Ralph Meeker

  1. Arthur  Kennedy, The Glass  Menagerie,  1950.  A  test to remember – opposite Tallulah Bankhead. “Inauspicious,” said Harry Mayer’s New York report to  Warners, August 22, 1949.  After two good days, “temperament at a minimum,” Tallulah hit  the  bottle…  “in  her  enthusiasm  for Meeker and after reiterating that this boy was going to be a great star, she constantly interfered with the direction and made it almost impossible to get the few rough feet of  film we were  so anxious to secure… If anything good shows on this [test], it will be quite miraculous.” Later films were way better, even those made in Bollywood and Iran.
  2. Mel Ferrer, Lili, 1952.   At first, MGM said the titular Leslie Caron would co-star with Meeker, Fernando Lamas, Ann Miller. They became Ferrer, Jean-Pierre Aumont, Zsa Zsa Gabor.  Playing the waif was considered a bum move move for Caron. “I heard that the whole studio laughed at me.”  MGMusical producer Arthur Freed told her: “We gotta restore you to stardom – any ideas?”  Yes, she said.  Gigi.  Aha! 
  3. Rod Steiger, Run of the Arrow, 1957.    Tanked. So did the studio. Universal bought Sam Fuller’s Western from the bankrupt RKO.


 Birth year: 1920Death year: 1988Other name: Casting Calls:  3