Summer Reading Classic Film Book Challenge - Fay Wray and Robert Riskin - A Hollywood Memoir

August 24, 2019



There are only a few weeks left in Raquel's Summer Reading Challenge so I think this is sadly going to be one more year that I fail to tackle 6 books. I think I might cheat a little next year and do all of my reading in the winter, when I always have more free time, and then post my reviews the following summer. It'll just be our secret :)

I've only finished one book so far, but boy was it a good one. I read "Fay Wray and Robert Riskin - A Hollywood Memoir" by their daughter, Victoria Riskin. For a while when I was a teenager I used to say that Frank Capra was my favorite director, believing that he was the driving force behind movies like Meet John Doe, Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, Lost Horizon, and You Can't Take it With You. But several years ago I started to realize that the movies he made apart from Robert Riskin didn't have the same appeal to me. Yet movies that Riskin made without Capra (particularly Magic Town and The Whole Town's Talking) still had what people refer to as "The Capra Touch." That was when it dawned on me that I wasn't actually a big Capra fan all these years -- I was a Riskin fan!

Going into this book I was an admirer of Riskin's screenwriting, and I loved Fay Wray in '30s horror movies like Doctor X and Mystery of the Wax Museum, but I didn't know anything at all about them personally. I didn't know that they were both beautiful, poetic souls, madly and deeply in love with one another. I didn't know that they were passionate progressives who were active in politics. Fay Wray's letter to Robert Riskin detailing her anxiety-riddled election night listening to returns coming in on the radio was a snapshot of my own election night experiences watching MSNBC. Her hope and relief when FDR won was so relatable that I immediately felt emotional flashbacks to November 2008. Victoria Riskin imbues this book with the spirit of her parents -- you can sense how much she loved them, how much they loved her, and how witty and smart and sweet they were. Little details like Fay Wray packing peanut butter sandwiches for lunch, or Robert Riskin keeping notes on words that amused him so he could work them into scripts (pixelated!) not only represent a daughter's loving remembrance but they help bring these Hollywood icons to life again and create a clear and wonderful picture of who they were.

In addition to the insights into their personal and private lives, the book also delves into behind-the-scenes cinema history involving casting decisions, writing credits, studio disagreements, and box office success. My favorite (or perhaps least favorite -- it breaks my heart now thinking of what could have been!) casting anecdote was that Robert Montgomery was originally the first choice to play Peter Warne in It Happened One Night. Gable is fine in the role and I love that movie, but my Robert Montgomery-loving heart aches for a version with him and Claudette Colbert instead. And be sure to have a box of tissues nearby when you read about the destruction of *hours* of footage that Harry Cohn cut from Lost Horizon. Even the stories that could be considered somewhat "juicy" are laid out with complete and utter loveliness -- like the time that Cary Grant told Riskin that he had been madly in love with Fay Wray but she was better off without him. In another book this might have felt very "TMZ" but Victoria Riskin tells the story with a sweetness that makes you forget you're reading about an affair between two of Hollywood's biggest legends that was never meant to be. It's just a warm and wistful remark from a man who once loved her mother.

I can only think of one other biography I've read (Truffaut: A Biography) where I was sad to have to say goodbye. I've grown to really love Fay Wray and Robert Riskin and as the story progressed, when signs of Riskin's failing health became apparent or when Wray was getting older, I winced knowing that things were about to end. But thank goodness that they left us so many movies to remember them by. Like Victoria Riskin said in the book, she hears her father in the words of John Doe or Longfellow Deeds. And Fay Wray's delicate beauty is forever preserved in movies like The Wedding March and King Kong. I may be finished reading, but I can still revisit their films and live with them a little longer.

Sunday in New York program

August 15, 2019

I recently added this official Sunday in New York program to my collection! I love the production notes especially -- "Jane Fonda playing the girl who wonders if all her answers are out of the question." You can click on the photos to view them larger.





