Hello, everybody.  Joe Morella and Frank Segers, your classic movie guys, here today admiring that photo above of one of our favorite actresses. (Doesn’t she look great?)

Last week’s blog about Ann Sheridan elicited this response from faithful reader Mike Sheridan:

Wow, you guys pick all the winners. Ann Sheridan was a true “movie star” deserving all the accolades… a great actress and a great personality.

One of her greatest tributes was when Bugs Bunny got konked on the head, several Ann Sheridans were dancing around his noggin (stars)… I never miss the chance to see this girl in action. As good as they get.

Yes, Mike, Sheridan was a knockout.  One of the most popular pin ups of World War II and a good “dame” by all accounts.

One story about Ann reveals what a decent gal she was.  After Thank Your Lucky Stars, the all star musical Warners released in 1943 (the one in which she sang “Love Isn’t Born, It’s Made,”) the studio decided to follow up with a film about the Hollywood Canteen.

Studio writers concocted a tale about a soldier visiting the canteen, and falling in love with one of the stars who entertained there.

Sheridan was Warners biggest sex symbol of the time and she was assigned the role. She adamantly refused the part.  She, justifiably so, thought it unconscionable to lead innocent servicemen to believe that such romantic possibilities were the purpose of the canteen.

Sheridan had the clout to refuse her bosses.  Young contract player Joan Leslie did not, so she wound up in the part.  In the film Hollywood Canteen (released in 1944) a young soldier played by Robert Hutton meets Joan Leslie and a romance ensues.

What’s really fascinating is comparing the plot points from Hollywood Canteen and the 1943 film Stage Door Canteen (about Broadway’s canteen for servicemen in New York City.)  In that film the plot discusses the rule that servicemen and hostesses were forbidden to date or see each other outside the premises, and a young hostess who is there to meet men is chastised and dismissed.

But Hollywood, of course, had to have a Hollywood ending.


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