Thursday, October 12, 2017

End Quote

It's that time. We've finally burned all the way through the alphabet of the book we've been sharing with celebrity quotes about themselves and one another. We're going out with a bang this time with 20 pictures instead of the usual 12 to 15. We hope you enjoy and we'll be back soon with more classic movie and television fun.
"The closest thing we've had to me lately is John Travolta. Whether he'll want to work hard enough on his dancing I don't know. Travolta moves well, but the facts of dancing life mean that you have to work very hard to keep up to the level you're already at." - GENE KELLY "He's not a dancer. What he did in those dance scenes was very attractive but he is basically not a dancer. I was dancing like that years ago, you know. Disco is just jitterbug." - FRED ASTAIRE  Two cinematic dance legends weighing in on JOHN TRAVOLTA.
"Maybe the major thing is how sensual he is. And how sexy, too. The sensitivity and the sexuality are very strong. It's as if he has every dichotomy-masculinity, femininity, refinement, crudity. You see him, you fall in love a little bit." LILY TOMLIN waxing enthusiastically about her costar JOHN TRAVOLTA in the decidedly un-sexy Moment By Moment.
"That Valentino was certainly a very splendid fellow. And his unique glamour was not entirely due to the fact that he was unhampered by banal dialogue. Modern dialogue is not always banal, and the screen hero who could match Valentino's posturing technique with an equally polished vocal technique has a perfectly fair chance of becoming his romantic peer. It was his magnetism and dignity that assured him a peak of magnificent isolation." - JAMES MASON on RUDOLPH VALENTINO
"Jon agonizes his way toward every decision; what his next movie should be; whether to go out to lunch. He's a good, tortured person." - JANE FONDA on her Coming Home costar JON VOIGHT (the film having netted them each both a Golden Globe and an Oscar.)
"The experience of working with him was unlike any I had in more than 50 pictures. He was so painstaking and slow that I would lose all sense of time, hypnotized by the man's relentless perfectionism." - GLORIA SWANSON on her Queen Kelly director (and, later, Sunset Boulevard costar) ERICH VON STROHEIM
"He was the unqualified front runner-the most generous man I've ever met. And he had such a lovely light sense of humor. I consider it a privilege to have worked with him." - JULIE ANDREWS on her Hawaii costar MAX VON SYDOW
"He wasn't as clever as Spence, but a brilliant actor nonetheless, bigger than life in his performance-and often when he didn't have to be." - KATHARINE HEPBURN on her Rooster Cogburn costar JOHN WAYNE
"I certainly would have given anything to have worked with John Wayne. He's the most attractive man who ever walked the earth, I think." BETTE DAVIS on JOHN WAYNE in 1974.
"I could never feel much sympathy for Cheeta the chimp-who was really rather queer, I'm afraid. Didn't like the girls at all. But he adored Johnny Weismuller and was terribly jealous of me." - MAUREEN O'SULLIVAN on CHEETA and JOHNNY WEISMULLER, her costars in several Tarzan movies.
"I have never met anyone so badly behaved." - JAMES MASON on The Last of Sheila costar RAQUEL WELCH
"Tuesday was a dream to work with. She seemed to have an instinct for how to act a scene. I also noticed she seemed to be heading for serious trouble. ...it was apparent stardom was well within her grasp, but she conducted herself in a manner that made you think she was just another Hollywood joke-and I followed her career-it was as though she were some dizzy blonde who had no idea about what she was doing." - DANNY KAYE on his The Five Pennies costar TUESDAY WELD
"You cannot battle an elephant. Orson was such a big man in every way that no one could stand up to him. On the first day...at 4 o'clock, he strode in, followed by his agent, a dwarf, his valet and a whole entourage. Approaching us, he said, 'All right, everybody turn to page eight.' And we did it (though he was not the director.)" - JOAN FONTAINE on her Jane Eyre costar ORSON WELLES
"During The Magnificent Ambersons, Orson Welles, drunk on Joe Cotton's Machiavellian martinis, secretly sending his chauffeur homes and pleading no transport, would I drive him? Gad, what a drive. I prayed for a policeman. Six feet four, 250 pounds and what seemed like six hands in my shirt." - ANNE BAXTER on costar ORSON WELLES
"I've learned everything from her. Well, not everything, but almost everything. She knows so much. Her insight is so true. Her timing so perfect, her grasp of a situation so right." - CARY GRANT on MAE WEST, with whom he worked in I'm No Angel and She Done Him Wrong.
"We went down to her house for rehearsals... And she was always in a sort of pale beige negligee with a train about twenty feet long. That's how we rehearsed every day. And when we'd stop for a breather, we'd sit and talk. She was just plain and simply a sweet old lady, who told me marvelous stories about her life." - ROCK HUDSON on MAE WEST, with whom he performed "Baby, It's Cold Outside" at the 30th Annual Academy Awards ceremony in 1958 (when West was 65.)
"They [the acting school] were trying to mold Robin into a standardized Juilliard product-Kevin Kline is the perfect example of it-but Robin was too special, too original, to be that." - CHRISTOPHER REEVE on ROBIN WILLIAMS
"Look, Debra is 21 years younger than I am. She has very different interests and different ways of looking at life. Just because you work intimately with someone for three or four months on a film doesn't mean there's any breeding ground for friendship. I don't think there was much of one. She loved to sit in her trailer in her combat boots and miniskirt, listening to real loud rock 'n' roll. Right there, I mean, what am I going to do that for?" - SHIRLEY MACLAINE on her Terms of Endearment costar DEBRA WINGER
"Joanne always made it her business to hold back her career while Paul was on the up and up. And that girl is one helluva talented actress. But she knew what side her bread was buttered on and let Paul become the superstar of the family. The result? They're still happily married today." - SHELLEY WINTERS on JOANNE WOODWARD (and PAUL NEWMAN)
"She was and is the only actress I really dislike. She was sickeningly sweet, a pure phony. Her two faces sent me home angry and crying several times." - VIRGINIA FIELD on LORETTA YOUNG, with whom she worked in Ladies in Love, Eternally Yours and The Perfect Marriage.
"If you want a place in the sun you have to expect a few blisters." - LORETTA YOUNG

