What Price Hollywood?

What Price Hollywood?

Constance Bennett
Director: George Cukor Cast: Constance Bennett
Constance Bennett
, Lowell Sherman
Lowell Sherman
, Neil Hamilton
Neil Hamilton
George Cukor

DVD (Pan & Scan)

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Overview

What Price Hollywood is often referred to as the "first" version of the oft-filmed A Star is Born. While there are strong resemblances between the two properties, Hollywood is in many respects a wholly separate entity. Constance Bennett plays a star-struck waitress who manages to make a good impression on prominent film director Lowell Sherman. With Sherman's patronage, Bennett rises to film stardom as "America's Pal." Sherman is gratified, but he keeps his distance; a chronic alcoholic, he is certain that his inevitable fall from grace will adversely affect Bennett's stardom. Impulsively, Bennett marries wealthy playboy Neil Hamilton, who genuinely loves his wife but is jealous of the demands made on her by her career. Hamilton walks out, but not before Bennett has been impregnated. Turning her attentions to her mentor Sherman, Bennett does everything she can to halt his career downslide, but it is too late. In a startlingly conceived sequence (utilizing slow motion and rapid-fire montage cutting), Sherman kills himself in Bennett's bedroom. When his body is found, the ensuing scandal destroys Bennett's career (represented visually by a life-sized cutout of "America's Pal" shrinking into nothingness). Hoping to heal her emotional wounds, she flees to Paris with her child, where she is reunited with a contrite Hamilton. What Price Hollywood? producer David O. Selznick later claimed that most of the dialogue and situations in the film were drawn from life; he'd make the same claim upon producing the similar (but not identical) A Star is Born five years later. Somewhat perversely, Lowell Sherman based his performance-especially the inebriation scenes-on his then brother-in-law John Barrymore.

Product Details

Release Date: 02/18/2014
UPC: 0883316945087
Original Release: 1932
Rating: NR
Source: Warner Archives
Presentation: [Full Frame]
Sound: [Dolby Digital Mono]
Time: 1:28:00
Sales rank: 33,452

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Constance Bennett Mary Evans
Lowell Sherman Maximilian Carey
Neil Hamilton Lonny Borden
Gregory Ratoff Julius Saxe
Brooks Benedict Muto
Eddie "Rochester" Anderson James
Charles "Heinie" Conklin Car Owner
Gordon de Main Yes Man
Eddie Dunn Doorman at Grauman's Chinese Theatre
Florence Roberts Diner
Phil Tead Jimmy
Bryant Washburn Washed-Up Star
Louise Beavers Juanita

Technical Credits
George Cukor Director
Pandro S. Berman Associate Producer
Rowland Brown Screenwriter
Carroll Clark Art Director
Gene Fowler Screenwriter
Jack Kitchin Editor
Lloyd Knechtel Special Effects
Ben Markson Screenwriter
Jane Murfin Screenwriter
Margaret Pemberton Costumes/Costume Designer
Charles Rosher Cinematographer
David O. Selznick Executive Producer
Adela Rogers St. John Screenwriter
Max Steiner Score Composer,Musical Direction/Supervision
Slavko Vorkapich Special Effects

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