A decade of discovering Dirk Bogarde

August 10, 2019



Today is the tenth anniversary of TCM's Summer Under the Stars salute to Dirk Bogarde, the day that I watched So Long at the Fair for the first time and my life was never the same. Ten years since I exclaimed on this blog, "Whoa! Hold the phone!! THIS is Dirk Bogarde?!?!"

I like to fantasize that this might have become a fairly popular and well-kept film blog if my manic fixation on Dirk Bogarde hadn't taken over the wheel and steered entirely in the direction of Bogarde movies, paraphernalia, photo scans, and desperate pleas for someone, anyone, to join me in my fanaticism. But if I'm being completely honest, I'd trade that fantasy of a successful movie blog for ten years filled with overconsumption of Dirk Bogarde. So many of his films became all-time favorites. And as a perpetually single gal who likes to fill the boyfriend-shaped hole in her heart with overblown obsessions with dead movie stars, the ten years that I've spent head over heels in love with Dirk Bogarde have been like a warm embrace, and fond company in what could otherwise have been a bit of a lonely life.

To celebrate a full decade of Dirk, here is a list of ten things (one for each year, obviously!) Favorite movies, blog posts, photos, random anecdotes, just ten things that have made this last decade all the more pleasant because he was a part of it:

1. Darling (1965) - As a Julie Christie fan it's very likely that I would have watched this eventually even if I wasn't on a quest to devour every Dirk Bogarde movie ever made - but I watched it in 2009 and it quickly became one of my top 5 favorite movies, and it has remained there all these years. Every time that I revisit it, I find something else to love about it. I'm so grateful to Dirk Bogarde's face for luring me into this film.

2. In 2010 I went to New York to view two of Dirk Bogarde's Hallmark movies at the Paley Center. It was the first time in all of my years as a classic film fan that I really felt like I was doing real research. I called ahead of time to make sure I could schedule enough time (the movies I wanted to see exceeded the normal allotted viewing time) and it was well worth the planning and the money to go into the city. I wrote about my experience and the films here.

3. Hot Enough for June (1964) - I don't know that I ever would have even heard of this movie were it not for Dirk Bogarde, and it ended up becoming one of my go-to movies for whenever I need a pick-me-up. It's a funny, smart, and so so fun spy spoof about a writer who gets assigned to take over for a deceased 007 when he shows up at the unemployment office. I wrote about it in 2009, here.

4. My devotion to Dirk Bogarde resulted in a pretty hefty amount of tribute videos. Back in 2010 and 2011 I had a little more time on my hands and I knocked out 10 Dirk Bogarde videos. You can view them all on my youtube channel here, but this one that features clips from all of his movies (that I could find) in chronological order, and this one that was my very first tribute video ever, are my favorites.

5. Dirk Bogarde's life story in comic book form! This was my absolute favorite find in all of my years of scouring ebay for Dirk memorabilia. It's a 22 page long comic book from the 1950's that retells his (slightly fictionalized and exaggerated) biography.

6. I'm going to cheat a little bit here and include ANOTHER top ten list in this top ten list. I wanted to choose my all time favorite Dirk Bogarde picture to include in here, but I couldn't narrow it down. I just couldn't!! So instead here is a link to my top ten favorite photos.

7. Modesty Blaise (1966) - This wild movie makes absolutely no sense and I LOVE IT SO MUCH. Honestly this might be the number one thing I am most grateful to Dirk Bogarde for. The music, the lobster indecision, the over the top-ness, the camp, Dirk's white wig (and his dramatic removal of said wig), the spinning umbrellas, the random outfit changes, Monica Vitti and Terence Stamp's short burst of song and ice cream and colored dust. It makes my heart swell just thinking about this movie.

8. The Mind Benders (1963) - Recently somebody asked me what movie has haunted me the most, and I think this would have to be it. It's a compelling, deeply disturbing movie about loss of sensation and what really happens to you when you're forced to be alone with your thoughts. The post I wrote about this movie back in 2009 is still one of my favorite things I've written.

