Thursday, January 05, 2006

Judy Garland

Judy Garland never did get over the fact that all people wanted from her was her voice.
Aljean Harmetz makes a case for that in her book,
"The Making of 'The Wizard of Oz,'" A Delta Book, 1977, page 108 - 9:
During her vaudeville childhood, Judy Garland had come to perceive herself as the undesired repository of her voice. The years at MGM would only intensify that feeling. "Mr. Mayer used to love to show his stars off,: Says his ex-secretary, Sue Taruog. "When Joan Crawford came to have lunch with him once without dressing up, he sent her home. He wanted to walk on the lot with one of his stars and have everybody say,'Isn't she gorgeous?'" MGM did indeed want Judy Garland solely for her voice. Even a glance at the other young girls who came to the studio as contract players made that obvious. Ann Rutherford. Lana Turner. Hedy Lamarr. Gloria de Haven. June Allyson. Deanna Durbin. Durbin was lost to the studio by accident in 1936 after being paired with Garland in a short film, Every Sunday, that was really a contest. Which girl should the studio keep? Which would give evidence of that magical rapport with an audience? Deanna Durbin's lean, long-legged prettiness convinced many of the executives who judged the film, although Judy's voice tilted the balance back to dead center. T the end of her life. Judy Garland would remember those early years when the wardrobe women circled her, discussing her flaws between themselves but never once speaking directly to her. "She got her revenge," says costumer designer Mary Ann Nyberg. "when I was designing for Arthur Freed, she showed me how she could stand a certain way for a fitting, and when the dress was made and brought back, the waistline would be one inch too short. She could also distend her throat and make the neckline stand out." During those first seven years, Judy Garland's sense of physical unattractiveness--and , by extension, sexual unattractiveness--became an obsession.
Miss Maven wishes that Judy could have "sic-ed" Toto on those too-too nasty people. . . .
And Maven isn't talking about a little nip on their ankles either!
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