Friday, July 01, 2016

Mae West: Stella Dallas

The June 1935 issue of Photoplay featured a lengthy fantasy feature on MAE WEST with charming illustrations by Frank Godwin.  This is the fourth installment, Part 4.
• • "Mae West Can Play Anything" written by Leo McCarey • •
• • Leo McCarey wrote:  Can't you picture Mae in these surroundings?  This plot is the same amusing idea, in reverse, as "Ruggles of Red Gap," which I have just directed. Here we have Charles Laughton and Roland Young, typical Britishers, suddenly transplanted into American Western society as typified by Mary Boland and Charlie Ruggles. It hits the funny-bone.
• • In "Peg o' My Heart," everyone frowns upon her American manners. The only one who sees her true value is the English barrister who is administering the estate.
• • At the climax of the story, there is consternation in the stuffy household when it leaks out that someone has been attending clambakes with the "heavy."
• • Mae West in the role, realizing that the daughter is the guilty one, would rush to the defense with a crack running something like this:   "Wait a minute. If there is any fun like that going on around here, who do you think would be having it?"
• • Tragic Stella Dallas • •
• • Do you recall the grand performance the late Belle Bennett contributed to silent pictures as Stella Dallas?
• • If Samuel Goldwyn ever makes the picture again, and he probably will, "Stella Dallas" would be a sensational success with Mae in the role.
• • Here is a woman with no culture, no background.  A silly butterfly-minded woman who valiantly strives to have her fling out of life, no matter what the cost. Yet she tears your heart out in her vain attempts to be a good mother to the child.
• • Here is an everyday character much older than Peg, much less colorful than Catherine and the Queen of Sheba.  I should like to see Mae West play the role, if only to demonstrate her latent versatility as an actress.   . . .
• • This has been Part 4. And Part 5 will continue on Monday.
• • Source: Article "Mae West Can Play Anything" for Photoplay; published in the June 1935 issue.
• • On Saturday, 1 July 1933 • •
• • A Mickey Mouse cartoon, "Mickey's Gala Premiere," was released on Saturday, 1 July 1933. Mae West is one of the celebrities who makes a grand appearance.
• • On Sunday, 1 July 1934 • •
• • Supposedly, on Sunday, 1 July 1934, the censorship of the Production Code began to be seriously and meticulously enforced.  Mae West suddenly found her screenplays heavily edited.
• • On Tuesday, 1 July 2003 • •
• • It was on 1 July 2003 that Camille Paglia's fascinating article was published in Interview Magazine. Her title was "Where's Mae West When We Need Her?" and Paglia discussed why movies must restore the "H" factor — — the humor and the humanness.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • The Hays Office wrote: "We judge from your letter that during part of this picture, Miss West will be masquerading as an exponent of religion or a religious worker."
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said:  "Bodyguards look after me."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • Photoplay mentioned Mae West.
• • GOIN' TO TOWN — Paramount — Mae West, pursuing the man instead of being pursued, in a fast- moving, wise-cracking film, that will keep you laughing.
• • Source: Item  in Photoplay Magazine; issue dated for July 1935
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 12th anniversary • •
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during these past twelve years. The other day we entertained 3,497 visitors. And we reached a milestone recently when we completed 3,400 blog posts. Wow! 
• • By the Numbers • • 
• • The Mae West Blog was started twelve years ago in July 2004.
You are reading the 3477th 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.

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• • Mae West • Frank Godwin's artwork, 1935

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