Lot 441: Hemingway Ernest

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2015-07-10 15:42:35

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Lot 441: Hemingway Ernest: (1899-1961) American Novelist, Nobel Prize Winner For Literature, 1954. A Remarkable T.L.S., Papa, In Bold Pencil, Two Pages, 4To, Finca Vigia, San Francisco De Paula, Cuba, 28Th August 1955, To Marlene Dietrich ('Dearest Kraut'). Hemingway Thanks The Actress For Her Long Letter 'With The Gen On What You Found Wrong' And Remarks 'I Don'T Know Anything About The Theater But I Don'T Think It Would Occur To Me, Even, To Have You Introduced Even To Me With Strains Of La Vie En Rose. Poor Peoples.', Further Providing His Own Advice For Dietrich'S Cabaret Show, 'If I Were Staging It Would Probably Have Something Novel Like Having You Shot Onto The Stage, Drunk, From A Self Propelled Mineworker Which Would Advance In From The Street Rolling Over The Customers. We Would Be Playing €Œland Of Hope And Gloryâ€. As You Landed On The Stage Drunk And Naked I Would Advance From The Rear, Or Your Rear Wearing Evening Clothes And Would Hurriedly Strip Off My Evening Clothes To Cover You Revealing The Physique Of Burt Lancaster Strongfort And Announce That We Were Sorry That We Did Not Know The Lady Was Loaded. All This Time The Thirty Ton S/P/ Mortar Would Be Bulldozing The Customers As We Break Into The Abortion Scene From €Œlakmeâ€. This Is A Scene Which Is Really Spine Tingling And I Have Just The Spine For It. I Play It With A Giant Rubber Whale Called Captain Ahab And All The Time We Are Working On You With Pulmotors And Raversed Vacuum Cleaners Which Blow My Evening Clothes Of You. You Are Foaming At The Mouth Of Course To Show That We Are Really Acting And We Bottle The Foam And Sell It To Any Surviving Customers. You Are Referred To In The Contract As The Artist And I Am Just Captain Ahab. Fortunately I Am Crazed And I Keep Shouting €Œfire One. Fire Two. Fire Three.€ And Don'T Think We Don'T Fire Them. It Is Then That The Germ Of The Mutiny Is Born In Your Dishevelled Brain. But Why Should A Great Artist-Captain Like Me Invent So Many For So Few For Only Air-Mail Love On Sunday Morning When I Should Be In Church. Only For Fun, I Guess. Gentlemen, Crank Up Your Hearses'. Hemingway Reflects 'Marlene, Darling, I Write Stories But I Have No Grace For Fucking Them Up For Other Mediums. It Was Hard Enough For Me To Learn To Write To Be Read By The Human Eye. I Do Not Know How, Nor Do I Care To Know How To Write To Be Read By Parrots, Monkeys, Apes, Baboons, Nor Actors' And Continues His Letter, 'I Love You Very Much And I Never Wanted To Get Mixed In Any Business With You As I Wrote You When This Thing First Was Brought Up. Neither Of Us Has Enough Whore Blood For That….Not Only That But I Myself Was Circumcised At A Very Early Age', Also Wishing Her Luck In California And Las Vegas And Warning Her To Be Careful With The Finances Of Her Shows, 'Some People Would As Soon Have The Publicity Of Making You Look Bad As Of Your Expected And Legitimate Success. But That Is The Way Everything Is Everywhere And No Criticism Of Nevada Or Anyone There. Cut This Paragraph Out Of This Letter And Burn It If You Want To Keep The Rest Of The Letter In Case You Thought Any Of It Funny. I Rely On You As A Kraut Officer And Gentleman To Do This.' Hemingway Then Turns To His Own Work, Commenting 'I Love You Very Much And Wish You Luck. Wish Me Some Too. Book Is On Page 592. This Week Thursday We Start Photography On Fishing. Am In Charge Of Fishing Etc. And It Is Going To Be Difficult Enough. With A Bad Back A Little Worse. The Artist Is Not Here Naturally. I Only Wrote The Book But Must Do The Work As Well And Have No Stand-In. Up At 0450 Knock Off At 1930. This Goes On For 15 Days.' And Concludes 'I Think You Could Say You And I Have Earned Whatever Dough The People Let Us Keep. So What. So Merdre. I Love You As Always'. Hemingway Adds A Holograph Postscript Of Eight Lines To The Verso Of The Second Page, Providing An Update, 'Started Ok On Fishing - One 472 Lbs And One 422 Lbs. Very Good Close Shots Of Harpooning At The End But Fish Too Small Even In Cinemascope For What We Need - Must Have Bigger Fish - System Of Photography And The Way The Local Boats Work And How Close We Can Ride Herd On Them Very Good. Steer 7 To 10 Hrs. On Flying Bridge And It Is Hard Work.' A Letter Of Exceptional Association Between The Writer And Actress, And Also A Letter Of Wonderful, At Times Surreal, Content. Some Very Light, Extremely Minor Creasing, Vg Marlene Dietrich (1901-1992) German-Born American Actress & Singer. At The Time Of The Present Letter, As The Content Suggests, Dietrich Was Preparing For A Series Of Successful Cabaret Shows Which Included A Run Of Performances At The Sahara Hotel In Las Vegas In November 1955. As The Present Letter Shows, Ernest Hemingway Was Initially Involved In The Production Of The Film Version Of His Novel The Old Man And The Sea (1952), And Took An Active Role In Marlin-Fishing To Try And Find A Fish Worthy Enough For The Film. The Film'S Budget Is Reported To Have Grown From $2 Million To $5 Million As A Result Of Searching For €Œsuitable Fish Footageâ€. As It Happened, The Producers Ended Up Using A Rubber Marlin And Stock Footage Of Marlin Fishing For The Film, Which Was Released In 1958 And Starred Spencer Tracy, Who Received An Oscar Nomination For His Performance. The Old Man And The Sea, One Of Hemingway'S Most Famous Works, Was The Last Major Work Of Fiction To Be Produced And Published In His Lifetime. The Novel Was Awarded The Pulitzer Prize For Fiction In 1953 And Was Cited By The Nobel Committee As Contributing Towards Hemingway'S Nobel Prize For Literature In 1954. Hemingway And Dietrich First Met On A French Ocean Liner In 1934 And Maintained A Regular Correspondence For Almost 30 Years. The Writer And The Actress Are Both Recognised As Having Led Complicated And Tangled Love Lives, Although Their Own Personal Relationship Was Never Consummated. Despite A Lengthy Correspondence, Letters From Hemingway To Dietrich Very Rarely Appear On The Market, The Majority Of Their Correspondence Being Housed In The John F Kennedy Presidential Library And Museum Following A Donation By Dietrich'S Daughter, Maria Riva, In 2003. American Book Prices Current Record Only Two Other Letters Written By Hemingway To Dietrich As Having Been Sold At Auction, One With Relatively Routine Content In 2011 ($19,000) And A More Interesting Letter In 2014 ($30,000). International Autograph Auctions' Autograph Auction July 2015 Saturday, 18th July 2015 Estimate: £6000 - 8000
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