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Ninety seven is a wonderful age to reach but still feel great sadness at her passing.

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8 minutes ago, Mashinka said:

Ninety seven is a wonderful age to reach but still feel great sadness at her passing.

Yes. I see she was taken by pneumonia, "the old man's friend," so I hope her death was an easy one. I can't say I was a big fan, but Lover Come Back and Pillow Talk hold up well for me, and she had a nice way with a ballad, as the AP obit notes.

Associated Press

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Her first singing hit was the 1945 smash “Sentimental Journey,” when she was barely in her 20s. Among the other songs she made famous were “Everybody Loves a Lover,” ″Secret Love,” and “It’s Magic,” a song from her first film, “Romance on the High Seas.”

The Guardian

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Day remained one of the top box-office stars, male or female, in the US throughout the 60s. She was also one of the highest-paid. However, in her late films The Ballad of Josie (1967), Caprice (1967) and, finally, With Six You Get Eggroll (1968), she failed to find roles that suited her age. It seems a pity that she refused Mike Nichols’s offer to play the seductive Mrs Robinson in The Graduate (1967), a plum role that went to Anne Bancroft. Day wrote: “I could not see myself rolling around in the sheets with a young man half my age whom I’d seduced. I realised it was an effective part, but it offended my sense of values.”

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Thanks for posting the topic, cubanmiamiboy. I hadn't heard.

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RIP, Doris. Day.  I remember first seeing her on TV in the movie Tea for Two when I was growing up, and I have adored her ever since. 

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Here are Doris Day's placements in the annual 'Top Ten Money Making Stars Poll':

1951 - 9th/1952 - 7th/1959 - 4th/1960 - 1st/1961 - 3rd/1962 - 1st/1963 - 1st/1964 - 1st/1965 - 3rd/1966 - 8th

From The Man Who Knew Too Much:

 

 

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I think she was one of the best criers on screen. I was always moved to tears myself while watching her. RIP Doris.

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Posted (edited)

According to Variety, Doris Day's early career crisscrossed that of Bette Hutton's, filling in for Hutton in Romance on the High Seas, and almost playing Annie in Annie Get Your Gun for which Calamity Jane was a kind of consolation award. Day's acting and singing was always too buttery smooth for me (as the Guardian characterizes it) to give most movies she was in much depth or counterpoint. In Young Man With a Horn, based on the Dorothy Baker novel (with Kirk Douglas and Lauren Bacall as parts of a trio), you get a glimpse of the more interesting jazz/big band singer she had been been in the 1940s – and which, had she preserved, might have given her an occasional play on Spotify alongside 50s singers like Dorothy Dandridge. I liked her in "Man Who Knew Too Much" with Jimmy Stewart, as slightly loud, oblivious Americans abroad. In Hitchcock/Truffaut she says she felt that the taciturn Hitchcock didn't like her performance and would have preferred Grace Kelly. Hitchcock: "I said nothing because you gave a good performance. If it had been otherwise, I would most certainly have said something."

 

Young Man / Horn trailer -

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UmREGcpAx7A

Edited by Quiggin

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4 hours ago, Quiggin said:

In Hitchcock/Truffaut she says she felt that the taciturn Hitchcock didn't like her performance and would have preferred Grace Kelly. Hitchcock: "I said nothing because you gave a good performance. If it had been otherwise, I would most certainly have said something."

And that sounds very much like a Balanchine remark.  ;)

Doris Day was a Pop singer and never truly a bluesy or Jazz singer. That said, her vocal control allowed her to borrow aspects of the Blues nightclub voice popular in the 1940s and 50s. She often sang with a slightly hoarse, breathy overtone that (thankfully) helped take the edge off the overly sweet and cloying songs that were often the mainstay of her repertoire. She had a tendency to choose novelty songs over anything "deep" or ultimately thought provoking. Day's singles don't represent the best of the Great American Songbook composers to the same degree as singers like Ella Fitzgerald, or Billie Holiday. But her voice is very distinct, and relatively pure - she was never a heavily mannered singer. Yeah for that. But you have to like slow ballads:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H8P_p7dB2dw

Her recording of Por Favor has both the novelty and the nightclub qualities I mention above:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p5piPFOFzJY

 

Edited by pherank

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Thanks for that link, pherank. Day could sound very sexy on occasion. 

