Beer In Ads #2163: Charles Laughton For Pabst


Saturday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1949. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features Charles Laughton. He “was an English stage and film character actor, director, producer and screenwriter. Laughton was trained in London at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and first appeared professionally on the stage in 1926. In 1927, he was cast in a play with his future wife Elsa Lanchester, with whom he lived and worked until his death; they had no children.

He played a wide range of classical and modern parts, making an impact in Shakespeare at the Old Vic. His film career took him to Broadway and then Hollywood, but he also collaborated with Alexander Korda on notable British films of the era, including The Private Life of Henry VIII. He portrayed everything from monsters and misfits to kings. Among Laughton’s biggest film hits were The Barretts of Wimpole Street, Mutiny on the Bounty, Ruggles of Red Gap, Jamaica Inn, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and The Big Clock. In his later career, he took up stage directing, notably in The Caine Mutiny Court-Martial, and George Bernard Shaw’s Don Juan in Hell, in which he also starred. He directed one film, the thriller The Night of the Hunter.

Laughton has been seen by one actor as one of the greatest performers of his generation. Daniel Day-Lewis cited him as one of his inspirations, saying: ‘He was probably the greatest film actor who came from that period of time. He had something quite remarkable. His generosity as an actor, he fed himself into that work. As an actor, you cannot take your eyes off him.'”

In the ad, Laughton’s relaxing, up against a tree, at the Ojai Valley Inn and Country Club. Beer in his hand, he’s in Southern California but still wearing a wool jacket and tie, even though it’s most likely on the warm side. Hopefully the beer will help keep him cool.

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Beer In Ads #2162: Gladys Swarthout


Friday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1948. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features Miss Gladys Swarthout and her husband Mr. Frank Chapman. She “was an American mezzo-soprano opera singer and entertainer.”

In the ad, Swarthout and her husband, also an opera singer, are in their “Connecticut Home,” in what looks like a den or music room. They’re sharing a bottle of beer, although they are two full glasses.

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Beer In Ads #2161: Jonathan M. Wainwright For Pabst


Thursday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1948. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features the “Hero of Bataan, Defender of Corregidor,” Joseph M. Wainwright. He “was a career American army officer and the Commander of Allied forces in the Philippines at the time of their surrender to the Empire of Japan during World War II. Wainwright was a recipient of the Medal of Honor for his courageous leadership during the fall of the Philippines.”

In the ad, Wainwright is at “Fiddler’s Green,” holding a gun while “relaxing in the den of his Texas home.” On a tray in front of him, there’s two bottles of Pabst and two glasses. Another man, who appears to be talking to, has already started drinking his beer, or is at least holding it in his hand. If I were him, I’d be waiting until after Wainwright put down the gun to begin drinking.

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Beer In Ads #2160: Tommy Henrich For Pabst


Wednesday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1950. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features Tommy Henrich. He “was an American professional baseball player, nicknamed ‘The Clutch’ and ‘Old Reliable.’ He played his entire Major League Baseball career as a right fielder and first baseman for the New York Yankees (1937–1942 and 1946–1950). Henrich led the American League in triples twice and in runs scored once, also hitting 20 or more home runs four times. He is best remembered for his numerous exploits in the World Series; he was involved in one of the most memorable plays in Series history in 1941, was the hitting star of the 1947 Series with a .323 batting average, and hit the first walk-off home run in Series history in the first game of the 1949 World Series.”

In the ad, Henrich is showing off his “World-Series home run baseball” in what looks to be his study. I think they’re referring to the 1949 World Series, the year before, when “he gave New York a 1-0 victory in Game 1 when he homered against Don Newcombe on a 2-0 pitch to lead off the ninth inning, the first walk-off home run ever in the World Series.” Shortly before the ad ran, on January 19, 1950, he was awarded “Athlete of the Year,” although I don’t really know who gave him the accolade.

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Beer In Ads #2159: Lawrence Tibbett For Pabst


Tuesday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1949. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features Mr. & Mrs. Lawrence Tibbett. He “was a famous American opera singer and recording artist who also performed as a film actor and radio personality. A baritone, he sang leading roles with the Metropolitan Opera in New York more than 600 times from 1923 to 1950. He performed diverse musical theatre roles, including Captain Hook in Peter Pan in a touring show.”

In the ad, Tibbett and his wife, Grace Mackay Smith, are aboard the S.S. Brazil, a “Moore-McCormick Luxury Liner.” They’re looking at something off in the distance, while a server is bringing them a couple of beers.

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Beer In Ads #2158: Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. For Pabst


Monday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1949. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features Douglas Fairbanks Jr.. He “was an American actor and a decorated naval officer of World War II.” He was, of course, “the only child of actor Douglas Fairbanks and his first wife, Anna Beth Sully.” Mostly for that reason, he was given an acting contract and started in supporting roles, but was elevated to starring by the late 1920s. He moved around a bit, changed studios, and live in the UK, with some of his most memorable parts being in “Morning Glory” (1933) with Katharine Hepburn, “The Prisoner of Zenda” (1937) and “Gunga Din” (1939).

