The 1937 comedy STAND-IN starred Leslie Howard and Joan Blondell, with Humphrey Bogart, Jack Carson, Alan Mowbray in support. The film ,from Walter Wanger Productions, is a spoof on the studio system, with Howard as a stuffy accountant (who knows nothing about the picture business) brought in to save a failing studio.
Joan Blondell is the ‘stand-in’ of the title and Bogart has a small role as a producer who drinks a lot.
Well, that’s how the billing started off. I presume the following posters came after the film was reissued and Bogart was ,well, Bogart.
But some of these posters are quite incredible.
Leslie Howard is now second billed and the dvd cover doesn’t even have the correct title. There is no ‘The’ . It’s just “Stand-In”.
But the following four adverts for the film do something I have never seen before. Leslie Howard’s name is removed completely!
And all of them show an older Bogart and attempt to portray him as the usual Bogie character, tough and mean.
”Bogart at his toughest!”
“He went gunning for the town!”
Bogart as ‘Quintain ‘, with his dog , protesting being kept out of a night club.
Even with Leslie Howard in the scene, his name is nowhere to be seen and only Bogart’s name is above the title.
Foreign posters came to their senses and remembered that Howard is the star.
Leslie Howard plays a character called ‘Atterbury Dodd’. Maybe they were trying to make audiences think the film was similar to “Mr.Deeds Goes to Town.”
Joan Blondell now gets demoted below Bogart.
Now Bogie doesnt even get a mention! How the title became “Always Eva” is anyone’s guess.
I can understand it’s all about promotion and Humphrey Bogart’s name would sell tickets. But I can’t understand leaving out the star’s name. They couldn’t exactly cut out Leslie Howard’s scenes!
Did producer Walter Wanger and Leslie Howard fall out? Even if the reissues were after Leslie Howard’s death, that would be no reason to leave his name out of advertising.
Any thoughts? Any other similar instances?
One could have hoped that the second and last pairing of Howard and Bogart (after “The Petrified Forest”) would have been more substantial than this light comedy, but it wasn’t to be.
Bogart would make another 17 films between 1938 and 1940 before finally showing what he was capable of in HIGH SIERRA and THE MALTESE FALCON, both in 1941.