Tag Archives: Anjelica Huston

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

21 Witchy Movies to Keep You Spellbound Until ‘Suspiria’

 

Demario Marks 21 Witchy Movies to Keep You Spellbound Until ‘Suspiria’ By Demario Marks Posted on June 7, 2018

  Bette Midler, SJP, and Kathy Najimy, Hocus Pocus If you’re a horror fan (or a Luca Guadagnino or Tilda Swinton fan), chances are you’ve already seen the new Suspiria trailer a few times. The fresh take on an Italian classic doesn’t hit theaters until November, but it’s already garnered plenty of early buzz (early footage at a CinemaCon luncheon led to nauseous praise) and scrutiny (the color palette features less Argento neon and more shades of gray) from horror aficionados and reboot detractors. Regardless of whether it recalls the original or is a complete diversion, the Suspiria redux will join the ranks of one of the greatest subgenres of storytelling: witch movies. Whether they’re funny or horrifying, heartwarming or tragic, stories about magic-practicing women have been a cultural mainstay long before the advent of film. In both Macbeth and Greek mythology, three powerful ladies foresee and shape the future using sorcery. These trinities of influential, mysterious women still crop up in pop culture today, along with references to historical superstitions like those that were at play in Salem and medieval Europe. Most witches on screen are clearly figments of popular imagination–they seem to practice an unlikely mash-up of Wicca, ceremonial magick, and Hollywood-ified Satanism–but the ideas they stand for and the themes their stories address are real and powerful. Sisterhood, womanhood, female friendship, queer love, and matriarchal power are boldly displayed (with either pride or fear depending on the movie) in these stories, making witches an ideal vessel for radical storytelling. Fictional witches, like most supernatural beings, have long since been a stand-in for “the other,” and their stories have become the stories of the marginalized. Women, people of color (although it should be noted that popular witch movies are still overwhelmingly white), the LGBT community, and more have all found a voice in these portrayals of ostracized people with unrecognized talent who are able to claim their power for better or worse. When (if?) you finally tire of watching the Suspiria trailer, give one of these witchy flicks a try: SUSPIRIA (1977) The original Suspiria is often celebrated as one of the best horror movies of all time for a reason. Dario Argento’s gripping, Giallo-influenced film is a nightmare drenched in vivid colors and shot with gorgeous precision. For the uninitiated, the movie follows a wide-eyed American ballet dancer as she uncovers a series of murders at a German dance studio. Lush, mysterious, and picture-perfect, it’s no wonder this one’s hailed as a masterpiece. THE WITCHES (1990) This movie didn’t quite connect with audiences when it was released, which is a shame because a Jim Henson-produced adaptation of a Roald Dahl classic (starring Anjelica Huston, no less) is just the type of off-the-wall ‘90s filmmaking that we’re all missing right about now. The practical effects of this movie, which is about a boy who’s turned into a mouse by kid-hating witches, are a little dated and strange, but it’s all in good fun. Dahl’s humor still shines through, and the movie would make a mean double feature with another Jim Henson production like The Dark Crystal or Labyrinth. THE LOVE WITCH (2016) If there’s such a thing as an instant cult classic, Anna Biller’s candy-colored homage to ‘60s movies is it. The Love Witch is a feminist take on gender and relationships told through the lens of a stylish Californian witch (Biller) named Elaine who can’t seem to stop murdering her lovers. It’s billed as a horror comedy, but it’s light on horror and heavy on comedy. Biller is a revelation as Elaine, a resourceful, confident neo-femme fatale with wonderfully arch delivery. HÄXAN (1922) This Swedish silent film is essentially an early documentary, although its dramatic reenactment sequences court horror and initiated some genre habits that are still alive today. The film is surprisingly progressive, revisiting periods of historical witch-hunts within the context of superstitions and limited medical understanding. Häxan’s greatest strength is its gorgeous design: detailed masks, costumes, and sets make the things that go bump in the night come alive in memorable, impressive ways. ROSEMARY’S BABY (1968) A masterwork of paranoia and suspense, Polanski’s classic is every bit as essential today as the day it came out. Mia Farrow absolutely owns the screen as a mom-to-be suffering through a pregnancy from hell, who suspects she’s being manipulated by the people around her, including her husband, upstairs neighbors, and doctor. In this saga of forced female helplessness, gaslighting has never been scarier, and when the finale comes around–even if you’ve seen it a dozen times before–it hits hard and stays with you. I AM NOT A WITCH (2018) Rungano Nyoni’s feature debut is still on the festival circuit in many places, but if it comes to a theater near you, don’t miss it. The satire blends fact with fiction in its imagined version of Zambia, where a young girl is banished to a witches camp after being the only witness to a village accident. The girl’s witch-hood remains to be seen, but her experiences