The feud between Bette Davis and Joan Crawford is one of the most famous in Hollywood history. The two actresses were said to have had a long and bitter professional and personal rivalry. According to the website, “Queens of Vintage” the famous spat began over a little known actor named Franchot Tone. Mr. Tone starred opposite Ms. Davis in the film Dangerous and the two soon began dating. Ms. Crawford got an eyeful of the comely Mr. Tone and invited him to dinner where she allegedly greeted him wearing nothing but a smile. Her clothes may have been off, but the war between the two women was on.
From now until August 28 the NW Film Society will present, “Bette and Joan” a retrospective of the actresses’ best films. The films will be shown at the Portland Art Museum and they include both of the women’s most famous roles as well as a few of their hidden treasures. Although all of the films are worth seeing, there are five films that no one should miss.
Don’t Miss The Bette And Joan Film Festival!
Saturday, July 23
Bette Davis was nominated for an Oscar for her role as a freewheeling socialite whose life is interrupted when she is diagnosed with old movie disease. She spends the movie living life to its fullest and goes through every emotion imaginable in the process.
As is common with old movie disease, Ms. Davis gets more beautiful and sympathetic as her condition progresses. Her understanding doctor and fiancée is played by George Brent.
Sunday, July 24
No matter if it’s reality television, a classic movie or a political scandal everyone loves a good cat fight. George Cukor directs this tale of Mary, a simple minded and sweet trophy wife whose life is turned upside down when her husband leaves her for a sexy manicurist played by Joan Crawford.
Mary spends the better part of the movie attempting to win back her husband. Her friends find her drama quite amusing and they all weigh in on how they think Mary should get back at the toenail trimming tramp. The screenplay was written by Clair Boothe Luce and contains some of the most daring and witty dialog in film history.
See Bette And Joan In Their Best Movies!
Saturday, August 6
Bette Davis plays a woman whose domineering mother causes her to end up in the laughing hospital. Her psychiatrist thinks that a little sea air will get rid of her demons and he sends her on a long sea cruise. In a twist that would put The Love Boat to shame she meets a mysterious man played by Paul Henreid and the two have a scandalous affair. The role won yet another Oscar nomination for the prolific and skilled Ms. Davis.
Sunday, August 7th
This melodrama brought Joan Crawford her first starring role as a doormat of a woman who will do absolutely anything for her spoiled daughter, Veda played by Ann Blyth. After divorcing her abusive and philandering husband Mildred takes up with Beragon, a bad boy who ends up cheating on her. When she discovers him with his mistress it leads to one of the most dramatic endings ever seen on screen.
Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?
Sunday, August 28
This camp classic brought Ms. Davis and Ms. Crawford together on screen. Ms. Davis plays former child star, Baby Jane Hudson who is forced to take care of her actress sister Blanche (Crawford) after Blanche has been in a horrible accident. Baby Jane expresses her jealousy and resentment by serving her sister, a pet parrot for lunch and scratching up the actresses headshots.
Tickets to all the films are $9.00 for adults, $8.00 for seniors and students and $6.00 for children.
Eliza Gale – PortlandMetroLive.com Contributor
Eliza Gale began her blogging career interviewing aspiring actors and industry professionals on a Los Angeles based website called Curvewire. She started www.elizagalesintervviews in 2012 and has interviewed over three hundred people about their jobs and businesses since then. She has contributed many interviews to 360drinks.com, which is a Portland based happy-hour website. She also writes for Examiner.com and AXS.com.