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First of all, I would like to thank everyone for participating in my Third Annual Bette Davis Blogathon. I have yet to finish my entry and read the array of contributions received, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t announce the blogathon that Michaela from Love Letters To Old Hollywood and I are hosting together. This time dedicated to the indelible talents of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers.

Unparalleled and highly revered dancing partners who epitomized the movie musical, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers were hot commodities in Hollywood during the 1930’s. Their sizzling on-screen chemistry and their unique brand of artistry made them a delight to watch.

Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers made a total of ten films together, but after completing, The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle in 1939, both stars went their separate ways and garnered success as a solo player. Because of the joy and the endless entertainment that they have brought us during the years, Michaela and I have decided to pay tribute to them by hosting a blogathon honoring both Astaire and Rogers.

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1. This blogathon is not just restricted to the ten films that Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers made together. Bloggers are welcome to write about any film that either Astaire or Rogers appeared in, or any topic relating to either Fred or Ginger.

2. Because there are a wealth of topics available, we have decided that no duplicates are allowed. However, if someone wants to write about Top Hat or any other film, somebody else can cover the dance sequences and musical numbers in the films, but for general movie reviews, we ask that there be no duplicates. Also, I encourage people to think outside the square when it comes to topics.

3. When: The blogathon will take place between the 20th – 22nd of July. Ginger Rogers was born on July 16th, but due to various reasons, we are unable to hold the blogathon on that particular date. Please submit your articles on any of these days or before.

4. We would also like to add that we are not accepting previously published articles. All entries must be new material. Also, we don’t have a limit on how many posts you want to write, but we would prefer no more than three entries per person.

5.  To express your interest in participating in the blogathon, leave a comment on my blog or on Michaela’s blog along with the name and URL of your blog, and the subject you wish to cover, or you can always register by email at: or by contacting Michaela. For those of you who wish to register by email, please be sure to include the name and URL of your blog, and the topic you wish to cover. Once you get confirmation, please spread the word about this blogathon by advertising the event on your blog. Below are a few banners, so grab yourself one of the beautiful banners designed by Michaela, and lets celebrate all things Fred and Ginger. We look forward to seeing you all in July.

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In The Good Old Days Of Classic Hollywood: Shall We Dance ( 1937 ), Fred Astaire & Adele & TBD

Love Letters To Old Hollywood: Holiday Inn ( 1942 ) & Star of Midnight ( 1935 )

The Story Enthusiast: Romance in Manhattan ( 1935 )

Caftan Woman: Follow the Fleet ( 1936 )

Maddy Loves Her Classic Films: Top Hat ( 1935 )

Real Weegie Midget Reviews: Ghost Story ( 1981 )

Musings Of A Classic Film Addict: A top ten list of the Fred & Ginger films.

Taking Up Room: Swing Time ( 1936 ), The Barkleys of Broadway ( 1949 ) and Royal Wedding ( 1951 )

Cinema Cities: Favorite Fred & Ginger dance sequences.

The Midnight Drive-In: The Man in the Santa Claus Suit ( 1979 )

Karavansara: Funny Face ( 1957 )

Movie Rob: Monkey Business ( 1952 ), Finian’s Rainbow ( 1968 ) and Three Little Words ( 1950 )

Whimsically Classic: Astaire and Rogers’ split and their post-partnership careers.

Critica Retro: Carefree ( 1938)

The Flapper Dame: The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle ( 1939 )






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The legendary Bette Davis made her star-studded debut in this world amid a clap of thunder and a streak of lightning 110 years ago today. Twenty three years later, she arrived on Hollywood soil and was ready to conquer the world.

For the special occasion, I’m proud to present for the third consecutive year, The Annual Bette Davis Blogathon. I’m sure everybody else is just as excited as I am to be honoring Bette. She deserves all the love she receives.

Bloggers, once you have published your entry, please submit your post on the comment section below, and I’ll showcase them as soon as possible. Thank you.

