Thursday, January 9, 2020

Tom Tyler in Real Estate, Hollywood style: Willet and Tyler

At one point in the 1930's during his acting career, Tom Tyler entered the real estate business with a partner. Willett and Tyler Realtors had their office located at 771 North Vine in Hollywood. Tom met Willett (first name unknown) some time in 1934, and by 1935, the team was placing real estate ads in the Los Angeles Times. One of their standard classified ads reads as follows: “We specialize in exchanges, leases, sales. Bring your listings for quick action. Willett and Tyler, 771 N. Vine, GR4416.” The GR4416 was the phone number – quite different from the standard ten digit phone number used by a landline or cellphone. A total of three property listings appeared in the Los Angeles Times, which probably does not seem like a whole lot. There was however a number of ads placed by Willett and Tyler offering their services. Willett was probably the more experienced of the two men in the field of real estate; back then, selling real estate was an apprenticeship, with Tom in this case being the apprentice. The business itself did not get very far, and Tom Tyler left some time late in 1935. He did not give up his day job as an actor, which was a good thing as he was unable to afford to do so.

Following are the real estate ads as posted by Willett and Tyler in the Los Angeles Times. The average price for a 5-room bungalow house downtown was $3,950.00 in 1935. A 7-room Spanish style house in Beverly Hills was $5,300.00 – cheap by today’s standard.

The Los Angeles Times, April 1, 1934

The Los Angeles Times, April 17, 1934
The Los Angeles Times, July 21, 1934
The Los Angeles Times, June 5, 1934


The Los Angeles Times, March 24, 1934

Today, the address of 771 N. Vine is occupied by RodeWay Inn.







Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Happy New Year 2020!

2020 is not just the start of a new year – and new decade – for Aventuras de Tom Tyler. 2020 also marks the 100th year since Vincent Markowski started making plans to leave his cozy family home in Hamtramck, Michigan, for an acting career in Hollywood. To that end, he took acting lessons through a correspondence course, which was popular at the time in order to attract fresh talent and the best-looking young men and women to young Hollywood. It seems hard to believe this event – Tom Tyler as a teenage boy receiving an education in acting – took place that long ago. Vincent was not even named Tom back then and it is entirely possible that he did not imagine what his professional name might be as an actor. But he did have the belief in himself, the work ethic and drive for ambition which enabled him to succeed as a leading man for FBO Productions, owned by Joseph Kennedy Sr. at the time.

There is a certain magic in thinking about the year young Vincent Markowski embarked upon his life ambition. It may have been a hundred years ago, but for Tom Tyler, his time has come for his earliest work in silent film to be rediscovered, viewed, and cherished. 2020 is the year for this to finally happen; all and any updates regarding these silent films from 1925 to 1929 will be first mentioned here at Aventuras de Tom Tyler. Let’s make 2020 the best year for Tom!