In the ad, Fairbanks is deep sea fishing “off Catalina Island,” which is “located about 22 milessouth-southwest of Los Angeles, California.” Unseen hands deliver him full glasses and bottles of beer, as he smiles during what I presume is a break in the fishing action.

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Beer In Ads #2157: William Bendix For Pabst


Sunday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1950. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features General William Bendix. He “was an American film, radio, and television actor, who typically played rough, blue-collar characters. He is best remembered in movies for the title role in The Babe Ruth Story. He also memorably portrayed the clumsily earnest aircraft plant worker Chester A. Riley in radio and television’s The Life of Riley. He received an Academy Award nomination as Best Supporting Actor for Wake Island (1942).”

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In the ad, Bendix sits in a barcalounger in his San Fernando Valley home, with a pipe in one hand and a mug of beer in the other. There’s also a sandwich for him on an end table. So if there’s a television in front of him in that room, it’s a pretty perfect setting. This series, with the photos inside a round blue ribbon ran for a few years, and then they changed the format slightly, squaring the photos, getting rid of the ribbon frame, and changing up the text away from talking about where the people were in the photo. Below is the newer version of the same ad, from the mid-1950s, just for contrast.

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Beer In Ads #2156: Hap Arnold For Pabst


Saturday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1949. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features General Henry H. Arnold, better known as simply “Hap” Arnold. He “was an American general officer holding the grades of General of the Army and General of the Air Force. Arnold was an aviation pioneer, Chief of the Air Corps (1938–1941), Commanding General of the U.S. Army Air Forces, the only U.S. Air Force general to hold five-star rank, and the only officer to hold a five-star rank in two different U.S. military services. Arnold was also the founder of Project RAND, which evolved into one of the world’s largest non-profit global policy think tanks, the RAND Corporation, and one of the founders of Pan American World Airways.

Instructed in flying by the Wright Brothers, Arnold was one of the first military pilots worldwide, and one of the first three rated pilots in the history of the United States Air Force.[nb 1] He overcame a fear of flying that resulted from his experiences with early flight, supervised the expansion of the Air Service during World War I, and became a protégé of Gen. Billy Mitchell.

Arnold rose to command the Army Air Forces immediately prior to American entry into World War II and directed its hundred-fold expansion from an organization of little more than 20,000 men and 800 first-line combat aircraft into the largest and most powerful air force in the world. An advocate of technological research and development, his tenure saw the development of the intercontinental bomber, the jet fighter, the extensive use of radar, global airlift and atomic warfare as mainstays of modern air power.”

In the ad, it says “Served to” Hap Arnold, which seems to suggest the woman is not his wife, but a different ad does identify her as Hap’s wife. He looks like he’s dressed for a 70’s disco, but this is from 1949, so I guess he was just ahead of his time. Or perhaps the Army was experimenting with uniforms that fit into civilian society better, and this was a prototype. Besides, it looks like he’s on a farm, so most likely not to close to any nightclubs. This is the largest image of the ad I could find and it’s hard to make out anything except “California,” although that other ad states that it was shot at the Arnold’s cattle ranch in Sonoma County, California, so he’s a neighbor.

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Beer In Ads #2155: Charles Boyer For Pabst


Friday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1949. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features Mr. and Mrs. Charles Boyer. He “was a French actor who appeared in more than 80 films between 1920 and 1976. After receiving an education in drama, Boyer started on the stage, but he found his success in American movies during the 1930s. His memorable performances were among the era’s most highly praised, in romantic dramas such as The Garden of Allah (1936), Algiers (1938), and Love Affair (1939), as well as the mystery-thriller Gaslight (1944). He received four Academy Award nominations for Best Actor.”

In the ad, Boyer and his wife, Anglo-Scottish film actress Pat Paterson, are at the French Research Foundation, which Boyer co-founded, with a tray of beers, presumably for after they finish their research.

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Beer In Ads #2154: Gary Cooper For Pabst


Thursday’s ad is for Pabst Blue Ribbon, from 1949. In the later 1940s, Pabst embarked on a series of ads with celebrity endorsements, photographing star actors, athletes, musicians and other famous people in their homes, enjoying Pabst Blue Ribbon beer. This one features Mrs. Gary Cooper. He “was an American film actor known for his natural, authentic, and understated acting style and screen performances. His career spanned thirty-five years, from 1925 to 1960, and included leading roles in eighty-four feature films. He was a major movie star from the end of the silent film era through the end of the golden age of Classical Hollywood. His screen persona appealed strongly to both men and women, and his range of performances included roles in most major movie genres. Cooper’s ability to project his own personality onto the characters he played contributed to his appearing natural and authentic on screen. The screen persona he sustained throughout his career represented the ideal American hero.”

In the ad, Copper and his wife, socialite and former actor Veronica Cooper, are on holiday at Trail Creek Cabin in Sun Valley, Idaho, sitting by a roaring fire, sharing a beer.

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