My post yesterday on Julian Eltinge fascinated me so much that I had to find out more about him, so I did more research and this is what I found out. Eltinge had spent a decade working the vaudeville stages before making it big in the legitimate theater in 1911 with his hugely successful play The Fascinating Widow. He played both the male and female lead roles. His audiences loved his transformations from male to female and back again. From then on, all of his roles in the theater and in his Hollywood films were written to show case his talent to transform himself. His shows broke box office records everywhere he played. They were considered family friendly and people brought their children to see him perform!
He became so famous and popular that he launched his own Cosmopolitan style magazine called Julian Eltinge Magazine in which he personally wrote articles giving women make-up, diet, exercise and fashion tips. He also had his own Julian Eltinge cosmetics company.
Of course everybody was not a fan. Most men ridiculed him and made him the butt of some very nasty jokes. He received death threats and, at times, had body guards. The social purity movement was working hard to change public opinion on cross dressing from one of fascination to one of perversion and they intended to use the law to legislate their views, which they did by the 1930's.
Julian created an ultra masculine image off stage to combat some of his negative attention. He staged bar fights, gambled in public, had public affairs with women and started his own line of Julian Eltinge cigars.