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Fun Finds: Screen Stars Magazine, February, 1964

It's time for another trip into Hollywood's past, this time the early-to-mid 1960s as we dissect a movie rag that went for the time at only $0.25 an issue! This one had no color content apart from its cover, so it was on the lower end of the spectrum in terms of gloss, but it does contain some neat and rare photos and content, so I think many of you will enjoy the tour of its insides. This likely hit stores in late-1963.
This page highlights some of the movies that were set for release in the near future. Oddly, the paragraph for Mary, Mary (which had been a considerable hit on Broadway) doesn't even mention its male stars Barry Nelson or Michael Rennie. (I thought the movie was dull and overlong myself.) The campy, yet epic, Kings of the Sun is one I want to see again in widescreen hi-def.
I found this page fascinating, revealing the models who posed for the (in)famous Cleopatra advertisement that dominated Times Square for a time. Apart from any controversy over whose body was truly the inspiration for the artwork, the billboard also ran into trouble because of costar Rex Harrison being relegated to an inset. Thus, later versions of the portrait had him awkwardly joining Liz & Dick during their moment together!
This page heralds the "arrival" of Miss Angie Dickinson to movie stardom.
We always adore these sections devoted to the various couplings and goings on in Tinseltown. Debbie Reynolds is shown with her crooked husband Harry Karl (whose child by deceased prior wife Marie McDonald she later helped raise.) Burt Lancaster's toothy blonde son Billy survived polio but nonetheless became interested in and played baseball, later writing The Bad News Bears and its sequels. Sadly, a heart attack claimed him at only age forty-nine.
Predictions of an Oscar for Audrey Hepburn in My Fair Lady were made impossible when she didn't even receive a nomination. Dean Martin's son Craig, whose wedding is pictured here, remained married to his wife Carole until her premature demise in 1987 of a stroke at age forty-eight. (Is a pattern developing here?!)
Well, there's a printing error in the caption for "The Nude Show-Offs" in which Carroll Baker's blurb accidentally gets replaced by Ursula Andress', which itself gets repeated! None of these women were truly "nude" in terms of showing genitalia or even nipples in these films. Attempts at comparing Christine Kaufmann and Greta Garbo equal lunacy. Here, we see the aforementioned Marie McDonald in trouble with the law. She would be dead of an overdose in just over a year at only age forty-two.
Love the photos on this page, first of Jill St. John and Cyd Charisse, then of Jim Hutton and Barbara Eden, who's sporting great hair. But imagine piling up a 'do like that for a "romantic picnic...!"
More fun and rare photos on this page. In the Mail Bag section at the top, wherein Victoria Cole responds to reader inquiries, she mentions that Alan Ladd would be thrilled to hear from a fan, but unfortunately he would be gone of an alcohol & drug combo before The Carpetbaggers was even released. He was fifty.
All sorts of little tidbits here as the segment finishes up (I went ahead and pulled this from the back of the magazine for ease in reading flow.) There is mention of Bob Horton (recently spotlighted in The Green Slime) appearing on Broadway in 110 in the Shade, the musicalization of The Rainmaker. Inga Swenson, Will Geer and Lesley Ann Warren were among his costars.
This piece, done at the virtual height of George Chakiris' movie career after West Side Story, is a highly-fabricated account of how two European beauties were vying for him.
I must admit that I didn't even realize that Chakiris had made a movie with Claudia Cardinale - 1964's Bebo's Girl, one of the movies that helped her ascend to greater acclaim as an actress, though Chakiris won no great reviews for it. (NY Times reviewer Bosley Crowther called him, "annoying, to say the least.") Bardot, for her part, merely met with him about possibly costarring in her next film, Agent 38-24-36, but in the end Anthony Perkins won the role.
This piece highlights the up-and-down marriage of Sandra Dee and her singer-actor husband Bobby Darin.
Their tempestuous union struggled along until 1967, when they divorced after only about six years of marriage.
Miss Elizabeth Taylor in a photo that accompanies the cover story.
There was plenty of speculation about Liz & Dick's relationship in this period before he was divorced and the two of them wed. Always a roller-coaster relationship, they wed in 1964, divorcing a decade later, then remarried a little over a year later, only to divorce again in several month's time! His glib remarks about her shape ("double chin," "overdeveloped chest" and short legs) made the rounds for quite some time!
Hayley Mills fans will like this series of questions and answers (with several pictures) from her.
This is a year-end re-cap of some of the various Hollywood happenings, couplings, splits and so on.

