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Entries in Norma Shearer (15)


"This wig weighs a ton"

Editor's Note: We're celebrating Marie Antoinette at the movies each afternoon for a week

Gee this wig weighs a ton.

Singin' in the Rain is, of course, a beloved movie about our beloved movies. There's lots of broad goofing on Hollywood history for movie buff amusement. But sometimes the gentle ribbing is actually pointed jabs. When Lina Lamont enters the shot above to shoot The Dueling Cavaliers the joke is bigger than her constant whining...

Click to read more ...


Debuts on this Day: Psycho, Spider-Man, Flatliners, Stardust

On this day in history at it relates to showbiz...

The Director and I

1787 Mozart competes his chamber piece "Eine kleine Nachtmusik" which has shown up in dozens of films over the years, many of which are classics. Here is but a small sampling of films that have used it in the past 40 years or so: Picnic at Hanging Rock, Alien, Sophie's Choice, The Bride, Hope & Glory, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, GI Jane, Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, Milk, and April and the Extraordinary World.
1896 Oscar nominated director Walter Lang (The King and I, 1956) is born
1897 Jack Haley is born. Enters screen immortality when he gets the part of the Tin Man in The Wizard of Oz when Buddy Ebsen has a terrible allergic reaction to the makeup...

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So should we wish Norma Shearer a happy 114th in heaven or not? 

As I was prepping an "on this day..." post I discovered that the internet does not agree on the birth date of The First Lady of MGM, Norma Shearer. TCM and IMDb say August 10th while Biography and Wikipedia say August 11th. Biography goes one further and even says there's disagreement on the year with 1900, 1902, and 1904 all cited which is perhaps why the Encyclopeida Brittanica doesn't give her a birthdate, just a month. Didn't Canada keep records at the turn of the century? 

Nobody agrees on anything about Norma, including her Best Actress win for The Divorcée (1930) which I was alarmed to realize some time ago is not always held in high regard despite her being utterly fabulous in the movie.  Gotta love those Pre-Code movies. We should probably do a mini-series on them at some point.

Whatever her actual birthday, TFE often feels festive about her. Three cheers to Norma this morning (your Old Hollywood fix since Judy by the Numbers, our beloved Wednesday morning pick me up, is delayed for the time being).


Jennifer Lawrence & The Race to Break Oscar Records

Nine year-old Jacob Tremblay (Room), fourteen year-old Abraham Attah (Beasts of No Nation), and 21 year-old Saoirse Ronan (Brooklyn) are the youngest actors who appear to be in the mix for possible Oscar nominations this year. But none of them will be breaking any records if they are as younger actors have been nominated in their categories. It's actually Jennifer Lawrence, an old lady at 25 (Kidding, but she sure does like playing older women) who is the one to watch for trivia's sake. She is likely to break a record that is currently held by another Jennifer. 

Jennifer in Duel in the Sun (1946) / Jennifer in Joy (2015)


Do you think Jennifer Lawrence will take Jennifer Jones Oscar record?
Duh! JLaw will be gunning for Bette/Katharine/Meryl records
Yes. JLaw will get another Oscar and a few more nods.
We'll see. Enjoy it while it lasts Jennifer.
No. This JLaw obsession must stop!
Poll Maker


Should Lawrence be nominated for Joy (talk about the new trailer here), she will have amassed an incredible four acting nominations by the age of 25. I assumed that record was held by Elizabeth Taylor but the record is actually held by one of the more forgotten superstars of the 1940s, Jennifer Jones.


Click to read more ...


Beauty vs Beast: Who's The Poo 

Jason from MNPP here... wait, that's not much of an introduction. I should do better. Ahem. One, two, three -- I'm sexy, I'm cute, I'm popular to boot. I'm bitchin', great hair, the boys all love to stare... I'm major, I roar, I swear I'm not a whore! ROLL CALL. It's "B-b-b-Beauty vs B-b-b-Beast" time and seeing as how tomorrow marks the 15th anniversary of the little cheerleading-movie-that-could called Bring It On I figured we'd slip into our team-colors and take sides on the greatest Cheer-Off of our times.

PREVIOUSLY Last week we celebrated the anniversary of Norma Shearer and with a wade into George Cukor's The Women -- Joan Crawford's trampy shopgirl pulled out in front early on, and while the lead narrowed with time it just wasn't Norma's time; Crawford dug her heel into 53% of the vote. Said Someone:

"To those of you not voting for Crystal, as she herself would say, "There's a name for you ladies, but it isn't used in high society... outside of a kennel. So long, ladies!""


Beauty vs Beast: The Red Jungles of High Society

Jason from MNPP here with this week's episode of "Beauty vs Beast" for your fun-time entertainment -- while it's certainly not as important numerically as the approaching 100 year anniversary of Ingrid Bergman (which we're celebrating with great enthusiasm here at TFE) I think it's a happy enough happenstance that today marks the 113th anniversary of the birth of the terrific actress Norma Shearer and we should likewise celebrate her. And what better way than with that grand dame of cinematic cattiness, George Cukor's 1939 classic The Women? Shearer plays the betrayed society wife Mary, whose husband can't resist the shopgirl charms of (one two three - hiss!) Miss Crystal Allen, played by a totally game Joan Crawford. There's no way to play if you don't enter the kennel...

PREVIOUSLY Last week we also took on a "good wife" trampled by some dark-haired hussy, facing down Joan Allen and Sigourney Weaver in The Ice Storm. And the hussy won! The hussy always wins. (As we'll probably find out in another week when this Women poll's results come in.) Said Joe:

"Both women were brilliant in this. This is my favorite Ang Lee film. I'd give the edge to Sigourney. Outside of the Alien films, this is her best work. It's SHOCKING that she was not nominated for an Oscar that year. I mean, Minnie Driver??"


Snack Break 

My brain is not working today. I looked at this photo of Jimmy Stewart and Norma Shearer on tumblr and assumed Jimmy was checking his phone and Norma was trying to sneak a peek at what bitchy thing Lucille Fay LeSueur had just texted him from the set of Ice Follies of 1939 and th--- oh, uh, 1939. Right. D'Oh!

Time to step away from the computer perhaps? Snack break. See you late late tonight for the AMADEUS (1984) roundup and two barking mad composers.