age heyday. Initially considered too rough-hewn to play the romantic lead, Gable's virile persona soon earned him scores of fans in films like "A Free Soul" (1931), "Red Dust" (1932) and "San Francisco" (1936). He won an Oscar for his role in Frank Capra's "It Happened One Night" (1934), made women swoon as Fletcher Christian in "Mutiny on the Bounty" (1935), and charmed as roguish Rhett Butler in the epic "Gone with the Wind" (1939). Gable's delivery of the latter film's classic line, "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn," was soon among the most quoted in the history of cinema. An oft-married Gable briefly found romantic bliss with his third wife, comedienne Carole Lombard, whose premature death in a 1942 plane crash permanently dampened Gable's insatiable lust for life. After distinguishing himself in combat during World War II with the Army Air Corps, Gable returned to Hollywood in 1945, albeit with a noticeably diminished spark. Although many of his late-career efforts were unremarkable, there were exceptions, such as the jungle adventure "Mogambo" (1953) and the naval action-drama "Run Silent, Run Deep" (1958). His final performance, however, also proved to be one of his best, when he was cast opposite troubled co-stars Marilyn Monroe and Montgomery Clift in "The Misfits" (1961). As befitting his iconic stature, America was informed of Gable's sudden passing with the reverent headline "The King is Dead."

Born William Clark Gable on Feb. 1, 1901 in Cadiz, OH, he was the son - despite being mistakenly listed as a girl on his birth certificate - of William Henry Gable, an oil-field worker, and Adeline Gable. Tragically, Gable's mother, already ill at the time of his birth, passed away before he had reached the age of one. After remarrying in 1903, Gable's father relocated to the town of Hopedale, just outside Akron, where young Clark was raised until financial difficulties forced his father to attempt farming in the nearby town of Ravenna. Although he was an adequate student with a keen interest in reading and music, Gable dropped out of school in 1917, and at the encouragement of a friend, traveled to Akron where he took a job at a tire manufacturing company. It was around this time that young Gable saw his first theatrical play. Thoroughly enamored by what he saw on stage, he immediately knew what he wanted to do with his life. Financial concerns, however, made the pursuit exceptionally difficult until an inheritance allowed the then-21-year-old to travel across country to Portland, OR, where he met a woman who would dramatically alter the aspiring young actor's career trajectory.

In Portland, Gable met and eventually married the considerably older stage manager-acting coach Josephine Dillon, who quickly set about cleaning up the rough-around-the-edges wannabe actor. Following numerous voice, elocution and movement classes, Dillon - now acting as Gable's manager - took her newly-refined husband to Hollywood. Going under the stage name of C.W. Gable for a brief time, he picked up a few minor roles in such silent films as Erich von Stroheim's "The Merry Widow" (1925) and "The Plastic Age" (1925), the latter starring silent-era "It Girl" Clara Bow. Despite the recent re-sculpting, producers saw little star potential in Gable, who returned to the stage within a few short years. After gaining valuable experience with a stock theater company, Dillon and Gable moved to New York City, where he made his Broadway debut in a production of the drama "Machinal" in 1928. His performance, described by one critic as "brutally masculine," quickly led to more work on the Great White Way. Even as his career advanced, Gable's marriage to Dillon began to crumble, while the onset of the Great Depression forced the closure of dozens of Broadway productions by the end of the decade. Within a year, Gable had left Dillon and returned to Los Angeles in the company of wealthy socialite Maria "Ria" Langham, another mother-figure, several years his senior, who he would marry in 1931.

Although he failed an early screen test with Warner Bros. producer Darryl F. Zanuck - who reportedly said of Gable, "His ears are too big. He looks like an ape" - the actor's performance in a stage production of "The Last Mile" - bankrolled by Langham -sufficiently impressed executives at RKO studios, who gave him a supporting role opposite William Boyd in the Western "The Painted Desert" (1931). Gable's fan-favorite performance as an unrepentant former outlaw in his first "talkie" earned him a contract with MGM studios, where he would remain until 1954. In his first year alone, Gable appeared in a dozen features, quickly transitioning from supporting player - typically, as a violent thug - to romantic lead, opposite MGM's greatest leading ladies. Known as a life-long philanderer, he began an on-again/off-again affair with frequent co-star Joan Crawford during the productions of their first two films "Dance, Fools, Dance" (1931) and "Possessed" (1931). A scene in which he roughed up feisty female lead Norma Shearer in "A Free Soul" (1931) unequivocally moved Gable into star status. Not all of Gable's leading ladies were as enamored with the actor - most notably Greta Garbo, his co-star in "Susan Lenox, Her Fall and Rise" (1931), who was unimpressed with his "wooden" acting skills. For his part, Gable considered Garbo a "snob." Action sagas like "The Secret Six" (1931) - the first of six films with his female equivalent, sex symbol Jean Harlow - "Sporting Blood" (1931) and "Hell Divers" (1931) rounded out Gable's incredible, breakout year.

