Famous Flappers of the Roaring Twenties

Flappers were a “new breed” of young Western women in the 1920s who wore short skirts, bobbed their hair, listened to jazz, and flaunted their disdain for what was then considered acceptable behavior. Flappers were seen as brash for wearing excessive makeup, drinking, treating sex in a casual manner, smoking, driving automobiles, and otherwise flouting social and sexual norms.

Flappers had their origins in the liberal period of the Roaring Twenties, the social, political turbulence and increased transatlantic cultural exchange that followed the end of World War I, as well as the export of American jazz culture to Europe.

zelda

Zelda Fitzgerald was an American socialite and novelist, and the wife of American author F. Scott Fitzgerald, who dubbed her “the first American Flapper”. She and Scott became the emblem of the Jazz Age, for which they are still celebrated via

1926: Hollywood film star, Clara Bow (1905 - 1965) in a shiny strapless dress. (Photo by Eugene Robert Richee)

Clara Bow epitomized the Roaring Twenties’ flapper. At only 25, she retired exhausted by repeated scandals about her presumed sexual life. Photo: Bow in a shiny strapless dress by Eugene Robert Richee, 1926 via

moore

 Coleen Moore was Bow´s “chief rival”. After Bow took the stage Moore gradually lost her momentum. In spring 1924 she made a good, but unsuccessful effort to top Bow in The Perfect Flapper, and soon after she dismissed the whole flapper vogue. Photo: Coleen Moore in “Why Be Good?”, 1929 via

louise-brooks-theredlist

Louise Brooks 1920. She was an American dancer and actress noted as an iconic symbol of the flapper, and for popularizing the bobbed haircut via

gray-gilda

Gilda Gray, 1924. She was an American actress and dancer who popularized a dance called the “shimmy” which became fashionable in 1920s films and theater productions via

bankhead

Tallulah Brockman, 1922. Bankhead was an American actress of the stage and screen, and a reputed libertine britannica.com

Anita_Loos_-_Apr_1922_Photoplay

Anita Loos was an American screenwriter, playwright and author, best known for her blockbuster comic novel, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes first published in 1925. It was one of several famous novels published that year that chronicled the so-called Jazz Age – including Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. Photo: Loos, on page 12 of the April 1922 Photoplay via

The First The Great Gatsby Film (1926)

This is a 1 min. trailer of the first filmed version of the novel, no copies of the actual film are known to have survived. The book and film famously narrate the life of self-made millionaire Jay Gatsby who lacks only one thing in life: the love of the beautiful, impulsive Daisy Buchanan. Gatsby’s carefully laid scheme to announce his intentions to take Daisy away from her cloddish husband Tom Buchanan goes horribly awry, setting the stage for the inexorable tragedies that follow. The film was first a stage play on Broadway at the Ambassador Theatre in New York City. Fitzgerald received $45,000 for the rights to his 1925 classic.

The film was entrusted to a contract Paramount director, Herbert Brenon who designed the film as lightweight, popular entertainment, playing up the party scenes at Gatsby’s mansion and emphasizing their scandalous elements. This might have been a big mistake.

Both Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald walked out of the movie when they saw it. Later Zelda wrote in a letter:

“We saw ‘The Great Gatsby’ in the movies. It’s ROTTEN and awful and terrible and we left”.

However, the 1926 Great Gatsby was actually filmed during the historical period it depicts.

Professor Wheeler Winston Dixon, James Ryan Professor of Film Studies at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, made extensive but unsuccessful attempts to find a surviving print. Dixon noted that there were rumors that a copy survived in an unknown archive in Moscow but dismissed these rumors as unfounded

Some stills from the trailer:

0-480x350

The Great Gatsby, 1926

tumblr_mmsznkp24C1qav5oho1_1280

The Great Gatsby, 1926

screenshot2013-04-18at12.35.42pm

The Great Gatsby, 1926

The Great Gatsby Movie Trailer from 1926