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The Rock-itt : January 2014
ACB1 Hobart to Hollywood It was a huge office and at the far side, the execution squad sat waiting for their next victim. Errol thought it would be bad enough facing Warner himself but here were three of the executives waiting to flail the flesh from his bones. Suddenly Warner began sending a salvo of harsh words in Errol’s direction as he walked toward the trio. Warner was admonishing Errol for his drinking on the set (referring to the cognac episode the day before). Errol reached the desk and stood ready to take his medicine when Warner stood and introduced the other two men as Bill Koenig, producer and Hal Wallis, executive producer at Warners. HAL WALLIS Errol had a strange feeling that he was not just in Warner’s office about the debacle on the set the day before.There was something else brewing which might not be as devastating as he had first thought. His feelings were immediately justified when Warner began to smile. Warner didn’t mention anything else about the fracas on the set the day before but instead he asked Errol how everything else was going, to which Errol replied ‘Fine thanks, Mr Warner. ’ Errol went on to assure Warner and his executive team that there would definitely never be another episode of drinking on a set. Errol left the office and went out almost gob smacked at the turn of events. Here he was ready to either beg for forgiveness or tell them to stick the job, but now instead here he was let off Scott free without hardly a word being said..... amazing. Obviously there was some hidden agenda which they weren’t letting on about. Could they possibly have thought that Errol was good and worth too much to them to fire him? I think that’s exactly what they thought and at the completion of the production of ‘Captain Blood’ and it hit the movie houses throughout the world, Errol Flynn was to become a star in his very first major film production. The accolades were now being lavished on Errol Flynn and he revelled in it. But to his French wife, Lily Damita, she knew it would be the end of their short and turbulent marriage. Captain Blood was a resounding success and the world film critics hailed it as a masterpiece of cinematography. Warner Brothers made millions at the box office and both Curtiz, the director and Errol, were exulted for their direction and acting respectively. Here is a small review of the film CAPTAIN BLOOD HAD ITS OPENING PREMIERE ON DECEMBER 26, 1935 AT THE MARK STRAND THEATRE IN NEW YORK CITY AND WAS RELEASED IN THE UNITED STATES ON DECEMBER 28, 1935. THE FILM RECEIVED POSITIVE REVIEWS AND NOTICES AND WIDE PUBLIC APPROVAL. Errol not only had his foot in the door at Warner Brothers’ Studios. He had suddenly become famous overnight and in big demand. Things were about to happen which would create history as the team of Flynn, DeHavilland and Curtiz would begin a fairytale rise to the top of the movie business heap. On the other side of the coin, Lily feared more than ever with Errol running with the bit firmly between his teeth that at any time her relationship with him would end. See you next issue, Flynn fans. You can bet your boots it will be a cracker. By Pete Johnson