WE THOUGHT WE COULD DO ANYTHING by Henry Ephron

WE THOUGHT WE COULD DO ANYTHING

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KIRKUS REVIEW

With their first play on Broadway and the first of their four daughters in tow, Henry and Phoebe Ephron gladly ""went Hollywood"" in 1944. Craftsmen good and true, they eventually wrote more than 30 plays and motion pictures--comedies, musicals, romances--during the frantically busy, happy years of a partnership that lasted until Phoebe's death in 1971. The creative life of a screenwriter is a compound of quick inspiration, solid sweat, impasse, stratagems, and personalities--volatile personalities in those expansive days. Ephron manages to surmount the inevitable string of I-love-the-script-you've-got-Jimmy-Stewart phone calls as he reels off illuminating anecdotes--from Ernst Lubitsch setting a boy-and-girl situation on to boil (""I want you to think--Cooper and Colbert"") to Hepburn and Tracy flirting with the Ephrons on the set (""a way of stimulating their feelings toward each other"") to Fred Astaire's comment on a projected love scene with Leslie Caron: ""Cary Grant can play it. I can't. I don't make love by kissing; I make love by dancing."" There are casual insights on the writing trade as the Ephrons pick up dialogue, concepts, and story lines like lint--from the damnedest places. As Phoebe's maxim has it: ""Everything is copy."" With an epilogue in which author Nora Ephron eulogizes her mother, this is an appreciative recap of a productive, well-spiced life.

Pub Date: April 25th, 1977
ISBN: 0393336255
Publisher: Norton