Saturday , March 6 2021

The rise and fall of Faye Dunaway



I think the film turned my career in such a direction that people had an irreversibly bad impression of me – and that’s damn hard to bear. I should have known better, but sometimes someone is vulnerable and doesn’t notice what they’re mixing with. It is unfortunate that the creators felt they had to make a film like this. But one cannot be ashamed of the work done. You make a decision and you have to live with the consequences Faye Dunaway told People magazine in 2016.

Mom is a star (Mara Hobel and Faye Dunaway)Source: Paramount / Intercom

The interview five years ago is one of the few occasions in which the actress has spoken at all, directed by Frank Perry Mom is a star(alternative Hungarian film titles: The most expensive mother and My dear mom). First published in his autobiography in 1997. (I’m looking for Gatsby: My life) considered that the biographical drama of the old Hollywood movie star Joan Crawford in a not very bright light made a serious break in his upward career so far, and in retrospect he wished that was the case in 1962. David and Lisa Oscar nominee for directing) Perry has so much experience that he knows when to direct an actor to a more restrained play.

Let’s point this out quickly: Dunaway’s self-criticism is exaggerated, by no means wrong with his portrayal, it actually perfectly brings out the manic, labile, egocentric, nymphomaniac, alcoholic monster for child abuse that adopted daughter Joan Crawford, Mom is a star of the same title (Mommie dearest), Best-selling biography writer published in 1978, Christina Crawford wanted to portray one of Hollywood’s biggest stars of the 1930s and 1940s.

Mom is a star (Diana Scarwid and Faye Dunaway)Source: Paramount Pictures

Without disputing the book and film’s allegations of abuse – mental and physical – that plague Joan Crawford’s memory, it is worth noting that the actress, who died in 1977, denied two of her four adopted children: Christopher and Christina Crawford, who later failed. to challenge the will of their foster mother in court. So the 1978 assassin’s memoirs might seem like revenge for a girl who went missing from an inheritance, mostly because both the book and the film end with a statement of intent after reading a will that Christina Crawford won’t let her mother have the last word this time – but according to others biographies of Joan Crawford (Fred Laurence Guiles: Joan Crawford: Last word), Christina, who was also trying to be an actress, had already started writing a biography that destroys the myths her mother died before her mother’s death, and this may have been the main reason for her exclusion from the 1976 will, which he stated “from reasons known to him ”

In any case, Christina Crawford did not achieve this by selling the film’s rights to Paramount Pictures: she stipulated in the contract that she had a say in key stock management issues, which she also sought to guarantee by doing so by the film’s second wife, David Koontz. t, who otherwise lacked any cinematic experience and whose only thing was to represent the interests of his wife. For example, for the first time, the couple immediately vetoed elected study director Franco Zeffirelli (who Championhas already collaborated with Dunaway), as the Italian master planned to portray Joan Crawford, a bully against his children, as a victim of Hollywood – an approach that was contrary to Christine Crawford’s intentions to make the worst image of her foster mother.

Mom is a star (Diana Scarwid)Source: Paramount Pictures

Instead of Zeffirelli, the one who eventually proved to be more controlled (and in 1971 DocFrank Perry, who also conducted Dunaway), sat in the director’s chair and also co-wrote the screenplay – embarrassingly making sure filmmakers can’t sue for more serious allegations, such as the fact that one of Crawford’s four adopted children in the film are just Christina and Christopher (the other two, Cindy and Cathy, were already in a hurry to refute the claims of the memoir, but also Joan Crawford’s biggest rival, Bette Davis and the actress ’first husband, Douglas Fairbanks Jr.).

The Mom is a star all of his flaws stem precisely from the fact that Perry served Christine Crawford’s rather narrow and blinded gaze on anger and pain, but in such a way that the director recalibrated the focus from girl to mother. The protagonist of the film that follows the narration of traditional biographical films is not the abused Christina, but the violent Joan Crawford, so it is even more confusing that Perry did not try to nuance the character and motivation of the actress – at least reminding the viewer he sees an extremely subjective portrait. So that’s it Mom is a star instead of opening the door to the understanding of the narcissistic man, tormented by both professional and private ups and downs, he digs his neck into the swamp of the camp, most similar to two classic Joan Crawford films, Mildred Pierce (1945) ia What happened to Baby Jane? (1962) would be a surreal parody in which psychological horror mixes with classic Hollywood glamor and in which even the deepest human feelings are transcribed with self-respect and self-deceiving theatricality.

