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May and December Couples: When fifty-three-year- old Bing Crosby married twenty-four-year-old Kathy Grant, the difference in their ages raised a lot of eyebrow-lifting in the world’s press. And yet, based on the past record of other couples who have lived happily ever after, in spite of the span of years between them, it would seem that these marriages have a far more durable quality than the more conventional ones, looked on so approvingly because the bride and bridegroom happen to be in the same age bracket.

Consider the record and you will see what I mean: Bill Powell and “Mousie” Lewis; Charles Chaplin and Oona O’Neill; Sir Cedric Hardwicke and Mary Scott; Mel Ferrer and Audrey Hepburn; Clark Gable and Kay Williams; Jose Ferrer and Rosemary Clooney; Jean Pierre Aumont and Marisa Pavan; Xavier Cugat and Abbe Lane; Cary Grant and Betsy Drake; Dick Powell and June Allyson, and the late Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall. More recently, pre-dating Bing and Kathy by only a short time, there have been the mergers of Mike Todd and Liz Taylor, Hank Fonda and the Baroness Franchini, and Rex Harrison and Kay Kendall.

Marilyn Steps Out: Marilyn Monroe made one of her very few public appearances in New York this season at the opening of Noel Coward’s “Conversation Piece” at the Barbizon Plaza, and the reason for this special occasion was that her sister-in-law, Joan Copeland, was playing the leading role. Marilyn, who was only fifteen minutes late (an improvement for her!) and swathed in ermine, sat in the same row with me—so I can report first-hand that she held Arthur Miller’s hand throughout the performance, only taking it away to applaud proudly for her husband’s talented young sister.

Later, she and Arthur joined the Miller family at the party, hosted for the cast. And to see Marilyn, who all her life has longed for the family she never had, surrounded by this loving family group, was to realize that, at long last, she has achieved her fondest dream.

When I asked her about her future film plans, she told me that she would like to do a revival of the “Blue Angel” and the screen biography of the late Jean Harlow, but before she signed any contracts, she was waiting to see the completed scripts and for director approval. In the meantime, she is thoroughly enjoying her self-imposed temporary retirement in New York, while she is furnishing her first apartment in the East Fifties, and supervising the building of a modern ranch house in Connecticut that she hopes will be ready for occupancy by summer.

Chance Query: When Susan Strasberg was playing “Time Remembered” in Washington during Queen Elizabeth and Philip Mountbatten’s visit, she was invited to the White House to watch the arrival of Their Majesties, where she met Bob Montgomery for the first time. Bob, who was one of Metro’s top stats when Susie was just a twinkle in her parents’ eyes, got a big laugh when Susie, acknowledging the introduction, asked, “Are you, by any chance, Elizabeth Montgomery’s father?”

Short Shots: The constant comparison of the careers of Kim Novak and Rita Hayworth took a new and interesting twist recently when Kim was escorted to a party by Aly Khan . . .

Joan Crawford, who had such a fear of height that she never would dare to fly, before her marriage to Alfred N. Steele, has spent more than “Eighty Days Around The World” during the past year, flying with Alfred on his business junkets just to prove that her husband’s business hits the spot everywhere! . . . To the New York Drama Critics, Tony Perkins’ beautiful stage performance in “Look Homeward, Angel” is proof he’s earned the histrionic mantle of his brilliant father, the late Osgood Perkins. Unfortunately, Osgood died when Tony was only five years old, so he never had the thrill of seeing him on the stage. But thanks to the rich posterity that pictures leave behind, Tony has seen every picture that his father appeared in . . . When Bob Evans made his screen debut in “Man of a Thousand Faces,” he looked upon his career as just an addition to his very thriving sportswear business in New York, but since his avalanche of fan mail, following this first film and his second release, “The Sun Also Rises,” Bob is now ambitious to make good as an actor and is coaching with Stella Adler and taking fencing and Italian lessons besides. This isn’t interfering with his business during the day, but there have been loud complaints from the “skirts” at night, who miss the handsome Bob as their playmate on the El Morocco and Stork Club dance floors!

