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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr


Indiana Jones: Hollywood Follies Indiana Jones
Hollywood Follies
TV movie
Written by Jonathan Hales and Matthew Jacobs
Directed by Michael Schultz
Release date: October 15, 1994

Indy's summer break from university is spent working at a pair of Hollywood film productions.


Read the "August – Early September, 1920" entry of the It’s Not the Years, It’s the Mileage Indiana Jones chronology for a summary of this episode


Notes from the Indiana Jones chronology


This episode takes place in Hollywood and its environs in August through early September, 1920.


Didja Know?


This TV movie was technically never a part of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles TV series, airing on the Family Channel as Young Indiana Jones and the Hollywood Follies.


Notes from the Old Indy bookends of The Young Indiana Chronicles


There were no Old Indy bookends for this TV movie.


Notes from The Lost Journal of Indiana Jones


The Lost Journal of Indiana Jones is a 2008 publication that purports to be Indy's journal as seen throughout The Young Indiana Chronicles and the big screen Indiana Jones movies. The publication is also annotated with notes from a functionary of the Federal Security Service (FSB) of the Russian Federation, the successor agency of the Soviet Union's KGB. The FSB relieved Indy of his journal in 1957 during the events of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. The notations imply the journal was released to other governments by the FSB in the early 21st Century. However, some bookend segments of The Young Indiana Chronicles depict Old Indy still in possession of the journal in 1992. The discrepancy has never been resolved.  


The events of this episode are not covered in the journal as published. It is possible additional pages from this time were excised from the journal by the FSB for some reason when it was in their possession. 


The boxed set of DVDs of the complete The Young Indiana Chronicles TV series has notations and drawings in the storage slot for each disk that suggest they are meant to be excerpts from Indy's journal. Most of these notes and drawings do not appear in the The Lost Journal of Indiana Jones book. Here is the slot image for this episode:


Characters appearing or mentioned in this episode


Indiana Jones


George Gershwin

Margaret "Peggy" Peabody (mentioned only)
Kate Rivers (mentioned only)
Gloria Schuyler (mentioned only)

George White (mentioned only)

Carl Laemmle

Laemmle's secretary

Erich von Stroheim

Isadore "lzzy" Bernstein

Laemmle's nephews (mentioned only)

waiter on train car



Universal Studios checkpoint guard

Abe Laemmle
Sol Laemmle
Manny Laemmle
Morrie Bernstein
Joe Bernstein

Irving Thalberg

tour leader

Claire Lieberman

John Ford

Ed (projectionist)

von Stroheim's butler

Tony Lewis


Prince Massimo

Douglas Fairbanks (mentioned only)

Mary Pickford (mentioned only)

Rudolph Valentino
Pola Negri








Alphone Studders (mentioned only)

Harry Carey

the Flints (characters in Six Steps to Hell)

the Simms (characters in Six Steps to Hell)

Wyatt Earp


Kitty Mayfack

Rick (mentioned only)


Black Jack (mentioned only)

Tyke (mentioned only)






Didja Notice?


The silent film Indy is watching as our movie opens appears to be the 1925 production of Ben-Hur (though it's only 1920 in the Indy timeline!). The theater scene was shot at Thalian Hall in Wilmington, NC.


The man who sits down next to Indy at the movie theater is George Gershwin (1898-1937), an American composer and pianist who became known for his Broadway compositions. He had become a friend of Indy's in "Scandal of 1920".


Though Indy has been fired from the production of George White's Scandals of 1920 for cheating on the boss' daughter, White himself understands that Indy saved the opening night of the show and is helping him get an in with Universal Pictures owner Carl Laemmle. Indy was dating three women at the same time in "Scandal of 1920", Gloria Schuyler being one who was the daughter of the (fictitious) investor in the revue, J. J. Schuyler. George White (1891-1968) was an American Broadway and film producer, director, actor, choreographer, composer, dancer, dramatist, lyricist, and screenwriter. He produced his Scandals revues from 1919-1939. Carl Laemmle (1867-1939) was the founder of Universal Pictures and remained as its owner until 1934.


At 2:41 on the DVD, a New York street scene shows the Knickerbocker Theatre, Dewalt Music Supplies, Academy, and Savoy. Knickerbocker Theatre may be a reference to the historical Broadway theatre of the time by that name, though the building here looks different. Academy and Savoy may refer to movie theaters of around that time, but were not on the same street as the Knickerbocker. Dewalt Music Supplies appears to be fictitious. Advertising signs for Coca-Cola, Optimo Cigars, and Stetson Hats are also seen. Optimo Cigars was an actual brand at the time.