With such undeniable box office success under his belt, Gable was soon able to flex a bit of his newly-acquired star muscle at MGM. And although his output the following year was reduced to a more reasonable five films, the size of his roles and the range of genres he tackled both increased significantly. Having been told by studio chief Louis B. Mayer to cool off his illicit relationship with Crawford - who was married to Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. at the time - Gable directed his amorous attentions toward Marion Davies, his co-star in "Polly of the Circus" (1932) for a brief period. Onscreen, he found himself in the middle of a love-triangle opposite Harlow and Mary Astor in the hit romantic-adventure "Red Dust" (1932), directed by Victor Fleming. Gable sported his famous mustache for the first time opposite Shearer in the romantic-drama "Strange Interlude" (1932), based on a play by Eugene O'Neill. A string of hit films followed, including the romantic-drama "Hold Your Man" (1933) - his third outing with Harlow - and the star-studded aviation drama "Night Flight" (1933), which featured Lionel Barrymore, Gable's good friend from his days in the theater.

For years, Gable's casting in director Frank Capra's seminal romantic comedy "It Happened One Night" (1934) was a subject of debate. While rumors circulated that the rising star was being punished by Mayer for being overly finicky about which roles he would accept, the more pragmatic explanation was that Gable was, at that moment, uncommitted to any other project and by loaning him out to lower rent Columbia Studios for more than his salary, MGM actually made money on the deal. Regardless, there would be little doubt as to the impact of the hit film, which became the first movie to sweep the five major Oscars categories - including Best Actor for the vindicated star - and vaulted Gable to new heights of prominence. Later, anecdotal evidence not only suggested that U.S. sales of men's undershirts slumped as a result of the scene in which Gable was seen bare-chested after taking off his dress-shirt, but that the classic Warner Bros. cartoon character of Bugs Bunny was inspired by another moment in the film in which a fast-talking Gable vigorously chomped on a carrot. Regardless of the voracity of these tales, one thing was certain: Clark Gable had become the biggest male movie star in the world.

The following year proved to be even more momentous for Gable. In one of the most anticipated, lavishly-produced movies ever made at the time, he starred as the conscientious mutineer Fletcher Christian in MGM's "Mutiny on the Bounty" (1935), another Oscar-winner for Best Picture. That same year saw him in a screen adaptation of Jack London's "Call of the Wild" (1935). Confined to a remote location during the two month production, Gable, not surprisingly, engaged in an affair with his attractive young co-star, Loretta Young. Although the tryst ended soon after filming wrapped, an unexpected by-product of the liaison arrived months later in the form of a baby girl. Fearing the disastrous effects the scandal would have on both their careers, Young went to great lengths to cover up the pregnancy. After delivering the child in private, she secretly placed Judy in an orphanage for the first 19 months of her life. Upon proudly announcing to gossip columnist Louella Parsons that she had adopted a baby girl, Young gave Judy the surname of her second husband, movie producer Tom Lewis. Eventually, rumors began to circle about Judy Lewis' true parentage, especially in light of the fact that as she grew older, she developed large ears, strikingly similar to Gable's. Raised in complete ignorance of the truth, Lewis met Gable only once when he came to visit her mother's home, but even then had no idea he was her father. Widely known within Hollywood social circles, but never publicly acknowledged by Young or Gable during their lifetimes, Lewis would not learn the truth until, at the age of 31, she finally confronted her mother about the rumors, which were confirmed.

Smash hits like the special effects-laden "San Francisco" (1936) - containing one of the actor's finest performances - thankfully overshadowed Gable's rare failures, such as the period drama "Parnell" (1937), a biopic about the doomed Irish political activist. So disastrous was the latter film that the star swore he would never act in a costume drama again. That same year, Gable appeared alongside Harlow for their sixth and final pairing in "Saratoga" (1937), which was derailed when the 26-year-old platinum blonde died tragically of kidney failure in the final weeks of production, necessitating a stand-in to complete her scenes. Around this time, Gable began courting Without a doubt, Gable was the biggest star at MGM, if not in all of Hollywood. Audiences sang along with Judy Garland while she crooned "(Dear Mr. Gable) You Made Me Love You" in the musical extravaganza "Broadway Melody of 1938" (1937). Mickey Rooney's Gable impressions in the Busby Berkely musical "Babes in Arms" (1939) - also starring Garland - laid testament to the star's preeminent placement in the pop-culture zeitgeist of the day. Still smarting from the debacle of "Parnell," Gable was reluctant to take on a starring role in a Civil War epic being produced by David O. Selznick and based on Margaret Mitchell's best-selling novel. From the beginning, Selznick had envisioned Gable, the personification of masculinity, as the dashing rogue Rhett Butler. Much to the delight of his devoted fans who felt he was perfect for the role, MGM finally agreed to loan Selznick their biggest star, prompting a wary Gable to at last sign on for "Gone with the Wind" (1939).

