Groucho Marx

  1. Ethel Merman,  It’s A Mad Mad Mad Mad World, 1963.      No farce is complete without a mother-in-law, except it had originally been a father-in-law…  Groucho knew a stinker when he read one.
  2. Peter Sellers, What’s New Pussycat? 1964.     “I can’t take more than fifteen minutes of your sex life at one time.” Written by Woody for Groucho, the shrink Fritz Fassbender became Sellers’ big test – to prove he was back among the living after his death(s) in Hollywood while shooting and before having to quit Billy Wilder’s Kiss Me, Stupid. Wilder was one one of th early writers of producer Charles K Feldman’s other pet project, Casino Royale, 1966, for which he had already started courting Sellers…
  3. Fanfulla, Fellini Satyricon, Italy-France, 1968.  Fellini desired some of his most cherished Hollywood stars in his ancient Rome extravaganza.  Durante, Van Heflin (surprisingly), Boris Karloff, Groucho Marx and Mae West headed his dream-wish list but they all felt too old for galivanting around Nero’s licentious  Lazio.  Bonnie and Clyde’sdriver, Michael J Pollard, was much  younger, of course, but  he still stayed away. .(Margaret Mitchell always said Groucho was her first choice to play Rhett Butler!!!!)
  4. Jack Kruschen, The Apartment, 1959.   Billy Wilder disagreed with Paramount’s idea of Groucho as Dr Dreyfuss, believing that the noise of passion coming through his walls is from neighbour Jack Lemmon enjoying the bachelor life – “a regular King Farouk,” says Mrs D.  Truth is poor Lemmon is out, pacing the streets, awaiting the right hour to return home,  after his boss, Fred MacMurrauy, has finished borrowing the place for schtupping Shirley MacLaine’s unforgettable Fran Kubelik.  Kruschen won his sole Oscar nomination.



 Birth year: 1890Death year: 1977Other name: Casting Calls:  4