The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of Fake"

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luckyboy
 
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The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of Fake"

Postby luckyboy » 18 Jan 2014

Hello guys!

I don't know if someone else found about this already, sorry, if it has been posted before, but, a friend of mine, just sent me this this morning, I thought to share it with you.

http://unpopperuno.wordpress.com/2014/0 ... olland-dr/


It's in Italian ( I'm Italian) and unfortunately now I don't have the time to translate if from you; basically, the blogger says that after having been trhu some research, he found a little novel published in 1923 from author Jack Whitman on the American magazine Munsey's Magazine ( same magazine that a few months earlier published the novel "Spurs" by Tod Robbins, novel that was the base for the movie "Freaks").

This guys, Jack Withman wrote this novel " The Irony of Fake" which is about the adventures of Sylvia North as a novice in the motion picture metropolis.

He goes on explaining that this girls, a small town girl, goes to Hollywood and, well, the main part of the story, apparently is about some casting about a movie, she meets the character of a cowboy, and there's also a rival girl for getting the part.

I gotta go now!!!
I'll try to do some research myself and, if you know something about it, let me know!

Cheers!

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby skytop » 18 Jan 2014

not sure if this was mentioned before. Im sure someone will confirm soon.

Is "The Irony of Fake" an actual novel or a short story? I found an online version but it's only a few pages long.

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby skytop » 18 Jan 2014

you can read the Irony of Fake here: http://www.unz.org/Pub/Munseys-1923jul-00269

very interesting. I don't think it's a major breakthrough in explaining the plot but it's clear that this is the Sylvia North lynch is referring to in MD.

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby luckyboy » 18 Jan 2014

Thanks Skytop! I guess that's all, 9 pages..it must be written for the magazine only.

Well, what can I say? i love the way David Lynch's mind work!!!!

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby Siku » 20 Jan 2014

Great work, luckyboy! The author, Jack Whitman, had five stories published in Munsey's Magazine between June 1922 and July 1923. I haven't read them yet, but something in Degrees of Temprement caught my eye...

It's the story of an actress named Rhodes who has an affair with her director!

:shock:

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby Siku » 21 Jan 2014

This is too much! Just finished reading The Irony of Fake and its all here - the sun drenched boulevards, the palm trees...

Sylvia North arrives from her home town of Cedarhurst hoping for a shot at the big time, but is soon being mocked by those in the know, "another immigrant has landed".

Check actress called Betty. Check photo resume. She finds a place and immediatley sets about remodelling herself...

"The days that followed were filled with heartache and disappointment for Sylvia.... The kind of attention she received from one or two of the casting directors, she did not desire.... Then one day she could no longer lunch at the Orange Moon and eat her fill. She began to think of takng a smaller room."

So she transforms herself and enters a world of fantasy. Things get weirdly unreal, there's a white horse and a cowboy, "I deceived you, I let you think I was a Western girl, and I'm not".

But best of all, "...she was in the midst of a dream world."

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby luckyboy » 21 Jan 2014

Isn't that interesting?

So, now we clearly know where the inspiration comes from.
I wonder if in the past some studio ever tried to make a movie out of this short story, or if it served as inspiration for other movies.

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby Siku » 21 Jan 2014

Normally I'm not bothered whether a connection was explicitly meant by Lynch, was mere coincidence, or part of some wider lexicon of universal symbols or collective unconscious. In this case, however, the connections seem so numerous that I think we can reasonably conclude Lynch has both read this and used it as source material.

That said, the more inter-textual connections we make, the more likely it is that any given event/person/prop/etc. ties in to multiple places on that web of connections. I've been looking at MD so long now, and so liberally, that I see faces in the wallpaper everywhere I look! It's insanity but it's fun.

I guess what I'm saying is that I hope some you will take the time to read these stories and share your thoughts on how they relate and what they reveal.

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby Siku » 23 Jan 2014

And to confirm, no this most certainly has NOT been found before. It's what blu would call an Easter Egg, and a goddam Fabergé one at that.

In fact it's so remarkable that when my partner suggested (after reading) that it might be a hoax, I got the fear and had to unearth the online archive of the copy of Munsey's that Irony of Fake appeared in.

Looking at the cover of that edition I think you'll agree there's no question this inspired Mulholland Dr. ;-)

Munseys Magazine July 1923.jpg

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby skytop » 23 Jan 2014

haha good photoshop work.

I still didn't get around to reading the other stories but I am planning to do that soon, starting with degrees of temprement.

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby skytop » 28 Jan 2014

I finally got around to reading "degrees of temperament". I have to say I do not particularly enjoy reading these stories. I just find them kind of flat and boring. But I guess for someone who in the movie business they might be more interesting. Once again there are echoes of MD in this story, but perhaps not as obvious as with "irony of Fake".

*SPOILER ALERT**

In a nutshell, "degrees of temperament" is a story about how actors are fake. The story is narrated by an electrician who works on movie sets. He generally seems to despise every director and actor in the business. In his view, directors are mostly untalented "ex-bartenders" and actors are dumb puppets. In the story he describes his experience working on a movie called "the soul doctor" in which he worked with the only two hollywood people who earned his respect: a terminally ill director named George Richards and actress Olive Rhodes. He credits George and Olive for being the only true creative forces behind "the soul doctor". George and Olive fall in love while filming the movie, but in the end George dies of his illness and Olive leaves the movie industry. In contrast, two other actors in the movie (Tom Mervin and Billie Thompson) who in his view made no contribution to the movie whatsoever will go on the become stars and reap huge rewards on the back of the success of "the soul doctor". Tom and Billie, boast about "creating" their characters in media interviews when in fact they didn't understand anything about the characters they were playing (according to the electrician).

So as I said, there are vague echoes of MD here for sure. Maybe someone with more imagination can decipher more specific clues though :holmes: :holmes: :holmes:

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby Siku » 19 Mar 2014

Seems a shame that the board is so quiet at the moment when something like this has been uncovered.

Quiet without kmkmiller and blu around isn't it!?

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby ctyankee » 21 Mar 2014

If true, this looks like a fantastic discovery. And after this long a time, significant things still coming up. That's wonderful.

My one reservation is whether this article is real or fake. My concern is that there is only one source that I could find for this article. Also, Google Books scanned all of Munsey's Magazines up to 1922. When it ends there i.e., NOT including 1923 I have to wonder why. See footnotes here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Munsey%27s_Magazine

So ... particularly with a title like "The Irony of Fake" ... until we get confirming evidence that this is completely legit, I have to wonder. Hopefully solid proof is forthcoming.

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby Bob » 23 Mar 2014

Siku wrote:Check actress called Betty. Check photo resume.


Don't remember reading about any Betty or photo resume. Can you point me to it?

For me the two major connections apart from the main character's name are her background as a bright-eyed small-town girl trying to make it big in Hollywood and secondly the Cowboy power figure she meets.

Are these 9 pages all there is? The story felt kinda cut off and ultimately pointless. Like MD if it had ended after the dream portion.

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Re: The Silvya North Story : Jack Whitman's "The Irony of F

Postby Siku » 26 Mar 2014

'Betty Thompson' page 271, col 1, para 4.
Photo resume: The opening page tells how Sylvia was encouraged to go to Hollywood by her photgrapher. She presents the photos to a casting agent on page 272, col 2.

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