has translated the following article as it appeared in the Parisian
newspaper, Le Figaro, on
September 21, 1922, in the
section relating to life in the United States. The author
muses over the advertising opportunities of Valentino's troubled
marital situation and mentions it could be the invention of a clever
manager. At the time of this article the only person “managing”
Valentino was Doug Gerrard and he was not acting in any official
capacity. I think if Valentino had a working manager then things
would not have been so disastrous. The author relates a scenario he
alleges took place for the benefit of reporters which he claims took
place at a pier with Rudy and Natacha.
September 1922, Rudy and Natacha were not heading to Europe together.
But maybe a trip was contemplated at some point; a trip which did not happen and
the journalist claims it was a set-up for publicity.
this is the first time this quizzical article has appeared anywhere
in English and thank you Renato!
Adventures of a Star...by
Valentino is the young, most fashionable star in the world of
American cinema. Is he, in life, as charming as on the screen? It
depends on one's taste. Because he has a rather heavy nose, a strong
oriental look, and his appearance shines neither with an extreme
vivacity or by a domineering aspect.
when you're famous, you don't have to be beautiful. You are always
loved too much.
Valentino, for reasons of his own, divorced a few months ago, a
normal fact in the United States and in the world of cinema.
divorced, he understood that the laws of the state of California, in
which he was divorced, did not allow remarrying until after a year.
He then left for Mexico which is close to California. There he
married an exquisite young girl, Miss Winifred Hudnut, who uses the
cinematographic and theatrical pseudonym of Natacha Rambova (Russia
is very popular in the United States).
as soon as Valentino returned to California, the authorities were
notified (and also the vice police) and it was discovered his
divorce would only be valid in California after a year. He could have
committed bigamy and the authorities were going to lock him up, as
well as his young wife.
had to send the charming Natacha to a less severe state and he told
the California authorities he had only sinned by ignorance of the
law. With a little help (Valentino is very useful to his managers)
things improved. But Valentino is ordered to live several months
apart from his young wife, until he was legally divorced.
we have just learned that, under the influence of chance and the
gods, the two young semi-marrieds found themselves in New York.
Immediately, with great emotion and deep sensation, forty reporters
set off after Rudolph and Natacha, who can no longer live in peace
and alone. This is excellent for the advertisement of Valentino, and
one begins to wonder if it is not to his manager that Rudolph owes
half of his troubles.
young woman decides to leave for Europe. She and Rudolph board a
steamer. We interview and photograph them. Then they retire to their
cabin. At the last moment, Rudolph descends from the boat, mingles
with the people who appear from the second class area. No one
recognizes him. The reporters are stunned. The same evening, we
discover the farce. New sensation. New photos. New articles.
now, will the impresario of Valentino do to astonish the reporters
and the crowds?
Linder once tried to reach a ship by plane. He missed his chance. We
offer Valentino a suggestion. He could go and wait for his young wife
on the open sea, near the Nantucket flagship, disguised as a pilot or
even a castaway.
Valentino even disappeared that day, in a storm, the film would be
more complete and the advertising even more intense. But the
impresario, the advertising manager, as they say on the other side of
the pond, will he go that far? And will he kill the goose that lays
the golden eggs after such a whirlwind?
is possible, from the point of view of advertising. It suffices to
understand the very spirit of American advertising to see these
phenomenal events in an honorably commercial aspect."
(Below the original article)