Day could sound very sexy on occasion. 

 Hitchcock preferred Grace Kelly to anybody. So Day shouldn’t have taken that too much to heart.:)

As miliosr’s box office data reflects, Day didn’t become huge until the Sixties with the “professional virgin” sequence of romantic comedies, much maligned in some quarters and highly praised in others.  It’s possible to appreciate Day’s competent professional women, capably fending off lecherous creeps. She made this breakthrough exceptionally late for a female star, pushing forty when she finally made it big.  

Those who have seen “That Touch of Mink” will recognize it as one of the movies attended by Ignatius Reilly at the Prytania (“How dare she pretend to be virgin! Rape her at once!”) I will say that Ignatius’ reaction to the movie is justified; by that time the formula was wearing thin and material that’s okay for Rock Hudson just embarrasses Cary Grant.

I should note that many people like her in the Ruth Etting biopic “Love Me or Leave Me” more than I do.

“Midnight Lace,” produced by Ross Hunter, is a guilty pleasure of mine – Rex Harrison gaslighting rich American wife Doris.

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According to Variety, Doris Day's early career crisscrossed that of Bette Hutton's, filling in for Hutton in Romance on the High Seas, and almost playing Annie in Annie Get Your Gun for which Calamity Jane was a kind of consolation award.

They both shared a certain tomboyish quality, and a general physical resemblance. Day didn't have anything like Hutton's Too Much intensity, probably to Day's benefit.

 

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"by that time the formula was wearing thin and material that’s okay for Rock Hudson just embarrasses Cary Grant."

By the 1960s Grant had a difficult time not showing his dislike for certain roles and situations. But it was oh-so-hard to stop being Cary Grant and just become a dramatic actor (the studios and audience had no interest in that anyway).

A total side-note, but I was never interested in Betty Hutton's singing or acting - her sister Marion though, was fun:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mchrCJN_BhM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQQfK8Bqkw0

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1 hour ago, pherank said:

And that sounds very much like a Balanchine remark.  😉

Doris Day was a Pop singer and never truly a bluesy or Jazz singer...

Yes, very Balanchinian!

With jazz-influenced big band singers, it's singing off the beat and a certain kind of horn instrument-like phrasing that's so appealing, and which Doris Day once had a bit of. I guess Frank Sinatra is the best example of someone who never gave that up – and even passing it on to younger singers like Paul Anka and Bobby Darin. (Abbey Lincoln does a wonderful version of Day's "It's Magic.")

Surprised not more was mentioned in the obituaries of the moment in the early eighties when Rock Hudson appeared on Doris Day's tv show and in effect broke the story about AIDS to the American public – and to the Reagans. It sort of put an end to the 1950s Hollywood age of innocence. It was a huge news story at the time. The Times Monday sequestered it in a gentle parenthetical note.

Added: As a result of Love Me or Leave Me, Columbia reissued Ruth Etting's recordings which became very popular in the early days of Notes on Camp. Interesting to compare the Bix Biederbecke-like accompaniments of Etting with the brassy "stereophonic sound" of the movie soundtrack which sounds now more like camp to our ears.

Edited by Quiggin

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"Surprised not more was mentioned in the obituaries of the moment in the early eighties when Rock Hudson appeared on Doris Day's tv show and in effect broke the story about AIDS to the American public – and to the Reagans. It sort of put an end to the 1950s Hollywood age of innocence. It was a huge news story at the time. The Times Monday sequestered it in a gentle parenthetical note."