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The Story Enthusiast is the first to arrive at the party with a post on Winter Meeting ( 1948 )

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The Midnight Drive-In tells us about the time Bette Davis met Walt Disney in Return From Witch Mountain and The Watcher In The Woods ( 1980 )


Caftan Woman brings to the celebrations a delightful post about Bette’s appearance on The Accomplice  episode from The Virginian ( 1962 )


I Found It At The Movies joins us with Bette’s phenomenal classic, All About Eve ( 1950 )


Wolffian Classic Movies Digest talks about one of Bette’s groundbreaking performances in Mr. Skeffington ( 1944 )


Karavansara takes us back to the days of Queen Elizabeth I with a post on The Virgin Queen ( 1955 )


Taking Up Room joins the party with a post on the delightful, The Bride Came C.O.D. ( 1941 )


What The Craggus Saw pens a tribute to Bette in The Watcher In The Woods ( 1981 )

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Vinnie H is honoring Bette with a post on Watch on the Rhine ( 1943 )


Vintage Geneive explores the film costumes worn by Bette in some of her most memorable roles.


A Shroud Of Thoughts brings to the party a post on the delightful The Man Who Came To Dinner ( 1942 )


Whimsically Classic goes back to the final chapter of Bette’s tenure at Warner Brother’s with a look at Beyond The Forest ( 1949 )


Love Letters To Old Hollywood explains why Bette is doubly brilliant in A Stolen Life ( 1946 )

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Critica Retro pays tribute to Bette in The Petrified Forest ( 1936 ) 


Real Weegie Midget Reviews examines Bette’s role in the Agatha Christie classic, Murder with Mirrors ( 1985 )


The Stop Button joins us with a post on my favorite Bette film, Dark Victory ( 1939 )


In The Vintage Kitchen brings to the party some of Bette’s recipes.


Silver Screen Classics revisits the 1937 classic, Marked Woman .

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Anybody Got A Match? writes about Bette’s powerful performance in The Star ( 1952 )


Portraits By Jenni talks about Bette’s appearance on Perry Mason .


Christina Wehner joins us with Bette’s Emmy winning performance in Strangers: The Story of a Mother and Daughter ( 1979 )


Pop Culture Reverie joins us with Bette’s second collaboration with Agatha Christie in Murder With Mirrors ( 1985 )

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The Wonderful World Of Cinema brings Charlotte Vale in Now Voyager ( 1942 ) to the party.



“As my father used to say, a reporter has to do a lot of sweating before he earns the right to perspire.”


During her successful tenure in motion pictures, Hollywood’s sweetheart, Doris Day has starred alongside some of the top ranks of the film industry, and formed memorable partnerships with Rock Hudson and James Garner, but when she joined forces with Clark Gable, audiences faced the unexpected collaboration with trepidation only to discover that both stars were about to ascend to an even higher pinnacle.

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The year was 1958. Clark Gable was in his twilight days of his career and would pass away two years later from an arterial blood clot, while Doris Day was hitting triumphant peaks after broadening her range and taking on dramatic roles in critically acclaimed productions. The last thing the movie going public expected to see was a sex driven rom-com titled Teacher’s Pet, starring the two stars.


The thought of an aging Gable pursuing Day’s character appalled most people, but surprisingly the initial scathing reactions were for nothing. The film was an immediate success, and fans of the two leading players were left campaigning for more Doris Day and Clark Gable vehicles.


The famous husband and wife writing duo, Michael and Fay Kanin were the instrumental force behind the fireworks that Doris Day and Clark Gable emanated. The Kanin’s who received an Academy Award nomination for their work in the Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn production, Woman of the Year ( 1942 ), provided the film with a screenplay that was phenomenal in character development and astute, witty and acidic in dialogue, while director George Seaton commendably controls the picture with the accelerator on full speed.



In the academic world of journalism, altercations brew and problems arise, but when James Gannon ( Clark Gable ), the newspaper editor for the Evening Chronicle collides with journalism professor, Erica Stone ( Doris Day ), perplexing dilemmas ensue.

The turbulence begins when James Gannon is invited to give a lecture at Erica Stone’s night class. Gannon who disagrees with journalism school being practical for learning the craft, rejects the offer and sends a letter of contempt to Stone, but when he is summoned to the office of his boss, he is forced to attend the class that night. Reluctantly he agrees, and upon his arrival a series of comical events take place when James Gannon masquerades as an artistically inclined student named Jim Gallagher in order to win the affections of Erica Stone.


