Thursday, July 13, 2017

Louis Serrano, a Brazilian journalist in Hollywood

Louis Serrano with Sarita Montiel in Hollywood in 1955.
'20 years in Hollywood' written by Zenaide Andrea for Cinelândia, July 1957.
George Stevens, Elizabeth Maria Meyer & her husband Louis Serrano at the première of 'Giant' in Los Angeles - October 1956.

Louis Serrano was sent by his father Jonathas to study in Montreal, Canada in preparation for him to become a teacher like himself had been all his life. That was in the early 1940s. Louis didn't like the severity of the Canadian winter and somehow managed to transfer his course to a university in San Francisco where he graduated and even taught Brazilian literature for some time. 

Soon, Serrano moved down to Southern California though. Poet journalist Raul Bopp (born in Vila Pinhal-RS - 1898-1984) who was a Serrano's twice removed cousin was the Brazilian consul in Los Angeles since 1942 and advised him to stick around there. 

When the USA entered World War II, foreign students were mobilized by the Coordinator Office and Serrano was offered a role in the production of a series of radio shows originating in the West Coast called 'Hollywood fala para o Brasil' to be broadcast by the Voice of America.  

Later on, Serrano met Elizabeth Maria Meyer, a Brazilian actress who was in Hollywood trying for a part in a Melvin Le Roy movie. Louis says he knew she was a special person when he first laid eyes on her. She was doing a routine with another Brazilian girl in which they tried to imitate a malandro's gait - a roughneck's swing. Louis dissuaded her to let go of a career in the movie industry and soon they were married. 

Louis & Elizabeth got married in 1946, and had 2 boys, Frederich aka Rick and Louis, born on his father's birthday plus a girl called Patricia, born in 1954. Elizabeth Maria works as a journalist too but in the fashion section. 

Bing Crosby & Louis Serrano. 
with Frank Sinatra at the Capitol studios in Hollywood, California. 
dressed to kill with Jayne Mansfield; Miyoshi Umeki when she won her Academy Award for 'Sayonara' in 1955.
with Karl Malden... don't leave home without it...
having a cuppa with John Wayne... 
George Nader, Martha Hyer & Serrano at the Ambassador Hotel's Coconut Grove.
recording an interview with James Dean...
with Robert Wagner & Natalie Wood the hottest couple in Hollywood in 1956; Tab Hunter.
James Dean still wearing his red wind-breaker & Tab Hunter in 1955. 
Louis Serrano kept abreast with the new-trends in Hollywood too, as heart-throb Tab Hunter.
Louis did his best to explain Elvis Presley & rock'n'roll but he couldn't grasp the whole thing.
Louis Serrano followed the US Hit Parade and reported at Cinelândia; he saw the introduction of rock'n'roll in the American mainstream.
everything happened in California then... here's the 1958 Miss Universe Pageant.
Miss Universe 1959 in Long Beach, California. 
1959 Miss Universe Pageant with Vera Ribeiro Miss Brazil 1959.
Louis Serrano spent some time in Rio de Janeiro as of May 1957, when he started a daily show at 6:55 PM on Radio Globo where he talked about ...'Show Business' of course. 
Serrano was a technical adviser at MGM in 'Latin lovers' (Meu amor brasileiro) in 1953;  with Bing Crosby at the set of 'White Christmas' in 1954.
Louis was right there on 24 July 1954, when Martha Rocha was the runner up for Miss Universe 1954.
Louis followed it up with Martha Rocha after the most embarrassing injustice done ever at a beauty contest. 
Serrano interviewed James Dean just a few weeks before he smashed his car on 30 September 1955; pays a visit to up-and-coming John Gavin.
never missed a beat... the Golden Globe always came before the Oscars... 
never missed an Academy Award gala... 'Gigi' won 8 Oscars in 1958; Susan Hayward & David Niven were the best actress & actor for 'I want to live' & 'Separate tables'.
RKO Pantages on its glory night on 6 April 1959.
Hollywood wasn't sure what to do with Sara Montiel; they didn't know how to handle Suzy Parker either. 
Zenaide Andrea wrote this article for Cinelândia about Louis Serrano's life - May 1957.

Paulo Serrano

Paulo Serrano was one of the many crooners that popped up in the 1930s when radio broadcasting in Brazil -  we're talking here about Rio de Janeiro - was still in its infancy. He was signed by Radio Nacional circa 1936, and was known to sing Mexican and Neapolitan songs.

Ruy Cartier was born on 12 March 1908, in Rio Grande do Sul. His older brother Horacio Cartier nee João Cartier - was an established author.

His younger brother was Luiz Cartier later known as Louis Serrano who lived in Hollywood, California most of his life reporting about the movie business to publications like Cinelândia & Filmelândia.

'Carioca' says Paulo Serrano went to a Jesuit school, was tutored by Erminio Meyer and studied music with Luiz Cosme.  

'Carioca' magazine 1936 says Paulo Serrano is now signed to Radio nacional. 

'Carioca' gives a list of performers using pseudonyms and their real names. Paulo Serrano's real name was Ruy Cartier whose brother Horacio Cartier was an author but whose real name was João; on the left a dark Paulo Serrano portrait by 'Carioca'.

Paulo Serrano talks to 'Carioca' about his love for Brazilian music and why he chose to sing Spanish and Neapolitan songs instead. Paulo also talks about his role at 'Alegria' a film shot in Rio by Oduvaldo Vianna in which he sings a Radamés Gnatalli song. 

Serrano stresses his love for his native Rio Grande do Sul, Gnatalli and Luiz Cosme. He says 'Tito Schippa is the greatest singer of Spanish songs. I think Charlo is the most interesting singer of Argentine songs even though I love Agustin Magaldi too'. 

Paulo Serrano started his singing career at Radio Nacional but now he's signed by Radio Cruzeiro do Sul

Paulo would leave off crooning to become the boss at Sinter Records, one of the greatest recording labels in the 1940s and 1950s. 

Louis Serrano, Radio Globo's Hollywood correspondent

'A Noite', 18 June 1957: Louis Serrano is Radio Globo's artistic director and has a daily programme called 'Show business' at 6:35 PM. 

'A Noite', 24 July 1957: columnist J.Picilone pokes fun at Louis Serrano for his having an English-sounding pseudonym; left: Louis Serrano arrives in Rio de Janeiro, having flown from Los Angeles in 1954 being greeted by his brother Paulo Serrano and Ramalho Netto

'A Noite', 9 January 1957.

Ribeiro Fernandes is given a position as Hollywood correspondent to Rio de Janeiro's daily 'A Noite'. He flies to Los Angeles and is welcomed by 'O Globo's own correspondent Louis Serrano who shows him the ropes about the new place. Serrano introduces Ribeiro to Ely Levy, Columbia Pictures' advertising man  who converses with him in Portuguese as Mr Fernandes was not very good in English yet.