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Belle Bennett (1891-1932)

  1. Constance Bennett, The Easiest Way, 1930.      The censorious Hays Office tried to downplay its banning any film of this poor girl winning riches - on her back. Yet that it precisely what Hays did for three years after killing Henry King’s plan to direct Belle opposite   Conrad Veidt as her sugar-daddy, at First National in 1927. The Hays war continued – filming the Broadway play “would not be good for the industry” - against six later producers, including David O Selznick… and Columbia’s Harry Cohn, who was “incensed” when MGM was permitted to make what he saw as his movie. Even then, Hays felt Metro’s version, with another Bennett (no kin), was more dangerous than the play itself - because the horizontal Laura wasn’t punished enough! When it reached Alberta, the film was in such a censor-slashed it seemed as if reels were being shown out of order.  NB:  Belle is not one of Constance’s sisters; they were Barbara and Joan.




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