With a behind-the-scenes story as epic as that depicted on screen, "GWTW" faced innumerable hurdles on its way to theaters, and, of course, Gable figured prominently in many of them. Initially, Selznick had lined up revered director George Cukor to helm the massive undertaking. A few weeks after production had begun Cukor was suddenly pulled from the film and replaced with director Victor Fleming. Although official explanations for the switch were scant, those associated with the picture acknowledged that it was Gable who had insisted on the change of director. Cukor's reputation as Hollywood's most adept director of women concerned Gable, who feared his performance would be overshadowed by those of his female co-stars, Vivien Leigh and Olivia de Havilland. Having enjoyed his experience with Fleming - a true man's man, like himself - on the successful "Red Dust," Gable successfully lobbied to place Fleming in the director's chair. Another tense moment for Gable came prior to filming the famous scene in which Butler cries. Always insecure about his range as an actor, Gable stubbornly pushed to alter the scene, until his co-star in the scene, de Havilland, buoyed his confidence in a heart-to-heart talk. He played the scene to perfection, and the fact that Gable had never shown such vulnerability on screen before made the moment all the more affecting.

"Gone with the Wind" went on to become one of the most successful, beloved films of all time, winning several Academy Awards, and earning Gable another Best Actor nomination. At the very pinnacle of his success, Gable had undoubtedly earned his title as the "King of Hollywood," an honor bestowed upon him by columnist Ed Sullivan. Not only was the period the best of his career, but it also marked a highpoint in Gable's personal life when he finally married Lombard in 1939. Although they had first met while co-starring in 1932's "No Man of Her Own," Lombard's then-happy marriage to actor William Powell and Gable's unease with her bawdy nature kept their interaction strictly professional. It was not until a chance meeting at a party four years later that they began a torrid affair. One of Hollywood's worst kept secrets, their romance was nonetheless kept under wraps to prevent a scandal, as Gable was still married to Langham, who demanded an exorbitant amount of money before she would agree to a divorce. As a way of convincing the star to accept the role of Rhett Butler, Louis B. Mayer increased Gable's salary to a degree that would allow him to pay off Langham, thus paving the way for the public consummation of America's favorite Hollywood couple.

By all accounts, it was the most fulfilling relationship Gable had ever enjoyed, as the outspoken, liberal-minded Lombard kept him on his toes and encouraged the usually solitary Gable to become more social. Additionally, she endeared herself to her husband by developing an appreciation for the pastimes he loved, such as hunting and fishing. Their storybook romance was cut tragically short after Lombard died in a plane crash in the mountains of Nevada in 1942 while returning from a successful war bonds fundraiser. After immediately rushing to the crash site - there were no survivors - a clearly devastated Gable returned to Los Angeles, where friends despaired as they watched the actor drink himself into oblivion while watching Lombard's old films, night after night.

In what some viewed as a death wish, the 41-year-old Gable turned his back on the movie business and enlisted in the Army Air Corps, where he served as a "motion picture specialist" and saw combat as a tail gunner during several missions over Europe. Reportedly, even Adolf Hitler was not immune to Gable's charms and offered a reward to any Nazi soldier who could deliver the Hollywood star to the Fuhrer, unscathed. After attaining the rank of Captain, Gable - who felt his age and celebrity status was preventing him from effectively serving his country - requested a discharge from active duty. A bigger hero than ever before in the eyes of fans, Gable returned to film with much ballyhoo for the Fleming-directed "Adventure" (1945), co-starring Greer Garson. While the novelty of Gable's return initially sold tickets, the sub-par romantic-adventure ultimately proved a disappointment. Although he continued to turn out projects throughout the remainder of the decade, both Gable's zeal for filmmaking and his status as the undisputed "King of Hollywood" began to wane. Also less successful than his previous experience, was his 1949 marriage to actress-model-socialite Lady Sylvia Ashley, a woman noted by many for her striking resemblance to Gable's dearly departed Carole. From the beginning, their relationship was a troubled one, possessing none of the mutual trust and admiration he had shared with Lombard.

Even though he was no longer the dependable box office draw he had once been, there was still no substitute for Clark Gable. When MGM remade "Red Dust" as "Mogambo" (1953), Ava Gardner was in for Harlow's character and a young Grace Kelly played the Mary Astor role. And what of Gable's part? Only Gable could fill Gable's shoes, even 21 years later. Following his divorce from Ashley and his parting ways with long-time home MGM, Gable became an independent freelance actor in 1955. That same year he married for the fifth and final time to Kay Williams - the union would bring him some semblance of security and happiness after years of grief. After starting GABCO, his own short-lived production company formed with actress Jane Russell, Gable appeared in "The King and Four Queens" (1956) - the one and only film he both starred in and produced. Back to working as a freelance actor, Gable took a critical drubbing opposite Yvonne De Carlo and a young Sidney Poitier in the antebellum plantation melodrama "Band of Angels" (1957). More successful was his work alongside Burt Lancaster in the wartime submarine drama "Run Silent, Run Deep" (1958), followed by a turn opposite Sophia Loren in the romance "It Started in Naples" (1960).