Brando Brashness: When Marlon Brando condescended to give a few exclusive interviews to help plug his newest film, “Sayonara,” it was with the understanding that he would leave the room if any personal questions about his private life were asked. However, one intrepid interviewer risked Marlon’s hasty exit and dared to ask, “Is your bride Welsh, Irish or Indian?” “She is Caucasian Brown,” was Marlon’s retort. “I consider it to be a concern of a few people that cannot be numbered among the general public.”

Alec the Great: In striking contrast to Brando is the true modesty and unaffected simplicity of an actor who seems to be a favored choice to romp off with this year’s Oscar for “the best male performance of the year.” I’m referring, of course, to Alec Guinness in “The Bridge on the River Kwai.” Alec is shy of the press too, but it doesn’t stem from arrogance but from an innate shyness with all strangers. Fortunately, I was privileged to meet him through many mutual English friends, and so I have seen him socially among his own group of intimates when he has been relaxed and at ease. He has a tremendous wit, as subtle as his screen performances and I only hope if he does win that “Oscar,” he’ll be free to fly to Hollywood to make his acceptance speech “in person.” It will be an added highlight to the festivities of the evening.

Radie’s Prophecies: Far be it for me to claim any clairvoyant powers nor do I have a crystal ball or deck of cards, but I would like to pretend to possess all three and just in a speculative mood, make the following predictions for 1958:

Lauren Bacall and Frank Sinatra won’t marry, and eventually Betty will move away from Hollywood and make New York her permanent home.

Rock Hudson will become more of a bachelor recluse than ever and will do most of his future film-making abroad, where he won’t have to explain constantly why he prefers to “live alone and like it.”

Natalie Wood and Bob Wagner will be the Bride and Bridegroom of The Year, and before the year is out, you’re sure to see a layout of Natalie’s layette for “R.J., Jr.”

Liz Taylor and Mike Todd will continue to feud in public, but they will always kiss and make-up in Van Cleef and Arpels and Christian Dior’s.

The press, which kept hounding Ingrid Bergman to divorce Roberto Rossellini, won’t stop now until they have married her off again, and every man she is seen with, will be rumored as her future husband.

Marilyn Monroe will concentrate harder on a baby than on another picture.

Gary Cooper’s daughter, Maria, will announce her engagement, but it won’t be to Tony Perkins or any other actor. He’ll be the Social Registerite that Mama Rocky approves of.

The continued separations of Jean Simmons and Stewart Granger, enforced by their separate careers, may cause a permanent separation, if they don’t remedy the situation.

The only “splash” that Diana Dors will ever make in Hollywood again, is if she’s dunked into a swimming pool again.

The Academy Awards, which in the past three years have been won by three “furriners”—Audrey Hepburn, Anna Magnani and Ingrid Bergman—may finally wind up this year with an American champion, Joanne Woodward.

Jane Wyman, Barbara Stanwyck and Nancy Sinatra will continue to be three bachelor girls in search of a Dream Prince in Hollywood’s “No Man’s Land.”

Tony Steele will decide he can’t go on living “scrappily ever after” with Anita Ekberg, and no one will be the least bit surprised if he takes a walking powder.

The Elvis Presley hysteria will be less hysterical. And other “new faces” will challenge the popularity of Tab Hunter, Pat Boone and Tommy Sands.

Tyrone Power will let the columnists marry him off to every pretty doll he dates, but he’ll continue to enjoy his bachelorhood until he makes up his own mind. In the meantime, Linda Christian, flirting through Europe, desperately searching for a husband to support her in the style to which she’s accustomed, will continue to kick herself for driving Ty to divorce.

Mrs. Alfred N. Steele will announce the marriage of her daughter, Christina Crawford.

“The Bridge on the River Kwai,” “Sayonara” and “Farewell to Arms” will be included on every list of the “Ten Best Pictures of the Year.”

Esther Williams and Ben Gage may do a “Jeanne Crain and Paul Brinkman,” and reconcile “for the sake of the children.”

Deborah Kerr will continue to be the star most popular with the press, the fans and her co-workers.

Gregory Peck, who has four sons, will hope that his next will be an image of his Veronique.

Tony Perkins will be lost to Hollywood for at least a year because of his Broadway success in “Look Homeward, Angel.”

Zsa Zsa and Eva Gabor will be in and out of columns with romances they will never marry.

1957 is dead. Long live 1958!




1 Comment
  • zoritoler imol
    22 Nisan 2023

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