9. This gif. It might be my favorite piece of film footage of all time. So handsome. So debonair. So beautiful. Sigh.



10. Discovering Dirk Bogarde never ends. When I first started this journey, I consumed way too many films in a very short period of time, and realized that I wasn't going to be leaving many new-to-me Dirk Bogarde films for my future self. So I slowed down and now, a decade later, I still have plenty left to watch. Some people like to approach fandom by binging everything as quickly as possible (I've been there!) but my preferred method is to stretch things out so that I still get to treat myself to "new" films even though the performer or director is long gone. And so I'm glad that ten years into consuming his filmography, I am still discovering Dirk Bogarde, and I hope I always am.

Is virtue an asset in the big town?

August 01, 2019

A few weeks ago I waited with baited breath while the the last few seconds went by on an ebay auction ... tick, tick, tick ... I was the highest bidder on a December 1963 issue of Movies Illustrated magazine, and contained within its pages was an illustrated summary of Sunday in New York.

As you can guess from the photos below, I won that auction (champagne! confetti! hooray!) and I finally scanned the pages to share with you here today. I love all the different euphemisms the article employs to describe a movie that is, in essence, about sex and virginity, without ever using any words that even come close. My favorite is that Cliff Robertson's character Adam would "never compromise a girl." Judging by how desperately Mona wants alone time with Adam, I don't think she'd consider it a compromise, lol!

So here it is, the "picture story" of Sunday in New York:











Dear Heart and the destruction of Penn Station

July 30, 2019



"Through Pennsylvania Station one entered the city like a god. One scuttles in now like a rat." - Vincent Scully

If you've entered New York City in the last 50 years you've likely scuttled in like a rat through Penn Station. There are little remnants of the structure that once stood there -- the granite eagles between 31st and 33rd street, and some brass and iron railings in stairwells -- but it's difficult to fully imagine the grandeur and majesty of the original Pennsylvania Station. Which is why it's such an absolute delight to see it in all its glory in the beginning and ending scenes of the 1964 film Dear Heart.



Production for Dear Heart began on October 2, 1963, just four weeks before demolition started on the building. You can see the light pouring into the terminal, and catch a glimpse of the almost-10 feet tall statue of Pennsylvania Railroad President Alexander Johnston Cassatt, looming over Glenn Ford's shoulder. There's the Coca Cola digital clock, the incoming baggage check, and the souvenir shop. Giant arched windows and beautiful stonework. You can see it all in these scenes.



According to Lorraine B. Diehl, the author of The Late Great Pennsylvania Station, you can spot some broken and covered windowpanes in the ending scenes. Although The Daily News reported in November 1963 that the Penn Station scenes were running behind schedule, Dear Heart ended their on-location filming on October 3rd. And one thing is for certain -- Dear Heart was the last movie to ever be filmed in the original Penn Station. By the time the movie was released in December 1964, the grand and glorious Penn Station was no more.



In Mary Wickes: I Know I've Seen That Face Before, Steve Taravella writes that "Penn Station was razed immediately after filming and replaced with today's soulless station of the same name." After this, most movies would have to film in Grand Central Station if they wanted to capture a New York station with cinematic appeal. In fact, it was the destruction of Pennsylvania Station that saved Grand Central. Less than two years after the demolition, spurred by the loss of such a beautiful historical landmark, New York City enacted the Landmarks Preservation Law.



Movies are like time capsules. When the crew of Dear Heart rolled into Penn Station in October of 1963 they might not have realized that they were preserving a small piece of American architectural and rail history. They may not have realized that their movie would bookend an era of rail travel, a vivid and faithful relic of a way of life that is long gone. But by creating this piece of art, they also preserved a piece of history for us to look back on years later.

We should be thankful for movies like this, filmed on location in locations that no longer exist. We may now scurry in like rat, but by watching Dear Heart we can imagine what the world must have been like when you once entered the city like a God.



This post was written in partnership with Trainiac Productions, as part of a series on train history in film. Please check out their facebook page for more train posts!

