Thursday, June 21, 2012

Mae West: Worked Fast

"MAE WEST Signs for First Film" was the headline.  Reporters announced she had signed with Texas Guinan and Helen Morgan for the George Raft vehicle, a story set inside a speakeasy.  But in 1932 night club czarina Guinan [12 January 1884 — 5 November  1933] was touring Canada, not in the best of health.
• • Speakeasy hostess and singer Helen Morgan [2 August 1900 — 9 October 1941] was seen in eleven films between 1923 — 1936 including "Frankie and Johnny" and "Show Boat" (both released in 1936). But Morgan, an alcoholic, made no films in 1932 or 1933.
• • Here's the article from The United Press: HOLLYWOOD, Cal., 21 June 1932 — Svelte and blond. Mae West, night club queen (sic), is in Hollywood to make her first moving picture.
• • The United Press continued:  Mae worked fast.  She signed with Helen Morgan and Texas Guinan to appear in "Night After Night" on Wednesday. She left the same night for the coast, and stopped off in Chicago just long enough to cancel her appearance in "The Constant Sinner."  ...
• • Source: The United Press, syndicated and reprinted by The Pittsburgh Press (on page 19) on Tuesday, 21 June 1932.
• • Al Hirschfeld [21 June 1903 — 20 January 2003] • •
• • Born in St. Louis, Missouri during the month of June — — on 21 June 1903 — — Albert Hirschfeld moved with his family to New York City where he trained at the Art Students League of New York.
• • Al Hirschfeld was a caricaturist best known for his simple black and white portraits of Broadway stars, dancers, mimes, dramatists, and other celebrities of the stage and screen.  Hirschfeld sketched Mae West numerous times during his long career.
• • On Wednesday, 21 June 1933 • •
• • It was on Wednesday, 21 June 1933 when Russell Holmon of Paramount Pictures tried to explain to the Hays Office that the title of a song "No One Does It Like that Dallas Man" was essentially innocent and the lyrics were harmless.  Hays wanted changes though and got them.
• • On Sunday, 21 June 1936 • •
• • The headline read "Mae West Has Laugh at Studio — Producers Are at a Loss When Star Outsmarts Their Plans."  This coverage was published on page 20 of the Charleston Gazette on 21 June 1936.  Obviously the studio was behind this smack-the-naughty-girl's-hand story because the article explained that "It is no secret that she is very difficult to handle and that censor problems of the Mae West pictures caused the folks a notable series of delays ...." This one-sided piece also stated "There's another Mae West story going on here.  Mae stipulates that she must be credited with writing the script but it's whispered out loud that often times she hits an impasse and is unable to work out a scene to either her own or her director's satisfaction. ..."  
• • Back in February 1935, Paramount star Mae West and Emanuel Cohen boarded a train for Chicago. The movie star quietly attended a play with Cohen, "Personal Appearance," by then a Broadway road company show. They discussed creating a cinema version of this lampoon of the film industry. The idea of poking fun at Tinseltown, just when the moguls had been freezing Mae out of opportunities, must have seemed enormously appealing. Emanuel Cohen soon announced that Mae West was firing up a new sparkler for his fledgling company.
• • One project they did together was "Goin' to Town" [released on 25 April 1935], with Emanuel Cohen Productions operating as Major Pictures Corp.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: "Why don't you come up and see me some time? Make it Tuesday, that's amateur night."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • An article about gender and films mentioned Mae West.
• • A Gender Variance Who's Who wrote:  The motion picture "Dinah East" [1969] tells of a female film star (Jeremy Stockwell in his first role) who is found to be male-bodied after she dies. The suggestion that this was a reference to Mae West is too strong, she threatens legal action, and the film is withdrawn.  ...
• • Source: A Gender Variance Who's Who; posted 1 June 2009
By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started seven years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 2338th blog post. Unlike many blogs, which draw upon reprinted content from a newspaper or a magazine and/ or summaries, links, or photos, the mainstay of this blog is its fresh material focused on the life and career of Mae West, herself an American original.
• • Come up and see Mae every day online:

Source: to Google

• • Photo:
• • Mae West • 1932 • •
• •
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