in the camp (where women are tied to long white ribbons so they don’t fly off) are mesmerizing thanks to Nyoni’s poetic direction and ability to shift nimbly between lighter and darker tones. SCOOBY-DOO ON ZOMBIE ISLAND (1998) As a Scooby-Doo aficionado, I feel confident in my claim that Zombie Island is the best of the franchises’ animated movies. Despite the title, Mystery Inc.’s culprits in this Louisiana-set adventure are actually a trio of Southern cat witch shapeshifters. You read that correctly: this is the first Scooby-Doo outing where the bad guys turn out to be real supernatural beings rather than old-man-so-and-so. The whole story has an especially dark tone, reinventing some of the gang’s mythology while also building up the central mystery in inventive ways. Plus, these three witches–Civil War-era, voodoo-practicing Southern belles–are iconic among the Cartoon Network-loving crowd. THE WITCH (2016) If there’s been a more commanding, stylistically assured debut than Robert Eggers’ Puritan-era thriller in recent memory, I must have missed it. A folktale about the subtle but sure threat of womanhood in the face of religious superstition, The Witch is a feast for the senses despite its brittle and increasingly lifeless setting. Dangerously wide open shots draw viewers’ eyes to the screen’s corner, then away as we anticipate the appearance of some disturbing specter, all while an oppressively spooky score works overtime to quicken the pulse. Anya Taylor-Joy is riveting as Thomasin, a teen girl who comes under suspicion from her banished family after losing her infant brother to an unseen kidnapper. HOCUS POCUS (1993) A fixture on the Disney channel and on ABC Family’s (now Freeform) 13 Nights of Halloween, this initially poorly received horror comedy is now a Halloween must-watch for a certain generation of viewers. Set in Salem, the cult favorite tells the story of three witches (Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy, all nearly unrecognizable in wigs and varying levels of hag makeup) who wreak joyful havoc after being accidentally summoned by a mopey boy virgin. This one admittedly has little appeal to those who didn’t grow up with it, but in the past 25 years, it’s gained enough popularity to warrant talk of a potential sequel. DRAG ME TO HELL (2009) Witches don’t get more stereotypical than the hag at the center of Sam Raimi’s epic gross-out. With origins that appear vaguely Romani and the same moniker as a Greek she-demon, Ganush (later called Lamia in demon form) is a poor-woman-turned-vengeful-spirit who just won’t leave this darned bank loan official alone. Marking Raimi’s much-anticipated return to horror post-Spiderman, Drag Me to Hell is an orchestra of gore and disgust composed mostly of bugs and rot and blood and fluid. Though her character is not fleshed out beyond the basics, the witch in question is certainly one of the most formidable characters on this list. TALES FROM THE DARKSIDE: THE MOVIE (1990) The TV series version of Tales From the Darkside is the perfect ‘80s comfort food entertainment–over-the-top and poorly aged, but binge-able and original nonetheless. In the spirit of other contemporary anthologies like Creepshow, the movie version is a mostly great series of shorts connected by a frame tale. In this case, the connecting thread is that each of these stories is being told by a young boy who’s stalling after being captured by a cannibalistic witch disguised as a preppy housewife-type. The stories themselves are doozies too, with a short Stephen King adaptation and a Steve Buscemi and Christian Slater-led outing among them. HARRY POTTER AND THE DEATHLY HALLOWS PT. 2 (2011) Anyone can tell you that witches play a huge part in J.K. Rowling’s omnipresent books, but some of the movie adaptations certainly contain more girl power than others. Although the final film isn’t the series’ best, it includes undeniable moments of badass witching from the likes of Professor McGonagall, Mrs. Weasley, Hermione, and several other clever magical ladies. KIKI’S DELIVERY SERVICE (1989) Kiki A sweet, low-stakes Miyasaki favorite, Kiki’s Delivery Service reimagines witches as cute and child-friendly. Titular hero Kiki rides a broom and has a familiar in the form of a black cat, but that’s about where her similarities to traditional witches of lore end. In this story, Kiki gets a job at a flight-based delivery service specially designed for witch couriers and struggles to get the hang of her newfound responsibilities. The movie contains gentle lessons about follow-through, friendship, and self-care, all while upholding Miyasaki’s trademark sense of wonder and magic. PRACTICAL MAGIC (1998) Would it be overkill to call this Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman-starring romantic drama a magical version of Thelma & Louise? Probably, but between the accidental murder of an abuser, deep, naturalistic female bond (this time between sisters), and heartland-courting soundtrack, the comparison isn’t far off. The film, about three generations of magical sisters dealing with the repercussions of a love-related family curse (and either embracing or rejecting their powers in the process), is the kind of lighthearted yet emotionally involving fare that’s perfect for a popcorn movie night with friends. Thanks to a memorable climax, it’s also one of the most slyly feminist and empowering witch movies to date.

THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT (1999) ...  Read More

Posted in Hocus Pocus | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


 

Saturday, December 17, 2016

BetteBackJuly 28, 1973: Bette Midler Has A Major Fan

Mt Vernon Register News July 28, 1973 CC010 Dear Bette Midler fans, you have exalted company, Bing Crosby, who says he has never met the lady in person, thinks she is a major vocal talent. P.S. ABC will star her in a special next winter. Bette Midler – My Mother’s Eyes – Divine Madness | BootLeg Betty BetteBack December 1, 1991: James Caan said his character in “For The Boys” isn’t a likable guy | BootLeg Betty Accentuate The Positive – Bette Midler & Bing Crosby – From “The Bing Crosby Special” March 20, 1977 | BootLeg Betty Bette Midler – GlowWorm – Bing Crosby Special | BootLeg Betty

BetteBack September 6, 1991: Geraldo Tastelessly Bares His Sex Life ...  Read More

Posted in BetteBack | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


 

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Bette & Angelica Huston

Posted in Photos | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


 

Monday, December 14, 2015

Melanie Griffith, 58, Fires Back at Critics With Unfiltered Instagram Selfie: ”Say Some More Mean Things”

E! News by MIKE VULPO Sun, Dec 13, 2015 8:19 PM Melanie Griffith, Instagram Melanie Griffith is 58 and proud of it! As many celebrities know, social media can be a cruel place filled with critics, haters and negative nancys. Unfortunately, it appears the comments finally took a toll on one actress who decided to speak out this weekend in a candid Instagram selfie. “Here ya go. Unfiltered. I’m 58. And I’m in Hawaii Five O playing Scott Caan‘s mom,” Melanie wrote online. “Go ahead…Say some more mean things. Merry Christmas.” Oh, snap! The post quickly inspired fans to show their support for the actress. “Haters are going to hate. Do you!” one follower wrote. Another added, “So beautiful. I hope I look as good as you when I’m 58.” Melanie Griffith, InstagramInstagramLuckily, the few critics didn’t prevent the Hollywood star from enjoying herself at a holiday party with a few familiar faces. Earlier in the weekend, Melanie caught up with close friends Anjelica Huston,Bette Midler, Alana Stewart and Margie Perenchio where there was plenty of girl talk. “Girls night at Margies…#IfWallsCouldTalk,” she captioned on Instagram. Alanaadded, “#GoodFriends #GoodFood.” With her divorce from Antonio Banderas recently finalized and plenty of projects in the works for 2016, Dakota Johnson‘s mom may have summed up her thoughts best with a recent Instagram post. “love my kids, love my ex’s,” she wrote after quoting words from Jennifer Weiner‘s Fly Away Home. “Always and forever. #Nobody’s business.”
Posted in Bette Related | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


