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Frances Dee Fans

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It would be great to have those Paramounts being scheduled on a regular basis on TV! Yes, I enjoy very much Chevalier's films, so far, I've had the luck of watching most of them...and all of them have been at least enjoyable. "The Love Parade" is another masterpiece, by the way, three times great!


Thanks for sharing that piece on how Frances got her bit part in "Monte Carlo". One thing does not fit though...she was not dressed in an evening gown in the picture, 'cos she impersonated a receptionist in a beauty parlor.


Keep sharing those tidbits with us...they're greatly welcome :)







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I appologize in advance for this mini rant. "Morris Chandelier" as I call him. Ugh, yuck, and aaaaaagh! Can't STAND 'im.! " Every little breeze seems to whisper, DISEASE." That sickening accent! That hideous suggestive French laugh. "Hough, hough, hough,." And worst of all that SONG! "Thank heaven for little girls." Pedophiles must LOVE that one. Before anyone goes berserk , I AM NOT accusing Maurice of being a child abuser! But it's hard to sit thru these leering lyrics and not have bad thoughts. Maybe it's the age we live in...and that straw hat! Boy what I'd like to do to that hat! Use your imagination...:)

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Hi, Helen:


I see we have been having an interesting discussion here, although maybe not quite as animated as that one in the other thread. Slappy sure has a right to his opinion. But the name of the song is "Louise," not "Disease."


I know my uncle does not care for Chevalier, either. He also thinks I should be more interested in John Houseman than Joel McCrea. However, I could care less. To each his own.


I've always liked Chevalier. I'm dying to see more of him and Jeanette MacDonald. I especially want to see, of course, "Playboy of Paris" and "Monte Carolo," for obvious reasons.


Speaking of the other thread, I want to congratulate you, Helen, for your sentiments to the Mr. negativity of that thread. While I do not agree with Slappy's opinion, at least he is respectful of other people's feelings, which that other person is not.


In fact, I was almost tempted to tell you this one funny story in regards to James Dean and his connection to Frances Dee on that thread, but I decided to do it hear, instead. It has more to do with Frances than actually Mr. Dean, anyway.


Also, I wanted to clear up two things in what I said in the other post. I do believe that James Dean was responsible for his own death in that he did not yield the right away. I also agree about the hype surrounding Dean. James Dean made three of the best movies of the 1950's, but he didn't have that long of a career to have this iconic status he has. Another actor who had a longer career and a wider range of roles was Montgomery Clift, who gets little or no recognition today.


Anyway, here is a silly little thing I ran across on the Internet around March/April 2004, shortly after Frances Dee passed away, involving the so-called James Dean curse. Helen, I hope you, Fernando, Susan, and the rest of you find it as amusing as I did when I read.


As you all know, James Dean died in a car accident in California in September 1955 (whatever way you want to aportion the fault). Now the name Dean has a "dee" sound to it.


So, when James Dean died on that lonely California highway in his Sliver Porsche, he put a curse on anyone with a "D" in their name. I don't know if it means I'm in trouble, since my name is Deborah.


Anyway, according to this person, anyone with the "dee" sound in their name was subject to this curse, courtesy of actor James Dean.


So, here we come to the truth of the matter. Of course, Frances Dee would fall into this category. So, we have the real reason Frances died when did (according to this so-called clairvoyant sage).


Frances died from complication of a stroke! But, what brought on her stroke! It could not really be the fact that she was elderly lady of 94 years old! No, of course not. While admitting that age may have played a part in the whole thing, the real reason Frances died March 6, 2004 was because of the curse James Dean put on Frances and anyone else with a "D" in their name. Of course, this sage never did explain why it took a mere 49 years for the James Dean and the long arm of his curse to strike our heroine down! That little fact the clairvoyant never explained.


Of course, then there is the connection between Frances Dee and Sandra Dee. Our clairvoyant wondered if Frances Dee's death bode an ill omen for Sandra Dee. Since Sandra Dee died a year later, I guess we can say our clairvoyant made a good prediction! Of course, the fact that Sandra suffered from kidney disease for several years had nothing to do with her death.


It goes to show you that one never knows what won is going to run across on the Web. I've run across weirder stuff than this, but I will not print it here. It is just too sick and bizarre for my blood. Some of it was Spam and got deleted, anyway.


