film noir dame

‘I call Jimmy Stewart and Robert Mitchum my sons, although I don’t see much of them. They have their lives and I have mine. I don’t have any children, but I feel that they are like my sons.’
- Judith Anderson interviewed c.1991

Interestingly, both actors had played Judith’s son: Stewart on Broadway in controversial 1934 play Divided By Three (pictures of which are thin on the ground, unfortunately) and Mitchum in 1947′s great film noir Western, Pursued. 

Dame Judith Anderson is standing on the edge of the movie set between takes while the cameras and lighting equipment are being reset. An electrician on a ladder yells down to her: ‘Hey, Judy, baby, move over a few feet!’

The great dramatic actress slowly swivels her head upward and in her deep resonant voice says, ‘It’s Dame Judy Baby!’

I found this brilliant anecdote in a writers’ handbook, of all places. Neither the original source nor the movie’s title is given, so I can’t tell when this is meant to have happened (although it must’ve been after 1960, when Judith was honoured by the Queen). But, my goodness, let’s hope it’s true!

Dame Judy Baby (or simply Judy Baby as she would’ve been back then) is pictured relaxing on the set of 1944’s fantastic film noir, Laura.