Classic Entertainment Autographs

Cat. #00164413: BABE LONDON

Sorry, this item has already been sold.

Rare vintage 7.5 x 9.5-inch sepia-tone portrait, dating to the 1920s, signed later in life in ballpoint pen.  In fairly good condition, with trimming to all four borders, not affecting the actual image; scattered pinholes and flecks of soiling; and a minute puncture to the bottom right-hand corner, in the black area of her shoulder.  The tremendously plump silent screen comedienne and vaudevillian-- who made an art out of mercilessly mocking her unattractive appearance-- entered films in 1919, playing supporting roles in scores of one- and two-reel comedies for Vitagraph, Al Christie and Educational, often opposite big-name stars like Stan Laurel, Lloyd Hamilton and Harry Langdon.  Films like The Expert Eloper (1919), Merely Mary Ann (1920), Henpecked (1922) and Jonah Jones (1924) are considered classics, as is  Scrambled Eggs (1923), featuring London as a correspondence bride who substitutes a photo of her gorgeous friend for her own, much to Phil Dunham's dismay.  Today, the actress is probably best remembered for the 1931 Laurel and Hardy two-reeler Our Wife, in which she played Hardy's equally hefty fiancĂ©e.  The film's absolute highlight has Stan Laurel attempting to squeeze the elephantine couple, as well as himself, into a tiny automobile.  The sequence reportedly took two days and quite a bit of bruising to complete, partly due to the mirth it generated among the crew. Continuing to appear in character roles in a mixed bag of drama, comedy and romance flicks through 1970, including Jackass Mail (1942), Road to Rio (1947), Joan of Arc (1948), Hazard (1948), Pleasure Treasure (1951), and Sex Kittens Go to College (1960), her best work of this era was in the Three Stooges farce Scrambled Brains (1951), unforgettable as the nurse Shemp Howard absolutely adores, following a major blow to the head.