shows Gene Marshall at a ball.

Info Edit


Released: 2005


Circa: 1949

Designer: Lynne Day

Company: Ashton Drake


Story Card Edit

A shiny black envelope printed in white arrived at Gene's studio dressing room.  And that could only mean one thing: it was time for the annual Monolithic Black and White Ball.

The Ball had begun in 1935, when the advent of color once again revolutionized the movie industry.  The Monolithic Black and White Ball was a tribute to the artistry of the black and white cinematographer, and every year a different artist was chosen as the honoree.

Gene daintily tore open her invitation and smiled.  This year, the toast of the Black and White Ball was to be none other than Charlie Beauchamp, the Monolithic Director of Photography who had supervised her screentest for the studio.  Charlie had always been such a help to Gene--even when he was not working on one of her pictures, she knew he was surreptitiously giving the cameramen and lighting crew tips on how to make her look even more lustrous than ever for the lens.

One of her favorite shots was something that Charlie had concocted for the film Red Venus.  To lend an air of mystery, Charlie had shot one of her pivotal scenes through a filigree of lace.  It had stunned audiences at the time, making them pay extra close attention to what was happening on the screen and to Gene's stunning performance.

So, as a bow to the master, Gene sat down with one of her favorite designers, Miss Lynne of Hollywood, and came up with a gown that incorporated the same lacy filigree pattern.

And when Charlie Beauchamp saw Gene at the Black and White Ball, a tear came to his eye when he recognized the pattern--and the beauty of the grateful actress who wore it.

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