The interior of the Universal Pictures building in New York was shot at Kerrwood Hall of Westmont College in Montecito, CA.


In explaining to Indy that the director of the currently-shooting film, Foolish Wives, is a genius, but a madman, Laemmle uses the term meshuge. Meshuge is a Yiddish word for "crazy". Foolish Wives is a 1922 silent film written and directed by Erich von Stroheim (1885-1957). 


At 3:49 on the DVD, Laemmle looks out the window of his Universal office at a giant billboard advertising Foolish Wives and, more specifically, von Stroheim, with the phrase, "He's going to make you hate him, even if it takes a million dollars of our money to do it." This was an actual advertisement for the film.
Foolish Wives billboard in this episode Foolish Wives advertisement, circa 1922


Laemmle sends Indy to Hollywood to ride herd on von Stroheim during the shooting of the picture. Hollywood is a neighborhood of Los Angeles, CA, famed for its production of film and television.


Laemmle remarks to Indy that his brother-in-law, lzzy Bernstein, is ostensibly running the studio in Hollywood, but he refers to Izzy as a shlimil. This is a reference to Isadore Bernstein (1876-1944), who did serve as a studio manager for Laemmle, but was mostly known as a screenwriter. Shlimil is a Yiddish term for a clumsy or inept person. Laemmle goes on to mention having nephews, "scores of them", working for him out there too. Laemmle did have a number of family members work for the studio.


At 5:21 on the DVD, Indy rides Engine 290 to the west coast. The train used for the shoot was the Atlanta & West Point #290 on the New Georgia Railroad.


Indy arrives by train at Union Station in Los Angeles. The building seen is actually the Amtrak station in Santa Barbara.


Indy takes a Yellow Cab from Union Station to Universal Studios in Hollywood. Yellow Cab is a name now belonging to multiple companies across the United States that operate taxi services in their local areas under the name Yellow Cab, originally founded in 1907. The cab itself is a 1927 Studebaker Commander.


The tall building with a sign on top seen down the road at 6:08 on the DVD is the Fontenoy apartment building on Whitley Avenue in Los Angeles.


Possibly, the road seen at 6:11 on the DVD, on Indy's ride from Union Station to Universal Studios, is meant to be Mulholland Drive.


The entrance of Universal Studios seen here is actually the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History.


As the cab drives onto the grounds of Universal Studios at 6:31 on the DVD, notice that, among the many costumed actors walking the lot, there appears to be a loin-cloth dressed man with beard and long hair walking alongside another man dressed as a Roman soldier and then two prop men carrying a life-sized crucifix behind them!


Izzy Bernstein introduces Indy to his associates at the studio, Abe Laemmle, Sol Laemmle, Manny Laemmle, Morrie Bernstein, and Joe Bernstein, all related in some way to founder Carl Laemmle. Although, as previously stated, Laemmle had a number of relatives working for him at Universal, I've been unable to confirm whether any of these gents were actual historical figures of the time.


Indy works with Irving Thalberg while trying to reign in von Stroheim. Thalberg (1899-1936) was an American film producer, best known for his artistic and profitable hit movies for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in the 1920s-30s. He started out his film career at Universal.


At 9:19 on the DVD, Thalberg points out a tour group at Universal, costing a quarter per person. The Universal Studios Tour would go on to become world famous.


At 9:43 on the DVD, a film shoot on the studio lot is using asbestos flakes to simulate snowfall. Of course, much later, in 1977, asbestos was declared to be a human carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer.


The Foolish Wives soundstage was shot at the Limoneira Company packing house in Santa Paula, CA.


As he does here, von Stroheim claimed to be the son of Austrian nobility, but this was just a backstory he created to lend himself cache; his father was a hat maker in Vienna.


Von Stroheim refers to Indy as a dummkopf. This is German for "fool".


On the set of Foolish Wives, Indy meets story editor Claire Lieberman and soon begins dating her. Lieberman is a fictitious character.


The studio commissary entrance was shot at the front of Sespe Elementary School in Fillmore, CA.


Indy meets and eventually works with John Ford, who would go on to become a legendary film director. Ford (1894-1973) won six directing Academy Awards throughout his career. Ford's films were a strong influence on the director of the first four Indiana Jones films, Steven Spielberg.


At 19:25 on the DVD, Indy and Thalberg walk past a studio prop sign of the "Royal Garden", the same sign that was seen at the Royal Garden jazz club in "Mystery of Jazz"!


