Friday, June 23, 2006

Actors = cattle. (So, where's the Hitch?)

Carole Lombard died young. In 1942, when she was just 34. It was a mere one year after whe starred in Alfred Hitchcock's Mr & Mrs Smith, one of his earlier films shot in the US. (It seems he directed it on Carole's special request. He must have had high regards for her.) She was reputedly a great comedienne. She also must have had a great sense of humour - off camera. The most famous instance of it concerned Hitchcock. He was reputed to have said somewhere, no doubt in an unguarded moment, that actors were cattle. The remark had been widely quoted all over. Taking a cue from these words, Carole arranged for a troop of oxen to be let loose on the sound stage one afternoon and promptly left for home. I couldn't find any record of the mayhem that must have resulted. This leads me to wonder if the story is apocryphal. Later, however, Hitch tried to do some damage control by explaining that he had actually said actors should be treated as cattle. Game point and set to Ms Lombard.

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