Hello, everybody. Joe Morella and Frank Segers, your classic movie guys, here today with those much-anticipated answers to our Gone With The Wind quizlet posed in our blog of last Friday (Feb. 24). Let’s see how you did.
— Question: How much in 2012 dollars did Gone With The Wind Cost to make: (1) no one knows since inflation values are not fixed; (2) $52 million; (3) $500 million or (3) $630 million?
Answer: This one, we admit, is a toughie in that there are authoritatively differing opinions. Joe’s formula, accounting for inflation and other cost-of-living factors, doubles the film’s production cost each decade since the year it was made. That puts GWTW’s original $4.250 million cost in today’s dollars at approximately $500 million. Other calculations put the figure close to option (3). We’ll be generous and give you a point if you selected choices (1) and/or (3).
— Question: Vivien Leigh as Scarlett O’Hara really resented Clark Gable as Rhett Butler principally because: (1) She felt he didn’t work as hard on his part as she did on hers, (2) She felt he was a tad stupid, (3) She was offended by his attempts to French kiss her in love scenes; or (4) She was put off by Gable’s chronic bad breath caused by his false teeth?
Answer: If you picked (4), congratulate yourself. Yup, Gable’s halitosis really turned off Leigh. Minty mouthwash, anyone?
— Question: Who was producer David Selznick’s first choice for the role of Rhett Butler: (1) Ronald Coleman, (2) Basil Rathbone, (3) Charles Laughton, (4) Clark Gable, (5) Gary Cooper, (6) John Garfield or (7) Errol Flynn?
Answer: No. 5, Gary Cooper. Would he have made a better Rhett Butler than Gable? We’ll never know.
— Question: Which of the following actresses were NOT seriously considered for the part of Scarlett O’Hara: (1) Lana Turner, (2) Miriam Hopkins, (3) Loretta Young, (4) Joan Crawford, (5) Bette Davis, (6) Joan Fontaine, (7) Katharine Hepburn, (8) Lucille Ball, (9) Norma Shearer or (10) Barbara Stanwyck?
Answer: (10) Barbara Stanwyck. We guess you can take Ruby Stevens out of Brooklyn but not the other way around.
— Question: Among the thousands of Scarlett O’Hara aspirants, who came closest to beating out Vivien Leigh for the part: (1) Jean Arthur, (2) Joan Bennett, (3) Irene Dunne, (4) Paulette Goddard or (5) Claudette Colbert?
Answer: No. 4, Paulette Goddard. If it wasn’t for her “ambiguous relationship” at the time with someone by the name of Charlie Chaplin, she might have landed the role. It was that close.
— Question: How much was Vivien Leigh paid to appear in Gone With The Wind: (1) $5,000 per week, (2) $100,000, (3) $30,000, or (4) $10,000 plus a piece of the box office action?
Answer: (3) $30,000, which in 2012 dollars translates to about a half million.
— Question: A relative of producer David Selznick played a crucial part in getting Vivien Leigh the Scarlett O’Hara lead. Who is this person, and what exactly did he do?
Answer: Selznick’s brother, Myron, was a bigtime Hollywood agent who represented among others Vivien Leigh’s paramour (and later husband) at the time, Laurence Olivier. Convinced of Leigh’s suitability for the role, Myron Selznick pressed her case with his producer brother. The rest is…….
— Question: George Cukor, the initial director of Gone With The Wind, was taken off the picture to be replaced by Victor Fleming, the film’s director of credit: 1) Because Vivien Leigh couldn’t stand the guy, (2) Because Clark Gable felt neglected by the director, (3) Because Cukor couldn’t get along with producer David Selznick, or (4) Because MGM boss Louis B. Mayer, who personally detested Cukor, put pressure on Selznick to drop him?
Answer: No. (2). Gable believed Cukor paid a lot of attention to Leigh and Olivia DeHavilland (who played Melanie) and not to him. He used his considerable star clout at the time to effect a change of directors to his old pal, Fleming.
— Question: Who among the following screenwriters did NOT work on the Gone With The Wind script: (1) Oliver Garrett, (2) Ben Hecht, (3) Sidney Howard, (4) Harold Robbins, (5) F. Scott Fitzgerald, (6) John Van Druten, (7) William Faulkner or (8) Jo Swerling?
Answer: No. 7, William Faulkner and , yes, No. 4, Harold Robbins.
— Question: The sacking and burning of Atlanta scene, originally intended to be filmed last, was filmed first by producer David Selznick because: (1) He screwed up the movie’s production schedule so badly that a coherent scene order was made impossible, (2) The change in directors (George Cukor out, Victor Fleming in) necessitated a fresh look for key scenes, and (3) A back lot littered with old movie sets and building facades needed to be cleared and the decision was made to burn the junk.
Answer: No. 4, they had to clear the set so why not set the junk afire? Saved money and made for a dramatic sacking of Atlanta.