 

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Bette Midler Visits Some Old Haunts And Friends While On Vacation

Bette Midler visits Radford High in Hawaii

Bette Midler visits her old school, Radford High,  in Hawaii

 
Bette visits friends Anjelica Huston, Melanie Griffith, and Alana Stewart over Christmas Holidays

Bette visits friends Anjelica Huston, Melanie Griffith, and Alana Stewart over Christmas Holidays

   
Posted in Photos | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


 

Monday, November 2, 2015

BetteBack November 28, 1967: Stardom Begins to Loom for Young Actress (Interview)

Lowell Sun Stardom Begins to Loom for Young Actress By Barry Robinson November 28, 1967 ...  Read More

Posted in Articles/Essays, Interviews | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


 

Friday, March 27, 2015

Ten best movie witches – The Telegraph

1970 Michelle Pfeiffer as Queen Lamia in ‘Stardust’ Wiches_Rachel_Weis_2685754k Rachel Weisz in ‘Oz the Great and the Powerful’ 2013 Wicthes_Angelica_H_2685756k Anjelica Huston as the Grand High Witch in ‘The Witches‘ 1990 Witches_Margaret_H_2685769k Margaret Hamilton as the Wicked Witch of the West in ‘The Wizard of Oz’ 1939 Wiches_Bette-Midle_2685768k   Bette Midler as the witch Winifred in ‘Hocus Pocus‘ 1993 wiches_Sarah-Jessi_2685767k Sarah Jessica Parker as the witch Sarah in ‘Hocus Pocus’ 1993 Wiches_Susan-Saran_2685763k Susan Sarandon as Narissa in ‘Enchanted’ 2007 witches_rose-mcgow_2685760k Rose McGowan in ‘Conan the Barbarian‘ 2011 Witches_Bellatrix_2685758k Helena Bonham Carter as Bellatrix in ‘ Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part Two’ 2011 Witches_Streep_2685751k Meryl Streep in ‘Into the Woods’ 2013
Posted in General | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


 

Monday, May 12, 2014

Since Bette Midler Will Be Playing Mae West: A West Interview 1974 (Thanks George!)

