erik lundegaard

Free, White and 21, Cont.

During another rabbit-hole meandering on IMDb, I came across this title—a play, of course, on the once-familiar, early-20th-century phrase, “Free, white and 21.” This version is a little more palatable, but I'm sure that's not why 20th Century Fox, way back in 1940, went with it. “Blonde” just has more sex appeal: 

Free, white and 21, continued

IMDb's synopsis is short but seems to give away a lot: “Stories of women who live in an all-women hotel. One (Bari) works hard and marries a millionaire; another (Hughes) cheats and goes to jail.”

“Bari” is Lynn Bari, who would become a WWII pinup; “Hughes” is Mary Beth Hughes, who began appearing in movies in 1939 and stopped in 1976. A year after this one, she was in “The Cowboy and the Blonde” (as the latter), and would go on to play “Blonde Spy” in “Sucker Bait,” a WWII-era documentary short, and “Atomic Blonde” in the 1950s TV series “My Hero.” She was also in “The Ox-Bow Incident” and “The Women.”

Found the film while searching on Frank Coughlan, Jr., who played Billy Batson in the 1941 serial, “The Adventures of Captain Marvel,” and has a bit part in the above.  

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Posted at 09:47 AM on Sun. Mar 31, 2019 in category U.S. History  
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