As he neared his 60th birthday, Gable seemed both physically and emotionally a mere shadow of the virile, life-loving man he had once been. Still, there was one final great performance left in him, although it would come at a price. Directed by acclaimed filmmaker John Huston, "The Misfits" (1961) was not merely a requiem for the mythology of the Old West, but a love letter to its star, Marilyn Monroe, written by her then-husband, playwright Arthur Miller. Starring opposite Monroe, Montgomery Clift and Eli Wallach, Gable's tragic, yet noble portrayal of a broken-down cowpoke would be regarded as one of his very finest. It would also be his last. Prior to filming, Gable was already in poor health, having suffered at least one heart attack years earlier. His use of amphetamines to quickly drop from 230 to 195 pounds certainly could not have helped his condition. Reportedly, the aging screen icon also insisted on performing many of his stunts for the film, shot in the grueling heat of the Nevada desert. Just two days after completing work on "The Misfits," the actor suffered a major heart attack at his Encino home. Ten days later, at a Los Angeles hospital, Gable died from coronary thrombosis on Nov. 16, 1960. News of his death was announced to a mournful public via the short, somber headline, "The King is Dead." As per his final wishes, his widow, Kay Williams, graciously buried him at Los Angeles' Forest Lawn Memorial Park, alongside his lost love, Carole Lombard. Gable was 59 years old. Months later, Williams gave birth to John Clark Gable, the son Gable had always longed for but had not lived to see.

By Bryce P. Coleman

Filmography

 

Cast (Feature Film)

Going Hollywood: The War Years (1988)
Himself
The Misfits (1961)
Gay Langland
It Started in Naples (1960)
Michael Hamilton
But Not for Me (1959)
Russell Wardrobe
Teacher's Pet (1958)
James Gannon, also know as "Jim Gallagher"
Run Silent Run Deep (1958)
Commander "P. J." Richardson
Band of Angels (1957)
Hamish Bond
The King and Four Queens (1956)
Dan Kehoe
Soldier of Fortune (1955)
Hank Lee
The Tall Men (1955)
Ben Allison
Betrayed (1954)
Col. Pieter Deventer
Never Let Me Go (1953)
Philip Sutherland
Mogambo (1953)
Victor Marswell
Lone Star (1952)
Devereaux Burke
Callaway Went Thataway (1951)
Across the Wide Missouri (1951)
Flint Mitchell
To Please a Lady (1950)
Mike Brannan
Key to the City (1950)
Steve Fisk
Any Number Can Play (1949)
Charley Enley Kyng
Command Decision (1949)
Brigadier General K. C. "Casey" Dennis
Homecoming (1948)
Ulysses Delby Johnson
The Hucksters (1947)
Victor Albee Norman
Adventure (1946)
Harry Patterson
Combat America (1945)
Narrator
Somewhere I'll Find You (1942)
Jonny Davis
They Met in Bombay (1941)
Gerald Meldrick [also known as Captain Huston]
Honky Tonk (1941)
"Candy" Johnson
Strange Cargo (1940)
[André] Verne
Boom Town (1940)
Big John McMasters
Comrade X (1940)
McKinley B. Thompson
Idiot's Delight (1939)
Harry [Van]
Gone With the Wind (1939)
Rhett Butler
Test Pilot (1938)
Jim [Lane]
Too Hot to Handle (1938)
Chris Hunter
Parnell (1937)
[Charles Stewart] Parnell
Saratoga (1937)
Duke Bradley
Cain and Mabel (1936)
Larry Cain
Love on the Run (1936)
Michael Anthony
Wife Vs. Secretary (1936)
Van ["V.S." Stanhope, also known as Jake]
San Francisco (1936)
Blackie Norton
Mutiny on the Bounty (1935)
[Fletcher] Christian
After Office Hours (1935)
Jim Branch
The Call of the Wild (1935)
Jack Thornton
China Seas (1935)
Alan Gaskell
Chained (1934)
Mike Bradley
Manhattan Melodrama (1934)
Blackie Gallagher
It Happened One Night (1934)
Peter [Warne]
Men in White (1934)
Dr. [George] Ferguson
Forsaking All Others (1934)
Jeff Williams
Dancing Lady (1933)
Patch Gallagher
Hold Your Man (1933)
Eddie [Hall]
The White Sister (1933)
Giovanni Severi
Night Flight (1933)
Jules Fabian
Hell Divers (1932)
Steve [Nelson]
Strange Interlude (1932)
[Dr.] Ned Darrell
Polly of the Circus (1932)
Rev. John Hartley
Red Dust (1932)
Dennis ["Fred"] Carson
No Man of Her Own (1932)
Babe Stewart
The Easiest Way (1931)
Nick
The Secret Six (1931)
Carl
Dance, Fools, Dance (1931)
Jake Luva
The Painted Desert (1931)
Rance Brett
Susan Lenox (Her Fall and Rise) (1931)
Rodney [Spencer]
The Finger Points (1931)
Louis Blanco
Possessed (1931)
Mark Whitney
Sporting Blood (1931)
Rid Riddell
Laughing Sinners (1931)
Carl
Night Nurse (1931)
Nick
A Free Soul (1931)
Ace Wilfong
North Star (1925)
Archie West
Forbidden Paradise (1924)
White Man (1924)
Lady Andrea's brother