I agree that Doris Day should be commended for bringing attention to AIDS and animal rights at a time when the establishment was far from sympathetic. No one was expecting that from America's Sweetheart. And she managed to do all that without seeming to have "an agenda".

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19 minutes ago, pherank said:

"by that time the formula was wearing thin and material that’s okay for Rock Hudson just embarrasses Cary Grant."

By the 1960s Grant had a difficult time not showing his dislike for certain roles and situations. But it was oh-so-hard to stop being Cary Grant and just become a dramatic actor (the studios and audience had no interest in that anyway).

A total side-note, but I was never interested in Betty Hutton's singing or acting - her sister Marion though, was fun:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mchrCJN_BhM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQQfK8Bqkw0

Grant didn’t seem resentful or sullen, or even as if he were phoning it in, just….embarrassed. Frankly, he deserved a Purple Heart for getting through those scenes at the hotel in Bermuda.

OT: Betty was hard for me to take. I did like her in "The Miracle of Morgan's Creek" as the girl who can't remember which soldier knocked her up.

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31 minutes ago, Quiggin said:

Surprised not more was mentioned in the obituaries of the moment in the early eighties when Rock Hudson appeared on Doris Day's tv show and in effect broke the story about AIDS to the American public – and to the Reagans. It sort of put an end to the 1950s Hollywood age of innocence. It was a huge news story at the time. The Times Monday sequestered it in a gentle parenthetical note.

It is getting mentioned here and there, but not with the prominence it deserves.

I see that the Manson Family connection is getting some play. Day’s only child, the late Terry Melcher, produced records for the Byrds and the Beach Boys, among others, and he was introduced by one of the latter to an aspiring songwriter named Charles Manson. Melcher passed, which did not go down well with Charlie. Sharon Tate and Roman Polanski rented the house where Melcher had once lived, and the rest is history – although Manson was not, apparently, out for revenge against Melcher that fatal night. Melcher ended up having to testify at the trials of Manson and Tex Watson. Apparently Day’s house was one of the residences visited by Manson and friends on a “creepy crawly” expedition.

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18 minutes ago, pherank said:

"Surprised not more was mentioned in the obituaries of the moment in the early eighties when Rock Hudson appeared on Doris Day's tv show and in effect broke the story about AIDS to the American public – and to the Reagans. It sort of put an end to the 1950s Hollywood age of innocence. It was a huge news story at the time. The Times Monday sequestered it in a gentle parenthetical note."

I agree that Doris Day should be commended for bringing attention to AIDS and animal rights at a time when the establishment was far from sympathetic. No one was expecting that from America's Sweetheart. And she managed to do all that without seeming to have "an agenda".

Well maybe it's not getting as much notice because Day did not seek credit and validation for Rock Hudson. She seemed to view it as simply being there for an old friend. When she did talk about him she generally did not focus on the fact that he had AIDS, but spoke glowingly about the friendship they formed when they made movies together. 

However when you compare her reaction to Nancy Reagan, who turned her back on Rock Hudson when he was desperate and dying, there is much to admire.

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/chrisgeidner/nancy-reagan-turned-down-rock-hudsons-plea-for-help-seven-we

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34 minutes ago, dirac said:

Grant didn’t seem resentful or sullen, or even as if he were phoning it in, just….embarrassed. Frankly, he deserved a Purple Heart for getting through those scenes at the hotel in Bermuda.

OT: Betty was hard for me to take. I did like her in "The Miracle of Morgan's Creek" as the girl who can't remember which soldier knocked her up.

Digressing from the topic, but I also liked Betty Hutton [and Eddie Bracken] in Preston Sturges's "The Miracle of Morgan Creek," which was shown on TCM last week. 

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Haven't the knowledge of Day's oeuvre or singers that so many here do but I long admired her as a champion of non-human animals and periodically look up her singing Que Sera Sera on youtube and when I did so usually checked out one or two other songs as well. I'm happy she lived to old, old age with some ability to take pleasure in life--at least as best one can tell from reading about her most recent birthday. May she rest in peace.

