It's Still Hot at 50!
"Nobody's perfect!" is the famous last line of the movie Some Like It Hot. But the Collins Imprint of Harper Collins has issued a perfect companion to fans of the movie the American Film Institute named "America's funniest movie."
Laurence Maslon has written in rich detail the complete history of this classic comedy from its roots as an obscure 1951 Germany comedy to its Hollywood conception in 1959 when director Billy Wilder cast Marilyn Monroe, Jack Lemmon, and Tony Curtis in lead roles and Joe E. Brown in a character role in which he almost stops the show and delivers the famous last line.
Author Maslon is an Emmy nominated writer for the PBS documentary, Make 'Em Laugh: The Funny Business of America. With Michael Kantor, he wrote the companion volume to that series as well as the Emmy-winning PBS series Broadway: The American Musical, and The Sound of Music Companion and The South Pacific Companion. He is the editor of the Library of America's edition of George S Kaufman's comedies.
Maslon takes an in-depth look at the creation and production of Some Like It Hot, covering everything from casting to casting trivia-Frank Sinatra and Mitzi Gaynor were considered for the movie; to the history of drag in cinema; to famed costume designer Orry-Kelly, who did the clothes for Monroe, Curtis and Lemmon, as well as unpublished images, documents, and pictures from the MGM archives to which he was given complete access; selections from the screenplay; casting notes; on-set production anecdotes; location shots; and a wealth of photographs from the film, the making of the film, and subjects associated with the film.
"The Official 50th Anniversary Companion" is the first book to tell the full story of Some Like It Hot from start to finish, from "wig to high Heels." As the years have passed, the reputation of the film has only burnished more brightly. It holds up well. It remains a delight to see: The American Film Institute's "Funniest American Movie of all Time." It was also high on the list of the Institute's list of greatest American movies.
DVDs of the movie are readily available or frequent television showings to be enjoyed all the more with "The Official 50th Anniversary Companion." One might add the book "Conversations with Wilder" by Cameron Crowe, Alfred A. Knopf.
The film, itself, is available at a discount from Oldies.com by visiting their Web site or calling (800) 336-4627.
"Some Like It Hot: The Official 50th Anniversary Companion." By Laurence Maslon. Foreword by Walter Mirisch. Collins Imprint (Harper Collins). 191 pp. 150 photographs. $35.