Finding Aid for the Dorothy Arzner Papers, ca. 1920-1979

Processed by Performing Performing Arts Special Collections staff; machine-readable finding aid created by D.MacGill;
Performing Performing Arts Special Collections
University of California, Los Angeles, Library
Performing Arts Special Collections, Room A1713
Charles E. Young Research Library, Box 951575
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
Phone: (310) 825-4988
Fax: (310) 206-1864
Email: speccoll-paging@library.ucla.edu
http://www2.library.ucla.edu/specialcollections/performingarts/index.cfm
© 1998
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Note

Arts and Humanities --Film, Television and Broadcasting Social Sciences --Area and Interdisciplinary Studies --Women's Studies Geographical (By Place) --California --Los Angeles Area

Finding Aid for the Dorothy Arzner Papers, ca. 1920-1979

Collection number: 175

Performing Performing Arts Special Collections



Los Angeles, CA

Contact Information

  • University of California, Los Angeles, Library
  • Performing Arts Special Collections, Room A1713
  • Charles E. Young Research Library, Box 951575
  • Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
  • Phone: (310) 825-4988
  • Fax: (310) 206-1864
  • Email: speccoll-paging@library.ucla.edu
  • URL: http://www2.library.ucla.edu/specialcollections/performingarts/index.cfm
Processed by:
Performing Performing Arts Special Collections staff
Date Completed:
Unknown
Encoded by:
D.MacGill
© 1998 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Dorothy Arzner Papers,
Date (inclusive): ca. 1920-1979
Collection number: 175
Origination: Arzner, Dorothy
Extent: 7 boxes (3.5 linear feet)
Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Performing Arts Special Collections
Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
Shelf location: Held at SRLF. Please contact the Performing Arts Special Collections for paging information.
Language: English.

Administrative Information

Restrictions on Access

Advance notice required for access.

Restrictions on Use

Copyright has not been assigned to the Performing Arts Special Collections, UCLA. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Performing Arts Special Collections Librarian. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Performing Arts Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.

Preferred Citation

Dorothy Arzner Papers (Collection 175). Performing Arts Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.

Biography

Arzner was born Jan. 3, 1900; studied medicine at Univ. of So. CA; ambulance driver in WWI (1917-18); in 1919, she was hired by William C. De Mille as a stenographer in the script dept. at Famous Players-Lasky (Paramount), and was later promoted to script clerk, film cutter, and film editor; editor for Realart, a subsidiary of Paramount, 1922; wrote and edited "Old Ironsides," 1925; met Marion Morgan, choreographer and dancer, in the early 1930s and the two remained companions until Morgan's death in 1971; retired from directing in 1943; produced WAC training films during WWII; taught at UCLA and made commercials for Pepsi-Cola; her credits include, "Christopher Strong" (1933), "Nana" (1934), and "Craig's Wife" (1936); honored at the 1st International Festival of Women's Films, NY, 1972, and by Director's Guild of America, 1975; died Oct. 1, 1979 in La Quinta, CA.

Organization

Arranged in the following series:
  1. Audio recordings (box 2)
  2. Clippings (box 5)
  3. Negatives (box 6)
  4. Personal sketches (box 5)
  5. Personal photographs (boxes 5-6)
  6. Personal correspondence (box 7)
  7. Scrapbooks (boxes 1,3,4)
  8. Stills (box 6)
  9. Tributes (boxes 6-7)
  10. Writings by and about Arzner (box 7)

Scope and Content

Collection consists of clippings, sketches, photographs and motion picture stills, correspondence, scrapbooks, audio recordings, and ephemera related to Arzner's personal life and career as filmmaker. Includes stills the films Anybody's Woman, The Bride Wore Red, The Covered Wagon, Craig's Wife, Dance Girl Dance, Fashion for Women, First Comes Courage, Get Your Man, Manhattan Cocktail, Merrily We Go To Hell, Nana, Old Ironsides, Ten Modern Commandments, and Working Girls.

Access Points

Arzner, Dorothy, 1900-1979--Archives.
Women motion picture producers and directors--Archival resources.


Container List

 

AUDIO RECORDINGS

Box 2

Two (2) audio cassette tapes: "At Diablo Valley College, 13 Oct 1976", "DGA Tribute to Dorothy Arzner", n.d. Five (5) magnetic audio reels, "Dorothy Arzner Tribute", n.d.

 

CLIPPINGS

Box 5 , Folder  2

Includes tributes to Dorothy Arzner, and commentary and announcements related to festivals featuring her films.

Box 5 , Folder  3

Includes articles pertaining to women filmmakers in general with mention of Dorothy Arzner.