You can rent Dear Heart on Amazon Prime right here, or purchase the DVD through Warner Archive here.

Made in Paris {The Apartment}

July 11, 2019



In the 1966 film Made in Paris, Louis Jourdan plays a Parisian fashion designer, Marc Fontaine. When Ann-Margret takes Edie Adams' place as his American buyer, catastrophic misunderstandings and flirtatious escapades ensue. This film is notable to me because it's the first time that I took notice of --and fell down a deep rabbit hole of full-blown obsession with-- Chad Everett, who plays Ann-Margret's boyfriend.

The only thing in this film that might be more aesthetically pleasing than Chad Everett's megawatt smile is Marc Fontaine's flamingo pink studio, designed by set decorators Keogh Gleason and Henry Grace. Situated right above the runway of the fashion house, this colorful abode is a feast for the eyes!



To the left is Fontaine's office desk, facing away from a bay window that -- I can only assume -- is probably overlooking the Champs-Élysées. To the right is a sitting area, complete with two chairs and a matching settee. But the piece de resistance is that spiral staircase hiding in the back left corner. Be still my heart! And the addition of a plush pink carpet only heightens the style that hovers somewhere between decadent and kitschy. My favorite spot to be!



On the right side of the room, Fontaine keeps his latest sketches on display, hanging over a table that appears to house a collection of fashion magazines. I love the balance here of opulence and strict attention to design, but with little messes here and there that reflect the reality of a working fashion designer. My own studio is much less lavish, but I think I strike a similar balance between lived-in creative workspace and pleasing to look at.



In the other corner of the room is Fontaine's easel, complete with a table for paints and palette, a roll of paper lying underneath, and a model form for reference that is bedecked in fabric, ribbons, and flowers. The spiral staircase is my favorite feature of the room but this model is my favorite detail that the set designers added -- it's kind of kooky!



Here is a close up of the staircase, which has a grey railing with golden spokes. And over Ann-Margret's shoulder you can see a peek of the Picasso painting hanging up on the wall. I also love how the walls have intricate wooden carvings in the beveled moulding and they almost seem to be washed in a rose hued stain.



Remember how I  mentioned that this room is situated right above the runway? It's the perfect spot for Fontaine to retreat during a show and keep an eye on the reception his pieces receive during a show. All he has to do is press a button and - Presto! - the bookcase disappears into the wall to reveal a window overlooking the runway. How fantastic is that?!

This is part of an ongoing series of posts dedicated to bachelor apartments in movies. You can view the rest of the series right here.

Saw it in the Movies Tag

July 05, 2019



The rules:

- Pick at least 3 things that you have done from a movie. It can be any movie, anything you did.
- Tell how the event worked out.
- Link back to the tag's creator and the person who tagged you (thank you, Hamlette!)
- Have fun!
- Tag 4 people.



1. I started using Pond's Cold Cream because it always seemed so glamorous when actresses in movies would apply the cream at night, sitting at their vanity, usually whilst arguing with their husband/boyfriend/lover. I have no idea why this particular ritual resonated so strongly with me but I can still think of specific scenes in movies off the top of my head - Bette Davis in All About Eve, Ingrid Bergman in Goodbye, Again, Ruth Chatterton in Dodsworth, Jean Seberg in Bonjour Tristesse.

2. I went through a phase where I was so influenced by the ennui of foreign film characters that I let it seep into my own life. I naturally gravitate towards being a very optimistic, happy person but as I became immersed in a world of restless, unhappy, languishing characters, I absorbed their energy. I felt like it was cooler to be jaded and listless than my normal bubbly self. I still love these movies but once I realized the effect that they were having on me I definitely cut back on my Antonioni intake considerably!

3. When I was about 15 I shaved off my eyebrows so I could draw them on like Jean Harlow or Marlene Dietrich. It's probably the worst decision I've ever made, I looked so silly and I had the hardest time drawing them on evenly! Luckily they grew back, but they're very sparse. It's funny because I was a teenager in the early 2000's and most girls my age over-plucked at the time, but for a totally different reason! lol!

I'm going to tag:
Nicole from Vintage Film Nerd
Nikki from The Way We Watch
Diana from Flickin' Out
Gabriela from Pale Writer

Talking Truffaut with Raquel from Out of the Past!

June 05, 2019



For the last few years, when my good friend Raquel has come into NYC in the spring for a work event we've been meeting up for dinner. It's become one of my favorite traditions to look forward to each year, and this time around we filmed a video for her youtube channel, too! I hope this also becomes a tradition because it was so much fun to record! We spent well over an hour chatting about my favorite director, François Truffaut (don't worry, Raquel managed to trim it down to just over half an hour!)

I feel compelled to acknowledge that I did make a few goofs with the facts, and there were so many times that my mind went completely blank on names or films that I know well when the cameras aren't rolling. I could list every Truffaut movie by heart and yet "A Gorgeous Girl Like Me" totally slipped my mind. And Charles Denning is Charles Denner. Alas! The point is, sometimes my enthusiasm and anxiousness overwhelms the part of my brain that's supposed to remember facts. As I say in the video, take it with a grain of salt. I absolutely adore the guy and his movies, but I'm just an absent-minded super fan, not an expert ;)

Anyway, this was just such an absolute treat and I think it's so fun that after 10 years of knowing each other through classic movie blogging (ten years?!?!) we got to film this! I can't wait to do the next one! :)

You can watch the video on Raquel's youtube channel here. And be sure to check out her classic film blog, Out of the Past, her sister site Quelle Movies, and if you're a fan of her work (which you definitely should be!) you can support her Ko-Fi right here.

The Classic Movie Tag!

May 24, 2019



Raquel from Out of the Past just posted a fun classic movie tag on her youtube channel (watch it here!) and I couldn't resist participating myself. Here we go!


1 - What's one classic movie that you recommend to people over and over and over again?

I wish that I had an answer to this that would surprise everyone, but it's Sunday in New York. I recommend it to everybody that I meet and I've been doing that for over ten years now. I remember before it was released on DVD officially I used to make copies of the dvd that I taped off TCM and mail them to my friends to make sure they got to see it. So far almost everyone I've recommended it to has loved it (with one exception that always sticks out in my mind, argh!) so I'm not going to stop anytime soon.

2 - What was the last classic film you saw and what were your thoughts about it?

The last classic film I saw was Claudelle Inglish (1961). I watched it for Chad Everett (who only has maybe 7 minutes of screen time) and the title role is played by Diane McBain, but Arthur Kennedy totally stole the picture in my opinion. He completely and utterly broke my heart. I didn't expect myself to get so wrapped up in the movie but by the end I found I was way more emotionally invested in it than I thought I'd be. And that's entirely because of Arthur Kennedy. What a performance.



3 - Name a classic movie genre you love and one you dislike.

One that I love would be '60s sex comedies. Even the worst of them are still completely enjoyable to me! And one that I dislike would be ... hmm... normally I would say westerns but as I wrote earlier this week, that has changed a bit. I'm going to go with Shakespeare adaptations. I actually enjoy Shakespeare and was obsessed with memorizing monologues when I was in school, but it's not my favorite thing to watch onscreen.

4 - Name a classic movie star with whom you share a birthday or a hometown.

I share a hometown with Paul Robeson! We were both born in Princeton, New Jersey.

5 - Give a shout out to a friend or family member who shares your love of classic movies.

I'll give a shout out to my mom and dad. My mom shares my love of frivolous '60s romps and old Disney movies, while my dad shares my love of foreign films. This week my mom and I traded favorite scenes from The Glass Bottom Boat and I had a conversation with my dad about the Truffaut vs. Godard approaches to whether or not art should be political. We also recently did a March Madness style bracket to narrow down our favorite character actors (if I remember correctly, Alastair Sim won across the board.)