Thanks George A. for bringing this to my attention! Interview Magazine NEW AGAIN: MAE WEST By PETER LESTER, ANJELICA HUSTON, JACOB BAGWELL DECEMBER 1974 img-new-again-mae-west_115250742717 HBO Films and Bette Midler are developing a biopic about American actress, singer, playwright, screenwriter, and general provocatrice Mary Jane “Mae” West. Born in Brooklyn, West made her mark in risqué and boundary-breaking plays such as the controversial Sex (1926), which would see the actress prosecuted and sentenced to prison for 10 days for “corrupting the morals of youth.” After her release, she continued to write and act in the theater, before starting her film career at the ripe old age of 40. Based on her play Diamond Lil, West’s 1933 box office hit She Done Him Wrong was credited with saving Paramount from bankruptcy. In 1943, West left the film industry indefinitely (well, for 27 years). Interview met Mae back in 1974, when she appeared on our December issue. Anjelica Huston and Peter Lester interviewed the star, who spilled the beans about the idea that sparked Sex and how she dealt with the controversy her work created. —Jacob Bagwell Mae West: the Queen at Home in Hollywood By Anjelica Huston and Peter Lester When talking of the legend that is Mae West, one feels compelled to expound in a sacred language, a language almost as sacred as the rhythm and timbre of speech, a sound that must be unique in this world. She does talk like she sounds in the movies… you know what I mean. Hollywood Boulevard, still dry from the heat of summer, seemed gray and bland; a complete contrast to the apprehension we felt in our stomachs as we drove to interview one of the most innovative stars the screen has ever known. Miss West had specifically requested no tape recorder—an idea unfathomable to journalists—but we were nevertheless prepared to hurriedly write down every word of wisdom that would drop from her lips; little did we know that we would be so transfixed by her magic that it would be hard to write. THE ROSSMORE APARTMENT BUILDING. ATMOSPHERE: Misty with climate control. Cream Venetian blinds drawn down. Air conditioner humming lazily. The scene seems to be shrouded in the mists of dry ice. THE SETTING: Small room, cluttered with carefully arranged memorabilia. An eye that glanced at Versailles and then squinted at Southern California. Cream, white, cream, white. Ormolu for days. IMPRESSIONS: Grandeur squat on voluptuous legs, heavily embossed surfaces in mirrored gold. Photographs from the past, teasing in sepia furs, Miss West as she was. Photographs everywhere, some standing proudly atop a Dresden baby grand; alabaster nudes, variations on hand to hip, hand to hair, amidst extravagant arrays of artificial floribunda. We’re dying for a cigarette, but the absence of ashtrays alerts us. Mr. Grayson, Miss West’s personal secretary, indulges his habit out in the hallway. The only visitor ever permitted to smoke had been Bette Davis, and she didn’t overdo it. Etiquette established, visitors’ book signed, credentials given, Mr. Grayson exits stage left. Drawn to us as if by a magnetic force concealed beneath the floor, Mae West enters, gliding almost mechanically to her chair. We are close enough to touch her without getting up. Silence as she allows herself to be scrutinised—freshly painted, hair waving softly champagne to her shoulders, shoulders draped in lace. Her eyelids droop shyly as she lifts her gaze, deeply shaded by mink lashes. The pupil of one eye overflowing in its iris; she smiles behind a coral cupid’s bow as she adjusts a lurex cushion to the small of her back; tidies the folds of the shocking pink negligee about her bosom and crosses her legs. Her hands, beautifully manicured and pearly tipped, lie in her lap, she rubs them together a little nervously at first, suspicious of us until she realizes that we are fans completely stunned by the legend. She relaxes and gives us everything. ANJELICA HUSTON AND PETER LESTER: To what do you attribute your looks? MAE WEST: (Tapping her teeth) See—they’re mine…I have no face lifts…it’s all mine? There’s no change in me. I wrote this book about it. It’s called Sex, Health and ESP, you know. I eat the right foods, exercise, take care of myself. HUSTON AND LESTER: ESP? WEST: Yeah, I’ve been havin’ these psychic experiences since 1941, I knew this man, the Reverend Jack Kelly… a great man who died in ’65. I was sitting just where I am, sittin’ watchin’ TV here when I heard this voice, whispering, kind of, I felt this presence beside me. Like it was a man in the room. looked down and saw a pair of men’s feet, looked a little higher and saw his legs. It was Jack Kelly all right. He walked here behind me, over to where you’re sitting and then he just dissolved away. Into the sofa. HUSTON AND LESTER: Are you afraid of them? Have you spoken with them? WEST: No. You see, they look nice. Once when I was laying in my bed, one came in and just stood there. You