January 4, 2012Turns out the information we got yesterday from Google was not right. We put in a photo of the Duke into Google's new image search and got the information that the photo was from a movie called The First Rebel.
Here's how it evidently happened. Google searched the web and found this French DVD:
Someone at RKO, or in France, thought this image would be sexier than a real photo from the film (they were probably correct). So, that's how Google found the right image with the wrong info. I have a hunch this is going to be even a more thorny issue down the pike.
Here's a photo from the re-release War of the Wildcats (1959). It was first called In Old Oklahoma (1943).
The Duke's hat, the scarf and the shirt and the pants all line up with the publicity still. Interesting that they simply changed the name and re-released it under another name 15 years later. I wonder if the Duke got a cut of that? I kind of doubt it. In those days the studio system basically did what they wanted and all the actors were under contract (basically employees).
And, looking forward to the future, with the proliferation of mash-ups and appropriation of images for "art" I think this is only going to make search worse.
"So, it seems, the more information we get, the less we seem to know."