Teacher’s Pet is an engaging tale that delves into the many obstacles that can occur in the journalism industry. When you get somebody likes James Gannon who preaches that hands on experience is the key to learning journalism, contempt and disrespect can easily be fueled from the educational beliefs of the professors who teach the subject. In Erica Stone’s case, she was not just a lecturer. She inherited her knowledge from her father who was a highly respected, Pulitzer Prize winning newspaperman for the Eureka Bulletin in his day. At first James does not willingly want to accept this fact, and this is part of the reason why he presents himself as Jim Gallagher and conjures up the story about him working for the wallpaper trade, but has pursued journalism after his reporter friend suggested that he change career paths. As time progresses however, James starts to realize that experience is the jockey, and education is the horse.


In Teacher’s Pet all cast members are given the opportunity to shine in their respective roles. Doris Day is perfectly cast as the headstrong Erica Stone, a worldly woman who exudes innate knowledge, and is not afraid to prove her expertise even when her powers are being challenged by the brash James Gannon posing as Jim Gallagher. At college, her journalism students consider her to be the pillar of strength and courage. She devotes her time to her students and provides them with enough skills to pursue a career in journalism.

“How could you give up a real newspaper job for teaching?”

“Well, that’s a very good question, Mr. Gallagher. Maybe for the same reason that occasionally a musician wants to be a conductor, he wants to hear a hundred people play music the way he hears it.”

Clark Gable on the other hand, is a scene stealer. James Gannon embodies all the ingredients of an obstinate hard-nosed city editor who commits all his energy to his career. He inhabits the belief that experience should take higher precedence over education, and that the only way to succeed in the industry is to work from the ground up. Many people have later stated that Rock Hudson would have been more suited to the role as James Gannon, but I personally feel that Clark Gable with his ruggedly charms was tailor made for the part.

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In the middle of this onerous entanglement is Gig Young who received an Academy Award nomination for his portrayal of Dr. Hugo Pine, a psychologist whose knowledge and skills supposedly encompass every chapter of an encyclopedia. For most part of the movie, Dr. Pine is the object of Gannon’s jealously. He believes that Erica is Hugo’s love interest until he discovers that they are only collaborating on a book together. Eventually Gannon meets Dr. Pine at a birthday dinner, and automatically his frustration levels flare when he sees that Dr. Pine is an insufferable wise guy who claims that he has more degrees than a thermometer.

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The entire night club scene is one of the memorable highlights of Teacher’s Pet. A large majority of people were enthused when actress, Mamie Van Doren made an appearance in what is known today as her most pivotal role as Peggy DeFore, the singer of the club who seems to be attracted to James Gannon. But for me, the main focal point of this particular scene is when Erica, James and Hugo are leaving the club to board a taxi when an intoxicated Dr. Pine passes out from all the alcohol his consumed.

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The filming of Teacher’s Pet was a monumental occasion for Doris Day, but on the home front, Doris was left emotionally distraught after hearing the news that her brother, Paul had suddenly passed away shortly before the film commenced. In the months leading up to his death, Paul had been working on publicity for the musical aspects of Arwin productions, and had recently moved to Los Angeles with his wife and children. It has been said that Day’s husband, Martin Melcher contributed a lot to his death, though others state that his prolific work schedule coupled with a baseball incident of his youth and his constant seizures played a large part in his passing.

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Exacerbating the grief and anguish that Doris was experiencing were the problems fueled from Mamie Van Doren. In her autobiography, Van Doren wrote, “I had looked forward to meeting Doris Day. A mutual friend of ours, Charlotte Hunter, a dance coach from Universal, told me what a warm, friendly person Doris was. Doris had always been one of my favorite singers, with hits like, “It’s Magic”. I had also become a fan of her movies after seeing Love Me Or Leave Me, in which she played opposite James Cagney. Nevertheless, our first meeting on the Teacher’s Pet set was far from what I expected. Doris ignored me when we were introduced and proceeded to conduct herself like a spoiled star. George Seaton and Gable had to stoically bear her tantrums and disagreeable attitude.”


According to Mamie Van Doren, Doris was the villain while Mamie played the victim, but in truth, Van Doren and her uncouth personality inflamed Day’s hostility and pretentious behavior towards her. Despite those difficulties, Doris Day’s time on the set of Teacher’s Pet was joyous and rewarding.