Mom is a star (Mara Hobel and Faye Dunaway)Source: Paramount Pictures

The Mom is a star his act is like a Noir masterpiece directed by Mihály Kertész, an Oscar winner for Joan Crawford it would be the other way around – at least if we consider that a Mildred PierceThe excessive love of a mother (Crawford), who became a successful cake maker and restaurant owner, eventually breeds hatred and betrayal in her teenage daughter (Ann Blyth), while in Crawford Memorial the mother (who also became a waitress with a permanent job and pioneering age) brand) despite her love for herself and her angry nature, and the traumas she suffered because of it, Christina also talks in the funeral home about how much she loved the actress who adopted her. As for the mental and physical terror portrayed, Robert Aldrich is still an excellent Hollywood psycho-horror, The What happened to Baby Jane? it might occur to you if the wheelchair-starred movie star Joan Crawford is tormented by her ex-sister of a Hollywood child (Bette Davis).

Mildred Pierce (Ann Blyth and Joan Crawford)Source: Warner Bros.

Of course, Faye Dunaway tried to combine these classic Crawford films mostly in her portrait – while desperately trying to find the psychological depth within the narrow boundaries set by Christina Crawford.

Second Autobiography of Joan Crawford 1971 (My way of life) said that if there is anyone who can play him in a film about him, it could only be the best young talent of his time, Faye Dunaway. Crawford, of course, could have based this statement on quite a few films at the time, but the fact is that Dunaway, who has been shooting since 1967, has already attracted attention in this excellent film: Bonnie is Clyde directed, for example, by Otto Preminger Storm in the southyear (drama from 1967 was the first Glumina film), The Thomas Crown case-ben (1968, r .: Norman Jewison), a Arrangementin (1969, r .: Elia Kazan) or in Little big man-Be.

For me, Joan Crawford was the queen of cinema, the greatest American movie star everDunaway has already stated that Mildred Pierce Mom found herself at the time of the star’s announcement on the set, yet found herself in a position where she didn’t have to live up to the expectations of Joan Crawford, not the foster actress, despite film director Frank Yablans ’promise to book to shape her idol in the more nuanced way she thought that she desperately wanted to be a mother, and her conflicts with her daughter stemmed largely from their inability to understand each other’s worlds.

Bonnie and Clyde (Gene Hackman, Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway)Source: Warner Brothers

To paint a more favorable picture of the star, Dunaway herself resorted to a similar trick as Christina Crawford and asked her second husband, photographer Terry O’Neill, to join her as executive producer. Yablans recalls that decisions about producers had to be made in the hands of two husbands: while Koontz was constantly bothered that Dunaway wanted to dedicate Joan Crawford, O’Neill complained incessantly that he expected his wife to become a monster.

In fact, many crews later remembered (for example, Rutanya Alda, filmmaker and costume designer Irene Sharaff), that they couldn’t wait for the filming to end because Dunaway really acted like a monster, where he treated others with contempt and where he didn’t frku. staff lives. By his own admission, Dunaway, striving for perfect transcendence, remained stuck in the role until the end of filming – so much so that in his dreams the role haunted him as if Crawford’s spirit did not allow him to calm down.

And while Christine Crawford’s approach eventually dominates Dunaway’s portrayal, the film star of the private star she plays, often resentful as a psychopath, seems to have been played by Joan Crawford herself – shaped by the extraordinary authenticity of Joan Crawford herself. self-pity raging with horror.

For complete transcendence, Dunaway studied Joan Crawford’s films and biography for months, mastering the actor’s gesture system and vocalization to deception (the latter rushed to help Frank Sinatra), and then perfected his look with mask master Lee Harman.

Yet he had only contempt for shaping the incomparable role of film history. While Mom is a star won over audiences (a $ 5 million film at the US box office brought in $ 40 million), critics failed to rebuke not only Perry’s directing, but also the portrayal of Dunaway – a lavish transformation for which the American Film Academy would clearly win an Oscar today. Instead, the “jury” of Golden Raspberry, a Hollywood advertising expert who jokingly founded John JB Wilson in 1980 but was picked up by the press at lightning speed, believed he deserved the award for worst actress (in the worst film) for her portrayal – three other labels (The first mortal sin,, Evil lady and Great girl), and the press also used him against Dunaway, portraying him in a color like the one whose talent had evaporated, but by his violent will made life difficult for the crew members on set.

Mom is a starSource: Paramount Pictures

A torrent of hatred undermined Dunaway’s career. It would be an exaggeration to say that he would not have had good performances in significant films later: for example, as Mickey Rourke’s partner, an adaptation by Charles Bukowski Loyal guest-ben (1987, b .: Barbet Schroeder), Volker Schlöndorff The story of the maid (1990) in Margaret Atwood, Emir Kusturica Dreamers from Arizonain (1993), but even in Don Juan de Marco-ban (1995, r .: Jeremy Leven). Az Mom is a star yet it overshadowed his reputation and he felt that more and more creators identified him with the role he played there. And later, when he was no longer getting physical roles, it seemed clear that he had a sin bigger than the bottom of the stars and maximalism – the only thing Hollywood couldn’t forgive the actresses for was aging.




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