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Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Happy Birthday, Olivia de Havilland

Wishing Ms. de Havilland a very happy birthday today

From the blog, Olivia & Joan: Sisters of the Silver Screen

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Olivia remembers Mickey Rooney

TIME magazine published a few memories from Olivia de Havilland on her  Midsummer Night's co-starthe late Mickey Rooney. They were reunited at the 75th Oscars in 2003. She didn't say how may years it had been, but I'm sure it was many, many years. I remember watching the Oscars that night. What a special night it was!

Mickey Rooney and Olivia de Havilland in A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935)

Monday, April 7, 2014

Mickey Rooney (1920-2014)

Hollywood Legend Mickey Rooney has passed away at the age of 93. A performer all of his life (his parents were vaudeville performers and brought him on stage when he was a baby), his best known films are from the 1930s and 40s, including the Andy Hardy series, National Velvet, Boys Town, Babes in Arms, and the one film he did with Olivia, A Midsummer Night's Dream. More from the New York Times

Mickey Rooney and Olivia de Havilland in A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935)

RIP Mickey Rooney

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Live in Chicago? See Joan on the big screen next week

If you live in or near Chicago you have an opportunity next week to see 1948's Kiss The Blood Off My Hands at the Patio Theater on the city's northwest side. The film, starring Joan Fontaine and Burt Lancaster, is a presentation of the Northwest Side Chicago Film Society, and will shown in non other than glorious 35MM on Wed February 26 2014 at 7:30 PM. Tickets are only $5 per person. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

News about a new Olivia book

The Facebook page of the Olivia de Havilland Fan Club (also @OdeHavilland) posted a link to a recent article with some good news about....hold on to your seat....a new biography of Olivia, which sounds very promising.

According to the article, a special grant was awarded to Victoria Amador, a professor of English at the American University in Sharjah (United Arab Emirates), and her plan is to write a new book, a critical biography of Olivia.

Professor Amador, a longtime fan of Gone With the Wind and Ms de Havilland, visited the legendary actress last year as part of her research; a photo of the two can be found in the article.

Also according to the article, the publisher will be University of Kentucky Press, and the goal is to have the book finished by the end of 2014.

For fans of Ms deHavilland, news about a new books is really exciting! Thanks to the Olivia de Havilland Fan Club for the update!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Remembering Shirley Temple (video)

Remembering the legendary Shirley Temple today.

source: WorldNewsNow / ABC News video

Sunday, February 9, 2014

A Damsel in Distress (1937)

This is a really fun musical comedy, featuring some wonderful songs by George Gershwin, and an Oscar-winning dance number, back when they gave Oscars for Best Dance Direction.

Fred Astaire plays an American entertainer visiting London. At one point, a crowd of people recognizes Fred and they get him to dance on the spot. It's a fun dance scene on a city street.

Joan Fontaine, proving she can handle the lead in a romantic comedy, is the titular damsel, who lives in a mansion with her father (Montagu Love) and numerous servants. Joan's "distress" is that she's forbidden to leave the mansion after she attempts a runaway to find a lover.

One of the young teenage servants named Albert (Harry Watson of The Watson Family) plays matchmaker and attempts to get Fred to fall in love with Joan and vice versa. Albert is really funny in this movie. Plenty of mistaken identity hilarity ensues.

George Burns and Gracie Allen play Astaire's sidekick assistants. They're not essential to the plot but provide plenty of comedic relief with zany one liners and retorts. In one scene, George and Gracie tour the mansion; a sign inside reads "Do Not Finger Art Objects" and Gracie giggles thinking "Art Objects" is a man's name.

I imagined Ginger Rogers - Fred's usual co-star - playing the lead insted of Joan, but Joan really won me over; she has good chemistry with Fred.  Joan's part doesn't require any dancing, except for one scene where she and Fred frolic on the castle grounds.

A high point in the film is the carnival sequence featuring the Oscar winning dance number in a fun house. Gracie really impressed me with her singing and dancing chops!

Highly Recommended. Directed by George Stevens.