Just another bit of useless information, with no useful purpose, except for maybe a good laugh. On another note, I got my Joel McCrea magazine today (part one of the article I was looking for for at least ten years). The pictures in their are priceless.


Take care, Helen. I hope you guys found this post as amusing as I did.



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slappy, you too feel strongly negative about someone??? Well, I'll be.:)


I used to feel that way about Rudy Vallee until I saw him in Palm Beach Story, and then saw the guy had a knack for comedy.


Maybe Chevalier had a talent for something other than affectation? I don't know, I'm just supposing here, I don't have an opinion one way or the other.

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Hi, Feaito:


So, you think it's a weird connection between James Dean, Frances Dee, and Sandra Dee. I'm astounded. You doubt the word of psychics and their power of intuition?


Your sentiments echo mine exactly. I think I ran across this while working on some paper at school and printed the thing out, but I don't know what happened to it. The exact wording of it was a little even more pecuilar.


I guess it doesn't take much to get on the Internet. I guess if this gets published, there is a chance of Frances Dee's book getting published one day (hopefully real soon). When I first read this, I had to like pause, and reread it, to make sure I was getting it. Believe me, Fernando, there is stranger stuff out there (even stranger at the time), that I don't even want to talk about here because it was really bizarre. You think that was weird, some of the other stuff was worse.


On another note, I was thinking about that thing about the evening gown in "Monte Carlo." There was something about it that seemed odd, for a receptionist in a beauty shop. If this had been something Frances was remembering when she was an elderly woman, I would have thought, "Well, sometimes details can get mixed up a little bit," even though Frances had an excellent memory and was sharp as a tack in later years, as evidenced by "Complicated Women" in 2003.


However, this was from an interview from 1937. So, Fernando, I have thought of a possible explanation for it. Number one, she was getting the costume from one extra role mixed up with another. Perhaps she was thinking of, say, "Manslaughter," which Susan said had a party scene.


However, there is another explanation that might even make more sense. The assistant was in a hurry to get someone down to the set for a part. He tells Frances, "Hey, get fitted in an evening gown," without really knowing or thinking about what part is. Frances gets down to wardrobe, and they tell her, "No. You need to be dressed like a receptionist."


Frances could have also gone down to the set in the evening gown, with Lubitsch asking her why she was wearing that. However, I think Frances would have recalled that. An assistant might have said something to her as well.


A lot of times the people in a specific area know more about what is going on then the person in charge. My feeling is Frances went down to the wardrobe person, who knew what the role was, and fitted her in the proper outfit. And, I don't think Frances had any lines in "Manslaughter."


What do you think, Fernando? What do you think is most likely? Do any of my ideas make sense?


Take care.



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Yes Debbie, I think that what you say makes sense and explains it, because in 1930 Frances appeared in other Paramount films, so it must have been either that she was dressed that way for another picture or that the guy who told her to go an put on an evening dress, was mixed-up.

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Hi, Slappy:


I knew you were kidding around and making a parody. I was just having a little fun with you myself.


I do know that Maurice Chevalier is not to everyone's liking. I much prefer Chevalier in his earlier roles, especially with Jeanette MacDonald.


Now, you take Rudy Vallee. While I thought his singing was good, I was never overawed by it. I also never got into that Raccoon Coat, which was popular in Roaring Twenties.


However, I got a whole new perspective on Vallee when I saw him in "Palm Beach Story." He was just hilarious. According to Bob Osborne, no one at Paramount wanted Sturges to hire Vallee for the part, but Sturges new Vallee was perfect for the part.


Of course, Vallee was perfect for the part. That scene where Vallee is singing "Goodnight Sweetheart" to Claudette while she is necking with Joel is hysterical. I read somewhere that if you visited Vallee at his house, when you range the doorbell, it played one of his songs.


He had quite a collection of movie memorabilia, which his widow gave to UCLA film archives.


Take care, Slappy.



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Hi, Susan and Everyone:


I would be curious to hear a little more about "Caught." Considerng it was such a small film, it's interesting Frances remembered making the movie so vividly. She made a comment about it having an interesting ending.


I found out that person who used to sell his films on Ebay is now selling privately. My friend said it might have a few titles I would be interested in (either Joel or Frances films). If you're interested, I'll let you know what films the person has.


I'm also going to be able to get two new Frances films, one I have never even seen. Frances has such a wide filmography. I'm going to order them next week.