“Newspapers can’t compete in reporting what happened any more, but they can and should tell the public why it happened.”

Clark Gable also marked Teacher’s Pet as a significant turn in his career. He was that proud of his contributions to the film that he agreed to plug it at that years Oscar ceremony when he and Doris was asked about presenting the award for Best Scriptwriter.



After Teacher’s Pet, Clark Gable would only appear in three more movies, his last film being The Misfits ( 1961 ), where he was cast opposite Marilyn Monroe. Sadly, Gable passed away on November 16th, 1960, leaving behind his wife of six years and a long legion of friends. Doris Day later stated, “He was as masculine as any man I’ve ever known, and as much a little boy as a grown man could be – it was this combination that had such a devastating effect on women.”


For Doris Day, Teacher’s Pet opened the door to an array of endless opportunities as well as planting her in a reputable position in Hollywood. The following year she was cast in Pillow Talk, her first of three films made with her close friend Rock Hudson. Her success continued throughout the 1960’s, and in 1968 after filming With Six You Get Eggroll, Doris Day retired from motion pictures to embark on her auspicious journey as an animal welfare activist.



Cary Grant and James Stewart both turned down the role of James Gannon because they knew they were too old for the part.

The movie was deliberately filmed in black and white in an attempt to disguise Clark Gable‘s age and weight.

Doris Day and her husband Martin Melcher threw a party for the visiting press and other cast members at their recently-purchased Beverly Hills home, even though they had not yet renovated it or moved in. The original plan was to stage a garden party and barbecue in the backyard. However, half an hour before the guests were due, it began to rain, so everyone ended up in the house, on the floor because there was no furniture.

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Doris Day: Born, Doris Mary Ann Kappelhoff on April 3rd, 1922 in Cincinnati, Ohio. Aged 96.

Clark Gable: Born, William Clark Gable on February 1st, 1901 in Cadiz, Ohio. Died: November 16th, 1960 in West Hollywood, California. Aged 59. Cause of death: Coronary Thrombosis.

Gig Young: Born, Byron Elsworth Barr on November 4th, 1913 in St. Cloud, Minnesota. Died: October 19th, 1978 in New York. Aged: 64. Cause of death: Gunshot wound/ Murder, suicide.


Happy 96th Birthday Doris, and here’s to 96 more.

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This post was written for the Second Annual Doris Day Blogathon, hosted by Love Letters To Old Hollywood. To read the other entries being exhibited during the event, please click here.









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The legendary Judy Garland has long been a highly revered icon of motion pictures and the musical stage. For many she was the epitome of talent, but for me she was the rescuer who occupied my mind, and introduced me to the world of classic cinema.

As I’ve stated many times, Judy Garland has played a pivotal role in shaping my life. It is for this reason that I’ve decided to shine the spotlight on Judy for the second time by hosting another birthday blogathon for Judy’s 96th birthday on June 10th. Sadly I was in hospital suffering from headaches during last years blogathon and was unable to be present for my own event. This year however, I’m going to make sure that the blogathon  is a success.



1. All my frequent blogathon participants would know the drill. Bloggers are welcome to write about anything that relates to Judy Garland. Judy has charted many different territories, so there are many areas to explore.

2. Because there are a wealth of topics up for grabs, I will be allowing no more than two duplicates. It’s first come, first serve, so act fast. Also, I don’t have a limit on how many posts you want to write.

3. The Blogathon will be held on June 8 – 10, 2018, so please post your entries on either of these dates or before. If you’re going to be late, please let me know.

4. To express your interest in participating in the blogathon, leave a comment on my blog, along with the name and URL of your blog, and the subject you wish to cover, or you can always register by email at: For those of you who wish to register by email, please be sure to include the name and URL of your blog, and the topic you wish to cover. Once you get confirmation, please spread the word about this blogathon by advertising the event on your blog. Below are a few banners, so grab yourself a banner, and let’s celebrate the unparalleled talents of Judy Garland.

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In The Good Old Days Of Classic Hollywood: A Star Is Born ( 1954 ) and My memories of attending Judy In New York in 2011.

