Thursday, April 16, 2015

N for Ramon Novarro



Born: February 6, 1899

Died: October 30, 1968

Aged: 69 Years-murdered

Real Name: Jose Ramon Gil Samaniegos

Affair: Herbert Howe

Famous Cousin: Delores Del Rio

A dashing matinee idol who is now more famous for how he died than for his body of work. His father was a dentist and they were well off but when his father died, their financial situation took a nose dive. To support his mom and 14 siblings, he went to work when he was a mere teenager. At one point he became a singing waiter. Due to his looks, he soon found himself in films and when Valentino died, his career went into the stratosphere. Even though he had an excellent speaking voice and could sing to boot (his version of "Pagan Love Song" was a hit), his career suffered when sound came. His career slowly  dried up. He was a strong Roman Catholic but he was also a homosexual and he struggled his whole life trying to come to terms with who he was. This was at a time  when people who were gay in England could be sent to jail and one was branded a deviant. He started to drink ( don't they all it seems) and  was arrested for drunk driving more than once. He would often pick up young men for some hubba hubba. In 1968. he picked up 2 young men and brought them back to his place. He was talking about the old days and these 2 S.O.B.'s thought Novarro had a ton of cash hidden in his home. After the one man had sex with Novarro, he took Novarro's cane and started to beat him with it. They beat the poor man to death. They tried to make it look like someone broke in but  since one was on the phone for 45 minutes after they killed Novarro plus other evidence, they were arrested 2 days later. Poor Ramon Novarro was found, naked the following day by his employee. Truly a sad end to a man that was conflicted but set women's hearts on fire.

Films: "Prisoner of Zenda", "Scaramouche", "Ben Hur", "The Student Prince", "Mata Hari"

Quote: " I was always the hero-with no vices-reciting practically the same lines to the leading lady. The current crop of movie heroes are less handicapped than the old ones. They are more human. The leading men of silent films were Adonis's and Apollo's. Today the hero can even take a poke at the leading lady. In my time, a hero who hit the girl just once would have been out."

The films in bold are the ones I would see first:)

55 comments:

  1. 15 kids! Poor woman. Yet another sad story of drink and violence. Re going to jail for being gay, Scotland was even further behind than England. Homosexuality was not legalised here till 1980.
    Anabel's Travel Blog
    Adventures of a retired librarian

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    1. 1980! Oh my Goodness!! There are many I know but tomorrow and the next day are not as sad:)

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  2. Oh, my....what a heartbreakingly sad story.
    When I first saw the picture, I thought it was a shot of a very young Cesar Romero.

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  3. First I've heard of him too. That is a sad and awful end indeed. Films sure has changed since his silent film days.

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    1. Yes they have changed so much-shame in some ways. he needs to be remembered

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  4. How sad! We just saw the Imitation Game movie and the character in there (for the life of me can I remember his name this early in the morning) was homosexual too, in England, considered a deviant and was subjected to chemical castration (awful). Ended up committing suicide a year later; brilliant mind, cracked the Enigma code during WW2. Anyway, back to this guy; so sad with how he died. Can't imagine having 14 siblings, can you?

    betty

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    1. I still have to see that film. That poor man suffered for no reason-so many did. 15 kids is nuts

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  5. That is incredibly sad.

    He's a new one to me, though.

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    1. It is very sad and he was a big star

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  6. First thing I thought of after reading this:

    “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.” -Henry David Thoreau

    Sounds like he could have been talking about Ramon Navarro. no?

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    1. Great quote!! I agree with you on this

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  7. We watched The Imitation Game last weekend. Poor Alan Turing, prosecuted and persecuted for being gay.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. I have to see that film. It is disgusting how gay people were treated and still are but at least it is getting a little better

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  8. Not familiar with this actor, but holy cow, what a terrible end. :/

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    1. Yes it was a horrific end to a major star from the silents

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  9. It is tragic to hear the stories of what happens to many famous people. Today all the young people want to be famous with Instagram and Facebook, but I do not think they really know what that means. What can happen to famous people, and how others can take advantage of them. There are benefits to being a celebrity, but it can also put one at risk of being taking advantages of people who are greedy.

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    1. I so agree with you. Many want to be famous but when they attain it they don't realize the price they pay and many can't handle the fame-sad indeed

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  10. My grandmother thought he was wonderful. I'd like to see a film he made. And I agree with the others, such a sad end to a life.

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    1. Glad you have heard of him. He was great in Ben Hur and Loved the campy Mata Hari (not meant to be campy but it is now)

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  11. He was picking up strange men when he was sixty-nine? That was a crappy way to go.

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    1. Yup-he was like so many but he paid the ultimate price

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  12. It’s officially the second half of A to Z. Time to catch that second wind, rest up on Sunday, then it’s that mad dash toward the finish line!

    Stephen Tremp
    A to Z Cohost
    N is for Numerology

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    1. Oh gosh I am looking at the calendar:)

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  13. There are some right b***ards around aren't there? Another tragic story. So many of them take to drink. Today it's more likely drugs, but either way, self destruction. I guess picking up strange men is rather asking for trouble.

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    1. There are many out there and back then, there was no where to go to find a man to have a relationship. It is asking for trouble and he found it sadly

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  14. This is a star I'd never heard of. What a sad end he came to.

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    1. It is very sad and wish he was better known

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  15. I've never heard of this man but, wow, what a story! BTW, I love your letters for the A to Z.

    Sunni

    http://sunni-survivinglife.blogspot.com/

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    1. Oh thanks-found them on the internet:) He is known best for how he died which is a shame because he was a big star

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  16. Pretty much a zero tolerance policy back in the day. A very sad ending :(

    Untethered Realms

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  17. Oh gosh what a sad end. Poor man.

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    1. Very sad end and he struggled with who he was all his life

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  18. A lost star remembered for the last act What a woeful end.

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    1. I know and he was such a great actor and full of expectations when he was young

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  19. Some people can be so awful. Sad end.

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    1. People are the cruelest animals on earth

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  20. Again, a remarkable life story. I've never seen the 1925 Ben Hur. I probably should.

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    1. It is excellent and there was allot going on with the making of this film

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  21. So sad. It makes me glad we live in an era where people are much more tolerant...although we still have more work to be done. In a couple more generations, there won't be any hate toward people who have different viewpoints.

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    1. I agree-there have been headways for sure but more can be done

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    1. It is-Wish he was known for his work

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  23. That's sad. I reminds me of imitation game with Benedict cumberbatch. He plays the role,of Alan turning. He created the machine that cracked the enigma code. He was forced to chemically castrate or go to jail for being homosexual. He committed suicide in 1954.

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    1. Yes others have compared the film and Turing's life. It was horrible how the gay population was treated and to have to be castrated-makes no sense

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  24. After reading the last few biographies, I'm glad I'm not an actor. I have insecurities, so I can imagine how I might use drink, drugs, or whatever else to escape into between movies.

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    1. It is funny-many are very shy, many love acting-they don't have to be themselves but many fall into addictions

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  25. This was a new one on me. The next time I see 'BEN-HUR' I'll have to watch for him.

    ~ D-FensDogG

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    1. Remember it is the Silent film not the one with Charlton Heston. Ramon Novarro played the Charlton Heston role in the 1925 version of Ben Hur

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