Sam Westwood's Hollywood

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by markedward, Sep 22, 2018.

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  1. C. McKay Well-Known Member

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    Let us know when you post it please. The new TL I mean
     
  2. markedward Well-Known Member

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    I will.

    Been working a lot, so I'm trying to get updates done for this TL first. A good chunk of the spin off is stuff that was already written but didn't fit here. It's just a matter of framing devices, details, etc.

    Seasonal is starting so I might be a little slow on updates but am going to try and touch base with everyone as much as possible.
     
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  3. C. McKay Well-Known Member

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    Thanks much and good luck
     
  4. Threadmarks: Mid-1968

    markedward Well-Known Member

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    Mentioned in Variety during spring, 1968

    “MGM has purchased the film rights to the Broadway musical How Now, Dow Jones...“ [1]



    Select IMDB Trivia Notes on Rosemary's Baby

    large_gordon-rosemary.jpg

    Mia Farrow was originally cast but had to pull out when husband Frank Sinatra was upset at her for taking the part as she had agreed to star opposite him in The Detective instead.

    Director Roman Polanski wanted to cast Jill St. John as Rosemary Woodhouse but didn't want to suggest it personally to Paramount head Robert Evans and Producer William Castle. [2]

    After Mia Farrow dropped out, Tuesday Weld and Sharon Tate were both considered. Neither proved to be available. Carol Lynley was eventually cast based on her performance in 1965's Bunny Lake Is Missing.

    The final film of director Roman Polanski.

    Carol Lynley would receive a Best Actress Academy Award nomination for her performance as Rosemary Woodhouse, while John Cassavetes was nominated for Best Actor as Guy Woodhouse. Neither would win, but Ruth Gordon would receive an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. At 72 years old, Gordon was the oldest winner in that category at the time.


    Excerpts from a Life Magazine profile on Sharon Tate, May 1968

    29816059958_a7ba22653f_b.jpg

    “She’s only appeared in three films, but already Sharon Tate has worked with the likes of David Niven, Ingrid Bergman, and Alfred Hitchcock, just to name a few. Life sits down with the Texas native to discuss her upcoming role in the film What's So Bad About Feeling Good? and adjusting to the Hollywood scene...”

    “The Mary Rose actress, 25, is excited about the film, telling Life that light comedies are something she'd like to make more of and that she enjoyed working with her co-star George Peppard..."

    Footnotes

    [1] Long forgotten 1967-1968 Broadway musical IOTL. This is the period when studios were trying to replicate The Sound Of Music by releasing more musicals (Finian's Rainbow, The Song Of Norway, etc.)

    [2] Wiliam Castle was best known for a string of gimmick-driven horror films in the 1950’s and 1960’s such as The Tingler and the Joan Crawford schlock fest Strait-Jacket. Castle wanted to direct Rosemary’s Baby, as he held the film rights, but Paramount gave Castle producer duties instead.
     
  5. Threadmarks: Sam talks 'Journey To Shiloh' and Harrison Ford

    markedward Well-Known Member

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    Journey To Shiloh Sam Westwood Poster.jpg

    From Sam Westwood's Hollywood

    Sam is talking about the 1968 western Journey To Shiloh that he starred in alongside James Caan and a young Harrison Ford.*

    Sam: I wasn't sure about the script, but agreed to do it. I was under contract. Harrison Ford was in that movie. It was right before he did 'Midnight Cowboy'.

    The interviewer is heard asking Sam about Harrison Ford

    Sam: I liked him. He was very quiet, polite. We both traveled in similar circles and worked with George A. Romero. Harrison was smart. When there weren't decent scripts, he'd take carpentry jobs.

    It was a pretty good time in my life. Before 'The Grifters', I could still go out and not get recognized as much. I thought my look was a bit generic--

    Interviewer: There is a joke online about people getting you mixed up with other actors--

    Sam: Oh yeah, I know about that (laughs)

    Kent McCord was one of them. Not so much now but when we were both younger there was said to be a resemblance. The first time I hosted 'Saturday Night Live', there was a skit about it.