Love Letters To Old Hollywood: Broadway Melody Of 1938 & Easter Parade ( 1948 )

The Dream Book Blog: I Could Go On Singing ( 1963 )

Life With Books and Movies: Meet Me In St. Louis ( 1944 )

Elizabeth Nelson: Guest post at In The Good Old Days Of Classic Hollywood: Judy’s collaborations with musicians and composers.

Taking Up Room: For Me and My Gal ( 1942 ) and The Clock ( 1945 )

Maddy Loves Her Classic Films: The Wizard Of Oz ( 1939 )

Critica Retro: Gay Pur-ee ( 1962 )

Real Weegie Midget Reviews: I Could Go On Singing ( 1963 )

Pop Culture Reverie: Meet Me In St. Louis ( 1944 )

Vintage Geneive: Judy Garland’s films and her life to gay culture.

Whimsically Classic: Judy Garland and Gene Kelly.

Musings Of A Classic Film Addict: Babes On Broadway ( 1940 )

The Stop Button: A Child Is Waiting ( 1963 )

I Found It At The Movies: Judy Garland’s life story and Get Happy ( Judy biography )

Karavansara: Judgement At Nuremberg ( 1961 )

Movie Rob: The Clock ( 1945 ), A Star Is Born ( 1945 ) and A Child Is Waiting ( 1963 )



“Nothing will raise your self-esteem as much as helping others. It will make you like yourself more and make you more likable. We can’t all be Mother Teresa, but each of us can try to make our little corner of the earth better.”


From the moment she stepped foot on Hollywood soil, Elizabeth Taylor became a crowning glory of the film industry. She received two coveted Academy Awards for her performances in Butterfield 8 ( 1960 ) and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf ( 1966 ) as well as attaining the industries top honors, but the role in which she wanted to be remembered for was her prolific work as a humanitarian.


The legendary Elizabeth Taylor was known the world over for her generosity and her incredible gift of giving. The actress who skyrocketed from a beloved child-star into one of cinema’s most beautiful women eventually became the face of charity and was often seen fundraising for different charitable events.

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Elizabeth Taylor found great satisfaction in helping others and always made sure that her charitable work took precedence over motion pictures, but the question that many people ask is how did a successful movie star become so involved in charity? Although discipline and benevolence had been instilled in Elizabeth since a young age, her story only really started in 1956 while she was filming Giant opposite Rock Hudson.

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Giant was made at a time when Elizabeth Taylor was yearning for a career resurrection. After being cast in a few box-office failures that did nothing to enhance her popularity, Taylor was desperate to be put back on the radar. When the script for Giant came in her direction, Taylor instantly knew that the role of Leslie Lynnton Benedict would save her from debris, so she lobbied director George Stevens until she obtained the part.


This was the perfect career move for Elizabeth Taylor. Not only did Giant rescue her from a descending film decline, it also formed an inseparable friendship that would ultimately make motion picture history.


As soon as the two starts met, Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson were inseparable. The core of their strong connection is said to be fueled from the roots of gratitude. Forever thankful that Hudson was the instrumental force behind her attaining the part, Taylor was always in his presence. Whether they were on or off the set they spent quality time together, often dining out and drinking their favorite beverage, Chocolate martini’s.


Elizabeth Taylor and Rock Hudson epitomized the true meaning of friendship. The special bond that these two Hollywood greats shared encompassed the entire movie set and continued into the proceeding years. Sadly their journey ended in heartache when Rock Hudson died from AIDS in 1985, leaving an emotionally distraught Elizabeth desperately wanting to get to the core of the dreaded disease that killed her close friend.

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Rock Hudson’s death left Elizabeth incensed with the lack of support and knowledge about this newfound disease. She was appalled by everyone’s inactivity when it came to helping those victims suffering from AIDS, but then it suddenly dawned on her. She too was laying idle, and there was absolutely no excuse for her. She had the power and was in the position to fight the stigma that was attached to the virus.


Realizing that she was just like everyone else, Elizabeth immediately sprung into action and transcended her acting career to fully commence her rewarding journey as an avid humanitarian. Her first venture was the AIDS Project Los Angeles’ Commitment to Life dinner that was held in September 1985. For extra support she rallied her friends to volunteer their time to the event, but when they all refused, Taylor was once again engulfed with bigotry and discrimination.


