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Westside61

Any Vivien Leigh fans?

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Vivien Leigh is one of those actresses from the golden era that many people nowadays have not heard of. Her name is not as popular as Bette Davis or Joan Crawford, but she was briliant in the limited American films that she did make. "Gone With The Wind" was obviously her most popular, but my favorites are "Waterloo Bridge" and "A Streetcar Named Desire." For an actress who won two Best Actress Oscars, it disappoints me that more people do not take notice of her.

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She is one of my favorites, but TCM doesn't show her movies very often. I think she should at least get a day if not a star of the month.

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I like Vivien Leigh - particularly in Gone with the Wind and Streetcar Named Desire. The rapport between Marlon Brando and Vivien Leigh was awesome. She looks a great deal like Hedy Lamarr.

 

Why doesn't TCM show Streetcar Named Desire more often?

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Vivien does resemble Hedy Lamarr. When I first saw of picture of Hedy, I first thought it was Vivien. "Ship of Fools", which was her last film and not a personal favorite, is playing on Valentine's Day, but so far no other movies of Vivien are scheduled. When TCM has their "Summer of Stars" during August, they should devote a day to her.

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I am a Vivien Leigh fan due, not to her most famous role in GWTW, but to her work in Waterloo Bridge (1940) and the less well known Sidewalks of London (originally known as St. Martin's Lane). Made in 1938, it catches Miss Leigh, Rex Harrison and Charles Laughton when they were each young enough to still be supporting players as well as stars. It's a charmingly told story of buskers, (the people who entertain crowds waiting in queue outside theatres). She is utterly radiant and proves that her dancing as well as her thoughtful, expressive face are beguiling.

 

21 Days (1940) with Laurence Olivier and Leigh as, (natch) lovers, is one of her films that I'd love to see sometime. I've seen snippets of dialogue from the John Galsworthy script adapted, in part by Graham Greene. The segment that I saw captured some of the intensity of both actors as well as their romantic ardor, more familiar perhaps in the widely seen Fire Over England (1937) and That Hamilton Woman (1941).

 

Of her mature work, I'd recommend her Anna Karenina (1948) over the Garbo version anytime. She is exquisitely tragic and, at her interesting best opposite not Vronsky, (Kieron Moore), but the great Ralph Richardson as Alexei Karenin. I'd also like to see Deep Blue Sea (1955) again since she's teamed with Kenneth More in the psychological portrait of an adultress well written by Terence Rattigan. As memory serves, this was one of her most complex portrayals.

 

TCM did have Caesar and Cleopatra (1945) scheduled for this month, but unfortunately that airing was cancelled. It's good though, as you may know, Vivien Leigh wasn't in good health when it was made. For me, Claude Rains steals the show as a very Shavian Caesar. Like you, Ship of Fools (1965) is not a favorite of mine for her role, (but Simone Signoret & Oskar Werner-yes!). I also found The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone(1961) to be unwatchable, (not a big Tennesee Williams fan, but then, I guess I'm just a happy philistine.). I love your idea of having Miss Leigh as one of the Summer Under the Stars too.

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I'll say I am! She's my favorite actress! There is a timelessness about her that is very poetic. She could be very mischievous (GWTW or Ceasar & Cleo), child-like (Sidewalks of London) or she can break your heart (Streetcar). She was very brave to take on roles that specifically centered on beauty as it ages/decays, such as Ship of Fools, Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone, Anna Karenina and Streetcar. Those dramas are too scathing and downright merciless for me to watch more than once.

 

I prefer her younger, more hopeful work.

 

I've never seen 21 Days, but Dark Journey is an interesting thriller which co-stars Conrad Veidt.

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Miss G and Moira,

 

All I can say after I read one of either of your informative posts:

So many movies to watch and so little time.

 

Miss Leigh certainly had a screen-catching quality -- my eyes always are drawn to her whenever she's on. My exposure has been limited -- but just think what she brings to that smallish part in A Yank At Oxford with Robert Taylor?

 

I remember watching That Hamilton Woman years ago - probably on AMC, and not realizing until years later that it was based on real people. The life of Emma Hamilton is fascinating, to say the least.

 

Julie

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Enough though I've only ever seen her in Gone with the Wind (one of the greatest films ever made!), Vivien Leigh is one of my favorite, if not my absolute favorite, actresses. From the moment I first saw Gone with the Wind, her beauty and spirit immediately captured my attention, and still does. To me, she is the most beautiful actress of all time. I also really wish TCM would show more of her films, particularly Waterloo Bridge and A Streetcar Named Desire, so that I can see her in some other roles. That would be great if TCM could devote a day (or even a month) to her.

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If you haven't seen her "other" films, you are in for a treat. She will break your heart in Waterloo Bridge, and several others. Most of them are on dvd.

 

The only thing left to wish is that she had done more films.

Miss G

Vivien_Leigh_1121rsmall.jpg

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MissGoddess, Thank you for the beautiful pictures of Vivien. Whenever I think of classic Hollywood film beauties, Vivien is the first actress that comes to mind.

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Hello to all the other Vivien Leigh fans, I have always thought that "Vivien Leigh" is, was and always will be one of the most beautiful women in the world. She always had such perfect, soft, femine features and so tiny. I have recorded a couple of documentaries of her off of t.v. one on "A & E Biography" and the other was an episode of "Mysteries and Scandals" on "E" Channel. I have already recorded "The Making Of A Legend Gone With The Wind" on "TCM" and I am getting ready to purchase "Scarlet and Beyond" on vhs online. But I would love to know if and when the documentary "The Battle For Scarlet" will air on "TCM"? If not, then I would love to know where I could possibly purchase a copy of it on vhs and/or dvd? I look forward to hearing from anyone of you sometime soon, thank you.

 

Sincerely,

CountessPandora

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Piping in here to say Vivian Leigh is definitely one of MY favorites; was born to play Scarlett O'Hara, but great in Streetcar, Waterloo, etc. When I think of "faded beauty" (esp. as I head into middle-age, lol), I think of her... So absolutely exquisite when young and frankly didn't age well; makes me very sad to see her in later films, knowing she was no longer the beauty she was, marriage over, trouble with drink. A lesson in "gathering rosebuds while we may" for all of us. Great "star" (just watch her award acceptance speech, compare and contrast it with today's embarrassments, to see what "star quality" truly is). A class act.

 

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otterhere

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apro7.jpg

The caption reads: On the cover of magazine as The beautiful goddess of the dawn, April 1938

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lvlv1.jpg

One of the most interesting photos I've ever seen with Viv: Here is Larry, in between first wife Jill and his mistress (what thoughts were passing in each mind? Why is Larry looking at Jill---rather worriedly?)

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Glorious photos of Vivien Leigh. She was so beautiful. Very angelic looking. As for Olivier, he was a nice looking man - but I had read that he not only had mistresses, but he had relationships with men as well. Has anyone heard that? Don't know how much to believe about some things written in books though.

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I've only read that from suspect sources, There is a supposedly excellent biography on him that recently came out which I want to read one day.

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