Box 5 , Folder  4

Five (5) issues of "Camera: the Digest of the Motion Picture Industry" (fragile). Includes 1922, Vol. 5 no.'s 16, 24, 26, 28, 29.

 

NEGATIVES

 

Sixty-nine (69) negatives of clippings in scrapbooks and photographs in this collection. Negs are numbered DA1-DA69. Availablity is marked on verso of photographs or on the page of scrapbooks. STORED IN Performing Arts Special Collections - NEGATIVE FILES.

Box 6 , Folder 26

One (1) 8x10 negative of Dorothy Arzner with film strip, two (2) strips of La Quinta home, four (4) strips Morgan Dancers, one (1) strip of young Dorothy Arzner. six(6) contact strips of outings with friends.

 

PERSONAL SKETCHES

Box 5 , Folder  5

Nine (9) pencil sketches, one (1) ink sketch (all unsigned). Orignal envelope labeled "Sketches by Dorothy Arzner and Marion Morgan".

Box 5 , Folder  6

Eight (8) items including seven (7) pencil sketches and one (1) pastel. Four (4) items signed D. Arzner.

 

PERSONAL PHOTOGRAPHS

Box 5 , Folder  1

Oversized portraits of Dorothy Arzner. Seven (7) items, (2) inscribed by Dorothy Arzner.

Box 5 , Folder  7

One (1) oversize photograph labeled "Entrance Atrium 2249 Mountain Oak Dr. Home of Marion Morgan and Dorothy Arzner 1930 - 1951".

Box 6 , Folder  1

Forty (40) items including small snap shots of Dorothy Arzner and friends. Includes snap shot of Marlene Dietrich holding Dorothy Arzner's Siamese cat.

Box 6 , Folder  2

Fifty-seven (57) items. Includes small photos of young Dorothy Arzner, family, and friends.

Box 6 , Folder  3

Twenty (20) items. Includes photographs of Dorothy Arzner and family from childhood to adolesence.

Box 6 , Folder  4

Twenty-one (21) items. Includes (1) portrait of a young Dorothy Arzner and Marion Morgan, two (2) snap shots of Dorothy Arzner bust by Alice Bush Lewis, and photos of older Dorothy Arzner at Diablo College.

Box 6 , Folder  5

Fifteen (15) items including portraits of Dorothy Arzner early in her career.

Box 6 , Folder  6

Twenty (20) items including photographs of Dorothy Arzner at work on various projects.

Box 6 , Folder 24

Fifty-six (56) items. Includes several photographs sent to Dorothy Arzner by Marion Morgan from [Europe]. [Items are not dated, possible date 1920's or 1930's].

Box 7 , Folder  1

(Dates unknown) Seventeen items including cards, letters and postcards. Includes (8) postcards from Aunt Emma addressed to Emma [Dorothy's middle name] and Dave.

Box 7 , Folder  2

(1930'S - 1940's) Twenty-three items including postcards and letters to Dorothy Arzner.

Box 7 , Folder  3

(1970'S) Forty-three letters, cards, and post cards to Dorothy Arzner. Includes personal and professional work related correspondence. One Christmas card from Marion Morgan dated Christmas 1969.

Box 7 , Folder  4

(1920's - 1940's) Forty-four postcards from Marion Morgan to Dorothy Arzner dates spanning 1920's - 1940's.

Box 7 , Folder  5

(1930's) Forty-three postcards from Marion Morgan to Dorothy Arzner dates spanning 1930's.

Box 7 , Folder  6

(1971) Ten (10) assorted letters, cards, and postcards to Marion Morgan. Most dated 1971.

Box 7 , Folder  7

Fifty-three (53) postcards, letters, cards, and telegrams. Condolences to Dorothy Arzner concerning the death of Marion Morgan.

Box 7 , Folder  8

Seven (7) items including (2) coat of arms for Arzner, (1) Westlake School for Girls Record, death certificates for Dorothy Arzner, David Arzner, Mabel Arzner, and Lois Arzner.

 

SCRAPBOOKS

Box 1

One (1) red scrapbook (fragile). Includes photos of young Dorothy Arzner, family, and friends.

Box 3

Three (3) items (fragile). One "Presented to Dorothy Arner from Joe Dill" includes small snap shots from "Old Ironsides". Two remaining include photos of Dorothy Arzner, family, and friends.

Box 4

"Dorothy Arzner Press Book", hand made (fragile). Clippings spanning 1926 - 1980.

 

STILLS

Box 6 , Folder  7

"ANYBODY'S WOMAN (1930, Paramount). Six (6) items including photographs of Dorothy Arzner at work.