Misc. Crew (Feature Film)

Going Hollywood: The War Years (1988)
Other

Cast (Special)

Louis B. Mayer, King of Hollywood (1999)

Cast (Short)

Gable and Barrymore (Raw Footage) (2000)
Himself
Gable and Barbershop (Raw Footage) (2000)
Himself
Screen Actors (1950)
Himself
You Can't Fool a Camera (1941)
Himself
Dixie Hails "Gone With the Wind" (1940)
Himself
Hollywood Hobbies (1939)
Himself
Hollywood Goes to Town (1938)
Himself
Another Romance of Celluloid (1938)
Himself
Hollywood Party (1937)
Himself
The Candid Camera Story (Very Candid) of the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures 1937 Convention (1936)
Himself
Starlit Days at the Lido (1935)
Himself
THE CHRISTMAS PARTY (1931)
Himself

Misc. Crew (Short)

Northward, Ho! (1939)
Archival Footage

Life Events

1901

Mother died when he was nine months old; sent to live with maternal grandparents

1903

Father and stepmother reclaimed him

1910

Family settles in Hopedale, Ohio

1915

Amateur acting debut in school play

1917

Moved to Ravenna with father and stepmother; eventually returned to Hopedale

1919

Settled in Akron and worked in a tire factory

1921

After stepmother's death, moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma with his father

1922

Joined Astoria Players Stock Company

1924

Became a member of Josephine Dillon's Stock Company

1924

Moved to Hollywood

1924

First film as actor, a bit part in "Forbidden Paradise"

1925

Can be spotted as an extra in Erich von Stroheim's "The Merry Widow"

1928

Broadway debut, "Machinal"

1930

Signed contract with MGM

1931

First sound film as actor in "The Painted Desert"

1931

Attracted attention when he pushed reigning screen queen Norma Shearer around (in the role of her brutish gangster lover) in "A Free Soul"; subsequent leading role opposite other MGM divas Greta Garbo and Joan Crawford confirmed his star status

1932

Starred in "Red Dust"

1934

Won Best Actor Oscar for comic role of a newspaperman chasing a runaway heiress in "It Happened One Night"

1935

Picked up second Academy Award nomination for performance as Fletcher Christian in "Mutiny on the Bounty"

1937

Made rare box-office flop, "Parnell", a biopic about the Irish statesman

1937

Sued by a woman from England who claimed that he was the father of her 13 year-old child; Gable was able to prove that he was in Oregon in 1923 when the child was conceived

1939

Starred in his best-remembered film, "Gone With the Wind", as Rhett Butler; received third Oscar nomination

1942

Enlisted in Army Air Corps as private; last film for three years, "Somewhere I'll Find You"

1944

Discharged as Major

1944

Awarded Air Medal

1945

Made first film after returning from war service, "Adventure"

1953

Starred in "Mogambo", playing the leading role in the remake of the 1932 film "Red Dust" in which he also starred

1954

Parted company with MGM

1956

Formed Russ-Field-Gabco production company (with Jane Russell and her husband Bob Waterfield)

1961

Starred in last film, "The Misfits"

1976

Portrayed in the feature biopic "Gable and Lombard" by James Brolin (Jill Clayburgh played Carole Lombard)

