spoto

4

“Are you going to use my voice for songs at all? I’ll work hard on my voice,” Audrey said, adding that she would “have as many lessons as you like. It’s all part of the business, to learn to sing and dance.” Jack Warner and director George Cukor had told her that they had no doubt that she would render the songs magnificently and her voice would be used (but for a few minor interpolations). But this was an astonishing act of deliberate deception, and it would miscarry in a way that seriously diminished the effect of Eliza’s character in the picture. 

On May 16, 1963, Cukor and Alan Jay Lerner had met privately with singer Marni Nixon to do a brief audition. She was asked to keep the matter regarding the dubbing strictly private. Audrey, who was still engrossed in singing lessons was unaware of this development. The decision had already been made to have Marni dub her voice and yet no one conveyed that news to Audrey, who continued to believe that, except for an occasional high note from Nixon’s recordings, her own voice would be heard in the picture. Audrey dutifully worked on her vocalises for a half hour or so every morning, and the weeks went by. To make matters worse, Cukor, Lerner and André Previn listened to Audrey’s singing and praised her lavishly, and Audrey, unfortunately, began to believe them. And when she completed the scene in which she performed “Wouldn’t It Be Loverly?” to a prerecorded track, the bit players and crew applauded loudly.

“Did you hear that?” Audrey asked Cukor excitedly at the end of the day. “They actually applauded!” “Audrey,” Cukor said gently, “they thought it was you.” Unknown to him, to Lerner and to Previn, the technician in charge of playback had indeed used her track instead of Nixon’s. “George,” Audrey replied, tears filling her eyes, “it was me.”

“Opening night of the Ringling Brothers circus at Madison Square Garden, on March 30, was a benefit for the Arthritis and Rheumatism Foundation. Among all the stars who turned out none was more visible or roaringly approved by the eighteen thousand spectators than Marilyn[…], she made a grand entrance in a tight, sexy outfit of feathers and spangles, riding atop an elephant painted shocking pink (x). "It meant a lot to me because I’d never been to a circus as a kid,” she told the nation a week later.“ - Donald Spoto

“She wanted to know what it was like to go to a basketball game, or to go on a date in a drive-in - simple things that would never happen in her life,” recalled Debbie Reynolds […] When she was not filming, she was posing for still photographers; when she was not on the set, she was in the studio schoolroom. […] And so, preoccupied with finding a means of escape, she naturally dreamed of romance as the answer to her problems, just as it was for the characters she portrayed. “I know exactly the man I want to marry,” she told Jane Powell in words worthy of Velvet Brown on the make. “I want someone who can keep me on horses.” - Donald Spoto

One day, (much to Joan [Plownright, Olivier’s third wife]’s annoyance), Olivier visited Vivien in her Sussex home. Her housekeeper recalled that Lady Olivier - as Vivien called herself - prepared a lavish luncheon and opened Olivier’s favourite wine. The couple then walked around the lake on her property. Olivier, unwilling to lead her to false expectations, was friendly but somewhat aloof, and the afternoon was cut short by a telephone call from Joan, urging him to see to other business.  He departed at once, Vivien watching his car recede along the driveway. “That is the man I am going to marry,” she had said thirty years earlier, seeing him act before they met. “And what do you think,” she told John Gielgud the day after Olivier’s visit. “I am still hopelessly in love.”

- Laurence Olivier: A Biography by Donald Spoto

3

Donald Spoto states:

“No serious biographer can maintain the existence of an affair between Marilyn and the Kennedys. All we can say for sure is that the actress and the President have met 4 times, between October 1961 and August 1962, and it was during one of those meetings, that they called to a friendly relation of Marilyn from a bedroom. Shortly after, Marilyn confided this sexual relation to her close relatives, insisting about the fact that their affair ended there”.

Although they may have only met face to face 4 times (according to Spoto) Marilyn Monroe and JFK did both attend the April In Paris Ball 1957 (11th April). They were both with their spouses throughout this event.

Keith Badman believes that they met on various occasions. He states Marilyn and Kennedy first met when Marilyn attended party held at Joe Kennedy’s home at Hyannis Port to thank Frank Sinatra for his support during the election, on 23rd and 24th September 1961 where Jaqueline Kennedy, Pat Newcomb and other guests were also present. According to the Gazette-Mail there was an unidentified guest which MAY have been Marilyn but this is by no means a confirmation. 

In addition, he states that Marilyn met the President on Sunday 19th November 1961 where a 3 hour dinner party took place with the Lawfords and close friends and family of theirs. This is possible as Marilyn did spend a lot of time with the Lawford family. 

On the 5th December 1961 JFK was in New York to make an address at the National Football Banquet and Hall of Fame held at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City. Marilyn supposedly met the President at a black tie party at the apartment of Fifi Fell. Marilyn had apparently arrived 2 hours late due to having her hair styled by Kenneth Battelle.

It is this night that is often connected to the “sex parties” which were thrown up in 1965. However, it was impossible for Marilyn and the other participants to leave the ‘invite only’ party to sneak away for an orgy. This file was created by J. Edgar Hoover whom was known to smear the reputation of those he disagrees with including Charlie Chaplin, who he believed was a communist. 

Saturday 24th March 1962  is the only possible date that Marilyn and JFK could’ve had a one night stand as it was a private gathering and it is the only one that can be documented by a reliable source. On this date, Marilyn and others including JFK had been invited to Bing Crosby’s home in Palm Springs. It as this occasion that she phoned Ralph Roberts and briefly discussed it however she only went into detail when the rumours began. She confided to him that it was the only time, and it wasn’t a big deal to either of them.

The final meeting was at the birthday gala on the 19th May 1962. As with Bobby Kennedy, she was not taken home by John and spent almost the entire night with her former father-in-law Isadore Miller.

In regards to Bobby Kennedy, he was incredibly loyal to his wife Ethel, unlike his brother who was very well known for his shameless affairs. 

mynervescouldstandadrink-blog  asked:

Sorry it took me so long to reply Rafael! You can call me dre (my nickname) by the way ;)

The book does indeed bring something new for it focuses more on her career than on any other aspect of her life. If you haven't seen one of her movies, you will feel like you have after reading this book. Every stage performance and TV/movie role is accounted for. The author did his research and gives in depth descriptions of her theatre and movie productions, even going as far as giving his own movie reviews.

The book also gives a good look into her family life (the Kelly's not the Grimaldi's).The book doesn't start off by going into a detailed history of her parents and where their wealth comes from (most biographies I have read about her usually describe that part a little too thoroughly). The author quotes family members and honestly explains her relationship with her family (the Kelly's) better than any other biography I've read. The book also doesn't focus on her love life. Each affair (or alleged affair) is talked about but really the book is not at all gossipy.

Grace first met Mr. Spoto for a book he was writing about Alfred Hitchcock. After that she gave him permission to write a biography about her, if he promised to wait to publish it after she was long gone (25 years gone to be exact). He kept his word and so most of the quotes from Grace come from his personal interviews with her.

I think it is worth reading if you want to know more about her acting career and how Hollywood worked back in the 50's.
~ dre

Thanks so much, dre! I’ll remember your meticulous review. Have a good one, Rafael