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Judy Holliday (1922-1965)

  1. Marilyn Monroe, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, 1953.    Hollywood fresh and  Oscared, Judy refused to be Lorelei Lee.  That, she insisted, was Carol  Channing's role - and nobody else's.  “I once fought for the privilege of doing the movie counterpart of an original  stage role I created [Billie Dawn in Born Yesterday]. Now the shoe is on the other foot and I still  haven't changed my  mind about  that  principle.”  (Marilyn had tested for Born Yesterday, and the vulgarian Columbia czar Harry Cohn didn’t even  bother viewing it. He preferred auditioning her - on her knees in in  his office).   
  2. Betty Garrett, My Sister Eileen, 1955.    Broadway’s 1953 hit, Wonderful Town, was based on the 1942 Columbia movie, My Sister Eileen. When Columbia decided to film the musical version, the rights were too wrong. A simple Eileen re-make was ordered instead - for Holliday in Rosalind Russell’s old role. But…  Holliday was on Broadway in Bells Are Ringing. Why not Russell? She was Broadway’s Auntie Mame! And so the ex-MGMarvel, Betty Garrett, won her first film in five years since On The Town - due to just being the wife of McCarthyism victim, Larry Parks! (Judy was also accused of Communist affiliations. Being cleared by the Senate Internal Security Committee  did not  help her ruined career). During Judy’s vacation, Betty tookl over her New York role and and Roz Russell made Wonderful Town for TV (ie CBS could afford what Columbia wouldn’t!).
  3. Doris Day,  The Thrill of It All , 1962.     Comedy writers  Carl Reiner and Larry Gelbart created the romcom for Judy  but she was undergoing treatment for cancer.  Doris was not the same thing at all.
  4. Rosalind Russell, Gypsy, 1962.   Head Brother Jack Warner refused Holliday, Judy Garland and Ethel Merman for Gypsy Rose Lee’s showbiz mama. Most of Russell’s singing had to be dubbed. By Lisa Kirk.

 





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