Photo Collections

Boom Town - Publicity Stills
Here are a few Publicity Stills from Boom Town (1940). Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.
Comrade X - Kapralik Trade Ad
Here is a trade ad for MGM's Comrade X (1940), starring Clark Gable and Hedy Lamarr. The art is by mixed-media caricaturist Jaques Kapralik. Trade Ads were placed by studios in industry magazines like Variety and The Hollywood Reporter.
Hold Your Man - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are several photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of MGM's Hold Your Man (1933), starring Jean Harlow and Clark Gable and directed by Sam Wood.
San Francisco - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are a few photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of MGM's San Francisco (1936), starring Clark gable and Spencer Tracy, and directed by W.S. Van Dyke.
They Met in Bombay - Kapralik Trade Ad
Here is a trade ad for MGM's They Met in Bombey (1941), starring Clark Gable and Rosaland Russell. The art is by mixed-media caricaturist Jaques Kapralik. Trade Ads were placed by studios in industry magazines like Variety and The Hollywood Reporter.
China Seas - Movie Poster
Here is the Window Card from MGM's China Seas (1935), starring Clark Gable, Jean Harlow, and Wallace Beery. Window Cards were 14x22 mini posters designed to be placed in store windows around town during a film's engagement. A blank space at the top of the poster featured theater and playdate infromation.
They Met in Bombay - Publicity Still
Here is a still of Clark Gable and Rosalind Russell, taken to help publicize They Met in Bombay (1941). Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.
Mogambo - Pressbook
Here is the campaign book (pressbook) for MGM's Mogambo (1953), starring Clark Gable, Ava Gardner, and Grace Kelly, and directed by John Ford. Pressbooks were sent to exhibitors and theater owners to aid them in publicizing the film's run in their theater.
Forsaking All Others - Movie Poster
Forsaking All Others - Movie Poster
Chained - Lobby Cards
Chained - Lobby Cards
Gone With the Wind - Wardrobe Stills
Here are several rare wardrobe stills taken for David O. Selznick's Gone With the Wind (1939). Such test stills were taken prior to principal photography to approve the look and design of costumes. (Images courtesy of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences)
Comrade X - Scene Stills
Here are a few scene stills from MGM's Comrade X (1940), starring Clark Gable and Hedy Lamarr.
Command Decision - Publicity Stills
Here are a few stills taken to help publicize MGM's Command Decision (1948), starring Clark Gable, Van Johnson, and Walter Pidgeon. Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.
It Happened One Night - Lobby Cards
Here are a few Lobby Cards from Frank Capra's It Happened One Night (1934), starring Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert. Lobby Cards were 11" x 14" posters that came in sets of 8. As the name implies, they were most often displayed in movie theater lobbies, to advertise current or coming attractions.
Love on the Run - Clark Gable Premiere Photo
Here is a candid photo of Clark Cable, attending the Hollywood premiere of Love on the Run (1936).
Gone With the Wind - Clark Gable Publicity Stills
Here are several photos of Clark Gable as Rhett Butler, taken to publicize Gone With the Wind (1939). Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.
Test Pilot - Movie Posters
Here are a few original-release American movie posters for Test Pilot (1938), starring Clark Gable, Myrna Loy, and Spencer Tracy.
Gone With the Wind - Behind-The-Scenes Photos
Here are a number of photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of David O. Selznick's Gone With the Wind (1939), starring Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh and directed by Victor Fleming and George Cukor.
Mogombo - Behind-the-Scenes Photos - John Ford
Here are several behind-the-scenes photos of John Ford directing the MGM adventure film Mogambo (1953), starring Clark Gable, Ava Gardner, and Grace Kelly.
The Misfits - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are a few photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of John Huston's The Misfits (1961), starring Clark Gable, Marilyn Monroe, and Montgomery Clift and written by Arthur Miller.
Betrayed - Movie Poster
Here is the American one-sheet movie poster for Betrayed (1954). One-sheets measured 27x41 inches, and were the poster style most commonly used in theaters.
Red Dust - Lobby Cards
Here are a few lobby cards from MGM's Red Dust (1932), starring Jean Harlow and Clark Gable. Lobby Cards were 11" x 14" posters that came in sets of 8. As the name implies, they were most often displayed in movie theater lobbies, to advertise current or coming attractions.
Saratoga - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are a few photos taken during production of MGM's Saratoga (1937), starring Jean Harlow (her last film), Clark Gable, and Lionel Barrymore, and directed by Jack Conway.
Polly of the Circus - Movie Poster
Here is an Insert movie poster for MGM's Polly of the Circus (1932), starring Marion Davies and Clark Gable. Inserts measured 14 x 36 inches.
Strange Cargo - Publicity Stills
Here are a few Publicity Stills from MGM's Strange Cargo (1940), starring Clark Gable and Joan Crawford. Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, taken for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.
No Man of Her Own - Lobby Cards
Here are several lobby cards from Paramount's No Man of Her Own (1932), starring Clark Gable and Carole Lombard. Lobby Cards were 11" x 14" posters that came in sets of 8. As the name implies, they were most often displayed in movie theater lobbies, to advertise current or coming attractions.
Lone Star - Movie Poster
Here is the American one-sheet movie poster for MGM's Lone Star (1952), starring Clark Gable and Ava Gardner. One-sheets measured 27x41 inches, and were the poster style most commonly used in theaters.
Wife Vs. Secretary - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are a few photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of MGM's Wife Vs. Secretary (1936), starring Jean Harlow, Clark Gable, and Myrna Loy.
Red Dust - Scene Stills
Here are a few scene stills from MGM's Red Dust (1932), starring Clark Gable and Jean Harlow.
Gone With the Wind (1939) Japanese Roadshow Program
This a rare Japanese souvenier program provided to audiences for a 70mm exhibition roadshow of Gone With the Wind (1939). Although no date is given, this was likely from the early or late 70's, when large format roadshows of American classics were common in Asia.
Clark Gable - 'GWTW' Premiere Press Photo
Here is a wire-service photo of Clark Gable and Carole Lombard arriving for the Atlanta premiere of Gone With the Wind on December 14, 1939.
Strange Cargo - Movie Poster
Here is the American one-sheet movie poster for Strange Cargo (1940). One-sheets measured 27x41 inches, and were the poster style most commonly used in theaters.
Men of Boys Town - Behind-the-Scenes Photos
Here are several photos taken behind-the-scenes during production of MGM's Men of Boys Town (1941), starring Spencer Tracy and Mickey Rooney.
Betrayed - Publicity Stills
Here are several Publicity Stills from Betrayed (1954), starring Lana Turner and Clark Gable. Publicity stills were specially-posed photos, usually taken off the set, for purposes of publicity or reference for promotional artwork.
Clark Gable - State Express Cigarette Card
This is a small cigarette card of actor Clark Gable. These cards were included in Cigarette packs in the 1930s and were collectible items. Customers could even purchase books to organize and collect these cards. State Express was an active Cigarette Card producer, creating a wide range of cards featuring famous people of which film stars were an often popular draw.

