Sunday, March 11, 2007

Bette & Joan 2

I got nothin'. So I will continue with excerpts from Bette & Joan. This time, Bette takes the lead.

"Bette is really unable to conceal for any great length of time that she considers herself God's greatest gift to screen acting. She believes that to be a simple fact of life. Oh, she can be disarmingly candid and funny about herself for a short while--sometimes even modest. But soon that overwhelming ego of hers starts rising to the surface again." -- Larry Carr, Those Fabulous Faces

To capitalize on Errol Flynn's bigger draw at the box office, [the movie title] became The Knight and the Lady; then Essex and Elizabeth. "You cannot give second billing to the Queen of England--or to me," Bette screamed at Jack Warner. "Either change the title or I'm walking out."

And he did, to Elizabeth and Essex.

One more:
On the set of Elizabeth and Essex, among Queen Bette's usual attendants was a boy whose sole duty was to follow the actress, holidng up an ashtray lest she spill ashes on her expensive costumes. When filming was completed, for his faithful, silent service Bette regally gifted the lad with three coins--not gold but silver--a quarter, a dime, and a nickel.[...]

Being a star made it difficult at times for Davis to relate to mere mortals. "It was always the small, human things she had trouble with," said a Warner's publicist. "Like good morning or hello or thank you. She was also very moody. Some days she would be very chatty; then others she could wither you with a glance."[...]

"END THE WAR! SEND BETTE DAVIS TO THE FRONT" was a piece of graffiti scrawled across the north rear wall of the studio lot. When the head of maintenance was called by publicity head Bob Taplinger to have the slogan removed before Davis saw it, he replied, "But she's already seen it. She called this morning and wanted to know why it wasn't put closer to the main gates."

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