In two separate interviews in the late 1970s, Olivia de Havilland and Joan Blondell, in part, place the filming of What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962) and the difficult relationship between its two stars, Joan Crawford and Bette Davis, before, during and after filming into some context. Joan and Bette are known as two of the most powerful actresses of their time. Bette in particular is known for her fearlessness on screen, while Joan was more protective of the image she projected both in her acting and personal life. It's 1961. Past middle age which is a difficult age for actresses to get substantial leading roles, both Joan and Bette are past what would be considered their acting prime, with Marilyn Monroe the Hollywood "it" girl of the day. Joan's latest husband, Pepsi executive Alfred Steele, has just passed away. Although Pepsi no longer pays Joan, she is still flogging the brand to appear relevant. Although her absence from acting was partly to focus on her life with Al, it ... Written by
Did You Know?
Hedda Hopper makes reference to Joan Crawford's "custom Billy Haines furniture." Billy Haines was a silent film star who became a Hollywood interior decorator after he was routed out of the film business for refusing to give up his relationship with his male lover. See more
The establishing shot of Crawford arriving at Davis's play, "The Night of the Iguana", shows the Palace Theatre on the marquee. "Night of the Iguana" played the Royale Theatre (which has since been renamed the Jacobs). See more
Friends? You think it's friendship I want from her? Is that what you think? You're wrong, it's respect. It's the only thing I ever wanted from her, or any of them for that matter. It's the one thing I've never got.
References Wagon Train
Music by George Gershwin
Lyrics by Ira Gershwin
Performed by Sarah Vaughan
[The song is played following Bette and Gary's theater performance] See more