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Joan Crawford and Bette Davis : why they hated each other


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Something that I have wondered about

Why did Bette Davis and Joan Crawford dislike each other so much.

In Whatever Happened to Baby Jane Bette was said to have really kicked Joan in the kicking scene. Joan was supposed to be the villain in Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte but got sick (from being around Bette Davis)

Was it ego ?

Was their professional jealousy ?

Was someone in the wrong ?

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Bette was the reigning queen of Warner Brothers, Joan was the reigning queen of MGM.

Their stars were both on the descendant in 1945. Joan went to Warner Brothers, made Mildred Pierce (a script that Davis rejected), won the Academy Award, and essentially booted Davis out on her ear. Bette made, between 1945-49 some of ther biggest duds. Had it not been for Claudette Colbert hurting her back on Three Came Home, Davis might never have regained her stature as a star with All About Eve. Crawford continued making winning films at Warner's for years, literally taking Davis' place.

To define how deadly the studios were back then, Warner's used some of the soundtrack from Now Voyager, Davis' big hit only three years earlier, in Mildred Pierce!

When Crawford and Davis were cast in Baby Jane, there came together almost twenty years of angst on he part of Davis. That she didn't kill Crawford, is amazing.

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i got these from this website: http://www.divasthesite.com/index.htm


under bette davis trivia: Had a legendary feud with Joan Crawford which reached its nadir when she said, "The best time I ever had with Joan in a film was when I pushed her down the stairs in 'What ever happened to Baby Jane?'"


Her feud with Joan Crawford began when Bette was making the movie 'Dangerous' with Franchot Tone. Davis apparently developed a very bad crush on Tone without knowing that he was having an affair with Crawford. Tone would come back from his lunch with lipstick all over his face from the make-out sessions with Crawford and when Davis found out that Tone was having an affair with Crawford the feud began and it never really ended.


from joan crawford trivia: Bette Davis used to tell everyone that Joan Crawford only got into movies by way of the casting couch-- until Joan hit her back with, "Well, my dear, it sure beat the cold, hard floor!"


When "What Ever Happened to Baby Jane" was finished, Bette Davis referred to Joan and herself as "we two old broads." Joan sent Bette a note on her traditional blue stationery: "Dear Miss Davis. Please do not continue to refer to me as an old broad. Sincerely, Joan Crawford."


and from 'whatever happened to baby jane?' on imdb: During the kicking scene, Bette Davis kicked Joan Crawford in the head, and the resulting wound required stitches. In retaliation, Crawford put weights in her pockets so that when Davis had to drag Crawford's near-lifeless body, she strained her back.

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>"The best time I ever had with Joan in a film was when I pushed her down the stairs in 'What ever happened to Baby Jane?'"


Not surprised to learn that. I've always thought that Bette might have had a terrific inner satisfaction from that movie. She is the one who gets to torment Joan. Poor Joan had to take all that abuse, plus the fact the movie was more about Bette than Joan, i.e., the last scene whirling in the sand, she gets the last laugh on all counts. Joan must have been desperate to do this one to put herself in that position.

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