6 - Name a classic movie star who makes your heart skip a beat or whom you admire greatly.

I'm going to take this as my cue to talk about Chad Everett again. I am so, so smitten. I just got a signed photo in the mail and placed it across from my bed so it's the first thing I see in the morning. I have a problem.

I only have one more movie of his from the 1960s left to watch (Johnny Tiger, which, depending on the legitimacy of the website from which I bought the DVD, is hopefully on its way to me now.) and then I'll be all done with that decade of his filmography. The '70s are tricky territory because of excessive sideburns, long hair, and so much polyester, so I might skip ahead a little bit and resume binging his career around 1981. I'm also working my way through Medical Center, and I have to say it might be one of my favorite discoveries that was spurred by a crush. Some episodes leave me grinning like an idiot, and then last night I actually had to grab tissues because tears were streaming down my face. It's a rollercoaster, that show! But it's just so well done. And Chad Everett is such a hunk. *Swoon*



7 - Describe one memorable experience watching a classic movie.

A couple years ago in February the heater broke in my house and it was freezing cold inside. La Piscine was showing at the Film Society in New York, and I took a train into the city to see it. The theater was nice and cozy, and the sizzling French summer was radiating off the screen. You could hear that low buzzzzz of insects and practically feel the sun on your skin and obviously Alain Delon, on the big screen, shirtless, and tanned, and ugh. It was just so nice. I think it was also my first time seeing a classic movie alone and I loved it so much. The solo movie-going experience is so underrated.

8 - Describe the craziest thing you've done because of your passion for classic movies.

Most of my really crazy things were done when I was a teenager, like wearing black mourning clothes to middle school on the anniversary of Audrey Hepburn's passing, or making my friends take photos of me with my arms around a nonexistent boyfriend at our junior prom so that I could then "photoshop" Frank Sinatra into the photo with me using MS paint. This was before digital cameras so the whole process was way more time consuming (and thus crazy) than it would be today, lol.

Lately I guess the craziest thing would be going to the TCM Film Festival multiple times. I don't like Hollywood, I'm socially inept, and I honestly can't afford to go as often as I do, but almost every year since 2014 I find myself on a plane bound for California every spring! I'm already planning out outfits and saving up airline miles for 2020.

9 - What's something classic movie related that you love to collect?

I collect movie tie-in books! I have a little rotating paperback shelf for them so that they're always on display, and it's my favorite collection (not just classic movie related collection) that I own! The only downside is that I haven't read many of them because I'm scared to crack the spines and possibly separate the covers since so many of them are in delicate condition.



10 - What's your favorite way to share your passion for classic movies?

I love talking to other classic movie fans on twitter and following accounts that are as obsessed with their favorite stars as I am with mine. My absolute favorite people on the site are the ones who are passionate about specific movies or stars and try to share that passion with the movie community. I think it can be a thankless job (especially if the star you're obsessed with isn't as popular as Audrey Hepburn or Cary Grant, say) but I appreciate and enjoy those accounts so much. I just love being able to talk movies there. It's the only place online that I really feel comfortable socializing, and I think it has to be because the classic movie community is so kind and welcoming and supportive. I'm sure most people there think of me as an acquaintance, if they think of me at all, but I think of so many of them as good friends and really cherish their presence in my life.

turns out, I like some westerns

May 21, 2019



Last month I was sick in bed with a pretty bad case of bronchitis, and I was binging my way through fun frivolous '60s sex comedies (way more healing than chicken soup, if you ask me!) When I got to Made in Paris, a 1966 Ann-Margret vehicle co-starring Chad Everett, I made a sharp detour away from "any '60s comedy" and veered towards "exclusively Chad Everett." From that day on I've been consuming everything he made, and I do mean EVERYTHING.