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Preston Sturges was a great men's, women's and extra's director as well as great screwball comedy writer (Easy Living with Jean Arthur for Mitchell Leisen). Created classic roles for Hutton, Veronica Lake, Barbara Stanwick, and Joel McCrea – as well as the brassy Eugene Palette and long suffering Franklin Pangborn.

Now looking back, at least as I remember, Day perhaps had two big movie careers – an early group of April in Paris, Love Me or Leave Me etc – and later the racy Ross Hunter movies, with Man who Knew in the middle. Her name seemed to be perpetually on the marque of my hometown cinema as I was growing up.

2 hours ago, canbelto said:

Well maybe it's not getting as much notice because Day did not seek credit and validation for Rock Hudson.


It's not that she took or didn't take credit, it's that the event on her show was a significantly newsworthy one and was reported on the front pages of most newspapers. Hudson was a shell of his former self and people were shocked to see what AIDS could do to someone who was so familiar to them, almost a neighbor. It really brought the epidemic home to them.

Edited by Quiggin

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41 minutes ago, Quiggin said:

It's not that she took or didn't take credit, it's that the event on her show was a significantly newsworthy one and was reported on the front pages of most newspapers. Hudson was a shell of his former self and people were shocked to see what AIDS could do to someone who was so familiar to them, almost a neighbor. It really brought the epidemic home to them.

True. It was a big deal then.

They did have great screen chemistry. And Rock was so handsome when he was young.

 

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2 hours ago, Quiggin said:

It's not that she took or didn't take credit, it's that the event on her show was a significantly newsworthy one and was reported on the front pages of most newspapers. Hudson was a shell of his former self and people were shocked to see what AIDS could do to someone who was so familiar to them, almost a neighbor. It really brought the epidemic home to them.

Bingo

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On 5/14/2019 at 3:31 PM, dirac said:

Day didn’t become huge until the Sixties with the “professional virgin” sequence of romantic comedies, much maligned in some quarters and highly praised in others............... She made this breakthrough exceptionally late for a female star, pushing forty when she finally made it big.

 

21 hours ago, Quiggin said:

Now looking back, at least as I remember, Day perhaps had two big movie careers – an early group of April in Paris, Love Me or Leave Me etc – and later the racy Ross Hunter movies, with Man who Knew in the middle.

Day did it in reverse of how it's usually done. If a star is lucky, they will have a big run when they are young and then -- maybe -- have a comeback later in life which is not quite as big as the initial success. (Think of Joan Crawford with Mildred Pierce or John Travolta with Pulp Fiction.)

Day had a decent-sized beginning at Warner Brothers and then as an independent (Love Me or Leave Me, The Man Who Knew Too Much). But she really became major in a big way with Pillow Talk in 1959.

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Turner Classic Movies has announced the roster of movies for its Doris Day tribute:

TCM Remembers Doris Day (1922-2019)

The beloved actress/singer, one of the last remaining icons from Hollywood's Golden Age, passed away May 13 at the age of 97. Turner Classic Movies pays tribute to Doris Day on Sunday, June 9 with the following festival of films. This program will replace the previously scheduled movies for that day so please take note.

The new schedule for Sunday, June 9 will be:
6:00 AM Romance on the High Seas (1948)
8:00 AM My Dream is Yours (1949)
10:00 AM Tea for Two (1950)
11:45 AM On Moonlight Bay (1951)
1:30 PM Carson on TCM: Doris Day (1976)
1:45 PM Love Me or Leave Me (1955)
4:00 PM Calamity Jane (1953)
6:00 PM Please Don't Eat the Daisies (1960)
8:00 PM Pillow Talk (1959)
10:00 PM Lover Come Back (1961)
12:00 AM Move Over Darling (1963)
2:00 AM The Glass Bottom Boat (1966)
4:00 AM Julie (1956)

And Barbara Hershey posted this on Twitter:

 

Edited by miliosr

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