Monday, October 07, 2013

Mae West: Andy Devine

MAE WEST starred in "Myra Breckinridge'' and Andy Devine was seen as Coyote Bill.
• • Andy Devine  [7 October 1905 — 18 February 1977] • •
• • Born in Flagstaff, Arizona in the month of October — — on Saturday, 7 October 1905 — — Andy Devine had a long career on the silver screen and on TV as a character actor and comic cowboy sidekick. The trim six-footer was always easily recognized by his distinctive raspy voice.
• • Andy Devine was cast as Coyote Bill in "Myra Breckinridge" [1970] when he was in his mid-60s.
• • From 1926 — 1977, Andy Devine was seen in TV shows, was useful to producers as a voice actor, and was featured in numerous movies. His screen work, largely in feel-good roles and "family entertainment," accorded him almost 200 credits.
• • Working right up to the end, Andy Devine was dealing with his leukemia, unfortunately. He died in Orange, California on 18 February 1977.  He was 71.
• • On Friday, 7 October 1932 • •
• • On Friday, 7 October 1932, The N. Y. Times reported the dramatic changes in Mae West's career. Though the critical reception of "Night after Night" was lukewarm, Mae West was a whole sultry sideshow unto herself, preventing the reviewers from dozing off when she was onscreen.  Paramount signed Mae to a generous contract on October 6th.
• • On Saturday, 7 October 1933 • •
• • It was on Saturday, 7 October 1933 when Mae recorded "They Call Me Sister Honky Tonk" for the Brunswick label.  The song was written for the motion picture "I'm No Angel."
• • On Saturday, 7 October 1933 • •
• • Marie Beynon Ray wrote an article about Mae West's influence on fashions — — "Curves Ahead" — — for Colliers Magazine. It ran in the issue dated for 7 October 1933.  And a review of "I'm No Angel" appeared in Motion Picture Herald (page 38) in the issue dated for 7 October 1933.
• • On Monday, 7 October 1935 • •
• • "I saw both pictures myself and they are definitely wrong," wrote Joe Breen to Will Hays on Monday, 7 October 1935.  This was the reason he gave to Paramount when he denied permission to re-release two hits starring Mae West distributed in 1933 to a blitz of ticket sales.
PHOTO: Wayne Takenaka
• • See "Diamond Lil" This Autumn! • • 
"Darlene Violette channels Mae West to perfection!" — Stu Hamstra
• • By popular demand, actress Darlene Violette — — and the wonderful cast who brought the Bowery denizens and Suicide Hall’s ne’er-do-wells to life — — will return in “Diamond Lil” for several evening performances at Don’t Tell Mama [343 W. 46th Street] on these dates in 2013:
• • 7:30pm on Sunday October 27th — Hallowe'en Party — come in 1890s costume!
• • 7:00pm on Sunday November 3rd — vote for Gus Jordan for Sheriff Night.
• • 8:30pm on Sunday November 10th
• • 7:00pm on Sunday November 17th
• • 7:00pm on Sunday November 24th
• • Phone after 4pm to reserve a seat: 212-757-0788; RSVP online:
• • Closest MTA subway stations: 42nd St./ Times Sq. via A, C, E, 1, 2, 3 
• • The public is invited (suitable for age 18 and over). Join us as we turn the iconic NYC nightspot Don't Tell Mama into Gus Jordan's "Suicide Hall"! 
• • The Cast: Starring Darlene Violette as Diamond Lil, Queen of the Bowery and also featuring Sidney Myer, Anthony DiCarlo, Joanna Bonaro, Gary Napoli, Juan Sebastian Cortes, Kimmy Foskett, Jim Gallagher and live music by Brian McInnis
• • Director: Co-directed by Dena Tyler, The Actors Studio, and Darlene Violette.
• • Come up and see for yourself. You might even win a swell Raffle Prize.
• • Watch a short clip: Diamond Lil meets Pablo, a gigolo
• • Read a Review of "Diamond Lil" • •
• • L'Idea Magazine's editors attended four times and had a lot to say. Here's the link:
• • Staying faithful to the gritty themes in the novel, LindaAnn Loschiavo trimmed the work to 85 minutes for a cast of eight.
• • Audience Comments about "Diamond Lil" • •
• • Gigi Garcone said:  Just saw "Diamond Lil" — — a very entertaining production! This tribute to the sultry, irresistible diva Mae West is a must see! All the actors are very talented and you can see they put their hearts into their roles. I especially liked Darlene Violette as Mae West and Joanna Bonaro as Rita, a madam from Rio. Darlene encompassed the whole persona of Mae and Joanna was sublime as the madam — — she really has such a presence on stage. Very enjoyable performance and it's worth the trip!
• • Rick Baynes of Baltimore said: I second Gigi's comments. "Diamond Lil" brings the fabulous Mae West back to life. The wonderful Darlene Violette is spot-on in her portrayal of the lusty, bawdy Mae. Do yourself a favor and go see this lovely production.

• • At Jefferson Market Library in NYC next month • • 
• • Mae West's legal woes inspired the stage play "Courting Mae West." See it on 23 November 2013 in the very same room where Mae faced off with Judge George Donnellan and 12 jurors. 
• • Darlene Violette stars as Mae West and the rest of the cast will soon be announced. 
• • The play, based on true events, is set during the Prohibition Era when Mae's plays were padlocked and she was sent to jail. Talk about a woman who climbed the ladder of success wrong by wrong.. 
• • This free event is open to the public and there is ample seating. [Note: The humor and adult themes are not suitable for children under 13.]
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said:  "All those young faces in that mob last night. So friendly. They're my television fans. No, I don't know that they're being ruined by all this permissiveness, this nudity and what-have-you. Somebody's pushing it, but it's the times."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • A New York Times article about "Myra Breckinridge" (released on Wednesday, 24 June 1970) interviewed Mae West.
• • Howard Thompson wrote:  Ask the woman a question, you get an answer. For instance, are those rocks real?
• • "You betcha," said Mae West, spreading her dainty hands. On three fingers of each glittered four huge diamond rings, two sets on double duty. The actress smiled. "The hippies — — the young people — — are wearing 'em like this now. I started it, years ago."
• • The venerable Miss West, who turns 77 in August, looked years younger on her first visit to New York in 14 years. A swirl of platinum hair cascaded to the shoulders of her pink and white pants suit, encasing a full but disciplined figure. Her complexion was a healthy, paler pink, her voice low-spoken.
• • Miss West was relaxing in her flower-filled hotel suite, following her tumultuous reception at "Myra Breckinridge" the previous evening. Facing her shortly was a large news conference at the Americana Hotel.  ...
• • Source: Article: "Mae West, 76, Still Finding New Generations of Fans" written by Howard Thompson (page 54) for The New York Times; published on Thursday, 25 June 1970
• • By the Numbers • • 
• • The Mae West Blog was started nine years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 2757th 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 Diamond Lil returned for Mae's birthday

• • Feed — —
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