Lonely, he turned to a long established call-boy service which catered to the rich and famous. His other secret was one he shared with only a few other stars: a sexual ambivalence in an age that had no tolerance at all for male homosexuals. I just finished reading Beyond Paradise . It was to play a part in Novarro’s gruesome death some forty years later. Attending to details so that the bigger picture can emerge.

By definition that meant painting some of the attitudes he faced from society at the time. The younger brother, Tom, having been released, took his own life in 2005. These injuries were enough to kill him but he was said to have died from asphyxiation. July 21, 2010 . As I put it in my novel, “He was the last victim of the ‘Ben-Hur’ murders.”. Looking back, you might think it would have commanded media headlines for days — the bloody murder of America’s first genuine Mexican movie idol, the star of 1925’s “Ben-Hur” and so many other films. Thank you for your comment. In 1923 he was hired by action director Fred Niblo to star in “Thy Name Is Woman” opposite hot-blooded siren Barbara La Marr. Valentino was what ticket-buyers wanted, but only one studio had him and it wasn’t Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Including Ramon. From 1923, he began to play more prominent roles. Ramon died because he was gay and she was embarassed that he was gay & did not follow t/Bible. Paul and Tom Ferguson were brothers from Chicago. [25] Novarro's star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame is at 6350 Hollywood Boulevard. Hi, Christy. I will be looking for his obit (hopefully soon ) to put an end to that horrific story. He is not listed as an inmate according to the facility’s website. The prosecution accused the brothers of torturing Novarro for several hours to force him to reveal where the non-existent money was hidden. If they went there with knowing there was to be a sexual encounter, then surely it wasn’t because of that. Hi, Sylvia. Where did you learn this? Novarro was murdered on October 30, 1968, by brothers Paul and Tom Ferguson, aged 22 and 17, who called him and offered their sexual services. Audiences only wanted to see him as Judah Ben-Hur, however. I just read your comment on Ramon Novarro and was pleased to learn of your connection.

WOW! As much as I knew about Mr. Navarro is as much as I didn’t and I thank you for giving me much of what I didn’t know. It’s said that he had the same qualities as Rudolph Valentino and in fact, Valentino was a good friend.


But he was never happy making movies. . Novarro's murder served as the basis for the short story by Charles Bukowski called "The Murder of Ramon Vasquez", as well as for the song "Tango," by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, recorded by Peggy Lee on her Mirrors album. So the story of Ramón Novarro’s bludgeoned body being found inside his Laurel Canyon home blazed across page one for just a single day, then jumped to the back pages. In 1891 he married Leonor Pérez-Gavilán, the beautiful daughter of a prosperous landowner. Thirteen children were born there: Emilio; Guadalupe; Rosa; Ramón; Leonor; Mariano; Luz; Antonio; José; a stillborn child; Carmen; Ángel and Eduardo. Valentino was Italian, but by 1922, he had developed a cult following as a desert sheik. Novarro was promoted by MGM as a "Latin lover" and became known as a sex symbol after the death of Rudolph Valentino. John. Full Service: My Adventures in Hollywood and the Secret Sex Lives of the Stars. I try to limit my posts to meaningful things. I gotta bookmark this website it seems very useful very beneficial, Thanks for the feedback, Sylvain. When the production started to fall apart in Italy, chief of production Irving Thalberg asked Fred Niblo to take over the reins of the movie, and Niblo insisted that Walsh be replaced by Novarro in the part of Judah Ben-Hur. [2] Novarro's direct ancestors came from the Castilian town of Burgos, whence two brothers emigrated to the New World in the seventeenth century.[3]. Love this story. Disturbing though it is. Thanjks for the feedback. He was often cast as the ‘Latin lover’ type. [1] The family moved to Los Angeles to escape the Mexican Revolution in 1913. However I was barely 12 in 1968, so the interest came long after many of them were gone. After receiving his degree in dentistry at the University of Pennsylvania, he moved to Durango, Mexico, and began a flourishing dental practice. Still, it wouldn’t be until decades later that what I learned about Ramón Novarro found its way into my Hollywood novel, “The Ben-Hur Murders.”.
He lived alone in the Hollywood Hills. I am a big fan of his. This is exactly the kind of story I find most mysterious and fascinating. He had in the past hired prostitutes from an agency to come to his Laurel Canyon home for sex, and the Fergusons obtained Novarro's telephone number from a previous guest. Ferguson, Paul. Three of Ramón's sisters, Guadalupe, Rosa, and Leonor, became nuns. It was a black phallus-shaped ornament, engraved with Valentino’s name. Many Samaniegos had prominent positions in the affairs of state and were held in high esteem by the president. It remained buried there through the ensuing weeks of funerals, criminal investigations and a series of court trials. One reason I write is to get more intimately acquainted with the people and subjects I find of particular interest. Along with Dolores del Río, Lupe Vélez and James Cagney, Novarro was accused of promoting Communism in California after they attended a special screening of the film ¡Que viva México!

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