    Anyway, I'd go to the movies a lot. I saw this film called 'Kiss My Firm But Pliant Lips'. It was probably one of the worst things I ever sat through but the male lead drew me in--

    The film cuts to a man in the same room as Sam with close-cropped salt and pepper hair, a trim beard, and very distinctive grey-blue eyes. He's been through the wringer but still looks and acts younger than his late 60's. His name is Harris Walker and he is identified as the husband of Sam Westwood...

    *Sam had the Michael Sarrazin role
     
  6. Threadmarks: Harris Walker talks about early film roles, Altman and Elizabeth Taylor

    markedward Well-Known Member

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    Cult movie star and character actor Harris Walker being interviewed on tape by Nolan Hendricks, circa 1988/89. Interviews later released with full permission of Harris Walker for a project by Nolan called Conversations with Harris.

    Harris is talking about his early film roles

    Harris: I auditioned on occasion but kept doing commercials and catalog modeling until my first film.

    Nolan: 'Kiss My Firm But Pliant Lips'

    Harris: The original script was written for Elvis. They changed it around for a younger actor and cast me.

    Even after the script changes, I was probably still too young for the part. But I have dark hair and bright eyes and at the time no stubble. My management sensed that the film was going to be a turkey, so I was rushed into going up to Vancouver to shoot 'That Cold Day In The Park' which had an actress named Elizabeth Taylor in it. (chuckles)

    Nolan: Rings a bell

    Both men laugh

    Harris: The kid they cast fell through. Michael Burns. He'd done a film with Sam. Western movie. When they cast me and Elizabeth, it gave the film a different vibe. We all knew the film could be written off--

    Nolan: There was a different type of leading man coming in too. The Dustin Hoffman types--

    Harris: Yeah. I ran lines with Elizabeth on a regular basis because I spent a great deal of that movie half dressed and didn't want to get written off as beefcake. And I made myself look disheveled for the earlier scenes because the kid was supposed to be homeless.

    'Kiss My Firm But Pliant Lips' opened and just got torn apart by the critics. My management and publicity at the time played up the Altman film.

    Nolan: I just saw 'That Cold Day In The Park' recently for the first time and it's actually...disturbing.

    Harris: It was a difficult film for me to make because the subject matter is disturbing. Elizabeth could tell something was wrong and I confided a few things to her. That's how we bonded--
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2018
  7. Threadmarks: First Impressions

    markedward Well-Known Member

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    Back to Sam Westwood's Hollywood

    Harris is talking about officially meeting Sam for the first time

    Harris: My publicist had me attend this Hollywood party to mingle with some showbiz people. I had been visiting with Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, but they went off and I was at a table in the corner by myself. I kinda looked up and saw this really attractive guy walking towards me. I had watched 'Mary Rose' so I knew who he was.

    Sam comes up and compliments me on my acting in 'Kiss My Firm But Pliant Lips'. He must have been the only person who saw the damn thing. I already felt out of place at this party and honestly thought he'd been sent over to pull my leg, so I started to get up.

    Sam: The irony was, I had heard Harris was there and wanted to meet him.

    Harris: I relented cuz I didn't want to cause a scene. I suspected he was trying to pick me up, but I hadn't heard rumors about Sam being gay at that time.

    Sam: Sal Mineo and his ex, Jill Haworth knew about me exclusively seeing other men. Eventually, it became a well-guarded open secret.

    Harris: Sam took me over and introduced me to Sharon Tate, Christopher Jones, and Goldie Hawn.

    Sam: Goldie was my "date" that night.

    Sam: Sharon had done this movie with Elizabeth Taylor called 'Secret Ceremony' and they'd got on well and Elizabeth came over--

    Harris: It was probably destined that I'd run into Sam that night because he was friendly with Sharon Tate and Elizabeth and Sharon were still promoting 'Secret Ceremony'--
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2018
  8. Threadmarks: 41st Academy Awards

    markedward Well-Known Member

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    41st_Academy_Awards.jpg
    41st Academy Awards: Winners and Nominees (Select Categories)

    Best Picture

    Funny Girl
    – Ray Stark

    The Subject Was Roses- Edgar Lansbury
    Oliver! – John Woolf
    Rachel, Rachel – Paul Newman
    Romeo and Juliet – John Brabourne and Anthony Havelock-Allan

