Friday, May 04, 2018

Mae West: A Priest Pickets

“Brutal! Vulgar! Dirty! MAE WEST and the gay comedy that shocked 1920s America” was the headline for Polly Stenham’s latest project. The British director plans to offer a rehearsed reading of “The Drag” on 10 July 2018 as part of Queer Theatre, 6-10 July, a season at the National Theatre, London, to mark the 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality in England and Wales.
• • Mae West was taken to court for writing “The Drag,” a play about a closeted gay socialite that ended up banned. This rehearsed reading will be posted about again, closer to the time. Meanwhile, let’s look back to a time when Catholic priests were protesting the star’s motion pictures.
• • N. Y. Priest Pickets Theatre Showing Mae West's "Belle of the 90's"
• • Seeks to Prevent Children of His Flock from Seeing Movie • •
• • Sayville, L. I. — Fearing that some of the children of his flock might be tempted to slip into the neighborhood theatre to see Mae West's latest film, a priest maintained a steady vigil for three days in front of the theatre. Whenever he saw any of the children approaching the theatre he stopped them and reminded them of the Legion of Decency pledge they had signed last Sunday.
• • The picture, "Belle of the Nineties," opened at the Sayville Theatre on Sunday, the same day on which the 140 children of Rev. James A. Smith's Roman Catholic Church had taken the new pledge to refrain from attending any films except those recommended by the Church. The pastor stated that he was not opposed to clean movies, and did not even object to the story of the picture in question.  But he did object to having the youngsters of his parish seeing a film in which the buxom Mae was the star.
• • Source: Article in Film Bulletin; published on Tuesday, 18 December 1934.
• • On Saturday, 4 May 1935 • •
• • A Los Angeles Times columnist noted on Saturday, 4 May 1935, that the news about Mae West's secret marriage to Frank Wallace had "chased Hitler, the NRA, and the quintuplets off the front page of every newspaper in America for two weeks."
• • Overheard in Hollywood • •
• • Bill Hendricks, manager of the Warner theatre at Memphis, is back from the coast after an eight-day visit as the guest of Mae West at the Paramount studio.
• • In Her Own Words • •
• • Mae West said: “I've never felt up until just recently that I could get married, if I'd wanted to. My folks made a lot of sacrifices for me when I was a kid. We were a family that was close together. I had obligations as long as my mother and dad were alive.”
• • Quote, Unquote • •
• • A film blogger mentioned Mae West.
• • Thomas Caldwell wrote: Early Hollywood cinema was comparatively risqué with its highly suggestive dialogue, naked bodies in silhouette, and coy undressing scenes.
• • Thomas Caldwell wrote: Most shocking of all were popular female actors such as Mae West, who frequently played sexually hungry, assertive and witty characters.
• • Thomas Caldwell wrote: Whenever there are expressions of sexuality, however — — particularly expressions of female sexuality — — there are groups who wish to ban it from the public eye. …
• • Source: Cinema Autopsy; posted on Tuesday, 3 May 2011
• • The evolution of 2 Mae West plays that keep her memory alive • • 
• • A discussion with Mae West playwright LindaAnn LoSchiavo — — 
• •
• • The Mae West Blog celebrates its 13th anniversary • •  
• • Thank you for reading, sending questions, and posting comments during these past thirteen years. Not long ago, we entertained 3,497 visitors. And we reached a milestone recently when we completed 3,800 blog posts. Wow!  
• • By the Numbers • •
• • The Mae West Blog was started thirteen years ago in July 2004. You are reading the 3952nd 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 1934

• • Feed — —
  Mae West

No comments:

Post a Comment