When von Stroheim fires Claire from Foolish Wives, Thalberg promises he'll get her assigned to the movie Sex and Satan. This is a fictitious film, but is probably a wink by the writer to the 1937 film Stand In, in which several filmmakers conspire to bankrupt Colossal Studios by running up expenses on a poorly written and made film called Sex and Satan.


The car Indy drives to confront von Stroheim about the stolen film at 20:13 on the DVD is a 1918 Ford Model T Tourer.


The song sung by the chorus at von Stroheim's pool is "O Fortuna". While the words were written as a Gallardic poem in the 13th Century, it was not put to music until 1935, so the chorus should not be singing it yet!


At 22:56 on the DVD, Claire drives Indy in a 1913 Ford Model T.


Claire tells Indy that she loves him, but she also loves her other boyfriend, Tony. When Indy seems dejected about this, she asks him, "Haven't you ever loved two women?" He sheepishly admits he has. What he is keeping secret from her is that he loved three women (Peggy, Kate, and Gloria) in "Scandal of 1920".


As far as I can tell, von Stroheim's new "actor", Prince Massimo, is fictitious.


Indy "kidnaps" Prince Massimo from a party being held by Douglas Fairbanks and Mary Pickford. Douglas Fairbanks (1883-1939)and Mary Pickford (1892-1979) were two of the most popular actors of the era. They were husband and wife from 1920-1936.


When Indy, Claire, and Thalberg arrive at the Fairbanks party, Rudolph Valentino (1895-1926) and Pola Negri (1897-1987) are dancing to the orchestra. These were another of the most popular actors of the era. Though the pair is said to have had a relationship, they never married.


The Fairbanks party interiors were shot at Lehmann Hall at the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara.


Thalberg refers to Prince Massimo as Principe Massimo as he introduces Indy and Claire. Principe is Italian for "prince".


When Indy, Thalberg, and Claire invite Massimo to another, less boring, party, he exclaims, "Andiamo!" This is Italian for "Let's go!"


Our heroic trio drive Massimo to Mexico in a 1913 Ford Model T. They dump him off in front of the Mexacali Cantina. Although there are a number of bars using this name, the one seen here is likely meant to be fictitious. An exterior wall of the joint has "Dos Equis" painted on the side, the name of a Mexican beer brand.


Arriving back in Hollywood the next morning, Indy and Hannah have breakfast at Hollywood Hannah's. As far as I can tell, this is a fictitious eatery.


At 29:59 on the DVD, von Stroheim arrives at the studio in a 1930 Packard Custom Eight Sport Phaeton.


Arriving at the soundstage and seeing an unexpected set built, von Stroheim shouts, "Was ist das?" This is German for "What is this?"


Von Stroheim gives Indy a pair of tickets for the premiere of Under Crimson Skies starring Elmo Lincoln at the Embassy Theatre. This was an actual silent film, but it was released in July 1920, not September. No copies of it are known to still exist today. There was no Embassy Theatre in L.A. at the time.


At the Under Crimson Skies premiere, Thalberg rushes away from Indy and Claire to talk to Gloria Swanson. Swanson (1899-1983) was an actress and producer.


Von Stroheim and his crew pack up the sets of Foolish Wives in the middle of the night and head to Mexico to complete filming without the inference of Universal producers. I have not found any evidence that this rebellion actually occurred.


Although there is no indication of Indy meeting him here, the real world Foolish Wives featured a bit part by an actor named Harrison Ford. This actor has no relation to the later actor of the same name who portrayed the adult Indy in five theatrical films from 1981-2023. This Ford (1884-1957) was a fairly well known silent film actor and even has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6665 Hollywood Blvd. in front of the famous Musso & Frank Grill.


At 45:24 on the DVD, someone at Universal calls out the surnames of (presumably) directors and hands each of them a small stack of scripts. Our man (John) Ford is one of them. Other names are Campbell, Schultz, Sturgeon, and Franklin. "Campbell" may refer to silent film director Maurice S. Campbell (1869-1942) and "Sturgeon" to Rollin S. Sturgeon (1877-1961). "Schultz" may be an in-joke to the director of this Young Indy TV movie, Michael Schultz. I don't know who "Franklin" may refer to.


The film Indy works on with Ford is the western Six Steps to Hell, from a script by Alphone Studders. This is a fictitious script and film by a fictitious writer. The premise of the film does seem to be similar to an actual John Ford western film, Straight Shooting, made in 1917 and starring Harry Carey (1878-1947), as the current, fictitious, one does.


