Saturday, April 7, 2012

{Book Tour} Hollywood Stories - book excerpt

By Stephen Schochet

 About the book: 

At high noon on a cold November day in 1974, sixty-seven-year-old John Wayne faced off with the staff of the Harvard Lampoon on the famous campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The students had issued their challenge by calling the beloved American icon a fraud. Wayne, who had his new movie McQ to promote, responded by saying he would be happy to show his film in the pseudo-intellectual swamps of Harvard Square. After the screening, without writers, the former USC footballer delivered a classic performance. When one smart young man asked where he got his phony toupee, Wayne insisted the hair was real. It wasn't his, but it was real. The appreciative underclassmen loved him and after the Q and A session, they all sat down to dinner. Later Wayne, who was suffering greatly from both gout and the after effects of lung cancer (sadly the Duke only had five years to live), said that day at Harvard was the best time he ever had.

Just when you thought you've heard everything about Hollywood comes a totally original new book -- a special blend of biography, history and lore.

Hollywood Stories is packed with wild, wonderful short tales about famous stars, movies, directors and many others who have been a part of the world's most fascinating, unpredictable industry!

Book Excerpt:

The Reluctant Stereotype

Marilyn Monroe was disgusted when she read the script for the comedy Some Like It Hot in 1959. The thirty-three-year-old Connecticut resident had left Hollywood partly because she had grown tired of stereotypical dumb blonde roles. Now they wanted her to appear as someone too dense to realize that Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis were disguised as women. Even she had never pretended to be that stupid. Still, Marilyn needed the money. Her acting coach, Lee Strasberg, reminded Monroe that she usually hadn’t been close with other ladies. Marilyn should play her character as someone who yearned for female companionship so much that she did not notice her new friends’ more masculine attributes. Armed with her teacher’s advice, the bombshell unhappily returned to Los Angeles. Though she was resented by her co-workers for constantly being late and blowing her lines, movie audiences totally fell for Marilyn’s sweet and sincere comic performance.

Extra: Thirty-four-year-old actors Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon (1925-2001) sometimes suffered in silent agony on the set of Some Like It Hot. Marilyn Monroe (1926-1962) often took multiple takes to get her lines right, while her dressed-in-drag male co-stars were forced to stand for hours in their
uncomfortable high-heeled shoes.

Extra: In one Some Like It Hot sequence, Marilyn’s only line was, “It’s me, Sugar.” It took her sixty-five takes. In between camera setups, the frustrated director, Billy Wilder (1906-2002), tried to calm his leading lady down. “Don’t worry, Marilyn."
“Worry about what?” she replied.
Later, the blonde, who was very shrewd about her comic abilities, told friends that she functioned as her own director. Once Monroe thought all the elements in a scene were correct, she delivered her dialogue perfectly.


  1. I will be reviewing this book in June.

    I just started following you via gfc and linky. If you would like, you can check out my blog:

  2. Yay! I found you again through the Drop It Like It's Hot blog hop. I am now following you through GFC, Linky and Facebook. Would love follows in return.

    I was just talking about loving book reviews and always trying to find the next best book. Thanks for sharing.

    I invite you to stop by my Facebook page. I am having an Avon Giveaway once I reach 700 fans. Thanks so much!!

    Have a great day! Julie from Stlavonlady Beauty Tips and Tricks, Savings & More!

  3. Now following you through the drop it like its hot hop via GFC, Linky, NB, n FB!

    This book sounds good!

    Valerie @ Intriguing Reads

  4. new follower from the hop, would love a follow back