Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Screening of "Stage Door" at Daystar Center August 11

Stage Door (1937)
Where: Daystar Center, 1550 S. State Street, Room 102
When: August 11, 2018
Time: 6:45 p.m.
Hosted by Stephen Reginald

Stage Door (1937) is a comedy/drama about aspiring actresses trying to make it big on Broadway. The actresses all live in the same theatrical boarding house, which is the setting for some of the wittiest dialogue ever put on film. The all-star cast includes Katharine Hepburn, Ginger Rogers, Adolphe Menjou, Gail Patrick, Andrea Leeds, Lucille Ball, Eve Arden, and Ann Miller. This is the movie where Hepburn actually says, “the calla lilies are in bloom again.”

Ginger Rogers, Lucille Ball, and Katharine Hepburn

Directed by the great Gregory La Cava (My Man Godfrey 1936) who manages to get magnificent performances from all the players. One of the great movies from the 1930s.

Backstory: In 1937, Katharine Hepburn’s career was in decline. She had starred in several back-to-back box office failures. On the on the other hand, Ginger Roger’s career was exploding. Having become a superstar as Fred Astaire’s premier dancing partner, she had begun to branch out in dramatic and comedy roles on her own. Hepburn’s role was initially diminished to that of a supporting player with Rogers being the main star. Hepburn complained to the bosses at RKO and director La Cava and she eventually got her part increased and shared equal billing with Rogers on screen and in publicity materials. After the release of Bringing Up Baby (1938), which was another box office flop, Hepburn was out at RKO and off the screen for two years until her triumph in The Philadelphia Story (1940).

Join the Chicago Film club; join the discussion
Twice a month we screen classic films and have a brief discussion afterward. For more information, including how to join (it’s free), click here. The Venue 1550 is easily accessible by the CTA. Please visit Transit Chicago for more information on transportation options.

Stephen Reginald is a freelance writer and editor. He has worked at various positions within the publishing industry for over 25 years. Most recently he was executive editor for McGraw-Hill’s The Learning Group Division. A long-time amateur student of film, Reginald hosts “Chicago Film Club,” a monthly movie event held in the South Loop, for the past two years. Reginald has also taught several adult education film classes at Facets Film School, Chicago.

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