When I’m doing a role, a good role, I’m being someone other than me. See, I’m a true Irishman, and I glide with the leprechauns. They say the Irish are brash, but there’s also a quietness. Sometimes I can sit a whole evening and say nothing - but I absorb everything. I happen to like being alone a lot. I’m called a little nuts. I call it concentration. So I have a shell I creep into. So? I marvel at people who have theories about acting. I just go and do the work. Frank Capra taught me that if you can think, you can make the audience know it. You can make them know what you are going to do. On the stage, it’s mannerisms. On the screen, your range is shown in your eyes.
- Barbara Stanwyck
"I think your whole life shows in your face and you should be proud of that."R.I.P. Lauren Bacall [September 16, 1924 - August 12, 2014]
David Niven studies a script in the gardens at Pinewood Studios, ca. 1950s
"I’m not ashamed of what I am - of how I pass through this life. What I am has given me the strength to do it. At my lowest ebb I have never contemplated suicide. I value what is here too much. I have a contribution to make. I am not just taking up space in this life. I can add something to the lives I touch. I don’t like everything I know about myself, and I’ll never be satisfied, but nobody’s perfect. I’m not sure where the next years will take me - what they will hold - but I’m open to suggestions."
Rest in Peace, Betty.
(1924 - 2014)
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Joan and Jack Benny
Barbara liked a relaxed set and one of the ways she kept the crew happy was by kidding with them. And if an actor was nervous, or pouting over some real or imagined slight, she’d usually come up with something to loosen him up. For example, Robert Cummings told Doug McClelland why he thought Missy was so wonderful. For comparison, he cited Susan Hayward, whom he described as being very cold toward him when filming The Lost Moment. He said that Susan never spoke to him off camera: “After a scene she’d turn on her heel and leave the set without saying a word.” Cummings was not a very confident actor, so this really unnerved him. But he said that Missy was the complete opposite, and gave this example: He was jittery and somewhat awestruck before their love scene, until she whispered to him, "Come on, Bob, you know you’d like to f**k me, admit it." Well, between blushing and laughing, Bob forgot to be nervous. And he was smart enough to know that she didn’t have designs on him.
"The goal was to find a way to get into the head of a child,” - Stephen Frankfurt, title designer
Happy Birthday Lucille Desiree Ball | August 6, 1911 - April 26, 1989
“She is one of the few individuals in history to be on a solely first name basis with the world: Marilyn, Elvis, Lucy. She was a national treasure. She remains a world icon, recognizable from Tallahassee to Timbuktu from Paduach to Peru. No other performer in any medium of either sex has inspired the devotion and generated the international love and appreciation that she has. Said one admirer: “Lucy…is a common denominator for nations, continents, and hemispheres, doing in entertainment what others have not accomplished in professional diplomacy.” - Women Pioneers in Television
"The sun never sets on Lucille Ball. All over this worried world tonight, nations of untold millions are watching reruns they also watched the first time around. Joy requires no translation. God wanted the world to laugh, and he invented you. Many were called, but you were chosen. All of the funny hats, the baggy pants, the mustaches and the wigs, and the pratfalls and and the blacked out teeth - they didn’t fool us one minute. We saw through all the disguises, and what we found inside is more than what we deserve." - Sammy Davis, Jr.
"She’s given the world so much darn enjoyment, Lucille Ball is the best loved star in show business." - Ed Sullivan
"One of the greatest gifts to mankind is laughter, and one of the greatest gifts to laughter is Lucille Ball. God has her now, but thanks to television, we’ll have her forever." - Bob Hope
Clark Gable photographed by Russell Ball, 1930s.
Irene Dunne by George Hurrell, 1931