Sister Celluloid

Where old movies go to live

Please Join Us for the Backstage Blogathon!

I’m thrilled to be co-hosting another blogathon with the fabulous Fritzi at Movies Silently! And this one premieres in—gasp!—2016. Which is much closer than you think.

On that cheery note, please join us January 15-18 for the Backstage Blogathon!

What’s it about? Well, the entertainment industry has always loved looking in the mirror, and we’re going to be taking a peek at what they put on the screen as a result—from love letters to scathing indictments and everything in between.

This isn’t limited to movies about movies: You can pick films that go behind the scenes of any performing art: ballet, theatre, puppetry, opera, the circus… use your imagination!


The film must feature performing arts as a significant part of the plot. So it’s not enough for a character to simply be, say, an actress; the profession must play an important part in the story. John Cassavetes, for instance, plays a struggling actor in Rosemary’s Baby, but the movie’s about communing with Satan, who in this case is not Louis B. Mayer.

To join up, all you have to do is tell either Fritzi or me your film choice. All movies must be from 1970 or before and, considering how often the arts have gazed at themselves on film, no duplicates are allowed—we are confident there’s something for everyone! Animated films are welcome, as are foreign movies. But no documentaries, please.


Here are some suggestions: Make Me a Star, Film Film Film, Ella Cinders, Our Gang Follies of 1936, All About Eve, The OscarForever FemaleValley of the DollsA Star Is Born (Janet Gaynor or Judy Garland but not, heaven forbid, Barbra Streisand)The Big KnifeBlack Widow, Lili, Pinocchio, The Hard WayThe Mind ReaderNightmare AlleyTrapeze, At the CircusA Night at the OperaFreaksHe Who Gets SlappedLaugh Clown LaughThe UnknownBerserk, Sunset Boulevard, The Next Voice You HearShine on Harvest MoonIt’s a Great FeelingSummer StockLove Me or Leave Me, Bombshell, Dancing Lady, Svengali, Sullivan’s Travels, and biopics of performers.


And to answer a couple of other questions in advance:

I have great behind-the-scenes stories of a famous film. Can I write about those?

No. We’re covering how movies portray the entertainment industry. Of course, if you have some juicy anecdotes about the backstage film you are covering, feel free to include them.

Can I write about authors and painters?

While we all love us some Kirk Douglas as Van Gogh or Norma Shearer as Elizabeth Barrett Browning, they’re for another blogathon another day. This event centers around the performing arts. Other forms of art can be featured but the movie must focus on acting, singing, dancing etc. as the main theme.

Once you sign up, please take a banner from this post and place it in your blog’s sidebar. We’re so happy to have you aboard! (We also understand that life happens, so if you find you can’t make the event after all, please let us know as soon as you can so we can free up that film for another blogger to claim. Thanks!) Grab a movie and let’s go backstage!


The Roster So Far:

