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Mary Astor as SOTM March 2014

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I didnt record that one, but I did record 4 others from overnight/today I havent seen. It's too bad her lesser known films are being shown in the daytime/early morning hours........

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For a 'typical' comedy programmer from the late 1930s, PARADISE FOR THREE has a rather high user rating on the IMDB.

 

I read that it was not syndicated on television. Eventually, it found a new lease on life thanks to cable and TCM, specifically. And it was finally released on home video as part of a Robert Young-Florence Rice double feature (with MIRACLES FOR SALE) in 2011.

 

1paradise.jpg

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I couldnt record everything, so I had to choose as to what sounded good or more interesting. And I'll have to watch all of them before Mary's night next week or I cant record more!

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>PARADISE FOR THREE is airing later this morning. It is sometimes known by its alternate title, ROMANCE FOR THREE.

 

According to IMDb, ROMANCE FOR THREE is the U.K. title, It was also the on-screen title as aired on TCM today, accompanied by U.S.A. copyright information.

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>ROMANCE FOR THREE is the U.K. title, It was also the on-screen title as aired on TCM today.

 

I am wondering if the DVD, which on the outside package says 'Paradise for Three' has the same opening credits that we saw on TCM today.

 

If anyone has purchased the Young-Rice double feature (or rented it from the classicflix website), please let us know.

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I finally got around to watching CYNTHIA this morning. Certainly not Mary Astor's best film but not her worst one, either.

 

A reviewer at the IMDB felt the film belongs to Astor, though a young Liz Taylor plays the central character. I agree that it is Astor who infuses the story with heart and energy.

 

TCM is re-airing CYNTHIA again on March 24th.

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I love Mary Astor (what a class act), but I do not think this has been a successful Star of the Month tribute.

 

As of this writing, there are less than 1,000 views of this thread. Usually when I create these SOTM threads, they range anywhere from 3,000 to 10,000 views. One or two have exceeded that amount. The June Allyson one is already over 2,200 views and her tribute does not start until five weeks from now.

 

Also, after Astor's films have aired, I have only seen one or two of them make the top ten list of the most searched titles on the TCM database. I think she only has three well-known titles: THE MALTESE FALCON, THE GREAT LIE and LITTLE WOMEN (and probably because of the other lead stars in those productions who have loyal fan followings).

 

I am glad TCM took a risk by spotlighting a performer who was not exactly an iconic star. I hope the lack of response does not prevent TCM from featuring other such deserving artists as SOTM in the future.

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TB,

 

The response to Mary Astor as SOTM has been very favorable and popular on Facebook where fans are talking about Mary's films and thanking TCM for airing them.

 

With the success of its social media sites like FB and Twitter (where they announced that last night's screening of *The Gold Rush* would be the 1925 version), TCM is reaching more fans than ever before.

 

As for the popularity of the June Allyson thread, part of that is due to one poster's vocal dislike of her and other posters engaging with him over that than it is about June herself so far.

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Good points, lz. Glad to hear that people are responding favorably to Mary Astor as Star of the Month on TCM's Facebook page.

 

I noticed there was no major voice-over tribute for Astor, either by a relative, a star who worked with her, or a modern performer who admires her. You know, how Keith Carradine spoke about Greer Garson, or how Kelsey Grammer did the tribute for Lauren Bacall-- it would have been nice if TCM could have found someone (a celebrity or a group of fans) to record in-depth thoughts and impressions about Mary Astor. I think there's a blurb by Margaret O'Brien commenting on LITTLE WOMEN, but Mary Astor deserves a bit more.

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This thread just broke 1000 views, and it is Mary Astor's final evening as Star of the Month.

 

There are some excellent films on tap tonight-- most notably LITTLE WOMEN '49 and MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS.

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I'm not sure how many page views on this thread is any barometer of how popular the Mary Astor SOTM has been. It seems to me that folks on these boards have been begging for YEARS for Mary Astor to be SOTM.

Personally, I think this has been my favorite SOTM since Constance Bennett, not only because I love Mary Astor but because her body of work spans the silent era into the golden age of films and beyond. It's been such fun to see so many films that are seldom shown on TCM (I doubt we'll be able to say that about June Allyson films!) and recognize the great range Mary Astor had.

 

Sorry to see this month come to a close. I have loved Wednesdays

and Thursdays in March.

 

Lydecker

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I agree with your take here. As you noted Mary Astor was in so many different type of films, for many different studios, over many years (eras). This leads to the films shown being more varied and makes the month more interesting.

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>Mary Astor was in so many different type of films, for many different studios, over many years (eras). This leads to the films shown being more varied and makes the month more interesting.

 

And just think how much more varied this retrospective would have been if TCM had aired

 

_Her 20th Century Fox films:_

BRIGHAM YOUNG

CLAUDIA AND DAVID

RETURN TO PEYTON PLACE

HUSH...HUSH, SWEET CHARLOTTE

 

_Her Universal films:_

STRAIGHT FROM THE HEART

THIS HAPPY FEELING

STRANGER IN MY ARMS

 

_Her Paramount films:_

JENNIE GERHARDT

MIDNIGHT

DESERT FURY

THE DEVIL'S HAIRPIN

 

_And her Columbia films:_

LADY FROM NOWHERE

TRAPPED BY TELEVISION

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This has totally been one of my all-time favorite SOTM months!!! Woohoooo!!!! TONS of pre-codes, early talkies and 30's flix, can't ever go wrong with that!!!

 

Mary has never really been high on my radar, but I've come away from this month with a new-found appreciation for the breadth of her work! Awesome stuff, and one of the things TCM does so well in introducing some lesser lights who once were greater to fans of classic flix everywhere! TCM rules!

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Yes, you're right. No voice over. I doubt there are any stars left who worked with Astor, but it would've been nice to have someone do a tribute. Too bad. TCM doesnt always do a voice over tribute. I dont think they did one for Olivier last year.........

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Yes, its too bad that TCM didnt show some of her Fox films, like her last, Charlotte or Return to Peyton Place (she was the best thing in that).

 

Was Astor ever under a studio contract in the 30s? I know she was in the 40s to Warners and MGM, but during the 30s she seems to have worked for a lot of different studios making many films...

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Mary Astor wrote one of the best all-time memoirs of her long career, A LIFE ON FILM, and my paperback copy has countless stills from most of her movies. It's wonderful the way she evokes how it was to make silent, then talkies. She describes the changes in make-up, hair styles, her wardrobe (her favorite designer was Irene at MGM). She's also very candid about some of her co-stars, especially Elizabeth Taylor and James Dean. Astor describes how trapped she felt after signing her MGM contract and all she played were 'Mother" roles--with the exception of Fred Zinneman's dark film noir, Act of Violence.

Her first biography, MY STORY, published earlier is also fascinating--she confesses to being an alcoholic, her horrific father, her love affairs, etc.

These books may be out of print but I would definitely try Amazon. They would be invaluable in any film buff's library.

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>Was Astor ever under a studio contract in the 30s?

 

She was under contract at RKO in the early part of the decade, then in the mid-30s she went to Warners where she made a batch of programmers. She considered DINKY, the one where she played Jackie Cooper's jailed mother, the best of the bunch.

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Thanks princessananka for recommending the two Mary Astor books. It is very much appreciated!

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Yes, I read both books. Too bad they are probably out of print now. A Life on Film was a great photo auto-biography concentrating on the films she made. I checked it out of the library several times. Hopefully libraries still have it. She also wrote several novels......(and was an accomplished pianist!)

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I have a paperback of one of Astor's novels; Goodbye Darling...Be Happy.

 

It is a good read. I always go to used book stores (when they use to exist!) looking for books related to studio-era movies. This book was in the section related to movie stars by mistake. Anyhow it was a good one to add to my collection since it was written by a actress I really enjoy.

 

The book was released in 1965.

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I'm on a quest to find a decent hardback copy of My Life In Film after this month. Mary Astor was not only an incredible actress, she was apparently a literate and compelling writer as well.

 

Lydecker

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