Saturday, May 12, 2012

Via Col Vento!

However one feels about its accuracy as a portrayal of the Civil War and the causes that brought it about, the film of Margaret Mitchell's bestseller Gone With the Wind is a cultural phenomenon unto itself. We currently have a 70th Anniversary Limited Edition of the Warner Brothers blockbuster, and I dug up these various versions of its poster for your viewing pleasure. Now who can name three of the women who screen tested for Scarlett? And do you have a favorite quote?
Vivien Leigh signing the book


7 comments:

  1. Vivian Leigh is signing the books?? Why isn't Margaret Mitchell? Alas! Just another Philistine example of Hollywood v. Truth, illusion v. reality. :-)

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    1. Have you noticed how old and worn the books appear? Are they being donated to the library, or to some charity?

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    2. I think it might have been a war effort of some sort.

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  2. Most of your followers are just babies--but I remember seeing Loretta Young, Susan Hayward, and Jean Arthur try out for the Scarlett role. And for favorite line, of course, "As God is my witness, I will never go hungry again!" They say her husband, Laurence Olivier, directed her in that scene. It was the highlight of the film for me.

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  3. BINGO! Bette Davis coveted the role as well (the Jezebel!) Thanks for the info ... wouldn't it be something to imagine all of the different slants each would have provided? None would have been as great as Vivien though.

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    1. May I make another comment? Something about illusion vs. reality, and seeing Vivien again.. I can see why they picked her--she looks so frail, with her porcelain skin and small frame, her frightened look. It added to the drama. How could SHE survive a war? How could SHE take a gun and kill a man? If it were Joan Crawford or Barbara Stanwyck--well, they could take it, couldn't they? They were tough. But what the producers saw in Vivien--that frailty--was real. And, as it turned out, it didn't take a war to break her, poor girl. Just life in Hollywood.

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    2. Very well said... and perceptive on all fronts. I heard thousands of actors were tested for the part of the boy in Everything Is Illuminated until the right one jumped out.
      Vivien was exceedingly manic depressive, which made it hard on her and everyone around her, but she sure gave us many great performances.

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