The two films are "Partrick the Great" and the "Films of Bel Ami." I have seen the "Films of Bel Ami," in which George Sanders plays his usual charming self.


Has anyone else seen "Patrick the Great" or "Affairs of Bel Ami." Take care every one. Have company this weekend; so, won't be able to post for awhile.



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Hello, Deborah!


It was so good to hear from you the other day! I've been feeling better lately, and have actually done some work on my Frances Dee site. Did anyone notice the new wallpapers?


Regarding Caught, what would you like to know? *laughs* I guess that isn't a very practical question really. =) How could you ask the specifics if you don't know what specifics to ask? Anyway... It begins with Calamity Jane, a less-than-ladylike bartender, gambler and recently in trouble for stealing cows and re-selling them. I'm not sure of the specifics of that, I've only seen the film once so far, but if you like I can watch it again and tell you exactly.


Frances comes in to a sweet tune like "Oh, Susannah" or something like that. She is an innocent farm girl forced to become a saloon floozy. Realizing she has no clue of what she's doing, Calamity takes Frances' character, Kate Winslow, under her wing, which causes quite a bit of trouble when Kate falls in love with the soldier that has been sent to capture Calamity. The ending of Caught was very interesting, not your typical "happily ever after." If you like I could e-mail the purchasing source to you.


I would like to know of the eBay fellow you mentioned, though I doubt I could buy anything at the moment.


Oh, be sure to tell me all about Patrick the Great. It sounds delightful!


The Private Affairs of Bel Ami is a wonderful, wonderful film. Every aspect -- the costumes, the sets, the story, the performances -- is amazing. Frances part is small, but profound. Actually, you could read about it on my website! =)


I hope you're doing well, Deborah! Take care!

- Susan

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Hi, Susan:


Oh, this sounds like a great movie. I wonder why it didn't do better when it came out. Richard Arlen was a real big star at the time. This was around the second or third major film Frances Dee did. As I told you, even though it was a minor film, Frances remembered it clearly, even after over sixty years.


I'm curious about one thing. Does the movie explain at all about how Frances becomes a dance hall floozy. I don't need to know how. Yes, I would be interested in your source.


Incidentally, my friend forwarded me a list of this person's movies, which has a lot of Joel/Frances films, incuding "Rich Man's Folly," "Along Came Youth," and "Lightnin." I can email you a copy of the list if you like.


I just won two Ebay auctions today; so, I'm not going to buy any movies for awhile either. These are Joel articles after 1933; so, I'm sure there is going to be stuff on Frances in them. Did you want me to email you those two pictures from the 1976 magazine?


Take care, Susan. I got to get back to my school project on the Original Crime of the Century, for presentation on Tuesday.



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Hi, Susan:


I should be getting my new magazines by next week, hopefully. I'm hoping they will have some nice family pictures in them.


I've found out some interesting information in my magazines I recently got. One of them sheds some light on why Joel and Frances didn't meet as children, even though they were born so close together. This is part one of that two-part article I told you about, where I was looking at part one for quite awhile. I was looking forward to putting the photos in my group (after I delete and reload other pictures I put on) so there is room for more pictures.


I saw the "Private Affairs of Bel Ami" several years ago and really loved it. No one could play a cad like George Sanders could, although he could be a nice guy when he wanted to be. Other than Sanders, the two people I remember most in the movie were Angela Lansbury and Frances Dee.


In her interview with Boyd Magers in 1998, Frances Dee mentioned the movie, "Private Affairs of Bel Ami," and the small-time studio who made it. It was the same studio that made "Four Faces West." Frances also remembered the producer of the two films very fondly. If you like Susan, I'll look up the stories and post them here.


I'm also looking in my historical newspapers section for articles and blurbs on Frances. I'll keep you posted on what I find.


Take care, Susan. Have to go back to my criminal justice paper now.



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How exciting to be awaiting new magazines! I love receiving them. Tell me, do you prefer Photoplay and the like to modern periodicals as I do? I can't stand to look at all the trash printed today...it's almost as bad as those terrible books we've discussed.


Oh, have you seen the version of "Bel Ami" that features an introduction by Roddy MacDowell? (Not sure if I spelled his name right...) It's fascinating, and so sad when he talks about George Sanders. What kind of person must he have been? Mr. Sanders I mean.