Videos

Movie Clip

Hold Your Man (1933) - Be A Pal! Following shortly upon the opening, tight comedy with Clark Gable as hustler Eddie caught running a street scam, diving into the apartment where Jean Harlow bathes, gamely providing cover when his mark and a cop (Henry B. Walthall, Jack Cheatham) arrive in pursuit, in MGM's Hold Your Man, 1933.
Hold Your Man (1933) - Can't Tell A Banker From A Bum Clever opening bit with Clark Gable in hustler mode, encountering venerable Henry B. Walthall on an MGM city street, then Garry Owen at a pawn shop, Sam Wood directing from an original screenplay by Howard Emmett Rogers and Anita Loos, in Hold Your Man, 1933, also starring Jean Harlow.
Hold Your Man (1933) - The Cutest Suburbs Jean Harlow as party girl Ruby brings Stuart Erwin as her devoted semi-sugar daddy beau to a night club, where she has subterfuge in mind, and we find out she’s been visiting in hopes of meeting con-man Clark Gable, who’s a regular, and who finally turns up, in MGM”s Hold Your Man, 1933, Louise Beavers the washroom lady.
Manhattan Melodrama (1934) - Skip it, Kid Old pal and gangster Blackie (Clark Gable) visits the new D-A Jim (William Powell), with lots of catching-up to do, in W.S. Van Dyke's Manhattan Melodrama, 1934, from a script by Joseph L. Mankiewicz and Oliver H.P. Garrett.
Any Number Can Play (1949) - Always Coming To Bat With The Bases Loaded Clark Gable as family-man casino owner Charlie, with former flame and customer Ada (Mary Astor), who interrupted him during a heart-trouble episode he's keeping secret, has already made clear he's not running away with her, but they discuss it anyway, in Any Number Can Play, 1949.
Any Number Can Play (1949) - Out In The Rain With My Secret Lover Joining the first scene in the household of leading man Clark Gable, who plays high-end underground casino owner Charlie, we meet Audrey Totter as Alice, the live-in sister of his wife Lon (Alexis Smith), and her husband, Wendell Corey as Robbin, who works for Charlie, with two goons (Richard Rober, William Conrad) appearing, in director Mervyn LeRoy’s Any Number Can Play, 1949.
Mogambo (1953) - Let Me Jump To My Own Conclusions! A good deal less bawdy than the equivalent Jean Harlow scene with the same leading man in the original (pre-Code) Red Dust, still alluring "Honey Bear" (Ava Gardner) in the shower meets angered safari guide Marswell (Clark Gable) early in John Ford's re-make, Mogambo, 1953.
Lone Star (1952) - Moonlight Was Meant For Lovers Clark Gable is still not revealing his identity, as a supporter of Texas annexation sent by Andrew Jackson, but Texan Martha (Ava Gardner) has grown interested in him, separating themselves from the crowd at an Austin dinner party, with an un-credited song, in MGM's Lone Star, 1952.
Hucksters, The (1947) - Your Toes Are Not Pointed Enough! Clinton Sundberg (delightful as photographer Michael Michaelson) receives dignified but insolvent war-widow socialite Mrs. Dorrance (Deborah Kerr), savvy Vic (Clark Gable) from the ad agency, who got her the lucrative photo gig, and stiff Miss Kennedy (Kathryn Card), representing the demanding sponsor, in The Hucksters, 1947.
Hucksters, The (1947) - Nobody's Anybody's Friend As singer Jean (Ava Gardner) joins the table after her number, she visits with old pal and ad-man Vic (Clark Gable) and his new maybe-flame, war widow Kay (Deborah Kerr), before Vic's intoxicated boss "Kim" (Adolphe Menjou, a one-time Ivy Leaguer, with Gloria Holden as his wife) takes a bitter turn, in The Hucksters, 1947.
Hucksters, The (1947) - Don't Disagree With Him! Spectacular entrance of soap tycoon Evan Llewellyn Evans (Sydney Greenstreet) with a tirade for ad men Kimberly (Adolphe Menjou), Cooke (Richard Gaines) and Norman (Clark Gable) in The Hucksters, 1947.
Hucksters, The (1947) - I'll Carry A Pipe New York agency boss Kimberly (Adolphe Menjou) and his old acquaintance and prospective hire Vic (Clark Gable) drop in on embattled Clarke (Richard Gaines) as he struggles with the prized "Beauty Soap" campaign and their intimidating client, in The Hucksters, 1947.

