Anna's Tribute To Gone With The Wind


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"The whole town was against us, and there wasn't a soul in Hollywood who wished us well."
(Olivia de Havilland)

"I refuse to go out on a limb over a head-rag."
(Margaret Mitchell ending her unofficial tenure as technical adviser)

"It's really very miserable and going terribly slow. I am such a fool to have done it."
(Vivien Leigh)

"It paid well... I went through a full semester at UCLA on one day's pay."
(Butterfly McQueen)

"Terrible lot of nonsense... heaven help me if I ever read the book."
(Leslie Howard with another complaint of his.)

"One had a thumb through it [the novel] as though it were scripture and, and check out phrases of hers [Margaret Mitchell's] that would cover the situation.
(Scott Fitzgerald)

"This is one of the happiest moments of my life and I want to thank each one of you who had a part in selecting me for one of the awards. For your kindness, it has made me feel very, very humble. And I shall always hold it as a beacon for anything that I may be able to do in the future. I sencerely hope I shall always be a credit to my race, and to the motion picture industry. My heart is too full to tell you just how I feel. And may I say thank you and God bless you."
(Hattie McDaniel accepting her Best Supporting Actress Award for her wonderful portrayel as Mammy)

"I beg urge, coax, and plead with you to read the book. You will drop everything and by it."
(Kay Brown, story editor of David O. Selznick, sent this to him after she read GWTW.)

"Scarlett is going to be a difficult and thankless role. The one I'd like to play is Rhett Butler."
(Norma Shearer explained this to 'The New York Times' why she withdrew from contention for the role.)

"Oh you don't want to be in Gone With the Wind. It's going to be the biggest bust in town."
(Jack Warner said trying to dissuade Olivia de Havilland when she expressed an interest in playing Melanie.)

"At noon I think it's divine; at midnight I think it's lousy. Sometimes I think it's the greatest picture ever made. But if it's only a great picture, I'll still be satisfied."
(David O. Selznick commented on the film to reporters the night before GWTW's Hollywood press preview.)

"Yesterday I put on my Confederate uniform for the first time and looked like a fairy doorman at the Beverly Wiltshire- a fine thing at my age."
(Leslie Howard shared his feelings about playing Ashley in a letter to his family.)

"I'm quite sure that Clark Gable, Vivien Leigh, and Leslie Howard are up there somewhere right now incensed over the proceedings."
(Olivia de Havilland was angered that GWTW's network television premier would be marred by numerous commercial interruptions.)

"I hate the damn part. I'm not nearly beautiful or young enough for Ashley, and it makes me sick being fixed up to look attractive."
(Leslie Howard complains again in a letter to his daughter.)

"I was scared, when I discovered that I had been cast by the public. I felt that every reader would have a different idea as to how Rhett should be played on the screen, and I didn't see how I could please everybody."
(Clark Gable talking about why he didn't want to play Rhett Butler)

"I wanted to play Scarlett from the first time I read the book. That was in London when I was appearing in a flop play. I fell in love with the novel and I gave the rest of the cast copies of the book as opening night presents. I told them, 'If I ever go to Hollywood, it will be to play Gone With the Wind.' They all laughed and said I was crazy."
(Vivien Leigh recalled years after making the film.)

"Playing a good girl was difficult in the 30's, when the fad was to play bad girls. Actually, I think playing bad girls is a bore; I have always had more luck with good girl roles because they require more from an actress."
(Olivia de Havilland recalled)

"Clark was supposed to cry in the scene after the death of his daughter. It worried him for days before he was to do the scene. He never cried on the screen before, and it became an obsession with him. He didn't think it was masculine for a man to cry. One day he confided in me, 'Olivia, I can't do it. I'm just going to have to quit.' I talked with him and convinced him that the tears denoted strengt of character, not weakness. It turned out to be one of the most memorable scenes in the movie. Clark Always underrated himself as an actor. I think his Rhett Butler will live forever as one of the screen's classic performances."
(Olivia de Havilland recalled after talking Clark into staying)