Payday Loans
Ellen Burstyn

  1. Jean Seberg, Saint Joan, 1957.  Although a trifle old at 25for the 19-year-old Maid of Orleans, the tyrannical producer-director Otto Preminger was intrigued by the Broadway debutante. She made her first movie in 1964 after four years of (24) TV roles.  Preminger also considered such unlikely Joans as Ursula Andress, Julie Andrews, Anne Bancroft, Claire Bloom, Carol Burnett, Joan Collins, Angie Dickinson, Sophia Loren, Shirley MacLaine, Mary Tyler Moore, Kim Novak (from Otto’sMan With The Golden Arm, 1955) ,Debbie Reynolds, Maggie Smith, Liz Taylor and…Mamie Van Doren!
  2. Karen Black, Five Easy Pieces, 1970.      Among the (very) few seen for Rayette.
  3. Ann-Margret, Carnal Knowledge, 1970.  When Jules Feiffer sent his new Play to Mike Nichols, the stage and screen director immediately knew three details. 1. It was a film. 2. For Jack Nicholson. 3. But not his Easy Rider co-star, Karen Black. (They mutually agreed she  that she didn’t have the right figure). Feiffer didn’t think Jack matched his “young Jewish misogynist." “Trust me,” said Nichols, “he’s going to be our most important actor since Brando.” That’s when Jules realised he “:an write ‘em, but can’t cast ‘em.”  Nichols took his time, seeing Ellen Burstyn, Dyan Cannon, Jane Fonda, Raquel Welch, Natalie Wood - before remembering Ann-Margret in Kitten With A Whip, 1964.

  4. Eileen Brennan, The Last Picture Show, 1971.    Cloris Leachman, The Last Picture Show, 1970.  Ellen lost an Oscar. That was her  choice, and she remembered it well…  She met with critic-turned-auteur Peter Bogdanovich. “He had me read all three roles. When I was finished, he said: You’re in this picture. Now we just have to figure out which part you’re playing.“  He saw her as Genevieve, gave her Ruth Popper. ‘No, I want to play Lois.’  And he said: “Ruth is the Oscar-winning part. And I said: ‘Yes. But I’m going through a divorce right now and I’m too unhappy and down to play a depressed character…  I want to play someone who’s hiding her problems better.”     
  5.  Eileen Brennan, The Last Picture Show, 1970.  No, said Ellen, she want to Lois.  A surprised Bogdanovich said:  “Ruth is the Oscar-winning part…”  So she explained. .  “ But I’m going through a divorce right now and I’m too unhappy and down to play a depressed character…  want to play someone who’s hiding her problems better.”   Leachman’s final scene was shot, minus any  ehearsal, in one glorious  take.  "I can do better," she said.  “No, you can’t,” said Peter. “ You just won the Oscar." And she had.

  6. Ann-Margret, The Train Robbers, 1973.    How far they had fallen intwo years... From Mike Nichols to John Wayne!  Having got to know each other other when the New Yorker  visited Howard Hawks’ El Dorado set in Old Tuscon, 1965, John Wayne asked Peter Bogdanovich to direct this average oater- and offered his Last Picture Show star the female lead.  They both passed.   Said Peter to Duke: “You gotta do mine first.”
  7. Louise Fletcher, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, 1975.
  8. Faye Dunway, Network, 1976.  Having worked with the world’s “greatest English-speaking actress” on Murder on the Orient Express in 1974, director Sidney Lumet wanted Vanessa as Diana Christensen, “the ratings-hungry programming executive who is prepared to do anything for better numbers,” as critic Roger Ebert put it. But the Jewish scenarist Paddy Chayefsky trashed her sympathies with the PLO:, Palestine Liberation Organisation.  "Paddy, that's blacklisting,” said Lumet, also Jewish. “Not when a Jew does it to a Gentile," retorted Paddy. Also in the Diana mix: Candice Bergen, Ellen Burstyn, Jill Clayburgh, Jane Fonda, Kay Lenz (stuck on TV’s Rich Man, Poor Man), Marsha Mason and Natalie Wood. Faye won one of the four Oscars won by the “satire” which became reality when the fictional UBS network became a fact. Fox.   And her then-hubby, photographer,  Terry O’Neillm got his classic Morning After photo!

  9. Cher, Mask, 1984.
    They came to me with this picture called Mask,” recalled director Peter Bogdanovich  in 2015.Not a very good script but it surely was an interesting story because it was a true story. And then I remembered how Dorothy  [his murdered lover, Dorothy Stratten] felt about The Elephant Man on Broadway very moved by it. After she was killed I figured it out because her beauty was as much of a source of alienation as his ugliness.  and I thought, "Well, I'll make it for her."  For Rusty, mother of the disfigured Eric Stojlz, Peter  obviously thought of Leachman and Ellen Burstyn from his 1970 Last Picture Show, Plus  Jane Fonda.  “Anybody with a name!” He then noticed Cher in the suits’ suggestions. “Interesting. I can see her [playing] a druggie and riding a motorcycle, and I can't see Jane Fonda doing it. She's too sophisticated. Cher and I didn't get along that well… She he had such a negative attitude. But she's very good in the picture. I don't think I've ever shot more close-ups - she's very good in close-ups and not that good in playing the whole scene through, because she loses the thread of it. So I shot it that way, and she should have won an Oscar.She did win on Best Actress at Cannes… and nd Bogdanovich never got over it.   “I’m sick of her mouthing off about me. I worked hard on that performance with her and she knows it... She’s excellent in it. But the studio didn’t want her, they wanted Jane Fonda. I fought for her. No one thought of Cher for the part except me.” Not so. Scenarist Anna Hamilton Phelan had  pinned a photo of the chanteuse  to the script  she handed to Bogdanovich.

  10. Anjelica Huston, Lonesome Dove, TV, 1989.    This is the project that Bogdanovich wanted Wayne to make first… John Ford took against it, told Duke not to do it. Jimmy Stewart meekly followed,  although Henry Fond stayed aboard awhile, Streets of Laredo became a book and, in turn, a (brilliant) TV mini-series.
  11. Connie Booth, American Friends, 1990.    After Anne Bancroft passed,  Ellen was seen in Paris by Michael Palin for his newest script - based on an incident in his great-grandfather’s diary. But his director, Tristam Powell, found she was more humorous, soft, attractive and vulnerable than how he saw Miss Caroline Hartley. Connie was a Monty Python and Fawlty Towers star during her 1968-1978 marriage to John Cleese.
  12. Vanessa Redgrave, Evening, 2006.    When Texan director Jonathan Caouette was in talks, Burstyn was mentioned for the lead. Finally,  Hungarian Lajos Koltal directed Redgrave. Plus Glenn Close, Meryl Streep and her daughter Mamie Gummer.  Said top critic Roger Ebert: “There are few things more depressing than a weeper that doesn’t make you weep.
  13. Meryl Streep, Evening, 2007. The original  director Jonathan  Caouette   had been talking with Ellen about playing Lila Ross. In her fifth movie, Mamie Gummer, Meryl Streep’s second born, played the younger version of her mother’s role.  Natasha Richardson did likewise for her mother Vanessa Redgrave’s role




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