Lots of people have asked me why in the world didn't Turner Classic Movies celebrate Jean Harlow's 100th birthday yesterday.
The short answer? Their annual "31 Days of Oscar" festival ran from February 1 to March 3 this year.
The bigger picture? TCM has named Jean Harlow its Star of the Month for March 2011. This means viewers will enjoy 20 of her films over the next four weeks, programmed in blocks of 4-6 at a time, each Tuesday night.
If my memory is correct, this is only the secod time that TCM has bestowed the honor on Jean since the cable network launched in April 1994. I didn't start getting TCM until 1999, so correct me if I'm wrong, please and thank you!
Back in 2001 they acknowledged her 90th birthday a month late, in April, because at that time "31 Days" was a March-long event. Then she was named Star of the Month in May. So, we've come a long way in ten years.
TCM has also produced this great video, hosted by Mr. Osborne, to promote Jean's month-long tribute:
Alternatively, here's a direct link to the video on the TCM site.
*Drumroll* Here's the line-up for March. All times are US Eastern, adjust according to your local time zone. Canadian fans, see this schedule.
Tuesday, March 8
8:00 PM Red-Headed Woman (1932) - An ambitious secretary tries to sleep her way into high society. Cast: Jean Harlow, Chester Morris, Una Merkel. Dir: Jack Conway. BW-80 mins, TV-PG, CC
9:30 PM Three Wise Girls (1932) - Three models try to snag husband's but the ones they find are already married. Cast: Jean Harlow, Mae Clarke, Marie Prevost. Dir: William Beaudine. BW-69 mins, TV-G
10:45 PM Riffraff (1936) - Young marrieds in the fishing business run afoul of the law. Cast: Jean Harlow, Spencer Tracy, Joseph Calleia. Dir: J. Walter Ruben. BW-94 mins, TV-G, CC
12:30 AM Suzy (1936) - A French air ace discovers that his showgirl wife's first husband is still alive. Cast: Jean Harlow, Cary Grant, Franchot Tone. Dir: George Fitzmaurice. BW-93 mins, TV-G, CC
2:15 AM City Lights (1931) - In this silent film, the Little Tramp tries to help a blind flower seller to see again. Cast: Charles Chaplin, Virginia Cherrill, Harry Myers. Dir: Charles Chaplin. BW-87 mins, TV-G (Note: not sure why they're including this in the mix. Jean worked as an extra in the party scene. Don't blink or you'll miss her!)
Tuesday, March 15
8:00 PM The Public Enemy (1931) - An Irish-American street punk tries to make it big in the world of organized crime. Cast: James Cagney, Edward Woods, Jean Harlow. Dir: William A. Wellman. BW-84 mins, TV-PG, CC, DVS
9:30 PM Bombshell (1933) - A glamorous film star rebels against the studio, her pushy press agent and a family of hangers-on. Cast: Jean Harlow, Lee Tracy, Frank Morgan. Dir: Victor Fleming. BW-96 mins, TV-G, CC
11:15 PM Libeled Lady (1936) - When an heiress sues a newspaper, the editor hires a reporter to compromise her. Cast: Jean Harlow, Myrna Loy, Spencer Tracy. Dir: Jack Conway. BW-98 mins, TV-G, CC, DVS
1:00 AM Reckless (1935) - A theatrical star gets in over her head when she marries a drunken millionaire. Cast: Jean Harlow, William Powell, Franchot Tone. Dir: Victor Fleming. BW-97 mins, TV-PG, CC
2:45 AM Personal Property (1937) - The bailiff charged with disposing of a financially strapped widow's estate pretends to be her butler. Cast: Jean Harlow, Robert Taylor, Reginald Owen. Dir: W.S. Van Dyke II. BW-84 mins, TV-G
Tuesday, March 22
8:00 PM Wife vs. Secretary (1936) - A secretary becomes so valuable to her boss that it jeopardizes his marriage. Cast: Clark Gable, Myrna Loy, Jean Harlow. Dir: Clarence Brown. BW-88 mins, TV-G, CC
9:45 PM Red Dust (1932) - A plantation overseer in Indochina is torn between a married woman and a lady of the evening. Cast: Clark Gable, Jean Harlow, Mary Astor. Dir: Victor Fleming. BW-83 mins, TV-G, CC
11:15 PM Hold Your Man (1933) - A hard-boiled babe and a con man wear down each other's rough edges. Cast: Jean Harlow, Clark Gable, Stuart Erwin. Dir: Sam Wood. BW-87 mins, TV-PG, CC
1:00 AM China Seas (1935) - A sea captain caught in a romantic triangle has to fight off modern-day pirates. Cast: Clark Gable, Jean Harlow, Wallace Beery. Dir: Tay Garnett. BW-87 mins, TV-G, CC
2:30 AM The Secret Six (1931) - A secret society funds the investigation of a bootlegging gang. Cast: Wallace Beery, Clark Gable, Jean Harlow. Dir: George Hill. BW-84 mins, TV-PG, CC
4:00 AM Saratoga (1937) - A horse breeder's daughter falls for a bookie. Cast: Clark Gable, Jean Harlow, Lionel Barrymore. Dir: Jack Conway. BW-92 mins, TV-G, CC
Tuesday, March 29
8:00 PM Dinner At Eight (1933) - A high-society dinner party masks a hotbed of scandal and intrigue. Cast: Marie Dressler, John Barrymore, Jean Harlow. Dir: George Cukor. BW-111 mins, TV-PG, CC, DVS
10:00 PM The Girl From Missouri (1934) - A gold-digging chorus girl tries to keep her virtue while searching for a rich husband. Cast: Jean Harlow, Franchot Tone, Lionel Barrymore. Dir: Jack Conway. BW-72 mins, TV-PG, CC
11:30 PM Platinum Blonde (1931) - A heartless heiress seduces a hard-working reporter into a disastrous marriage. Cast: Robert Williams, Loretta Young, Jean Harlow. Dir: Frank Capra. BW-89 mins, TV-G
1:15 AM The Beast Of The City (1932) - A police captain leads the fight against a vicious gangland chief. Cast: Walter Huston, Jean Harlow, Wallace Ford. Dir: Charles Brabin. BW-86 mins, TV-14, CC
This Day 5 post for the Jean Harlow Centenary Blogathon, hosted by The Kitty Packard Pictorial, is brought to you in conjunction with Harlow In Hollywood: The Blonde Bombshell in the Glamour Capital, 1928-1937 by Darrell Rooney and Mark Vieira, the gorgeous new book from Angel City Press. Pre-sale discounts still available via Amazon.