Thursday, January 22, 2015

Mae West: Earn Laughs

As Oscar night excitement builds, MAE WEST and her achievements are fondly recalled by comedians and critics.
• • In 2008 New York Times film critic Manohla Dargis lamented, “And if there’s anything the movies could use it is funny women, especially those who earn laughs by keeping their clothes on and their dignity (more or less) intact. … Real funny women — Mae West, Elaine May — come along every few decades, so the timing seems right. But the clock is ticking.”
• • Happy Birthday to Piper Laurie • •
• • Though we are not big fans of the 1982 TV bio-pic about Mae West, the actress who played Mae's beloved mother onscreen was born today.
• • Cast in this televised production as Matilda West, Piper Laurie's birthname was Rosetta Jacobs. The little redhead was born in Detroit, Michigan in the month of January — — on Friday, 22 January 1932.
• • On Monday, 22 January 1934 in Times Square • •
• • It was a festive Monday evening, on 22 January 1934, when Mae West and Eddie Cantor and many other stars entertained at the New Amsterdam Theatre — — at the 52nd annual benefit for the Actors' Fund.
• • Mae West, a longtime member of Actors Equity, left one-third of her estate to the Actors Equity Fund, hoping to assist actors and actresses who are facing a hardship and are in need. When I telephoned the Fund's headquarters in NYC to ask how much they had received (to date) from Mae's thoughtful provisions for them in her Will, they were unaware of this bequest. The Actors' Fund had never been contacted by the executors of Mae's Will; they have never received the funding Mae intended for them.
• • Now this is certainly too bad, that someone refused to administer Mae's charitable bequest and carry out her wishes after she died — — and isn't it a shame that the "financial assistance" was directed elsewhere?
• • Who pocketed all the money meant for The Actors' Fund?
• • On Wednesday, 22 January 1964 in The N.Y. Times • •
• • New York Times readers who turned to the financial business section of the paper, published on Wednesday, 22 January 1964, noticed this item on page 75.
• • The headline read: "Mae West Plays Role for 'Mr. Ed'; Actress Makes TV Episode for Showing in March."
• • Times reporter Val Adams wrote: Mae West, a theatrical sex symbol for more than half a century, has completed filming a guest star role for "Mr. Ed," the comedy series about a talking horse. Many fans of "Mr. Ed" are children, but the average age of the audience may increase considerably when Miss West's performance is televised by the Columbia Broadcasting System on a Sunday evening in March. ...
• • On Tuesday, 22 January 1980 in Los Angeles • •
• • It was a Tuesday, on 22 January 1980, when Mae West signed a check to give her sister Beverly West the sum of $125.00. Drawn on her personal account at the United California Bank, Mae noted that $125 was for "maintenance and care of the ranch." Beverly endorsed the check on the back.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • "Hollywood Contingent Opens at Chicago Fair" • •
• • Chicago — With Mae West starting the proceedings by remote control from Hollywood on Saturday night, Hollywood-at-the-Fair opened with its new setup under the head of 0. W. Rosenthal and Raymond D. Berry.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said:  "You learn to get along in life by studying life."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • An article about "My Little Chickadee" playing in London mentioned Mae West.
• • Peter Bradshaw wrote: It has to be the King-Kong-meets-Godzilla event of classic screen comedy: W.C. Fields teams up with, and indeed ties the marital knot with, Mae West in this ridiculous, and ridiculously funny, 1940 comedy, a preposterous tale from the old west, presented next week as part of the Fields season at London's BFI Southbank.  ...
• • Source: Article: "My Little Chickadee" written by Peter Bradshaw for The London Guardian [UK]; posted on Friday, 22 January 2010
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 10th anniversary • •    
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during this past decade. The other day we entertained 1,430 visitors. 
• • By the Numbers • • 
• • The Mae West Blog was started ten years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3098th 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 in 1934

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1 comment:

  1. I totally agree with you that some serious problems concerning the disbursements of Mae West's final wishes remain unanswered. I had occasion to meet Craig Russell's mother a few years back and according to her, the $3,500 bequeath to the "Mae West Fan Club" was never honoured. I suspect that the bank overlooking her estate refused to honour that gift because the Club had been disbanded at the time, but Craig was still alive.