see, I don’t drink, so this really happened. Anyway, this one came over to me and stood there by the bed. So I stood up and put my arm up like this to stop him from touching me… I’m not takin’ that chance till I know what they’re goin’ to do. (Looking up from our wild scribbling, we see that she’s smiling and gracious, enjoying talking as much as we are enjoying listening.) WEST: Once a friend came here, and I said to him “go over to the piano and play that melody, you know the one, just the melody, forget the lyrics.” So he did, and as I was standing there beside him, listening, this story came to me in 56 seconds. HUSTON AND LESTER: What was it? Can you remember it? WEST: No. It was good though. One of my stories, I can’t think which one it was. I had a secretary write it down. HUSTON AND LESTER: Do you entertain here? WEST: Off and on. Friends stay sometimes, but mostly at my beach house. It’s got 22 rooms, eight bedrooms with bathrooms, you know, so there is more space. Then there is a ranch I have in Sepulveda. So you see, this is just one place I live in. I wasn’t looking for a home in this apartment, so I just had it fixed up and started to live here. HUSTON AND LESTER: For how long? WEST: Since 1932. HUSTON AND LESTER: Do you feel that people working then in Hollywood were more talented than now? WEST: Talent… But then, you see, there was so much of an outlet for it. Every studio made a hundred or so movies a year… now they’re down to 10 or 12. There was always testing… there were talent scouts everywhere. All over the country going to small towns, looking for girls for movies. They never had enough talent then. Now, you see, it is all television. Small scale. We had great artists… great writers working here. It’s not the way it used to be. The young crowd… they watch my movies on TV. HUSTON AND LESTER: Would you work for TV now? WEST: Too many people seein’ you for nothing. HUSTON AND LESTER: To what do you attribute your success? WEST: I wasn’t aware of what I was doin’, see. I was innocent. I couldn’t help my personality. It was the way I was. (The eyelids lower. The negligee is rearranged to conceal more.) It was my success…From the time I was a headliner in Vaudeville at 17 years old, until then I’d played child’s parts, but I came out to Hollywood and started to write my own pictures. In order to show them what I wanted, I had to write it. HUSTON AND LESTER: Did your mother encourage you to work as a child? WEST: Yeah. My father was an athlete, you know. So I got used to that kind of thing, seeing barbells around and all. HUSTON AND LESTER: And muscles? WEST: And muscles, yeah. (A suggestion of a blush, eyes down and laughing.) HUSTON AND LESTER: Those alabaster statues are very beautiful. WEST: Yes, they’re nice, aren’t they? My manager wouldn’t let me pose for a man. My manager was in love with me. So they found a woman artist. You see the picture behind you? (An oil painting of a flaxen voluptuary on a canopied chaise, gazing at a bewitched monkey hanging from the bedpost by one hairy arm. The words “SEX” and in smaller print, “Mae West” are written underneath.) See that? Well, this artist, Florence Kosell was her name, she was here one day and she walked through the bedroom and I was lying there on my bed, so she said, “I must paint you like that.” She wanted it full face at first, but I thought it was kind of brazen, so I say how long will it take to do? She tells me and it’s a long time. So I say, well how long will it take to do it in profile? She says half the time, so that’s how we did it. It turned out good, don’t you think? Maybe the forces wanted it that way. HUSTON AND LESTER: When was it painted? WEST: Around the time I did this play, Sex. I was the first one ever to say “sex” on stage. The director was called Edward Elsner, he’d directed all these actresses… Pauline Fredrick, Julia Marlow, that girl—Ziegfield’s wife—what’s her name? You know the one… very fluttery. Well, anyway, I bring him this play, but he doesn’t have his glasses with him. I said shall I read it to you? He says sure. It was called Follow the Fleet, a dramatic play with a jazz band in it. Well, I started reading it and suddenly he says, Oh my God, this is sexy! He says, you have a quality I have never seen in a star before… a sexy quality. I say, where have I got it? He says, I don’t know but you’ve got it, it’s just there, sex. So I just went on doin’ what I was doin’, and he says again, sex, sex, sex, this play reeks of sex. I was hearing the word sex so much I was beginning to like it. “Gee,” I thought, “this might be good for the title, Sex.” So I tell my manager I want to change the title to Sex. He says, if only we dare… so we do! Then there was a lot of trouble. When it opened, the newspapers wouldn’t use the word. They said, “Mae West in that certain play.” Finally we had to hire those sticker guys, you know. You’d leave your car for ten minutes and there’d be Sex all over