Time once again to dip into our e-mail bag and check in with you — our very knowledgeable readers.
To start things off, we refer back to our Jan. 20 blog — The Biggest Stars With The Fewest Films — in which we cited James Dean, Mae West and Gordon MacRae as among the biggest stars with the fewest movies to their credit. Dean made just three pictures, West 12 and MacRae 19.
But we overlooked at least one other big star, as correspondent George Eastman points out:
Montgomery Clift only appeared in 17 films, and only 8 1/2 films prior to his disfiguring car crash. Following a party at Elizabeth Taylor’s house, he crashed into a telephone pole during a break while filming ‘Raintree County’, so there are scenes in the film both pre-crash and post-crash.
He had been nominated for Best Actor three times during his first eight films. He later garnered a Best Supporting Actor nomination for ‘Judgment at Nuremberg’ in 1960.
Thanks, George. (George Eastman? Humm, name sounds familiar…. )
And speaking of Gordon MacRae, we received this from Rachel: Love him! and his voice!
In response to our VAN HEFLIN — Great Good Guy But Even Greater Bad Guy blog of Feb. 15 — we received this from Peter Winkler:
Van Heflin remains a woefully underappreciated actor, although he did receive a well deserved Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. It’s surprising to learn that the acting technique he employed emphasized preconceived gestures and line readings when his acting always appeared natural and unforced.
And from regular reader Mike Sheridan:
Van’s sister Frances, played Erica Kane’s mother, Mona on ‘All My Children.’ She was also fantastic.
Although we hate to admit it, but even WE make mistakes on occasion. In our Feb. 14 blog, JEAN PETERS Quiz — The Answers, we failed to make clear which movie Peters turned down. Here is the exact text:
5) Question: Peters was picky about her movies and turned down leading roles in some pretty big pictures, including the following four titles. Can you name the actress who wound up starring each? a) 1948’s Portrait of Jennie; b) 1949’s Samson and Delilah; c) 1953’s How To Marry A Millionaire; and d) 1957’s Designing Woman.
5) Answer: a) Jennifer Jones; b) Hedy Lamarr; c) and d) Lauren Bacall.
Reader Rob alertly e-mailed the following:
Jane Russell wasn’t in ‘How to Marry a Millionaire.’ Was Jean Peters up for the Lauren Bacall role?
Here’s what we know, Rob. Peters was up for Bacall’s role in (d) Designing Woman. We’re not sure of what role she was up for re Millionaire, but she was considered for starring part in that picture. We suspect it was the Bacall role. And, of course, you are correct: Jane Russell costarred with Marilyn Monroe in Gentlemen Prefer Blonds, not Millionaire. Interestingly, both were made in the same year at the same studio.