Later that year she joined forces with Dr. Mathilde Krim and formed the American Foundation for AIDS Research, in which she became the organizations first national chairman. Her commitment was phenomenal and her dedication in helping those suffering alone could not be usurped. Sally Morrison of amfAR stated, “Elizabeth’s participation was great for the scientists, the people fighting at the lab bench and at the bedside. It’s very demoralizing work. Then she shows up. It’s very meaningful to them.”


As an actress Elizabeth was unparalleled, but her work as a humanitarian left an indelible mark on society. During the years she fought endlessly to find a cure for AIDS related diseases, and eventually all her hard work paid off. Progress was gradually made and through further developments, treatments and medicines were hitting the markets. Schools were starting to place emphasis on sex education. Elizabeth once said, “It’s our moral responsibility to educate people about safe sex. People shouldn’t stop having sex—I’d be the last person in the world to advocate that—but safe sex is important.”


The years, 1986, 1990, and 1992 were busy for Elizabeth. It was during those twelve months that she testified before the Senate and House for the Ryan White Care Act. In 1987, she persuaded Ronald Reagan to address the disease for the first time in a public announcement, but usually when politics was concerned, Elizabeth Taylor was known to denounce presidents like George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton for their lack of interest and support in the subject matter. At the Eighth International AIDS Conference she told the audience, “I don’t think President Bush is doing anything at all about AIDS. In fact, I’m not even sure if he knows how to spell AIDS.”


In the years that Elizabeth Taylor had been working as a philanthropic she had managed to bring a disease that was so overshadowed to the forefront, but despite her significant contributions she had made, Elizabeth was unsatisfied by her efforts. She felt she weren’t doing enough to extinguish the disease, and so in 1991 she opened the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation in support of those sufferers who were in need of proper patient care.


Her mission was to ensure that each seriously ill individual benefit from the money raised. Her foundation was not established to help other organizations. She was there to support the needs of those unfortunate victims who were suffering from the disease. Elizabeth often stated, “The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation researches all the requests. We weed them out, and find out about their overhead. If their overhead is exorbitant, I don’t give them money because I know it’s going into somebody’s pocket. My foundation is for the individual. I want the money to get to the sick who can’t get out of bed.”

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The Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation was not just for the victims however. She also helped support other charitable organizations including, Caring For Babies With AIDS, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, LIFE, and Mother Saradadevi Social Service Society as well as funding, support education, condom giveaways, and needle exchange programs.

“Remember always to give. That is the thing that will make you grow.”

The praise she received was gratifying, but for Elizabeth the most crucial aspect of her charitable endeavors was meeting and corresponding with those suffering from AIDS. Having someone of Elizabeth Taylor’s stature visit them was a dream come true for these people. They idolized her for helping them find courage, and she remained their pillar of strength. On the other hand however, Elizabeth sometimes found her face to face time with the victims extremely heartbreaking. She would often walk into rooms to discover almost lifeless people whose bodies were ravaged by the disease. Witnessing cases like these emotionally disturbed Elizabeth, but it piqued her interest in fighting more.


Further along on the journey, the disease that Elizabeth Taylor continuously fought, hit close to home when many of her close friends died from AIDS or AIDS related illnesses. The most heart-aching for her was when her former daughter-in-law, Aileen Getty approached Elizabeth with the news of her diagnosis. Getty later stated that her family displayed no remorse and sympathy for her, but Elizabeth on the other hand was profoundly empathetic and understanding. “Without the love of Elizabeth Taylor in my life, I would probably be dead—if not physically, most certainly emotionally.” Getty said.

“There’s still so much more to do. I can’t sit back and be complacent, and none of us should be. I get around now in a wheelchair, but I get around.”