And here we have some predictions for the coming year. Natalie Wood didn't marry beau Arthur Loew, but she did wed Richard Gregson in 1969. They divorced in 1972, whereupon she rewed first husband Robert Wagner! Liz definitely got her wedding day. Connie Stevens wed James Stacy in October of 1963, so they were WAY off on her...! They were right on about George Maharis and Elvis and, to a degree, Troy Donahue. He wed Suzanne Pleshette, but the union was over within months.
In the pre-Internet days, one had to either head to the library or rely upon a book of some sort - perhaps an encyclopedia, from someplace else in order to look up the life of a famous person. Here, the periodical presents the stories of Spencer Tracy and Loretta Young.
Spence's bio is remarkably forthright about his in-name-only marriage and his "understanding" with Katharine Hepburn. He would be dead by 1967 of a heart attack.
Young's bio is a bit less accurate, though there are hints of things here and there, such as her one-time love for Clark Gable and her "adopted" daughter Judy (who was later revealed to be her own child by Gable.)
Just in time for Halloween comes this creepy story on the sex stalkers of Tinseltown!
Because the article actually contains some real names and the frights they went through, I attach it below.
Richard Chamberlain, then of TV's Dr. Kildare and the occasional movie.
I know my remark is more than a little bit flip, but I can pretty much guarantee that this unnamed psychiatrist "didn't know dick!" LOL
This period before the collapse of the Motion Picture Code and the institution of the ratings system was clearly a time when semi-nudity was becoming not only popular, but also controversial.
Lots of rare, behind-the-scenes shots from Love With the Proper Stranger on this page.
Hmmm... one of the downsides of posting only one page of a two-page spread is that sometimes the headline can seem to mean something it wasn't intended to!
...ahhh, now we get it. You won't believe who the "kid" is that is blackmailing Tony Curtis and new wife Christine. The monumental stupidity of this article comes to life when we're told that it's "Bernie Schwartz," Tony Curtis' own young SELF before he took his more user-friendly Hollywood name! The gist is that his poor young self keeps "blackmailing" him into working for more and more and more money and security...
This last photo-essay compares the recent release It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World with the comic classics of the silent era.
It's been a while since I've seen it, but I don't recall a Jim Backus shower scene. Then again, the looonnngg movie went through many cuts between its opening and its wide release. Anyone recall seeing the scene?
This is NOT from the magazine, but as a little bonus I wanted you to see the hilarious changes made to the advertising artwork depicted in the early part of the magazine. As Rex Harrison had contractual rights to equal depiction in all promotion of the film, his image was later tacked on to this otherwise languorous depiction of Taylor & Burton.