For those of you who are movie buffs when it comes to classic black and white films, and were also fans of Bette Davis or Joan Crawford, like me, I'm sure you're aware of their notorious rivalry.
Supposedly they hated each other and were said to have fought throughout their careers. However, I'm sure that hatred was overly magnified due to Hollywood gossip.
Yet I must say from watching many interviews, I could sense they didn't exactly love each other either. And I think a lot of that came from having very similar personalities; therefore they collided like two fiery meteorites. Davis and Crawford were strongly opinionated human beings who were both highly competitive and aggressive.
And I don't think it was necessarily a competition for getting the same roles because they were total opposites in how Hollywood cast them. I believe it was more of a competition for being the most famous female star at that time.
As they got older and began starring in not-so-successful films, they were both labeled "Box Office Poison." However, they made miraculous comebacks and acted in films up until their deaths.
I adored Bette Davis and Joan Crawford onscreen and thought they were very talented. In fact, I have many of their films on VHS and DVD, and continue to watch them.
But if I had to choose which one I felt was the stronger actress, it would be Joan Crawford, because I think she was more organic in her acting. Bette Davis, to me, used the same "Bette Davis mannerisms" in most of her films. Whereas, Joan was more internal and didn't rely on the same physical acting crutches over and over again.
Still, I admired and respected them both.
Today I would like to share a few of my favorite films with Bette Davis and Joan Crawford. And it was challenging to come up with just a few because I enjoy so many within their filmographies.
Take it away, Bette and Joan!
About Now, Voyager - (my favorite BD film. it is a celluloid masterpiece)
About All About Eve - (brilliant film. razor-sharp dialogue)
About Mildred Pierce - (my favorite JC film because it was such a complex role. she won an Oscar for this film)
About The Women - (the cast (all female) and costumes in this film are faaabulous!)
About Torch Song - (Joan really shows her dancing ability in this film. she also exposes so much vulnerability in this role)
Then, in 1962, Bette and Joan starred in their first film together, Whatever Happened To Baby Jane?, a psychological thriller about two aging movie star sister's who have a bitter resentment towards each other. Um...appropriate casting, hu?
I remember first seeing this movie when I was a kid and being scared shitless. This film is now a cult classic!
It was at this time that the two stars were in a feud because Davis had been nominated for Best Actress in the film, while Crawford had been overlooked.
However, Davis didn't win the Oscar that year. Nope, it went to Anne Bancroft for the movie, The Miracle Worker.
Yet it's ironic, Bancroft had asked Crawford to accept her award that night if she won because she could not attend. So, not only was Joan elated that Bette didn't win, but she was more than happy to walk up on the stage that night and ACCEPT an Oscar.
Woops! I guess Crawford did have the last word.
You GO, Joan!
Bette and Joan...I will always love you ladies!
Have a star-studded Monday everyone!
Update: I stand corrected by someone (thank you, Michael) who emailed to let me know that Anne Bancroft did not ask Joan Crawford to accept her award that night if she won. Apparently, Crawford had sent letters to the Best Actress nominees saying that in case they couldn't make the awards ceremony, she'd gladly be there to accept for them. Thus, she accepted the Oscar for Bancroft.