Ford tells Indy his real name is Sean Aloysius O'Feeny. But this isn't true either, it was a name he sometimes gave, perhaps to play up his Irish heritage. His real name seems to have been John Martin Feeney.


When Ford asks Indy if he's ever been to Ireland, Indy tells him he was in Dublin during the Easter Uprising. This was in "The Easter Rebellion".


John Ford's brother, Francis Ford (1881–1953), was an American film actor, writer, and director, as mentioned by Ford here.


    Ford sends Indy to the Waterhole at Hollywood and Cahuenga boulevards, said to be a hangout for old rodeo cowboys waiting for bit parts in movies. Indy finds Wyatt Earp there. Earp (1848-1929) was a legendary old west lawman, known particularly for the shootout at the OK Corral in Tombstone, Arizona.

    As far as I can tell, the Waterhole is a fictitious establishment. It's exterior was shot at 106 North Mill Street in Santa Paula, CA.


At 49:09 on the DVD, a Gerlach Barklow Co. promotional calendar is seen hanging behind the bar at the Waterhole. Gerlach Barklow Co. was a publisher of promotional business calendars from 1907-1971.


Earp advises the film on how an old west ambush worked. He mentions shooting with a Winchester, referring to the famed Winchester rifle, originally produced from 1866-1895.


At 51:43 on the DVD, a bottle of liquor called Cromartie is seen on the writing desk. As far as I can tell, this is a fictitious brand.


The exterior shots of the beach house Claire lives at are borrowed from the 1977 film Julia (see the Young Indy Film Locations site for more).


At 55:43 on the DVD, a can of Monogram coffee is seen on top of Claire's freezer. This was an actual coffee brand at the time.


A prop man brings Ford a selection of Colt .44 pistols for him to look at. He is referring to revolver pistols that fire .44 Colt cartridges.


The cab that Kitty Mayfack arrives at the studio in at 1:00:25 on the DVD is the same one Indy took to get there early in the film!


Indy informs Claire that the Six Steps to Hell production is heading to Newhall for on location filming for the next 6 days. Newhall

is a community of the city of Santa Clarita, about 20 miles northwest of Los Angeles. The area is known for the many western films that have been shot there.


Indy and Ford ride in a 1917 Buick Model D-35 Touring to the Newhall film site.


The car Wyatt Earp drives to the Newhall site is a 1915 Ford Model T.


At 1:05:09 on the DVD, one of the studio trucks heading to Newhall has Morrell Bros. Inter-City Trucking printed on the side. This appears to be a fictitious business. The truck itself is a 1924 Ford Model TT.


At 1:07:16 on the DVD, Earp is finishing a story about Black Jack, possibly an old west outlaw, who killed someone named Tyke. In reality, in 1940, Jerome Bonaparte "Blackjack" Ward (1891-1954) an American cowboy and film actor, shot and killed stuntman Johnny Tyke, whom he claimed had been harassing him for months.


When a rattlesnake shows up on location in Newhall, Indy shouts "Snake!" and runs off. One of the actors later asks him what he's afraid of and Indy just says, "It's a long story." He is presumably referring to his fall into a circus snake bin in "The Cross of Coronado" when he was 12 years old.


The song Kitty sings as Indy and Claire are reunited on location is "I’ll Remember You Love In My Prayers", written by Will S. Hays in 1877.


From about 1:30:17 to 1:30:28 on the DVD, Indy performs a stunt for Six Steps to Hell that is very similar to one he will perform in Raiders of the Lost Ark, i.e. being dragged under a wagon/truck and pulling himself hand-over-hand across the underchassis to the front. Both scenes were inspired by one in the 1939 John Ford western, Stagecoach.


Memorable Dialog


I had a feeling having three girlfriends was going to be trouble.mp3

studying to be an orthodontist.mp3

he's going to make you hate him.mp3

what is this movie about?.mp3

I could make 25 pictures for that kind of dough.mp3

Irving wants the producer to be king.mp3

a necessary evil.mp3

I could kiss her.mp3

I have three loves.mp3

even if I have to kill von Stroheim myself.mp3

I am supposed to use blanks?.mp3

welcome to Hollywood.mp3

studio executive one day, gopher the next.mp3

where'd you get a name like that, from your dog?.mp3

we should get along fine.mp3

Mr. Jones misses his woman.mp3

sharing a bed with a man and his mummy.mp3


acting with a corpse.mp3

I almost vomited over my waffles.mp3

I think I'll stick to archaeology...safer.mp3


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