AVA: Portrait of A Star by David Hanna

AVA: Portrait of A Star

By
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Enter Ava, a stunning showman, striding into the camera, smiling gaily, teeth perfect, body beautiful, the daughter of a sharecropper -- and what's more -- indifferent to her career. And yet her days are passed like a gaudy scenario set in hotel suites, limousines, trattorias, bullrings, and on the phone at dawn. The celluloid queen insists her success was accidental and describes herself as ""ugly and awful, nasty and destructive"" and yet she obviously enjoyed being in front of the camera, spent hours going over still photographs and had a way of capturing press attention as well as romantic husbands (Mickey Rooney, Artie Shaw, Frank Sinatra) and surly but devoted lovers (Walter Chiari, Luis Miguel Dominguin). Mr. Hanna says idleness made her fretful and he did his best to keep her occupied. But she was a dreamer not a doer. That's about it, because the rest of the book is about Mr. Hanna and his press-agentry, the intrigues and stunts of the proverbial studio publicity departments, and the eccentricities of directors and stars Mr. Hanna worked for in between his meetings and employment by Miss Gardner. Apart from his pleasurable affinity to the star he is not too perspicacious on the subject of Ava but he manages to fill up the book...

Pub Date: Oct. 31st, 1960
Publisher: Putnam