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Vivien Leigh's centenary


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#1 dirac

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Posted 06 November 2013 - 11:25 PM

This week, Vivien Leigh would have turned 100. A happy birthday from PBS.

 

The actress died of tuberculosis in 1967 when she was only 53 years old.

 

 

A new exhibit at the V&A Museum.

Professional correspondence includes many letters from playwright Tennessee Williams. One addressed to Leigh in September 1950 enthuses about her role of Blanche DuBois (for which she won an Oscar).

 

He wrote: 'It is needless to repeat here my truly huge happiness over the picture and particularly your part in it. It is the Blanche I had always dreamed of and I am grateful to you for bringing it so beautifully to life on the screen.'

 

Related.



#2 Buddy

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Posted 07 November 2013 - 02:34 AM

I take parts of a collection of postcard size photos with me when I travel. Among them is one of Vivien Leigh, age 25, in The Sidewalks of London (with Charles Laughton). Absolutely charmed by that performance.


#3 dirac

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 02:47 PM

Sidewalks of London is easily her best early performance, I think, Buddy. And Laughton is very touching. It's a nice little movie.



#4 AlbanyGirl

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Posted 08 November 2013 - 03:20 PM

Ms. Vivien is one of my favorite actresses.  She is, of course, most famous as Scarlett O'Hara, but I think her greatest film triumph is as Blanche.  I've seen scenes from Sidewalks of London but not the whole film, so I'll keep my eyes open for it.  Ship of Fools and That Hamilton Woman are also wonderful.    How I wish I could have seen her on the stage!  Happy Birthday to you, Ms. Vivien Leigh. 

 

~ Karen



#5 dirac

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 12:21 PM

I also like That Hamilton Woman. So did Churchill, for reasons that are clear when you see the picture, and reportedly Hitler liked it too. Leigh was also a popular Soviet pinup girl during the war, so it looks as if she had both the Allies and the Axis bases covered. :)



#6 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 01:48 PM

vivien_leigh_quotes_tumblr.gif



#7 AlbanyGirl

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 07:43 PM

I also like That Hamilton Woman. So did Churchill, for reasons that are clear when you see the picture, and reportedly Hitler liked it too. Leigh was also a popular Soviet pinup girl during the war, so it looks as if she had both the Allies and the Axis bases covered. smile.png

What a great clip, Dirac!  I love that scene.  It seems to really capture her natural charm, both as a person and as an actress.   She acts that scene wonderfully.  



#8 AlbanyGirl

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Posted 09 November 2013 - 07:56 PM

It's hard to think about her as a person who did not have natural affection for her child, her daughter, Suzanne.  Everyone always talks about her as the actress, the beauty and the star, but her unnatural attitude towards motherhood is, for me, hard to to accept.



#9 dirac

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Posted 10 November 2013 - 12:52 PM

I wouldn't be too hard on her. She married for the first time at 19. Not unusual in those days but still very early and she was not cut out to be a wife and hostess only. Later in life she miscarried several times.

 

Motherhood and a full-throttle career are rarely easy to combine but female stars of Leigh's generation seem to have had it particularly tough. Few of them were winning Mother of the Year awards....



#10 AlbanyGirl

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 07:50 AM

Thank you,Dirac.  Although my post may not have reflected my sentiments adequately, I understand the complexity, especially as she also struggled with mental illness.  I do think of the child who didn't have her mother, that's all, which is a fact of Vivien's extraordinary life.  I understand that Vivien and Susanne did have a good relationship after she'd grown and also enjoyed her grandbabies.  



#11 Dale

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 10:27 AM

Don't forget Olivier left his family, including a young child, when he married Leigh. Somehow, there's less hand-wringing when it is a man.

 

In this link, both children in question comment on their parents:

 

http://www.dailymail...ubled-star.html

 

That said, Vivien Leigh and Lawrence Olivier are two of my favorite actors. I wish I was able to see this exhibit.



#12 dirac

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 11:56 AM

Thanks for that link, Dale. You are right, men tend to get a pass in these matters.  For a time Tarquin Olivier was much closer to Leigh than he was to his father, and he's always been very kind about his second  first stepmother.  Olivier was also young and inexperienced when he married for the first time, however -  his first wife played for the other team, if you catch my drift. Everyone seems to have ended up on decent terms after it was all sorted out.

 

Which reminds me that I would really like to see the first film version of The Deep Blue Sea again.....


Edited by dirac, 11 November 2013 - 04:27 PM.


#13 AlbanyGirl

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 03:45 PM

all good comments and I'd forgotten that Olivier left his family, also.  Thanks for the clip, Dale.



#14 dirac

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 12:05 AM

Photo gallery from CNN. Slide 3 is a  rather neat color photo taken at the Oscars for 1939, with Jock Whitney (I think), Olivia de Havilland, David O. Selznick, Leigh, and Olivier all looking like very happy campers.

 

 Leigh was also a popular Soviet pinup girl during the war, so it looks as if she had both the Allies and the Axis bases covered.

 

 

And I learn from this that Waterloo Bridge was/is huge in China.

 

There are even audio guides for students to practice their English by reciting dialogue from this film.

 



#15 canbelto

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Posted 16 November 2013 - 05:53 PM

I know it's really cheesy but I love Waterloo Bridge. Movie always makes me cry. 

 




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