I would love to hear what Frances had to say about

"Bel Ami," and would very much like those two pictures you offered from you 1976 magazine. Thank you for the two wonderful articles you've sent recently as well. "I Give Thanks" is posted on my Frances Dee Tribute, and the other might just have to wait until after May 2, when a project of my own comes due.


You know, I don't exactly remember how Frances' character in "Caught" came to be a saloon floozy. She certainly wasn't born the type, and is reprimanded for being too decent. One part I do remember is the scene when she first comes out in her dance-hall dress. She walks a little bit stiffly, every inch the lady, until another girls walks by. Noticing the way she wore her gown, Frances quickly adjusts the shoulder straps from being in their rightful place to a seductive, off-the-shoulder look, and attempts to slink across the room.


Take care, Deborah! I hope your project comes out well.

- Susan

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Hi, Susan:


For some reason, I've been having trouble logging in lately. Even if my settings come up in the main menu, when I go in and try to post, I'm not allowed to do so, especially in the first list of menus. I tried to post something on Ruth Hussey and was unsuccessful. Have you ever had that problem.


I haven't gotten my copy of "Bel Ami" yet. I don't know if Roddy MacDowell does an introduction it or not. If you've seen "Word of Mouth" on TCM, dear, sweet Angela Lansbury was talking about George and how acting only used a small portion of his brain. She also talked about how he used to regale her with limericks. I'll have to see if Joel mentioned him in that interview with Patrick McGilligan. I'll have to see. The one picture I have is from the premier of "Foreign Correspondent."


As I said, my final is due a week from Tuesday. My presentation, this Tuesday, is a talk on the original crime of the Century, that happened in May 1924 in the Hyde Park/Kenwood neighborhood of Chicago. I'm going downtown tomorrow to see if I can find some pictures of how Chicago looked in the 1920's, as well as a street map. I'm also going to try and see if I can find a picture of Shakespeare Grammar School. It might be in the "Lost Chicago" book. It could also still be in existence, but under another name.


Oh, I much prefer the oldtime magazines (aka "Modern Screen" and "Photoplay") to the drek they have out nowadays, although I must admit that even the tabloids don't go as far as some of these awful, awful books, whose soul purpose is to make money by trashing people.


First of all, look at the stars you had in the past, like Frances Dee, Ruth Hussey, Kate Hepburn, Claudette Colbert. Now you've got no-talent dreks, who build their whole careers on an image, rather than on talent. I told you the story about how I got my friend interested in Frances Dee. She was talking about how beautiful she was, especially in later years (a la that "Life Magazine" photo you have on the website). Well, her silly friend came up and said she was too fat. I said, "Yes, size 6, 110 pounds is really hefty?" I mean, "Give me a break. I'm a big-boned woman and even if I lost all the weight I want, I'm never going to be a size 6." Back in the old days, women had figures and looked like women, not the stick pins that are out there today. And, let's not even get into the men.


I didn't mean to get too much off on a tangent. But, I do hate the tabloids and the trashy magazines out there today. Even the more mainstream ones, like "People" have become trashy, veneer with no substance. I remember when I used to watch "Entertainment Tonight" all the time in the 1980's; now I don't watch it at all. It's just garbage. I went to see a couple of movies today. I actually liked both films, but the coming attactions were so awful, I'm going to stay away most of the summer.


On another note, if you would like me to, I'll email you some of the pictures from that other Joel article, if you're interested in seeing some pictures of him as a child? I also wanted to email you another picture later on to see if you think the picture is actually Frances or someone else, if that's okay. I just want to see w hat you think on the matter.


Take care.




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Hi Susan, I went to your website recently love the new

screen savers but i couldn't decide which one to use as my desktop allthe pictures are fabulous! Of our Frances

Dee I had tears in my eyes looking at the "older" pictures of Joel & Frances the way they are holding on to

each other in their advanced years shows so much tenderness and years of deep love! We all should be so

blessed! Keep posting love all your posts read them all

the time just at that particular moment i have nothing

to add to the discussions but when i have something to say i will and so will many other posters. take care


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decotoddla, as long as one...Frances Dee...remains on topic, all is well. It is when one veers off topic in talking to or about another subject...Frances Dee...that one is reminded on the board to remain...Frances Dee...on topic.


That's about it, decotoddla...Frances Dee...that's how it works.

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