Trailer

Gone With The Wind (1939) -- 2014 Blu-Ray Trailer Special trailer promoting the 2014 75th anniversary release of Gone With The Wind, 1939, on Blu-Ray.
Finger Points, The - (Original Trailer) A naive reporter (Richard Barthelmess) takes payoffs for keeping a prominent gangster out of the papers in The Finger Points (1931) co-starring Fay Wray.
Night Nurse - (Original Trailer) A nurse discovers that the children she's caring for are murder targets in the pre-code shocker Night Nurse (1931) starring Barbara Stanwyck.
Gone With the Wind (1939) -- (1961 Re-Issue Trailer) Scarlett O'Hara (Vivien Leigh) fights to save her beloved plantation and find love during the Civil War in Gone With the Wind (1939).
Mutiny On The Bounty (1935) - (Original Trailer) The sadistic Captain Bligh (Charles Laughton) drives his men to revolt during a South Seas expedition in Mutiny on the Bounty (1935).
It Happened One Night - (Original Trailer) A newspaperman (Clark Gable) tracks a runaway heiress (Claudette Colbert) on a madcap cross-country tour in It Happened One Night (1934), directed by Frank Capra.
It Started in Naples - (Original Trailer) When a lawyer (Clark Gable) tries to settle his brother's affairs he falls for an in-law (Sophia Loren) in It Started in Naples (1960).
Somewhere I'll Find You - (Original Trailer) Brothers feud over a girl they both fall for while covering World War II in Somewhere I'll Find You (1942) starring Clark Gable and Lana Turner.
Call of the Wild - (Re-release Trailer) Clark Gable heads to Alaska's gold fields and digs up Loretta Young in Call of the Wild (1935).
Dancing Lady - (Re-issue Trailer) Joan Crawford loves Clark Gable but sings and dances with Fred Astaire in Dancing Lady (1933) with a guest appearance by the Three Stooges.
Strange Cargo - (Original Trailer) Devil's Island prisoners are changed forever by a prisoner who thinks he's Jesus in Strange Cargo (1940) starring Clark Gable & Joan Crawford.
Idiot's Delight - (Original Trailer) Clark Gable and Norma Shearer star in Robert E. Sherwood's Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Idiot's Delight (1939).

Promo

Family

William Henry Gable
Father
Oil driller.
Adeline Gable
Mother
Born c. 1870; Roman Catholic; died on November 14, 1901.
Jennie Gable
Step-Mother
Died in 1920.
Judy Lewis
Daughter
Psychotherapist, former actor. Born on November 6, 1935; mother, Loretta Young; Lewis believed she was adopted until she learned the truth of her parentage as an adult.
Joan Spreckels
Step-Daughter
John Clark Gable
Son
Actor. Mother, Kay Spreckels; born shortly after Gable's death on March 20, 1961.

Companions

Josephine Dillon
Wife
Actor. Married in December 1924; divorced in April 1930; born c. 1889.
Joan Crawford
Companion
Actor. Reportedly had an on-again, off-again relationship over a 10-year period; frequently co-starred together in such films as "Dancing Lady" (1933) and "Strange Cargo" (1940).
Rhea Langham
Wife
Married on June 19, 1931; divorced in March 1939.
Loretta Young
Companion
Actor. Had affair during filming of 1935's "The Call of the Wild"; gave birth to Gable's daughter Mary Judith but passed her off as an adopted child; daughter did not learn truth of parentage until she was an adult.
Carole Lombard
Wife
Actor. Married from March 29, 1939 until her death in a plane crash on January 16, 1942; popular film star in the 1930s and early 40s in such films as "Twentieth Century" (1934), "My Man Godfrey" (1936), "Nothing Sacred" (1937) and "To Be or Not to Be" (1942); acted opposite Gable in the 1932 "No Man of Her Own".
Lady Sylvia Ashley
Wife
Former actor. Married on December 20, 1949, divorced in 1952.
Kay Williams Spreckels
Wife
Married from July 1955 until his death in 1960.

Bibliography