Friday, November 04, 2016

Mae West: Biggest Pain

In September 1934, MAE WEST sat down for a series of "Me and My Past" talks with the United Press syndicated reporter Leicester Wagner.  We posted excerpts from Chapter #2 in several installments all this week.  This is Chapter 2, excerpt e-e, which ends this section.
• • "Me and My Past" by Mae West • •
• • As Told to Leicester Wagner United Press Staff Correspondent • •
• • Did Not Like the Dialogue • •
• • But I didn't like the dialogue they handed me. And I told them so. For the first few days Hollywood gave me the biggest pain of my career.  I would have sold out for a dime. J did, in fact, offer to return the studio my train fare and go back to New York and the stage. Here's something that hands me a laugh now, but it carried me through those sessions.
• • Astrologer’s Tent • •
• • Just before I left Broadway I ducked Into an astrologer's tent — — just tor  laughs. He went through his act and came up with the information that I was going to take a trip — — which is a good guess in any league. He added though, that I wouldn't at first like things where I was going but that, if I stuck to it, I'd never regret it. Was THAT man right? Particularly about Hollywood. 
• • I found out before I was in town an hour that it was a charitable town with a bob of rules such as:  Love thy neighbor but not thy neighbor s wife. We'll go into that later.
• • This has been excerpt e-e  — — the conclusion of Chapter #2.
• • NOTE: This is the 2nd chapter of Mae West's life story as told to Leicester Wagner, United Press.  This syndicated series was reprinted in American newspapers during September 1934.
• • (Copyright, 1934, by United Press.)
• • The third chapter of Miss West's life story will follow shortly.
• • On Friday, 4 November 1927 • •
• • The New York Times planted a bitter raspberry with their review of "The Wicked Age" (published on Saturday, 5 November 1927). Written by Mae West, age 34, and her long-time collaborator, the production opened at Daly's 63rd Street Theatre on Friday evening, 4 November 1927 — — and lasted for merely nineteen performances.
• • On Wednesday, 4 November 1931 • •
• • It was  Wednesday, 4 November 1931 when the final curtain came down at the Royale Theatre on "The Constant Sinner" starring and written by Mae West.
• • Set in Harlem, the play opened on 14 September 1931 and ran for 64 performances on Broadway.
• • On Sunday, 4 November 1934 • •
• • The syndicated feature "The Experts Derided Mae West" written by John C. Moffitt was reprinted in The Straits Times and published on Sunday, 4 November 1934.
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • Hollywood in the 1930s was not an easy place for a British actor to get work, unless he happened to meet Mae West.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said:  "I've always got a new trick."
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • A New Jersey daily mentioned Mae West.
• • Jack La Rue, who has made more than 300 pictures, was tapped for his first by Howard Hawks, who saw him on the stage opposite Mae West in "Diamond Lil."
• • "I didn't know who Hawks was," La Rue remembered, "but he came backstage and asked me how I'd like to make a picture. He said he'd pay me $400 a week and my expenses to come to Hollywood."
• • He added, "I told him that sounded fine but that I couldn't accept because I had a run of the play contract. Hawks told me not to worry about that because the play was about to close. He knew something I didn't."  . . .
• • Source: Item in Courier-Post from Camden, New Jersey; published on Thursday, 23 October 1975
• • 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 3,500 blog posts. Wow!  

• • By the Numbers
• •

• • The Mae West Blog was started twelve years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3567th 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:


• • Photo:
• • Mae West • in 1931

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