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Famous Name Changes
April 7, 2003 10:08 AM   Subscribe

Walter Matuschanskayasky Understandably Changed His Name To Walter Matthau, Derek Gentron Gaspart Ulric van den Bogaerde to Dirk Bogarde and Goldie Jean Studlendegehawn to Goldie Hawn but who did Splanger Arlington Brugh and Joyce Penelope Wilhelmina Frankenberg turn out to be? What's in a name, you ask? A lot's in a name, as Famous Name Changes extensively shows!
posted by MiguelCardoso (27 comments total)

 
Is it any surprise that Elegio Sardinius-Montalbo, who changed his name to "Kid Chocolate", would have his career "curtailed by a flamboyant lifestyle in New York City."

Nice link, Miguel.
posted by msacheson at 10:15 AM on April 7, 2003


Walter Matuschanskayasky understandably changed his name to Walter Matthau
I'm having trouble getting to Snopes at the mo', but I'm pretty sure this is a story that Matthau made up to mess with journalists.

Oh, here it is.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 10:22 AM on April 7, 2003


I don't do this often, but it bugged my memory enough so I had to dig it up (and admittedly it took 4 Googles): double post.
posted by costas at 10:33 AM on April 7, 2003


Thanks, Costas - sorry, everyone else. I was here in December 2001 so I really should have remembered.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 10:42 AM on April 7, 2003


Even old New York was once New Amsterdam...
posted by teferi at 11:19 AM on April 7, 2003


Even old New York was once New Amsterdam...

Why'd they change it?
posted by trigfunctions at 11:41 AM on April 7, 2003


I can't say.
posted by teferi at 11:53 AM on April 7, 2003


People just liked it better that way.
posted by wanderingmind at 11:54 AM on April 7, 2003


Yul Brynner used to be Youl Bryner, slow down there Yul, you don't want to change your name too radically or anything!
posted by Pollomacho at 11:59 AM on April 7, 2003


Sometimes actors have to change their names because someone in the Screen Actor's Guild is already using it. They don't give you any notice of it either - simply "You can't use your name...got another?" That's why I am now known as "Johnny Joe Joe Junior Shabbadoo".
posted by hellinskira at 1:25 PM on April 7, 2003



Why did Constantinople get the works? That's nobody's business but the Turks.

posted by blue_beetle at 1:25 PM on April 7, 2003


Istanbuuuul....
posted by *burp* at 1:53 PM on April 7, 2003


Oprah Winfrey was... wait for it... Orpah Winfrey.

Instanbul? Not Constantinople?
posted by Dick Paris at 1:54 PM on April 7, 2003


I've long felt that song needed a few more verses for Persia/Iran, Siam/Thailand, a few cities in Russia, and one stanza just for Ho Chi Minh City so you could use the line:
Let's let Saigon be bygones!

As for the Screen Actor's Guild no-duplication rule: that's why that short bald guy on the Carol Burnett Show is known as Tim and not Tom Conway. They did make one exception for a kid who'd had a few hit records to avoid changing his name, so there's one aging white radio guy with a British accent named Michael Jackson who is still pissed.
posted by wendell at 2:02 PM on April 7, 2003


And Beck, of course, was ... Bek. Makes all the difference in the world.

No, it's Istanbul, not Constantinople.
posted by yhbc at 2:09 PM on April 7, 2003


quonaczsxszczsy sardianthevichowicxz changed his name too...
posted by quonsar at 2:11 PM on April 7, 2003


Which one is he, ParisParamus or MidasMulligan?
posted by wendell at 2:41 PM on April 7, 2003


Both.
posted by cortex at 3:23 PM on April 7, 2003


I don't understand? How is this bashing Americans?
posted by HTuttle at 4:39 PM on April 7, 2003


I've long felt that song needed a few more verses for Persia/Iran, Siam/Thailand, a few cities in Russia, and one stanza just for Ho Chi Minh City so you could use the line:
Let's let Saigon be bygones!


In the "MLF Lullaby" (circa 1965), Tom Lehrer had this:

I say a bygone should be a bygone
Let's make peace the way we did in Stanleyville and Saigon


Not the same, I know, but close.
posted by pmurray63 at 5:16 PM on April 7, 2003


I just love how John Cleese's character in A Fish Called Wanda is named "Archie Leach", in a nice tribute to Cary Grant.
posted by Vidiot at 5:31 PM on April 7, 2003


And how Cary Grant's character in a movie once said something to the effect of killing another (off-screen) character named "Archie Leach."

Wouldja believe my real name is davidmsc...?
posted by davidmsc at 6:54 PM on April 7, 2003


"For Channel Six News, I'm Kenny Brockelstein."
posted by sillygwailo at 10:44 PM on April 7, 2003


it's definitely hard to get too much of spooky dirk bogarde.

il portiere di notte, with cutie charlotte rampling (yes, I think that's actually her real name...) is one of the best.
posted by dorian at 12:05 AM on April 8, 2003


And how Cary Grant's character in a movie once said something to the effect of killing another (off-screen) character named "Archie Leach."

"The last person to say that to me was Archie Leach, just before he slit his own throat." From His Girl Friday.

Which also contained the most outrageous cheat I ever saw in a movie. Grant is telling a pickpocket about a guy he wants him to target, played by Ralph Bellamy: "He looks like that movie star, what's his name -- Ralph Bellamy." "You can't do that!" I shrieked. But everyone else in the theatre was laughing too hard to hear me.


posted by pmurray63 at 2:34 PM on April 8, 2003


Wendell: you may be interested to know that not only did some of those cities in Russia/the Soviet Union change their names but, in Paris, where streets are named for some of those cities, the name also changed. Therefore: rue Saint Peterbourg was recently rue Leningrad. Before that I think it was rue Petrograd. Before that, Saint Petersbourg.
posted by Dick Paris at 4:46 PM on April 8, 2003


pmurray63: Very much obliged -- you saved my "trivia-loving" psyche.

And Bellamy...a class act.

FWIW & IMO: the first 20 minutes of "His Girl Friday" probably rank as my favorite 20 minutes of film ever...Russell & Grant like firecrackers, and the "water buffalo" remark...and then the scene out by the elevator that you referenced. Amazing comedy from two absolute masters. Er...three, including (?) Cukor.
posted by davidmsc at 9:24 PM on April 8, 2003


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