If all those stories told of the Los Angeles movie colony are true, why do the film producers go to all the trouble of scenarios and posed pictures? Why not just turn their cameras on Hollywood from day to day?

Tacoma Ledger
March 3, 1922

Sunday, March 20

Everybody by now...

          ... has heard that Fatty Arbuckle has been arrested and awaits trial for the rape and murder of Virginia Rappé.  I just don't know what to think.  Rumours are flying around Hollywood with their usual speed (our publicity man once remarked to me “here in Hollywood, if you sneeze on Wiltshire, someone will sell you cold medicine by Sunset Boulevard”); and their usual accuracy.

          Of course I knew Roscoe back when I was personal assistant to Mack Sennett over at Keystone, and I have to tell you that I never found him anything but gay and charming.  It really is quite incredible to me that such accusations could be true, particularly when Mr Sennett ordered I have the lot shut down and fumigated after he discovered that Virginia Rappé had contracted the sort of disease that suggests much about her character while in our employ.  It is a terrible shame that someone so young has lost her life, of course, but when you live as hard as she did, why naturally there are consequences.

          I got the dope about that party up in San Francisco straight from one of the script girls over at Paramount, who ought to know what she's talking about (though delicacy forbids me from stating precisely why).  I suspect she personally attended the party, though of course she denies this.

          It's not known why Roscoe chose San Francisco as the setting for the party he was throwing to celebrate his new Paramount contract (rumored to be worth $1million a year), but I'm told that he simply wanted to give his brand new Pierce Arrow a good run up the coast, so San Francisco it was.  The party was a typical Hollywood one – plenty of booze, dope, and the sorts of girls who claim they are unable to Charleston freely while fully dressed.

          I know it all sounds terribly shocking, but believe me I've known wilder ones here in Hollywood, some involving names you would be very surprised to hear associated with such behavior.  After some years “knocking about” here in Hollywood, I've come to the conclusion that one must suspend the usual moral judgements when considering movie folk: they are simply of a different breed and subject to a different set of rules than you and I.

          So far, my script girl friend has confirmed that neither Virginia Rappé nor her friend Maude Delmont (well known in these parts for being a “professional correspondent” for blackmailers) were invited to the party, but they arrived nevertheless.  She claims to have been too inebriated to recall much more than that (a claim I'm wont to believe given what I know of her activities) but I suspect that as time goes by and our mutual friend Mr Arbuckle's trial looms, her memory will begin to clear. I shall keep you informed of developments.

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