Box 6 , Folder  8

"BEHIND THE MAKE UP" (1930, Paramount). One (1) photograph of Fay Wray and William Powell.

Box 6 , Folder  9

"THE BRIDE WORE RED" (1937, MGM). Twelve (12) photographs including Dorothy Arzner at work, Joan Crawford, and Franchot Tone.

Box 6 , Folder 10

"THE COVERED WAGON" (1923, Paramount). Three (3) photographs.

Box 6 , Folder 11

"CRAIG'S WIFE" (1936, Columbia). Nine (9) photographs including Dorothy Arzner at work, John Boles, Rosalind Russell, Billie Burke, and Mary McCall.

Box 6 , Folder 12

"DANCE GIRL DANCE" (1940, RKO). Eleven (11) photographs including Dorothy Arzner at work and home, Lucille Ball, and one inscribed photograph from James Anderson.

Box 6 , Folder 13

"FASHION FOR WOMEN" (1927, Famous Players Lasky/Paramount). Three (3) photographs including Dorothy Arzner at work.

Box 6 , Folder 14

"FIRST COMES COURAGE" (1943, Columbia). One (1) photograph of Carl Esmond, Merle Oberon, and Brian Aherne.

Box 6 , Folder 15

"GET YOUR MAN" (1934, Paramount). Eleven (11) photographs including shots of various scenes.

Box 6 , Folder 16

"MANHATTAN COCKTAIL" (1928, Famous Players Lasky/Paramount). Six (6) photographs including Dorothy Arzner at work.

Box 6 , Folder 17

"MERRILY WE GO TO HELL" (1932, Paramount). Four (4) photographs including Dorothy Arzner at work.

Box 6 , Folder 18

"NANA" (1934, United Artists). One (1) photograph labeled "Anna Sten in the Samuel Goldwyn Production of NANA". Shows Dorothy Arzner at work.

Box 6 , Folder 19

"OLD IRONSIDES" (1926, Paramount). Fifty-six (56) photographs including Dorothy Arzner working, Esther Ralston, Wallace Berry, George Bancroft, George Godfrey, and Charles Farrell.

Box 6 , Folder 20

"TEN MODERN COMMANDMENTS" (1927, Paramount). Four (4) photographs including Dorothy Arzner at work.

Box 6 , Folder 21

WAC'S TRAINING FILM (1944). Two (2) publicity stills of Dorothy Arzner with WACS World War II.

Box 6 , Folder 22

WORKING GIRLS (1931, Paramount). Two (2) photographs including Dorothy Arzner with telephone operators, and Dorothy Hall and Judith Wood.

Box 6 , Folder 25

Five (5) miscellaneous photographs. Includes (2) photographs of Billie Burke, (1) photograph of drapes in a hotel suite, (1) photograph of Charles the Second, and (1) unidentified group of actors.

 

TRIBUTES

Box 6 , Folder 23

Five (5) photographs from the Director's Guild Tribute to Dorothy Arzner. Includes Dorothy Arnzer, William Wellman, Fay Wray, Robert Wise, Daisy Gerber, Francis Ford Coppola, Lucien Ballard, Mary McCall, Jr., Margaret Lindsay, and Francine Parker.

Box 7 , Folder 14

Two (2) programs: "Director's Guild of America A Tribute to Dorothy Arzner Pioneer Director". One with picture of Dorothy Arzner.

Box 7 , Folder 15

Twenty-six (26) items. Correspondence to Dorothy Arzner about the Director's Guild Tribute. Includes telegrams and letters from Katherine Hepburn, Joan Crawford, Robert Young, Rosalind Russell, Fredric March, Lucille Ball, Frank Capra, and others.

Box 7 , Folder 16

Fourteen programs for film festivals. (4) programs featuring Dorothy Arzner's work specifically. (10) programs featuring women film makers in general including Dorothy Arzner.

 

WRITINGS BY DOROTHY ARZNER

Box 7 , Folder  9

"Starlight", [n.d.], 3 page writing philosophy on the influence of movies on people's lives.

Box 7 , Folder 10

Four (4) studio biographies. (1) untitled, (1) Director's file Publicity, (1) M.G.M. Director's file, (3) M.G.M. Publicity Director's file - (1) annotated.

Box 7 , Folder 11

Senior thesis, 91 pages. "What Is This We Hear - A Broad Is Gonna Direct?" by Deborah Derow, May, 1976.

Box 7 , Folder 12

"The Work of Dorothy Arzner: Towards a Feminist Cinema" edited by Claire Johnston. Published by the British Film Institute, 1975.

Box 7 , Folder 13

"Approaching the Art of Arzner" by Francine Parker, [n.d.], 14 pages.