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Remembering Marie Prevost


slaytonf
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A woefully neglected actress, she started out as a silent film beauty and morphed into an early talkie sidekick. She had an excellent comic sense, as can be seen in tonight's movie, Ladies of Leisure. Her best turn was in a Mae Clark movie, The Good Bad Girl. She plays a brilliant scene at a breakfast table loaded with food, which she indulges in, while strictly preventing her sugar daddy from having anything, to keep him on his diet.

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> {quote:title=slaytonf wrote:

> }{quote}A woefully neglected actress, she started out as a silent film beauty and morphed into an early talkie sidekick. She had an excellent comic sense, as can be seen in tonight's movie, Ladies of Leisure. Her best turn was in a Mae Clarke movie, The Good Bad Girl...

 

Love Marie too!

She was one of the best things about LADIES OF LEISURE.

And I agree about THE GOOD BAD GIRL, and she was also fun in another with Mae Clarke, THREE WISE GIRLS (1932).

 

And thanks Fred for posting that great picture!

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That photo you posted Fred, is a hoot! I assume it's Marie, although I don't recognise her.

 

What's funny about this picture is when I was a little girl & asked my grandma what it was like to be a flapper, she said;

 

"We would roll our stockings down below our knees to expose them (apparently this was scandalous) and then we'd rouge our knees."

 

That photo is the only time I've ever seen a stocking rolled down that way. Also funny is the short dress with cowboy boots-something regrettably in fashion right now.

(Yes, teens wearing shorts & cowboy boots had been seen this past summer)

 

The only thing weird is her ONE tassel?

 

And glad no one mentioned the great Nick Lowe song "Marie Provost". It was based on that awful Hollywood Babylon book account of Marie which has since been debunked.

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Wow, what a very sexy au courant photo.

 

True, TikiSoo, the female youts think short skirts and boots are oh so current, they don't realize designers rip stuff off from fashion history going back to the year of the flood.

 

Tiki, if you look at the bottom of her left elbow, I 'think' that's the other tassel, it probably got caught there when the photo was taken.

 

 

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>TikiSoo posts:

>that awful Hollywood Babylon book account of Marie which has since been debunked

 

That book seems to be riddled with inaccuracies, from what I've encountered. I don't care to perpetuate myths and libels, yet I am interested in her real story. Would you be able to give us an outline of it without the fake, so we can start promoting the true one?

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Hate to sound like a bottom feeder, but what was in Babylon about Marie? I read the book years ago, but dont remember. It's possible her arm is obscuring (or holding back) the other tassle!

 

I'd forgotten about Marie's arduous trek up the stairs to the penthouse in Ladies of Leisure. What a nailbiter! Poor thing.

 

 

Never mind. I just looked it up! Sad.

 

Edited by: Hibi on Dec 6, 2012 9:37 AM

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*Also funny is the short dress with cowboy boots-something regrettably in fashion right now.*

 

THAT's a DRESS!? I thought it was a slip; even for the 20s it seems way too short....

 

Hibi,

Per Kenneth Anger in HB, Marie drank away her bitterness over the collapse of her career in Talkies, as her "Bronx honk" didn't match her romantic image. Supposedly she was found dead in her apartment 1937, half eaten by her dachshund. That's all I remember about her in those books.

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>I'd forgotten about Marie's arduous trek up the stairs to the penthouse in Ladies of Leisure. What a nailbiter! Poor thing.

 

That was a wonderful scene!

 

Capra did a great job on this.

 

He must have studied a lot of DW Griffith endings because this was a great Griffith-style ending. But Capra went one step further.... he had the guy get on the elevator, and we think he is going to miss the girl, and he had Barbara actually jump off the ship and into the water, and we think she is going to drown. Then Capra saved the day both times.

 

How could someone be as clever as Frank Capra, and at such an early age.

 

It's a rare gift. This type of directing can't be taught to the average college student. The artist-director must have been born with a natural ability.

 

I've always been pretty good with making documentaries, my earliest TV network credit as a cameraman on a documentary was for CBS in 1962, when I was 20 years old, but I never could direct a feature film.

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Yes, Kenny stretched the truth on this one, writing that the dog was eating

Marie and not that he was trying to wake her up. And how much could a

dachshund eat anyway, plus Marie was known to have rather acidic tasting

flesh, not something that would entice rover to chow down.

 

Nick Lowe wrote a song about Marie Prevost, though he spelled her last name

wrong and went with Anger's version of events. Sometimes, in the name of art,

one has to take a little poetic license. This also gave him a chance to invent

this humorous little couplet:

 

She was a winner,

Who became a doggie's dinner.

 

 

 

 

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Me neither. I'm guessing he heard or read about it and the doggie part

interested him. And who better to write a bittersweet but witty song about

her. And it does move right along. I suppose he could have done a whole

album, maybe Lowe Sings Anger, about all those Tinsel Town tragedies,

though it might have been a little monotonous.

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> Musicalnovelty wrote: Love Marie too!

> She was one of the best things about LADIES OF LEISURE.

> And I agree about THE GOOD BAD GIRL, and she was also fun in >another with Mae Clarke, THREE WISE GIRLS (1932).

She was also good in SPORTING BLOOD (1931), with Clark Gable, and in yet another Columbia film with Mae Clarke, PAROLE GIRL (1933).

 

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I forgot she was in Sporting Blood. I like that movie. Though the story is nothing special, the dialogue is good, and the cast, even Clark Gable, do a good job, especially Ernest Torrence. The shots in the opening sequence are beautiful, perhaps due to Harold Rosson's (The Wizard of Oz, On the Town) cinematography. There is a wonderful and powerful moment when Torrence's character, instead of crushing a little boy's spirit for contributing to the death of his favorite mare, has him help in caring for her foal.

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Yes, yes...that IS a slip (undergarment) she's wearing in the picture. I just said wearing dresses/shorts with boots is the fashion. Sheesh.

 

>Fred said: How could someone be as clever as Frank Capra, and at such an early age. It's a rare gift. This type of directing can't be taught to the average college student. The artist-director must have been born with a natural ability.

 

This is something I often ponder; natural talent vs learned talent.

 

If you've met enough celebrities usually a few things stand out; their generosity to others, their professionalism, their dedication & focus. I absolutely believe success is a tightrope and if you falter for one minute, you've lost it and it's very hard to recoup-but it can be done.

 

It's funny, we want to identify with these famous people as "just normal people like us" which they ARE, but they also possess a drive & dedication few of us share.

 

>I've always been pretty good with making documentaries, my earliest TV network credit as a cameraman on a documentary was for CBS in 1962, when I was 20 years old, but I never could direct a feature film.

 

Honest of you to reveal that.

I think you just didn't have that inner drive to WANT to direct a feature film, or you would have moved mountains to do so. Other things, like girls, may have distracted you at 20 y/o.

danser.gif

 

When taking on interns or apprentices, the biggest thing I teach them is that I pretty much sacrificed any real social & family life for my work. All they see is "I wanna do that, be my own boss!" but the reality is you can't go out drinking, 'ho around or raise babies and remain sharp enough to keep your business afloat.

That, and you have to be willing to live at a poverty level. Capra personally financed his own films. If it failed, his family could have been out in the cold. (well, California cold)

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