The long arm of coincidence affected the movie career of MAE WEST. An article in the June 1935 issue of Screenland gave readers some insight about a heavily beaded gown that altered a certain iconic scene in "Night After Night."
• • "The Long Arm of Coincidence" written by Winifred Aydelotte • •
• • Winifred Aydelotte wrote: Coincidence encircles the waist of the world, and it has a strangle hold on Hollywood. There is scarcely a player on the screen today whose emotional or artistic career has not been vitally affected by a coincidence. Ask yourself: "Would I be a star if that had happened to me?"
• • The long arm of coincidence and Mae West • •
• • Winifred Aydelotte continued: Slipping stealthily over to Paramount, I surprised another coincidence. Remember Mae West's famous first line? The first thing she ever said on the screen [sic] was in answer to the check girl's exclamation, "Goodness! Where did you get those diamonds?" And Miss West's line was: "Goodness had nothin' to do with it, dearie."
• • Well, just because it happened that the script called for Mae to wear a heavy beaded gown; that the director wanted her to come in on a trot and break into a good fast canter toward George Raft; that the gown was so heavy she couldn't even get up a momentum; and that Mae West happens to be able to write lines like nobody's business, the immortal remark was born.
• • "I'm going to walk," she told the director. "Nobody can romp around in orchids, ermine, and diamonds. I want to come in slowly, throw my wrap off and say something to cover up the snail's pace Raft-ward. How about my saying — — ?"
• • And that is how it came to pass that America went around for so long, slurring, "Goodness had nothin' to do with it, dearie." . . .
• • Source: Article written by Winifred Aydelotte for Screenland; published in the issue dated for June 1935.
• • On Wednesday, 26 June 1935 • •
• • The 8-minute cartoon "Who Killed Cock Robin?" was released on Wednesday, 26 June 1935 in the USA. Loverboy Robin is crooning to a Mae West-like Jenny Wren when he is shot with an arrow.
• • Actress Martha Wentworth [2 June 1889 — 8 March 1974] was the voice of Jenny Wren. Wentworth also did Mae's voice in "The Mae West Jewel Robbery," which made its radio debut on 21 February 1934.
• • On Thursday, 26 June 2003 • •
• • Newspapers announced this headline on Thursday, 26 June 2003: "Dolly Parton Thrilled With Mae West Role."
• • "Country icon Dolly Parton has signed up to play feisty silver screen goddess Mae West in an upcoming TV movie, and she admits it's a part she's been longing to play," reported news outlets. Despite her enthusiasm, the project was not filmed.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • The New York Times reports that Mae West and Raquel Welch are being greeted by two thousand fans at the Criterion Theater after the premiere of "Myra Breckinridge."
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: “Let 'em talk. It’s good for business.”
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • Time Magazine discussed Mae West and an author (who died in June) who applauded her.
• • Time wrote: F. Scott Fitzgerald found Mae West the only Hollywood actress with "an ironic edge, a comic spark."
• • Time wrote: The British author Sir Hugh Walpole [13 March 1884 — 1 June 1941] applauded her mockery of the "fraying morals and manners of a dreary world." . . .
• • Source: Article in Time Magazine; published on Monday, 28 September 1959
• • Note: "Goodness Had Nothing to Do with It"
was Mae West's letter to the world. Released in hardcover more than
fifty years ago by the Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey imprint Prentice
Hall, this meaty memoir was reprinted as a paperback by Avon Books
[December 1959]. Many articles about Mae's new book appeared in 1959. An essential item for your bookshelf.
• • 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 3,497 visitors. And we reached a
milestone recently when we completed 3,200 blog posts. Wow!
• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started ten years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3209th blog post.
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• • Photo: • • Mae West • • in 1959 • •
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