Movies Silently    Kean and No Way to Treat a Lady
Sister Celluloid    Souls for Sale
Criterion Blues    The Red Shoes
Speakeasy     The Lost Squadron
A Shroud of Thoughts     42nd Street
B Noir Detour     A Double Life
Now Voyaging     Show People
Silver Screenings     Footlight Parade
The Motion Pictures     Annabel Takes a Tour
The Last Drive In     The Legend of Lyla Claire
Citizen Screen     Daffy Duck in Hollywood
Movie Movie Blog Blog     You Ought to Be in Pictures
Caftan Woman     Charlie Chan at the Opera
Make Mine Criterion     Hellzapoppin’
Carole & Co.     Twentieth Century
Defiant Success     Yankee Doodle Dandy
Love Letters to Old Hollywood     There’s No Business Like Show Business
Stardust     Singin’ in the Rain
Nitrateglow     The Unknown
Mildred’s Fatburgers     Kiss Me Kate
Wolffian Classic Movie Digest     The Bad and the Beautiful
Cinematic Scribblings     8 1/2
Cinema Cities     The Barkleys of Broadway
Immortal Ephemera     What Price Hollywood?
Moon in Gemini     Unfaithfully Yours
Smitten Kitten Vintage     Easter Parade
Cinephiliaque     Contempt
Tam May, Author     Stage Door
The Movie Rat     Our Gang Follies of 1936
Critica Retro     The Phantom of the Opera (1925 and 1943)
The Joy and Agony of Movies     All About Eve
David Bruce Appreciation Society     Alice in Movieland
Cinema Shame     A Night at the Opera
Second Sight Cinema      The Gang’s All Here
Girls Do Film     Contempt
Cinema Gadfly     Variety Lights
Wonderful World of Cinema     Lady Be Good
Scribblings     Upstream
LA Explorer     Babes in Arms and Babes on Broadway
Welcome to My Magick Theater     Abbott and Costello in Hollywood
Phyllis Loves Classic Movies     What a Great Feeling and Funny Girl
Old Hollywood Films      Summer Stock
Pop Culture Pundit     Sunset Boulevard
Crimson Kimono     They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?
Tossing It Out     Idiot’s Delight
Wrote by Rote     Give My Regards to Broadway
The Love Pirate     The Producers (1967)
BB Creations     The Band Wagon
Laini Giles     Ziegfeld Girl



  1. Reblogged this on and commented:
    Here’s a unique upcoming blogathon!

  2. I’d like to do the 1940 Warner Bros. cartoon “You Ought to Be in Pictures,” where Daffy Duck tries to finagle Porky Pig out of a job.

    • LOVE that one!! I think it’s the best of the Daffy in Hollywood series. You got it!!

  3. Any room for me to write about Hellzapoppin’?

  4. I’d love to sign on with “Charlie Chan at the Opera”.

  5. I’d love to write about The Barkleys of Broadway! 🙂

  6. Hello, does Le Mépris (Contempt) by Jean-Luc Godard qualifies in the blogathon? if yes, that will be my contribution! If not, I might pick Ingmar Bergman’s The Magician instead. Thank you!

    • I think Contempt definitely qualifies!! Welcome!!

      • Perfect! Thank You! Le Mot du Cinephiliaque

  7. tammayauthor

    Hi there! I’d like to do Stage Door (1937) for this blogathon, if that’s OK with you. My blog is Mother Time Musings ( I’d like to post on Friday, January 15, as I post about classic films on Fridays, so this will fit in nicely.

    Looking forward to it!


  8. I’d like to cover “Alice in Movieland” for the David Bruce Appreciation Society (

  9. I didn’t see Truffaut’s Day for Night listed, I would like to grab that if I could

  10. I’m not sure this is exactly what you’re looking for. But what about You’ll Find Out, the 1940 Kay Kyser picture. It’s not particularly well known. It’s behind the scenes of Kyser’s radio show. He plays himself; he and his band are hired to play in a creepy mansion. As an OTR fan and classic movie fan, I’ve watched it about 100 times. Just let me know.

    • It’s borderline but you obviously love it so that pushes it into the “Go” category for me!! 🙂

      • Thanks! Just let me know exactly when you want it posted. (Do you know the movie? Few people seem to. I found it because I enjoy Kay Kyser’s Kollege of Musical Knowledge.)

    • Thanks, Steve! Be sure to post it in Fritzi’s comments too; she’s doing the first-day wrap-up!!


  1. The Backstage Blogathon | Make Mine Criterion!
  2. Get Crazy (Allan Arkush, 1983) | Make Mine Criterion!
  3. You’ll Find Out – Spontaneous Whimsy
  4. Backstage Blogathon: A Double Life – BNoirDetour
  5. Jane Fonda in They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? | Crimson Kimono
  6. Hellzapoppin’ (H. C. Potter, 1941) | Make Mine Criterion!
  7. - Login Information -Official Site
  8. backstage - Login Information -Official Site

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