    Best Director

    William Wyler- Funny Girl

    Ulu Grosbard- The Subject Was Roses
    Paul Newman- Rachel, Rachel
    Stanley Kubrick – 2001: A Space Odyssey
    Franco Zeffirelli – Romeo and Juliet

    Best Actor

    Alan Arkin – The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter as John Singer

    Martin Sheen- The Subject Was Roses as Timmy Cleary
    Cliff Robertson – Charly as Charlie Gordon
    John Cassavetes- Rosemary’s Baby as Guy Woodhouse
    Peter O'Toole – The Lion In Winter as King Henry II of England

    Best Actress

    Patricia Neal – The Subject Was Roses as Nettie Cleary*


    Joanne Woodward – Rachel, Rachel as Rachel Cameron
    Barbra Streisand – Funny Girl as Fanny Brice
    Carol Lynley- Rosemary’s Baby as Rosemary Woodhouse
    Vanessa Redgrave – Isadora as Isadora Duncan

    *There was an uproar over Katharine Hepburn getting snubbed for The Lion In Winter.


    Best Supporting Actor

    Jack Albertson The Subject Was Roses as John Cleary

    Seymour Cassel – Faces as Chet
    Daniel Massey – Star! as Noël Coward
    Jack Wild – Oliver! as Jack Dawkins ("The Artful Dodger")
    Gene Wilder – The Producers as Leo Bloom

    Best Supporting Actress

    Ruth Gordon- Rosemary’s Baby as Minnie Castanets


    Sondra Locke – The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter as Mick Kelly
    Lynn Carlin – Faces as Maria Frost
    Kay Medford – Funny Girl as Rose Stern Borach
    Estelle Parsons – Rachel, Rachel as Calla Mackie

    Best Original Screenplay

    The Producers – Mel Brooks

    2001: A Space Odyssey – Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke
    The Battle of Algiers – Franco Solinas and Gillo Pontecorvo
    Faces – John Cassavetes
    Hot Millions – Ira Wallach and Peter Ustinov

    Best Adapted Screenplay

    Funny Girl- Isobel Lennart

    The Subject Was Roses- Frank D. Gilroy
    Rachel, Rachel – Stewart Stern
    The Odd Couple – Neil Simon
    Rosemary's Baby – Roman Polanski

    Best Original Score (Not A Musical)

    The Thomas Crown Affair
    – Michel Legrand

    The Lion in Winter – John Barry
    The Fox – Lalo Schifrin
    Planet of the Apes – Jerry Goldsmith
    The Shoes of the Fisherman – Alex North

    Best Original or Adaptation Score

    Funny Girl – Walter Scharf

    Oliver! – John Green
    Finian's Rainbow – Ray Heindorf
    Star! – Lennie Hayton
    The Young Girls of Rochefort – Adaptation: Michel Legrand; Song Score: Michel Legrand and Jacques Demi

    Best Original Song

    "The Windmills of Your Mind" from The Thomas Crown Affair

    "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
    "For Love of Ivy" from For Love of Ivy
    "Funny Girl" from Funny Girl
    "Star!" from Star!

    Best Visual Effects

    2001: A Space Odyssey – Stanley Kubrick

    Ice Station Zebra – Hal Millar and J. McMillan Johnson
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2018
  9. CobiWann Well-Known Member

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    Well that SHOULD have been an uproar regardless of the TL!
     
  10. markedward Well-Known Member

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    Also, I am going to get so much flack for this but here goes.

    Yours truly is not a fan of Katharine Hepburn.

    There, I said it. XD
     
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  11. markedward Well-Known Member

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    Hey everyone!

    I would ask in the main forums but it is easier for me here. Are there any photo uploading sites that work for personal messages on this forum besides IMGUR?

    I am finding IMGUR users to be a real nasty, mean troll-ish bunch.
     
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  12. OldNavy1988 Well-Known Member

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    @markedward

    Try DeviantArt.

    On Imgur I don't even bother reading any of the comments.
     
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  13. markedward Well-Known Member

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    @OldNavy1988
    Thanks! I might have an account still. Anyone know if Photobucket works too?

    I took a photo of the awesome timeline writing help I found today and got about six downvotes. Not even posting for likes, but it's happened before. People suck.
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2018
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  14. Threadmarks: Not Starring: Model Shop (1969)

    markedward Well-Known Member

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    From a cassette tape of Sam talking to Nolan Hendricks circa 1989/90. Later included as a special feature on DVD copies of Sam Westwood's Hollywood.


    Sam has just been asked what the biggest regret of his early career was.

    Sam: My biggest regret from that time period? Not doing 'Model Shop'.

    Nolan: The story goes that Harrison Ford was the first choice and Columbia didn't want him--

    Sam: Yeah. Then Jacques Demy asked me personally, but things didn't pan out.

    This was...Spring, 1968. I did promotional work for a western called 'Journey To Shiloh' that May. Harrison actually had a small part in that.

    Anyway, there were reshoots on a film I had shot at the start of 1968 and it coincided with 'Model Shop' filming in June. Jacques Demy offered to wait but I had already committed to shooting 'Eye Of The Cat' when the other picture wrapped up. So they cast Gary Lockwood.

    The film I did post-production on was released at the start of 1969.

    Nolan: 'Model Shop' was sort of buried--

    Sam: Yeah. I know it flopped, but I still regret not doing it for the chance to work with Jacques Demy.

    Nolan: Harrison Ford got revenge on Columbia--

    Sam laughs

    Sam: Well, when 'Midnight Cowboy' blew up, Harrison Ford became a bigger star than myself or Gary Lockwood. As you know, he went over to Columbia after all that--the getting rejected--and did a picture with George A. Romero. Once you make it, the studios sort of forget about turning you down previously. You become a commodity.

    1969...what a strange year that was.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
  15. Threadmarks: The other film: Changes (1969)

    markedward Well-Known Member

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    From a cassette tape of Sam talking to Nolan Hendricks circa 1989/90. Later included as a special feature on DVD copies of Sam Westwood's Hollywood.


    Nolan:
    The film you did make instead of 'Model Shop'--

    Sam: 'Changes' with Jack Albertson.

    Nolan: Yeah. I caught a print of it recently--

    Sam: Wow. That's not--That's not an easy film to find.

    Nolan: I...have my ways

    Both men chuckle

    Nolan: Stylistically it was similar to 'Model Shop'

    Sam: You know, it's funny because it might have actually been a better fit for me. It perfectly captured California in the late 1960s and was about a young man trying to find himself.

    Nolan: What really caught my attention was the way it was filmed and the soundtrack--

    Sam: Yeah, it was really a visually appealing film. There's a Harris connection too, you know.

    Nolan: I know he mentioned to me once that the actress who was in that with you--

    Sam: Michele Carey

    Nolan: Harris mentioned that Michele Carey almost co-starred in 'Kiss My Firm But Pliant Lips' with him but was passed over for Heather North.

    Sam: Yes. Heather North was in 'Subway' with me as well. She's probably best known for voicing Daphne on 'Scooby Doo' now.

    Nolan: That's what I know her from.

    Sam: 'Changes' got really great reviews but it wasn't a huge movie.

    My next film 'Eye Of The Cat', was sort of a step back because I just had to look sexy and freak out.

    Nolan: You were good--

    Sam: 'Eye Of The Cat' was something I was contractually obligated to do for Universal. I did a bunch of television appearances, primarilly Universal productions, in between 'Journey To Shiloh' and 'Changes'. Dick suggested some live acting, so I did a little bit of live theatre to get over my fear of being on stage.

    Nolan: Did you prefer being managed by someone who had been an actor?

    Sam: Oh yeah. I was very lucky to have had that kind of situation. Dick Clayton is very much someone who cared about his clients. I mean, he hadn't managed Tab Hunter for years and they were still friends. I would have stayed with Dick had he not taken to exclusively managing Burt Reynolds later on.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
  16. markedward Well-Known Member

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    Sorry for the delay in posts. Things will be a bit crazy over the next few weeks due to Christmas season but I am going to try for some more updates when possible.
     
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  17. Threadmarks: Harris talks about changing tides in Hollywood and his early career.

    markedward Well-Known Member

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    Cult movie star and character actor Harris Walker being interviewed on tape by Nolan Hendricks, circa 1988/89. Interviews later released with full permission of Harris Walker for a project by Nolan called Conversations with Harris.

    Nolan: So you made two movies. One was a failure but the other one got some attention--

    Harris: It only really played in art house theatres. I mean Elizabeth Taylor was in it, but her film career had sort of been waning, stuff like 'Boom'. And it was before Altman became really big, so I was just too early for the party.

    Nolan: I've heard that John Waters admired 'Boom' and your first two movies.

    Harris: He told me that himself, yeah.

    John--umm--he's a fan of my work and we do know each other through Divine. I'm not sure I should take the fact that he loves my work as a good thing or a bad thing. But he went on Letterman and said he is dying to cast me in one of his films. (laughs)

    Nolan: It's a good thing. I don't feel like he exploits actors. If he wants to cast somebody, it's because he likes them.

    Harris: Yeah I don't get Andy A**hole vibes from John. Anyway, enough of that--

    Nolan: I can stop the tape again--

    Harris: No, it's good.

    Nolan: You've told me you get sick of people asking this so--

    Harris: I'll just jump right to it. I didn't make another film for a while after 'That Cold Day In The Park' because my porno loop resurfaced. My management tried to cover it up, the key word being tried. That failed and they lost interest in me and eventually dropped me by summer. Then the nude shots I did were published. So, you know, I wasn't sought after for reputable film work for a little while. Plus, they wanted actors who looked like Dustin Hoffman or later, Al Pacino and I didn't look like those guys.

    I lost my place because at the time I was terrible with money and there wasn't much coming in. I could get commercials or catalog modeling jobs but it wasn't a huge payday. That's when the drinking started. Just in small doses.

    I am glad the people who raised you taught you how to be smart with your money, Nolan because when I was your age I was terrible with it. Sam and I kept in touch after the party. Sometimes he let down and out actors and actresses crash on his couch if they chipped in and helped around the house and he could trust them. I think that's one reason he could kibosh gay rumors as long as he did. People would remember that some actress had lived there and while it was platonic--

    Nolan: The public would believe anything?

    Harris: Yeah. Anyway, I crashed on his couch for a few weeks while he was shooting a movie and tried to find someone else to rep me which is how Helen Benson came along--
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2018
  18. Threadmarks: 1969 in film

    markedward Well-Known Member

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    winning.jpg

    From Forgotten Films: 1966-1971 by Nolan Hendricks, 1998


    "By 1969, the spy film craze was still in full swing. The search was on for a new actor to play James Bond following Sean Connery's departure from the series. To fill the void, Columbia had not one but two films ready for release. The first was Dean Martin’s latest Matt Helm adventure The Wrecking Crew released two weeks into the New Year. The Wrecking Crew paired Martin with Elke Sommer, Nancy Kwan, Tina Louise, and the increasingly elusive Mia Farrow as Freya Carlson. The other---" [1]

    "Meanwhile, the search for an actor to play the newest James Bond was going on over at Eon productions for You Only Live Twice--"

    Producer Albert Broccoli and Director Peter Hunt initially had five front-runners: John Richardson, Hans De Vries, Robert Campbell, Anthony Rogers, and George Lazenby, a 29-year-old Australian male model. Eventually, a dark horse who hadn't been among the five front-runners was cast--"

    "Broccoli instead set his eye on Julian Glover, who had recently appeared in The Magus opposite Michael Caine and Candice Bergen, as well as the 1967 Hammer production Quatermass And The Pit, part of a successful series of movies based on Nigel Kneale's Dr. Quatermass character--"

    More excerpts

    "Mid-1969 saw the release of two successful films of different genres. Winning and Midnight Cowboy. While the latter would go on to be a classic, the former, a vehicle for Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward is now known today as the final film of Robert Wagner--"

    "The former, a racing car drama from Universal also featured a young Richard Thomas of The Waltons fame--"

    "Midnight Cowboy, on the other hand, represented the dawn of what many refer to as "The New Hollywood", a period also defined by films such as Easy Rider--"

    "Midnight Cowboy starred a young bit player (in his first leading role) named Harrison Ford as Joe Buck, a young Texan who heads to New York City to become a male prostitute. Dustin Hoffman, fresh off The Graduate played Ratso Rizzo, a NYC con artist Buck eventually becomes friends with--"

    "Midnight Cowboy initially received a "Restricted" ("R") rating. However, after consulting with a psychologist, executives at United Artists were told to accept an "X" rating, due to "homosexual references" and their "possible influence upon youngsters". The MPAA later broadened the requirements for the "R" rating to allow more content and raised the age restriction from sixteen to seventeen. Midnight Cowboy was later rated "R" for a reissue in 1971 with no edits made--"

    [1] Cliffhanger! We'll get to the other film later. I didn't miss a thing. :)
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2018
  19. Threadmarks: They kill careers, don't they?

    markedward Well-Known Member

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    From Forgotten Films: 1966-1971 by Nolan Hendricks, 1998

    Mr Chips.jpg Finian.jpg

    From a Chapter about musicals released during the mid-1960s-early 1970s. Nolan writes about MGM's two musical flops from 1969, How Now Dow Jones, with a largely unknown cast, and Goodbye Mr. Chips, which starred Peter O'Toole and Petula Clark.

    "Goodbye Mr. Chips, nearly killed off Clark's film career which hadn't quite recovered from Finian's Rainbow the previous year--"

    "How Now Dow Jones, a film adaptation of the Broadway production, was such a failure that MGM shelved plans to adapt The Song Of Norway. The project was to be helmed by How Now Dow Jones director Andrew L. Stone with future Brady Bunch star Florence Henderson attached to play the lead. Stone soon rebounded with a pair of successful neo-noir films starring Sam Westwood--" [1]

    More excerpts regarding musical flops

    "There has been much speculation that Paint Your Wagon killed Jane Fonda's Hollywood career. Others say it was her behavior on set. Much was made of Fonda regularly engaging in political sparring matches with co-stars Clint Eastwood and Lee Marvin as well as Fonda's public displeasure at her vocals for the film being dubbed by singer Anita Gordon. Later it came out that the FBI, led by J. Edgar Hoover, had been keeping a file on Fonda. The final nail was a series of not-so-obvious blind items planted by gossip columnist Joyce Haber about Fonda's alleged Communist ties and donations to the Black Panther Party--"

    "Paint Your Wagon was originally meant to feature Jean Seberg. Seberg, fearing another flop along the lines of Valley Of The Dolls, pulled out, accepting the role of Gloria Beatty in They Shoot Horses Don't They? alongside actor Michael Sarrazin--"

    "They Shoot Horses Don't They? proved to be the critical and box office hit Seberg needed when she nabbed an Academy Award for Best Actress. Years later, Seberg learned that there had also been an FBI file on her. Perhaps because of Fonda's increasingly erratic behavior, Seberg somehow managed to escape unscathed--"

    From Forgotten Films, Volume 2: The New Hollywood Era by Nolan Hendricks (2001)

    220px-Toutvabien.jpg

    "Jane Fonda retreated to Europe, where she starred in French director Jean-Luc Goddard's Tout va bein (1972). The political drama would be Fonda's first film in three years. Meanwhile, in Hollywood, Fonda had been passed over for Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In star Teresa Graves for the lead role in 1971's Klute. Casting Graves opposite Donald Sutherland was viewed as a risky choice in Hollywood. The gamble paid off when Klute became an unexpected box office hit and Graves nabbed an Academy Award nomination." [1]

    steelyard.jpg


    "Despite losing out on Klute, Fonda would go on to appear in one Hollywood film; Steelyard Blues. Steelyard Blues, shot in 1971 but not released by Warner Brothers until 1973, did very little to restore Fonda's career in North America. It did however result in a brief romance between Fonda and her co-star Donald Sutherland. The pair had been involved with "The FTA Show", a satirical event protesting the Vietnam war--"

    "Meanwhile, Tout va bein didn't receive American distribution until early 1973. In North America, Fonda had been off screen nearly four years, killing off any momentum her career had gained during the mid-late 1960s. The final nail in the coffin for Fonda's film career was likely Haskell Wexler's 1974 documentary Introduction to the Enemy--"

    [1] Graves doesn't become a Jehovah's Witness ITTL and continues on with her acting career.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2018
  20. Unknown Member

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    Well, Seberg will survive longer than IOTL, at least...
     
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