The back story to Eddie Mannix
Eddie Mannix is the protagonist in the 2016 movie Hail Caesar. His character is based on a real person by that name.
Quote:The Mysterious Death of the First Superman
There was the incident when [Mannix] had a “showgirl” up for a nightcap at an apartment he kept on the side over in West Hollywood. The next day they found her on the floor, beside the bed that Eddie was passed out on. She was dead. And she also just happened to have Eddie Mannix’s semen in her mouth. The press said it was suicide. Which, no doubt, it was; one way or the other.
On another trip back East to visit the home office and Mr. Schenck, Eddie ran into another showgirl known around Broadway as Legs Lanier.
When the real Mrs. Mannix got wind of [Mannix's affair with Toni Lanier], which didn’t take long in that particularly small town of Hollywood, she was so angry, she went straight to the lawyers, got herself a nice settlement, a divorce, and moved to Palm Springs. You wan’ him, be my guest. Although it still did not end well for Bernice Mannix. She was killed in an automobile accident, and at the time it was widely believed (although never proven) Eddie had her killed.
Toni then had an affair with George Reeve (Superman) with Mannix's acceptance, but then Reeve decided to go for another lady, Lenore Lemmon.
... in the weeks leading up to this June night, George had been getting frequent mysterious threatening phone calls to his unlisted numbers, sometimes as many as twenty calls a day. He told the police when he reported it that he suspected Mrs. Mannix. Although, it was unlikely that the police were going to trouble Mr. Mannix with the matter.
George had also been in a couple of auto accidents in recent months which were close-calls. One seemed less like an “accident” when it was discovered later by a mechanic that George’s brakes failed and he narrowly escaped death because someone had pumped the brake fluid from them. In another much more recent accident he had seriously injured his right hand, and had been prescribed painkillers for it.
Next, Reeves goes to bed.
Quote:A few minutes later (in all versions) Lenore and her guests heard a gunshot. She went upstairs and found George “naked” lying in a body-twisted position on the bed, shot in the head, with the bullet lodged in the ceiling, with the gun on the floor at his feet.
Coincidentally or not, like the Doheny murder, and the Johnny Stomponato-Lana Turner affair, the LAPD was not called immediately. It might very well have been the deft hand of Howard Strickling at work once again.
About two hours after George Reeves demise, they called the cops. The cops found the Lugar on the floor – which belonged to the deceased. It had no fingerprints on it, which meant that fingerprints were either wiped off by someone after the fact, or that the gun was so well-oiled the prints had dissolved in it. This was not noted.
George, it was said, also liked to occasionally play Russian Roulette. On top of that, Lenore reported that he was “very depressed” at this time – although it seems ironic, in retrospect considering the future plans that he already knew about – a new marriage, a new contract, Europe, Australia.
George, it was also found, had a .27 alcohol level in his bloodstream at the time of death, well beyond a little too much.
The police also found that there were no signs of burned gunpowder on the head of the 45-year-old deceased male. Very unusual for a self-inflicted gun wound to the head. They also found that the fatal bullet was lodged in the ceiling. It had also been noted that he shot himself with his “right hand,” although it was still very painful to move. These details required an odd contortion of the body in to hold the gun to his temple.
They also discovered that under a rug that had been very recently placed on the floor underneath where the gun was found, two more bullet holes. Lenore explained that she had done that accidentally while holding the gun a few days before.
Lenore Lemmon blew town two days later. She took with her $5000 in travelers cheques that George had bought for their European honeymoon ($5000 = approx. $60,000 in today’s currency).
Quote:What Really Happened the Night Ted Healy Was Beaten at Cafe Trocadero?
The Times reported that Healy had gotten into a fight with Albert Broccoli, 29, whom the paper described as “a wealthy New Yorker.” However, the coroner’s examination ascribed Healy’s death, not to a fight, but to natural causes related to alcoholism. Fleming says the coroner’s cause of death was bogus — bought and paid for by MGM.
The next order of business for Mannix and Strickling, Fleming writes, was to get Wallace Beery out of Hollywood. According to Fleming, “Beery and his family left on a hastily arranged month-long trip to Europe. They left for New York later the next day. Studio photographers recorded their departure, smiling and waving as MGM’s biggest star left for a holiday vacation.”
With Beery safely out of town, Mannix and Strickling continued their mop-up by ensuring that the Trocadero staff, most of whom, Fleming says, “were already on Strickling’s payroll,” would remember nothing about Healy arguing with Beery, DiCicco and Broccoli. They also planted a story among the Trocadero’s staff that “survives to this day” — that it was “three drunk college boys” who had beaten Healy that night.
Quote:It happened One Night at MGM
Douglas had no need to work. So when a casting call came on the afternoon of Sunday, May 2, 1937, she demurred at first, but later agreed to show up. "They never mentioned it was for a party," she recalls. "Ever. I wouldn't have gone!..."
That night there was a dinner at the Ambassador Hotel, and the next day, Monday, motorcycle police escorted the salesmen to Culver City, where cigar-chomping, bulldog-faced MGM general manager Eddie Mannix, known and feared as "a fucking gangster"—during one tantrum he broke his wife's back, and an ex-mistress, actress Mary Nolan, endured 15 abdominal surgeries after his beatings—presented Mayer with a key to ceremonially open the main gates of the 117-acre lot.
After applying thick camera makeup, the girls were bused to "Rancho Roachero," a remote, eucalyptus-lined studio property several miles away. Herded into a large banquet hall, they were ordered to sit at tables and wait. Two hours passed, but Patricia Douglas stayed patient. Had she possessed a savvier nature, she might have noted a disturbing detail: though an orchestra and bar were being assembled, this "location set" lacked any sign of a crew, lights, or cameras.
At seven o'clock Mayer, Mannix, Roach, assorted MGM bigwigs and male stars, and almost 300 revved-up conventioneers appeared at the ranch. Given that they had been promised a stag affair, the salesmen's lust-at-first-sight response to a bevy of young, over-made-up beauties makes sad and terrible sense. Delegates mistook the professional dancers for party favors and treated them accordingly; without telephones or transportation, the young women had no means of escape. Tricked into attendance, then trapped into service, they were left to fend for themselves. "You'd never think they'd pull anything like that," says Douglas, seething as she recalls the scene. "You're trusting with the studios. You're not expecting anything except to work in a movie. That's what you're there for." At first the Wild West party seemed tame.
Spurned by a nobody who, he presumed, was there for his pleasure, David Ross decided to retaliate. "He and another man held me down," she says, shuddering. "One pinched my nose so I'd have to open my mouth to breathe. Then they poured a whole glassful of scotch and champagne down my throat. Oh, I fought! But they thought it was funny. I remember a lot of laughter." As soon as her tormentors released her, Douglas fled to the washroom and threw up. Still woozy, she stepped outside the banquet hall to get some air. Before her lay a freshly tilled field, covered with studio Ford sedans; from behind, a hand clamped over her mouth. "Make a sound," hissed David Ross in her ear, "and you'll never breathe again." Ross dragged her to a parked car and pinned her onto the backseat. "I'm going to destroy you," he boasted. When Douglas started to black out, he slapped her with the back of his hand and snapped, "Cooperate! I want you awake."