Hepburn, Davis, Stewart and Friends Recall the Screen's Golden Years
Email this review


 A fictitious dinner party featuring Hollywood ``royalty,'' with dialogue taken from their own words during actual interviews with Speck. From 1985 to 1988, Speck did a series of 24 interviews for Interview magazine, talking with Katherine Hepburn, Ava Gardner, Olivia de Havilland, Bette Davis, Audrey Hepburn, Joan Fontaine, Gregory Peck, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., and others. Since many of these celebrities spoke on the same topic, or were led to speak on that topic, Speck has decided to arrange this book not simply as a sheaf of interviews, but by topics, as if one were at a party in which Stewart, Fontaine, Peck, and others all tell about their work with Alfred Hitchcock (a revised picture of Hitch emerges, after his blackening by Donald Spoto) and with Cary Grant and Grace Kelly. Bette Davis and others tell about making pictures with William Wyler, and a dozen or more have their memories of working with, of dining with, or of just watching Greta Garbo--memories that, when strung together like this, produce a rainbow of awe and a heartfelt if stagestruck chorus of ``incomparable''s. Geraldine Fitzgerald says of Garbo that she ``liked to try on hats without any other clothes. They used to have these tours through the Metro lot, and one time a tour came into the fitting room. Well, there on a high chair, trying on hats, completely nude, was Garbo....It would have made a wonderful picture.'' Laurence Olivier and Vivien Leigh get the big treatment, as do Davis, Clark Gable, James Cagney, Marilyn Monroe, David Selznick, Henry Fonda, Humphrey Bogart, Frank Capra, John Ford, Spencer Tracy, and others. Guess who's coming to dinner! A brilliant idea well carried out. (Photographs throughout--not seen.)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1992
ISBN: 1-55972-150-2
Page count: 288pp
Publisher: Birch Lane Press
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15th, 1992