it. Well, then there was an epidemic of sex plays, all of them using dirty words. I’d never use bad words like hell or damn in my plays. I wrote innuendos, I write the way I feel. It just comes out that way. I’d hit ’em all the way through the beginning, middle and end. My play had a plot, a story. No woman’s going to pay to see other women being slapped around, and these other plays were embarrassing. Sex is only exciting on the inside. HUSTON AND LESTER: What was your next play? WEST: Then I wrote The Drag. There were 60 gay boys in it. I wrote it for them, I didn’t act—why? Well, the gay boys were having a hard time, they couldn’t keep a job. The trouble was they’d start flaunting it and people would take offence. I’d tell them to keep it private. I sympathized with them… I studied books on homosexuality and I wanted to help them, so I hired them. The NYC officials said the play would harm the city and that they were not equipped to deal with it. What they meant was that they were afraid the gay boys would have taken over, but they were great! I’d take them home, two or three of them, to the country on weekends… even my mother loved them, they’d have a good time… make my mother hats… paint her nails… fix her hair… One boy, I’m telling you, he was the most gorgeous thing in an evening gown. Anyone can acquire homosexuality, there are variations of it, but I found out that the true-born homosexual has the soul of a female inside a male body. When the play opened it was a big hit, people were coming from New York and paying 50 or 60 dollars to get in. The audience loved it. HUSTON AND LESTER: Who was your favorite male star? WEST: Cary Grant. I put him in a picture. I liked him so much I put him in twice. HUSTON AND LESTER: Female stars? WEST: I don’t know, name some. HUSTON AND LESTER: Harlow? WEST: Schoolgirl sex, she was before me. HUSTON AND LESTER: Monroe? WEST: Same thing, schoolgirlish. HUSTON AND LESTER: Ann-Margaret? WEST: They can imitate me, but who can imitate Ann-Margaret? HUSTON AND LESTER: What about W.C. Fields? WEST: Well, I knew he was a clever man, a comedian. Universal wanted me to use him. I said fine. We started workin’ together but he started gettin’ envious because I wrote the thing. He asked if I’d mind him writing a few of his own scenes, and I said no as long as he didn’t go write anything for me. He was plottin’ though. He’d hold up the shooting on the scenes he’d written and you see they’d be vital to the story. Among other things he wanted the billing to read, “Mae West and W.C. Fields,” instead of “Mae West with W.C. Fields.” I’d have a little writing to do here and there, so he’d work mostly in the in the mornings. I’d come in after lunch… it was easier to for me to work in the afternoons. But he’d be late, or he’d delay shooting the scenes. He knew all the time he was doin’. The director came to me one day and said that Bill was on the sound stage, and that he’d been drinking. I said if he’s been drinking let’s get him out of here for the rest of the day. I had to go down to work, and I saw him there, showing off in front of about two hundred extras. The director told him, “Tomorrow morning, Bill,” so he left. Tipped his hat to me on the way out. He was humorous, maybe. We didn’t talk too often. When you’re a star, you don’t get much time for conversation, unless it’s part of a scene. HUSTON AND LESTER: How did you get on with your directors? WEST: A director can’t really tell me what to do. I look a certain way, and move a certain way, and talk a certain way… other actors have to move around me. HUSTON AND LESTER: Is this the reason you’re a star? WEST: Of course. HUSTON AND LESTER: Do you play the piano? WEST: I used to play a little boogie woogie. I play the drums, throw up the sticks and all. I did a lot of tricks like that, but I never fitted drums into the picture. HUSTON AND LESTER: Do you travel? WEST: I don’t like traveling, it’s work for me. HUSTON AND LESTER: Do you intend to go on working? WEST: I think I must. My fans love me. They holler in the streets and ask me for my autograph when I go out in my car. It’s the young crowd that like me. They write begging for me to work. Maybe I’ll do Diamond Lil again… in color. THIS INTERVIEW INTIALLY APPEARED IN THE DECEMBER 1974 ISSUE OF INTERVIEW.
Posted in Articles/Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


 

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Bette Midler Makes a Fashion Week Appearance for Michael Kors

Bette Midler had a great view at the Michael Kors Fall 2011 show, where she shared the front row with Anjelica Huston, Debra Messing, Emma Roberts, Catherine Zeta Jones and Angie Harmon. Midler looked casually chic in a textured sheath worn beneath a simple white cardigan. Midler sported all-gold accessories with the look, as well as a simple pair of black pumps. More Photos: Click Here
Posted in Articles/Essays | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments