The most important thing is to enjoy your life - to be happy - it's all that matters.

Welcome Scott O'Brien for a Q & A on Sylvia Sidney 12-17 & 12-18

Past chats with our guests.

Moderators: Sue Sue Applegate, movieman1957, moira finnie, Lzcutter

User avatar
oscotto
Posts: 44
Joined: April 30th, 2011, 9:25 pm

Re: Welcome Scott O'Brien for a Q & A on Sylvia Sidney 12-17 & 12-18

Postby oscotto » December 18th, 2016, 7:50 pm

Hi Joe - Years after leaving Hollywood behind, Sidney mentioned that her favorite film was Mary Burns, Fugitive. She sang nothing but praises for her director, William K. Howard. “I learned more about picture making, about how a film was put together, from Howard than from almost anyone. He was one of my gods. He was one of the only directors in America at the time that ‘cut’ in the camera. Fritz Lang did it and so did Hitchcock, but I think Bill Howard was brilliant."
MaryBurnscloseup.jpg
MaryBurnscloseup.jpg (142.47 KiB) Viewed 2404 times


Sylvia had great admiration for Spencer Tracy, and hoped they would re-team after they did Fury (1936). “Spencer Tracy was very special,” she admitted. “He was not only a great actor, but he listened as well. Tracy would say, ‘Acting to me is always reacting!’
Fury.jpg
Fury.jpg (74.86 KiB) Viewed 2404 times
Fury, with Tracy

Least favorite, Bogart.
“I’d known Bogart from way before, when he was a very bad ‘juvenile’ in the theater," she said in 1990. "He was a mean young man, and ended up a rather mean old man. But that was his nature.” She and Bogie had a wild confrontation in the mid-forties. She threw her cocktail glass in his face - blood everywhere.
BogSid.jpg
BogSid.jpg (101.64 KiB) Viewed 2404 times
With Bogart in When the Wagons Roll at Night
Thanks Joe, that was a fun question to answer.

User avatar
moira finnie
Administrator
Posts: 8175
Joined: April 9th, 2007, 6:34 pm
Location: Earth
Contact:

Re: Welcome Scott O'Brien for a Q & A on Sylvia Sidney 12-17 & 12-18

Postby moira finnie » December 18th, 2016, 9:26 pm

The Bogart story is one that I'd never read before reading your book, Scott--and I've tried to read everything published about this compelling icon. I won't reveal it here, but the incident between Sidney and Bogart offers insight into a dark side of the talented if troubled actor. I suspect that Bacall had some very choice words for her husband in private that night.

Did Sylvia Sidney have "a love of her life," or was that role filled by her brilliant, tragic son, Jody?

Also, Scott, before you leave, could you please tell us about your next biographical subject?
Avatar: Frank McHugh (1898-1981)

The Skeins
TCM Movie Morlocks

User avatar
oscotto
Posts: 44
Joined: April 30th, 2011, 9:25 pm

Re: Welcome Scott O'Brien for a Q & A on Sylvia Sidney 12-17 & 12-18

Postby oscotto » December 18th, 2016, 11:40 pm

moira - Thanks again for the opportunity to share my research on Sylvia. I'll give the "scoop" on the Bogie-Sidney scandal that never made the headlines.

The night of the Bogart-Sidney run-in, Sylvia's almost-third husband, Carleton Alsop, ran outside to fetch her. Bogie was bleeding profusely. When Sylvia went back into the Bogart residence, Lauren Bacall was trying to stop the bleeding as he sat atop the toilet—a gash from his temple to his ear. Bogart grimaced and yelped. Bacall fired back, “Shut up. You deserved it.” While they waited for a doctor to arrive, Bogie looked up at Sylvia and said, “You’re a great kid, Sylvia. Didn’t know you had that kinda fire.”

The love of her life? I think you hit the proverbial nail when you mention Jody. Her bond for him was unconditional. The two really connected. Of the three husbands, Sylvia admitted that Luther Adler was "the best kisser."
G8.jpg
G8.jpg (148.51 KiB) Viewed 2397 times
September 1, 1938, newlyweds Sylvia and Luther arrive in New York from London.

For my next subject my publisher and I decided on Herbert Marshall. It's been challenging and fascinating research. Again, so much rumor and hyperbole about Marshall abounds in books that have already been written. Like George Brent, Marshall preferred not to talk much about his past, or his amputation during WWI. Unlike Brent, Marshall was much more of a social animal. I've always admired Marshall's work, his mellifluous voice, and the inner compassion that exuded from his very presence. In the 1980's a female Canadian author commented on his "delicious limp"—as if it were a "turn on." Bart (as his friends called him) would have relished that comment. He had a marvelous sense of humor.

Bart Gloria WC on set of Poppy 1936.jpg
Bart Gloria WC on set of Poppy 1936.jpg (223.38 KiB) Viewed 2397 times
On the set of Poppy (1936) with Bart's mistress, Gloria Swanson, and W.C. Fields.

clore
Posts: 73
Joined: November 6th, 2011, 4:21 pm

Re: Welcome Scott O'Brien for a Q & A on Sylvia Sidney 12-17 & 12-18

Postby clore » December 19th, 2016, 12:31 am

moira finnie wrote:I hope Scott can address this one too, clore! Saw this episode of Naked City, "A Hole in the City" for the first time about 2 years ago. Sylvia was remarkable--I wonder how Robert Duvall and the actress liked working together? Have you seen "A Motherless Child" on Route 66 with Sidney? Another great turn by Sylvia.


No Moira, I haven't seen that one. I was watching Route 66 for a while on Me-TV, depending on Mr. Sandman as it was running at 3am and I didn't have a DVR yet. While I liked that the show was done on varying locations, so often if seemed as if each week the plot line was "Tod or Buzz falls for a woman who may have a mental problem."

But as with a few other actors, if I had seen Sylvia Sidney's name listed, I would have tuned in. I stayed up to see an episode with Lon Chaney, Jr and Betty Field, co-stars in OF MICE AND MEN and was disappointed that they didn't share any scenes.

clore
Posts: 73
Joined: November 6th, 2011, 4:21 pm

Re: Welcome Scott O'Brien for a Q & A on Sylvia Sidney 12-17 & 12-18

Postby clore » December 19th, 2016, 12:47 am

oscotto wrote:Clore - Very interesting details on Raft's career. I'm glad Sylvia had the opportunity to work with him and appreciate what he had to offer.

I did get to see Sidney's episode on Naked City (1961). Ed Asner was also in this. I met Asner earlier this year and asked if he had any recollections about her. He sheepishly admitted that he didn't (they had no scenes together), but readily admitted how much he admired her acting.


Asner would return to the series to play the same character. He was extraditing prisoners Robert Blake and Frank Sutton and gets seriously wounded in the process. He had a scene in the beginning shot at the East Side Airlines Terminal which has bus lines that went to the airports. In that scene as his son was a friend of mine, Larry Bleidner who would go on to become the Lay's Potato Chip kid in a series of spots with Bert Lahr.

User avatar
Sue Sue Applegate
Administrator
Posts: 3319
Joined: April 14th, 2007, 8:47 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Welcome Scott O'Brien for a Q & A on Sylvia Sidney 12-17 & 12-18

Postby Sue Sue Applegate » December 24th, 2016, 11:45 am

Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your enthusiasm for Sylvia Sidney! Please come visit from time to time. :D
Blog: http://suesueapplegate.wordpress.com/
Twitter:@suesueapplegate
TCM Message Boards: http://forums.tcm.com/index.php?/topic/ ... ue-sue-ii/
Sue Sue : https://www.facebook.com/groups/611323215621862/
Thelma Ritter: Hollywood's Favorite New Yorker, University Press of Mississippi-2018
Avatar: Ginger Rogers, The Major and The Minor

Hibi
Posts: 6
Joined: July 3rd, 2008, 1:22 pm

Re: Welcome Scott O'Brien for a Q & A on Sylvia Sidney 12-17 & 12-18

Postby Hibi » January 19th, 2017, 11:52 am

I'm sorry I missed Scott's visit. I used to get e-mail notifications, but that has stopped for some reason. Scott, if you are still around, could you talk about Sylvia's final illness? That was my only disappointment in the book. You really didnt go into that except for saying she was having chemotherapy treatments. How long was her illness?


Return to “Archived Guest Stars”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests