02 January, 2018

Curator's Notes: Ted Hawkins in Hollywoodland

Hollywoodland Magazine.  September 1940.

Stepping away from the Strongbox for a moment, we are today presenting additional material and information that relates to the recent exhibit of the Collection Item 317: The Rocket City Lobby Card 1942.  In that post, we introduced visitors to Ted Hawkins, grandson of Geoffrey Hawkins.  Fortunately, we do not have to rely on the contents of a secure strongbox to provide further details and ephemera about this most interesting gentleman.

Ted Hawkins began his film career as a stuntman at Republic Pictures in the mid-1930s.  In 1939, family friend Magnus Deakin offered Hawkins similar work at the fledgling Hyperion-Zephyr Productions. In early 1940, Hawkins landed the leading role of Captain Zephrim Cutlass in the chapter serial The Pirates of Blood Cove and was quickly on a path to stardom.  Later that year he completed two western films, The Timberjack Kid and Riders of the Desert Sun, and then starred in the fifteen episode serial Zephyr Squadron to the Rescue.  His dashing good looks and friendly nature made him a darling of the Hollywood press, despite his poverty row studio pedigree. In September of 1940, he was featured on the cover of Hollywoodland magazine.
Publicity Photo of Ted Hawkins. 1940.

Hawkins is best known for portraying Preston Powers in the three Rocket City chapter serials produced from 1942 to 1945. In the late 1940s, he starred in a series of well regarded crime dramas that are now considered minor classics of the film noir genre. He made his last film in 1953 and then quietly retired to live near family and friends in western Pennsylvania.

0 Observations: