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MARION DAVIES and THE FIVE O'CLOCK GIRL


drednm
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The Five O'Clock Girl was a 1928 film based on a Broadway musical. Marion Davies started filming this project as a silent but it was switched by MGM to a talkie and co-starred Charles King, Joel McCrea, and Aileen Pringle. Sources say that filming proceeded for 3 or 4 weeks before the project was shelved by Louis B. Mayer after an argument with William Randolph Hearst after seeing the rough cut. Some sources say Hearst decided Davies should not make her talkie debut playing a shop girl (even though she'd already been starring in films for more than a decade); others says Mayer shelved it because he couldn't have his way (whatever that was). In any case, the film supposedly shelved has never been seen. Odd that sources don't just say it was destroyed, but it's also odd that the existing film, even if it was never finished and released, was not part of Davies' personal collection (which she donated to Library of Congress in the 1950s).

 

Trade papers of the day printed lots of updates and tidbits about the production of The Five O'Clock Girl since it was to be Davies' starring debut in a talkie. Some say the project was rushed because they only filmed it while waiting for Rosalie (another Davies project) to get underway. A sign of trouble was that the original director, Alfred Green, was replaced by Robert Z. Leonard. Rumors persisted that Davies couldn't talk (she had a stutter) or sing, but when Davies' talkie debut in Marianne DID hit theaters, it was proven she had absolutely no problems with talking or singing.

 

Rosalie didn't get made at MGM until 1937. The Five O'Clock Girl, which included the hit song "Thinking of You," seems to have been lost in the mists of time.

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