Aug 14, 2010

Patricia Neal, Emma Thompson & Audrey, Reese & Peggy Lee

So many things happened this week. Do you mind if I comment about all these women in one post?

Patricia Neal

I've seen just two movies starring Patricia: "Hud" and "Breakfast at Tiffany's". And I can say she was a terrific actress. I always remember that moment in B@t when she is getting out of a cab and gives a quick look to Holly Golightly.

I don't know why I recall this particular scene so much. Maybe it's because that mix of smiles and looks and her character realizing that she might lose Paul and that inattentive way in which she receives all the info about Holly Golightly.
Great posts were written about Patricia this week. But Sheila O'Malley's was my favorite.
RIP Patricia, you'll not be forgotten.

Audrey: I have a feeling someone, someday, somehow is going to call my acting "twee".
Rex: Don't worry, I'm going to give to this movie an extraordinary quality.  
I'd love to start this topic saying: "And who the hell is Emma Thompson?". But I can't. She's great. But definitively lost kudos with her statements. If you're coming back from Mars and didn't hear, here's what she said to The Hollywood Reporter:

THR: Now you're working on a character who's definitely not ugly: You're writing a new version of "My Fair Lady."
Thompson: I was thrilled to be asked to do it, because, having looked at it, I thought that there needs to be a new version. I'm not hugely fond of the film. I find Audrey Hepburn fantastically twee.
THR: What is "twee"?
Thompson: Twee is whimsy without wit. Its mimsy-mumsy sweetness without any kind of bite. And that's not for me. She can't sing and she can't really act, I'm afraid. I'm sure she was a delightful woman -- and perhaps if I had known her I would have enjoyed her acting more, but I don't and I didn't, so that's all there is to it, really.

And to Daily Variety she said:

"I find it chocolate-boxy, clunky and deeply theatrical. I don't think that it's a film. It's the theater piece put onto film. It was Cecil Beaton's designs and Rex Harrison that gave it its extraordinary quality. I don't do Audrey Hepburn. I think that she's a guy thing. I'm sure she was this charming lady, but I didn't think she was a very good actress. It's high time that the extraordinary role of Eliza was reinterpreted because it's a very fantastic part for a woman."
I have to say three things. First, "My fair lady" isn't one of my favorite movies from Audrey. Emma has a point when she says that it's "the theater piece put onto a film". But I think that is precisely Audrey's presence which enlightens the movie, especially after Rex Harrison recites those long and misogynist lyrics. And it seems that being 'twee' is what directors asked to their Elizas to be. Just watch Julie Andrews.
Secondly, I'm assuming Emma hasn't seen "The Nun's Story" and "Two for the Road". Because I could call her acting 'twee' too after watching her in Harry Potter. But I don't because I've seen her in other movies. And I'm assuming that she hasn't heard Audrey singing Moon River either.
And finally, Audrey never said something like this in her life about a fellow actor. She never went bashing people. Yeah, Emma, you're right when you say you didn't know her.

Well, talking about "My Fair Lady", look at these:

A new Theater is going to be opened in Santiago next month and MFL is the first play they're going to show. Can't wait!

Peggy Lee

And finishing with exciting news. Some days ago I talked about how great was Nora Ephron's movie soundtracks. Well, she's going to direct one of my favorite modern actresses, Reese Witherspoon, in a biopic about one of my favorite singers, Peggy Lee. HOW COOL IS THAT?

Just one more thing: Crazy Poll is sad, just three people voted. It doesn't want to change its name to Fail Poll. It wants you to participate :)


  1. Clara: A diverse response to your posting of diverse subjects. A stunning photograph of Patricia Neal. Terrific woman. By the way, Patricia Neal disliked George Peppard immensely. I heard her say it in person at an appearance and she might have also said it in her Osborne interview.

    I think Emma Thompson has been eating the wrong kind of breakfast cereal. I am a fan of long standing, since “Fortunes of War,” but lately she seems to be saying and doing unusual things (e.g., the Hepburn quote and the television appearance).

    I saw the original “My Fair Lady” on Broadway in 1957 (yes) and, like many, always regretted the absence of Julie Andrews in the film. But most of us know about Hollywood economics. I do not care for the film version, but it seems bad form to launch such a diatribe against a special actress of our time because of a failed film. (I suspect Thompson wanted publicity and got it through a cheap shot.) Best. Gerald

  2. Gerald,
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I had no idea Patricia disliked George. I've only heard that his Method acting made Audrey insecure about her own acting style.

    About Emma, yes, I didn't know she was the kind of people who say thing like's really a shock, because I've always admired her intellectually. And you can't say things like this when you're doing the remake of the remake of the remake!!

    You're so lucky you had the opportunity to see MFL on Broadway!!
    I'd love to hear more details about that.

    Thanks for stopping by.

  3. I'm glad you made those points about Audrey. She is my favourite actress and I feel Emma's comments were really unfair.

  4. Welcome SabrinaFairchild, glad to have you around :)

  5. I'm glad you made those points about Audrey. She is my favourite actress and I feel Emma's comments were really unfair.



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