Gone With the Wind

GWTWOne of the first books I remember making a big personal impact on me was “Gone With the Wind.”  I’m re-reading it for like the thousandth time right now.  I wore out two paperback copies of it before I moved on to buying a digital copy so now I’ll never wear it out!

I think the thing that made such an impression on me was that the characters were SO well drawn that you could really feel their thoughts and emotions.  And the fact that the protagonist was a woman who was smart and independent also made a big impression on me – although I always wanted to be Melanie more than I wanted to be Scarlett.

The movie was coincidentally recommended to me by my TV OnDemand this weekend – which makes you wonder if the cable people are spying on me – so I also watched the movie for like the 100th time this weekend.  As a result, today I’m presenting to you some fun facts about the movie of “Gone With the Wind.”

  • Vivien Leigh wasn’t cast until filming had already begun.  And she almost lost the part because she spoke with her native English accent in the first screen test!
  • Author Margaret Mitchell suggested that Groucho Marx would have been a good Rhett!
  • Leslie Howard (who played Ashley Wilkes) hated his role and only took it because he was promised a producer credit in an another upcoming David Selznick film.
  • The stage comedy “Moonlight and Magnolias” tells the mostly true story of turning the book into the screenplay.  The writing process for the movie was insane – and involved Selznick locking himself, director Ian Fleming and script doctor Ben Hecht into an office for a week with nothing to eat but bananas and peanuts.  By the end of the process, Selznick had collapsed from exhaustion and Fleming had a burst blood vessel in one eye.  I NEED to see this play!
  • The iconic “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn” like almost never made it to the screen.  Selznick had to work VERY hard to get the word “damn” past the censors of the time.  Eventually, he used the dictionary definition to help prove it was only a vulgarism and not a swear word to help convince the censors.

Check out your OnDemand – maybe “Gone With the Wind” is your recommendations too?  You certainly can’t go wrong watching it – it is a fabulous movie!