Here I am, approximately a month later, the proud owner of Return of the Gunfighter (1967) and the complete series of The Dakotas. Did I watch Return of the Gunfighter with a grimace on my face, painfully plodding my way through a western for the sake of eye candy? No! I enjoyed it, and then I watched it TWICE. And was I dragged kicking and screaming into a screening of The Last Challenge (1967), Everett's western flick with Glenn Ford? Heck, no! I loved every minute of it and found myself on the edge of my seat by the nail-biting finale. I know somebody is going to supply a pretty well-deserved "I told you so!" but if I had realized how well-populated westerns are with beautiful, tanned, blue jean-bedecked actors I probably would have caved in to this genre a whole lot sooner.

Oh, and did I mention I also liked a war film? Yup, you heard it here first folks! I watched and was thoroughly entertained by First to Fight (1967) a movie about a WWII war hero (Everett) who experiences PTSD when he returns to the Pacific to fight again after spending time away from battle to sell war bonds on the home front. I definitely enjoyed the home front scenes more than the battle scenes, but darn it, I really liked this whole movie.



Anyway. I guess my whole point is that I think Chad Everett is the dreamboatiest dreamboat to ever dreamboat and I am having a super hard time thinking about anything else these days. If you need more evidence of his handsomeness, I made a ton of gifs on my giphy right here that you can swoon over, too! :)

An Ode to Rachel Devery

March 28, 2019



I was heartbroken to learn today that June Harding has passed away. Harding played the iconic Rachel Devery in The Trouble with Angels, a movie that has now been seen and cherished by at least three generations of young girls. My own mom saw it in theaters when she was 10 and shared it with me when I was even younger than that. I'm a childless 32 now, but I'm sure that countless women my age who grew up loving this film are now sharing it with their daughters, as well.

June Harding played Rachel with a tenderness, sweetness, and authenticity that perfectly complimented Hayley Mills' scheming Mary Clancy. Even though their plans were always hatched by Mary and willingly accompanied by Rachel, Rachel wasn't merely a stooge or a blind accomplice. She was a best friend doing what best friends do! She enjoyed being a part of a team, excited about whatever new adventure Mary might come up with. She was Mary's equal, her other half. And when Mary decides to join the order, Rachel's devastation doesn't just stem from feelings of betrayal. It's the sudden loss of that team, the end of their escapades as a devious duo.

June Harding poured so much into Rachel. It isn't just the physical comedy and displays of ineptitude -- her misadventures in sewing, her bungled sign of the cross, her clumsiness in the art studio, her messy charcoal work, her frenzied jump into the swimming pool -- but the way that she imbued meaningful scenes with layers of emotion. When she says "I'll miss you" after Mary has already walked away from her, or when she looks stabbed with hurt over Mary's announcement at graduation.

And June Harding's ability to convey unbridled joy was unmatched. Her happiness when she sees Mary after summer break, or when she decides to forgive Mary is absolutely infectious. Not every performer can make you feel the emotions that they're displaying onscreen -- weep when they're sad and grin when they're smiling, but June Harding had that in spades.

I hope that she knew what she meant to us. I hope she knew that when I reminisced about my childhood friends, I usually counted Mary and Rachel among them.

My Sunday in New York collection

February 27, 2019



I've been collecting Sunday in New York memorabilia for about ten years now and I thought it would be fun to round up everything and share it here!

Sunday in New York is my favorite movie. It's comfort food, the kind of movie I watch when I want to feel like I'm home. It makes me laugh more every time I watch it and even though I know other people love it too, my devotion makes me feel a certain level of ownership. It's MY movie. I just adore it. And I love surrounding myself with things that remind me of it.



If you look at the drawer units behind me in one of my outfit posts on my style blog here, and then look at those drawers in this photo it will give you some idea of the size of this poster. IT IS BIG. It's so big that I don't actually have room for it right now on my walls, but it was such a unique find that I couldn't pass it up for "someday" when I have a bigger living area.



This poster is slightly obscured in the photo by my hanging planter but it's a standard one sheet. I've moved this one around a lot but it's one of the only posters I own that has been on constant display since I got it in 2013.



This is a custom marquee art print where I added the Sunday in New York marquee details. I think it's such a fun way to pay homage to one of my favorite movies!