After witnessing heartbreaking situations like this, Elizabeth continued to remain dedicated to her work. In fact, observing cases like these only fueled a greater interest in trying to change people’s perspective and stopping the stigma. Even in ill health, Taylor spent days trying to combat the disease, but as time progressed the surrounding bigotry was still evident. In 2006, Elizabeth Taylor commented, “It is still a pandemic. It has not slowed down. I know people have forgotten. They take things for granted—especially the young people, between 15 and 24. There is an entire generation of sexually active teenagers who have lived their entire lives in a world where the cocktail of drugs has allowed those with AIDS to live relatively normal lives—but it is this ignorance that is continuing to kill so many around the world. And in developing countries around the world, the people who require these drugs simply cannot afford them. “We have a map at amfAR that blackens out areas of the world where AIDS has killed. If you could see how completely out of control it is in Africa, Asia, and India. It is spreading so rapidly. It’s frightening,”

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The work that Elizabeth Taylor engaged herself in is remarkable. With every avenue she followed she achieved greatness. When her health was rapidly deteriorating a wheelchair bound Elizabeth inspired generations by her unselfishness and towering generosity when she donated a $500,000 mobile medical HIV/AIDS care unit for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. The following year on World AIDS Day she returned to the stage to raise one million dollars for the disease.


Elizabeth Taylor and her extensive resume of charitable endeavors is beyond compare. It’s been seven years since Elizabeth passed away, but millions worldwide continue to follow her ingenious trail of artistry that she left behind. During her time on earth, she became the face of AIDS and fought endlessly to come to a positive resolution. She visited sick children in hospital and often helped fund their visits. She saved the lives of dogs and cats when danger was in her path, and she aided the homeless in finding housing or shelter. Whatever philanthropic duty there was, Elizabeth was involved with it. The gist of the story is that Elizabeth was the essence of inspiration, compassion, generosity and kindness. She embodied all that and so much more. There will never be another Elizabeth Taylor.


This post was written for The Elizabeth Taylor Blogathon, hosted by me at In The Good Old Days Of Classic HollywoodTo read the other entries being exhibited during this event, please click here.

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When Crystal Pacey asked me if I would be interested in writing something for her blog honoring the birthday of Dame Elizabeth Taylor, I had just finished reading a fun article about Elizabeth Taylor and Michael Wilding in the December 1953 issue of Movieland magazine. It seemed so much of a coincidence that I agreed to write about the marriage of Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor and her second husband, Michael Charles Gauntlet Wilding, which I think as far as her marriages go, has been somewhat neglected. I call Wilding the “forgotten husband.” He was bridegroom No. 2 after her disastrous marriage to Nicky Hilton, a marriage orchestrated by the studio, MGM.


The name of the article in Movieland is “A Couple of Characters” and highlights some of the madcap things the Wildings did as newlyweds. The Wildings were well, wild. In one story they are living in their house in Beverly Hills at 1775 Summit Ridge Drive. The house was painted yellow and decorated with wood paneling and purple furniture.

We will have the outside painted yellow, with white shutters, the living room will be in grey with periwinkle blue—my favourite colour.” decreed Elizabeth.

Taylor said she was pregnant at the time and unlike other expectant mothers who crave pickles and ice cream, she craved colors. One time when the Wildings were driving in their neighborhood they saw a fabulous house for sale behind theirs. They decided to get a closer look so they scaled a brick wall, she skinning her knee, and then found a window open and crawled in. They proceeded to make frequent visits to the house and began almost squatting there. When the realtor would bring prospective buyers she would see Elizabeth and Michael on the floor playing cards and drinking beer. They had stocked the refrigerator. I suppose no one minded because it was Elizabeth Taylor! They kept pulling up the “for sale” signs and ended up buying the house with a loan from MGM. The house was designed by George McLean, an acclaimed mid-century modern architect. I can’t find any photos of the interior of the McLean house, but I have included photos of the Summitridge Drive house, with its garish colour scheme. Elizabeth Taylor claimed that she did a complete reverse with the new house and decorated in earth tones to reflect the indoor/outdoor nature of the house.

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Michael Wilding was one of the most popular stars in England when he met Elizabeth Taylor. They first met each other on the set of “Conspirator” (1949) which sixteen-year old Elizabeth was filming with Robert Taylor in England for MGM, but it was three years later when Elizabeth was again in England filming “Ivanhoe” (1952) that she fell in love with Wilding and pursued him. He is probably most famous for Alfred Hitchcock’s “Stage Fright,” (1950) but he is wonderful in “The Law and the Lady” (1951) with Greer Garson.


In a kind of “A Star is Born” fashion, her star was in the ascendance, especially after “Giant” (1956) while his was falling. He was 20 years her senior when they married and although he was also on contract with MGM, he was not receiving the types of roles he had in the past. Plus the influential Hedda Hopper didn’t like him and actively tried to persuade Taylor not to marry him. Hedda Hopper also unfairly accused him of being a homosexual in her column, which didn’t help his career at MGM. He sued her newspaper for 3 million dollars and won. Eventually their marriage ran out of steam. Elizabeth Taylor claimed later that she henpecked him, but the combination of the age difference, her work schedule (for the most part she was very obedient to the studio), and his waning star, all contributed to the end of their marriage. They had an amicable divorce after five years in 1957.


Taylor and Wilding had two children, Michael Howard (Elizabeth’s brother’s name) Wilding Jr., an actor who appeared on “Guiding Light,”and Christopher Edward Wilding, a photographer/film editor.






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The day has finally arrived. For the next three days a prolific array of writers will be shining the light on the Legendary Elizabeth Taylor for her birthday blogathon.

For those of you participating in the blogathon, please send me your links, and I’ll link them as soon as I receive them. Thank you.

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Cinematic Scribblings puts the spotlight on Elizabeth Taylor in A Place In The Sun ( 1951 )


Maddy Loves Her Classic Films joins the party with a post on A Cat On A Hot Tin Roof ( 1958 )


Crimson Kimono highlights two of Elizabeth Taylor’s and Richard Burton’s films, The Sandpiper and Boom.

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The Stop Button delivers Elizabeth in Giant ( 1956 )  to the party.

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Real Weegie Midget Reviews talks about Elizabeth Role in Z, Y & Zee ( 1972 )


Pure Entertainment Preservation Society pens an excellent post on Life With Father ( 1947 )


For her first post, Taking Up Room delights us with one of my personal favorite Elizabeth Taylor films, Father Of The Bride ( 1950 )

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The Dream Book Blog addresses the true meaning of friendship in Between Friends ( 1983 )


The Story Enthusiast takes us on a trip down memory lane with her post on National Velvet ( 1944 )


Mondo Movies brings an Elizabeth Taylor pictorial to the party.


Caftan Woman analyzes Elizabeth Taylor’s role in the Agatha Christie classic, The Mirror Crack’d ( 1980 )

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Vinnie H joins the birthday celebrations with a delightful article on Suddenly, Last Summer ( 1959 )


For her second post, Taking Up Room delivers us the baby news with her delightful article about the sequel to Father Of The Bride,  Father’s Little Dividend ( 1951 )


I Found It At The Movies visits George and Martha in Who’s Afraid Of Virginia Woolf ( 1966 )


Four Star Films examines Elizabeth’s role in Giant ( 1956 )


Anybody Got A Match? tells us about the famed storybook romance of Elizabeth Taylor & Richard Burton.


Critica Retro takes a trip down memory lane and visits Elizabeth’s film debut in There’s One Born Every Minute ( 1942 )

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Portraits By Jenni delivers a fabulous post on A Date With Judy ( 1948 ) to the party.


No Nonsense With Nuwan Sen talks about two of Elizabeth Taylor’s great loves, Mike Todd and Richard Burton.


Elizabeth Nelson: Guest post at In The Good Old Days Of Classic Hollywood pens a wonderful tribute to Elizabeth Taylor and Michael Wilding.

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For her third post, Rebecca from Taking Up Room delights us with an enchanting article about the book, Elizabeth Taylor: My Love Affair With Jewelry.


LA Explore spotlights Elizabeth Taylor as Amy March in Little Women ( 1949 )


Karavansara pays tribute to Elizabeth in The Taming Of The Shrew ( 1967 )


The Wonderful World Of Cinema compares Elizabeth’s performance as Amy March in Little Women ( 1949 ) to Joan Bennett’s portrayal of Amy March in the 1933 version.


Old Hollywood Films visits Elizabeth Taylor’s Jewelry Collection.


Yours truly from In The Good Old Days Of Classic Hollywood discusses Elizabeth and her road to charity.


Last but not least, Movies Meet Their Match tells us about The Last Time I Saw Paris ( 1954 )