Madeleine Carroll

  1. Loretta Young, Call of the Wild, 1934.  Fox production chief Darryl Zanuck changed his Jack London hero from Fredric March to Clark Gable – and his lady from Carroll to Young.  The title got to Young… Loretta and Gable had a typical on-location-affair  – years later, she called it rape.  It resulted in their illegitimate daughter, Judy Lewis. To avoid any scandal destroying her Goody Two Shoes image, Young always claimed that during some time off work she had adopted a baby.  Lewis revealed all in her 1994 memoir, Uncommon Knowledge. Except with one look at her, all Hollywood knew who Daddy was.  
  2. Merle Oberon, The Dark Angel, 1935.   For his re-make of “the greatest role ever written for a girl,” producer Samuel Goldwyn lost the scramble for Madeleine and fell for Oberon – ex-Estelle Merle O’Brien Thompson. She loved the original which made  Goldwyn’s greatest silent star Vilma Banky and cabled her lover and mentor, Alexander Korda: “I would die if Carroll got the part.”  
  3. Joan Fontaine, Gunga Din, 1939.   Her sergeants would have been Ronald Colman, Robert Donat and (the only one to stay on parade) Victor McLaglen.
  4. Alice Faye, That Night In Rio, 1940.   During  a September 1940 meeting about what was then A Latin from Manhattan, head Fox Darryl F Zanuck, suggested Carroll, Joan Bennett, Paulette Goddard or Rosalind Russell for Baroness  Cecilia Duarte – before going with the contracted Faye in her sixth and final teaming with Don Ameche.  (She called her studio: Penitentiary Fox).
  5. Barbara Stanwyck, The Lady Eve, 1940.     For his deliciously sexy comedy, director Preston Sturges went through various combos for the con-woman chasing an heir to zillions… In 1938, the rascally gal was Claudette Colbert. In July, the couple was Joel McCrea and Madeleine Carrol, then Ray Milland and Paulette Goddard. By August, Carroll and Fred MacMurray. In September, Fox loaned Henry Fonda to join Goddard – and they wound up as Fonda and Stanwyck… at her wicked best. And then Sturges claimed he wrote it for her. Oh really!
  6. Paulette Goddard, The Lady Has Plans, 1941. Two of the high Cs on the A List – the English Carroll and French Claudette Colbert – were in the frame for the cub reporter on the Lisbon trail of stolen top secret WWII plans. Goddard and her grumpy boss, Ray Milland, were first teamed that year in CB DeMille’s Reap the Wild Wind.
  7.  Paulette Goddard, The Forest Rangers, 1941. In the middle of huntiung an arsonist, a Forest Ranger finds time to fight off a butch lumber mill owner, marry a rich beauty and still be chased by miss Butch. The original trio of Sterling Hayden, Paulette Goddard and Carroll… turned into Fred MacMurray, Susan Hayward… and Goddard – who never forgot the film’s song, I’ve Got Spurs That Jingle, Jangle, Jingle. She whistled it in her very next gig that year, The Crystal Ball.

 Birth year: 1906Death year: 1987Other name: Casting Calls:  7