This still was a gift from my parents last Christmas. I had sent my mom a link to the ebay listing and then on Christmas morning it wasn't under the tree. Sometimes after Christmas I treat myself to a few things I might have wanted but didn't receive as a present (does anyone else do this?) and when I went on ebay, I found this was sold out! Boo! I tried to find another copy but nobody had one listed anymore.

Then about a week after Christmas a package came in the mail from Sweden and there it was! My mom had totally forgotten that she had ordered it, and it arrived late! I'm so happy I managed to get this one, I just think it's so beautiful!



I got this still at Larry Edmunds' book store in Hollywood at my first TCM Film Festival (where I saw Sunday in New York with Robert Osborne introducing it!) so this one is really special to me. I took the photo at a terrible angle so my xoxo frame is blocking the corner, but Rod Taylor is wearing one sneaker and one shoe, which is one of the funniest gags in the movie. I love that it's featured in this still!



This is my 45 record of the Sunday in New York score. I love this but I feel like without context Cliff Robertson looks like he's creeping in the doorway about to kill them, lol!



I've been searching for German versions of the Sunday in New York posters for ages (this one in particular) because they are so bold and I love the green title text with the heart over the "i" in "in"! It's one of my all-time favorite Sunday in New York finds. I hope someday the ebay gods will look kindly on me and let me find the matching one, as well.



For Christmas, Nikki got me this Yugoslavian version of the poster! I had never even seen this version before. I love how they added the cartoon drawings in the top corners, with the rowboat scene in the left corner and a very happy New York City on the right. For a while I've been thinking about getting a Sunday in New York themed tattoo at some point, and I think that happy city might be the perfect subtle nod to my favorite film.



I have a bunch of 8x10 stills running along the top of my ceiling and of course I have several from Sunday in New York! This one definitely captures Jane Fonda's awkwardness when Robert Culp bursts in to propose to her!



Two more stills from my collection. On the left, Jane Fonda is realizing her brother broke his "sacred honor" and on the right Cliff Robertson is dashing through the airport (actually LAX) to find Jo Morrow.



Another still featuring the shoe fiasco! Just looking at these stills brings a smile to my face since they are such perfect snapshots of the humor from the film.



In addition to the 45, I also have a 33 album of the film score from Sunday in New York. Since the movie sometimes feels like a feature length ad for Peter Nero I think it's especially appropriate that I have every version of the soundtrack possible, haha!



This is a press book for the movie. I need to actually devote a full post to this one with scans from the book, since there are a lot of press snippets, interviews, advertising suggestions, and small images of the American poster releases for the movie!



I have a binder filled with my extra stills that don't fit on my walls and these are the ones from my Sunday in New York collection. One of these days I would love to hang all of my stills grouped together, when I have more room.



These are contact sheets from a Sunday in New York photo shoot with Jane Fonda and Rod Taylor. I scanned all of them so you can view larger versions of all of the pictures on my movie scan blog here.



This was the first piece of Sunday in New York memorabilia that I ever purchased! It's a lobby card that I bought back in 2009 for like $5 and I can remember checking the mailbox anxiously every day waiting for it to arrive. It's one of my favorite scenes in the movie and I love Jane Fonda's expression! And I love the "suitable only for adults" sticker that a movie theater had placed on this at some point. It almost feels like real proof that this was really hanging in a theater where the movie originally played.



I think this might be my most unique find, an ad for TWA airlines that subtly plugs Sunday in New York. I think it's so fun since Cliff Robertson plays an airline pilot in the movie! The caption reads "Enjoy fine films such as the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Seven Arts production, 'Sunday in New York,' starring Cliff Robertson, Jane Fonda, Rod Taylor."



And finally, this button set that I made myself! I love making things that reflect my own super particular interests and I just had to have a Sunday in New York button set. Obviously I included the sneaker/shoe scene and some of my favorite quotes (the "two heads" one gets me every time!)