Past Imperfect

Past Imperfect – #319

On the set of “Hush, Hush, Sweet Charlotte”, 1964…


Joan Crawford: “Bob, we really need to talk.”

Robert Aldrich: “What is it now, Joan? Was the caviar on the craft services table not stellar enough?”

Joan: “Very funny. No, you need to talk to the people who are doing my hair. They aren’t listening to me.”

Robert: “It looks alright. Is it not big enough for you?”

Joan: “It’s too big. That wretch Bette Davis tried to shove a bottle of gin up in there.”

Robert: “Ah, so you bring up Bette once again. Isn’t that the real issue? Bette?”

Joan: “Of course not. We are both professionals, or at least I am, and I’m having a swell time working with that horrid woman.”

Robert: “Such a swell time that you’ve called in sick almost every day this week?”

Joan: “Bob, that has nothing to do with Bette.  I just have lingering medical issues from the last time that you directed Bette and me in Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?

Robert: “And is one of those issues jealousy?”

Joan: “How absurd! I would never jeopardize this production over something so crass as holding a grudge over what that bit-”

Robert: “Oh, look, Olivia de Havilland has just driven up. If you’ll excuse me for a minute.”

Joan: “Olivia? She’s not in this movie…”

Robert: “She is now.”


Previously published in “Crusty Pie” and “Bonnywood Manor”. No changes made for this latest post. This is basically a true story, with just a smidge of creative license when it comes to the dialogue. Bit of trivia: Despite being replaced, Joan still appears in the movie, in a long shot when “Miriam” is riding in a taxi.


15 replies »

  1. Joan: I’ve got a stick and I’m not afraid to use it!!
    Robert: Oh my gawd. What now?? And please limit your use of adjectives, just this once. I get it. You aren’t good friends with Ms. Davis.
    Joan: I wouldn’t be so angry if you could refrain from mentioning that woman! Actually my small observation has nothing to do with her.
    Robert: Hey!! Are you filming this?? NO CAMERAS! }he glares, slack jawed at some peon who was ‘best boy’ and now is ‘redundant boy'{
    Joan: I want the alleged beautician FIRED!!
    Robert: And why? She’s my wife’s second cousin three times removed and her monetary demands are very small.
    Joan: Well that explains it. My curtains no longer match my carpet. That is unacceptable. And what’s with the ersatz roses she has melded into this tower of hair? F-ugly.
    Robert: I’ll see what I can do. Just put away that stick. It has the potential to put someone’s eyes out, sort of like that foundation garment you’re sporting.

    Liked by 1 person

    • And then Bette Davis wandered up, full of risk and vinegar, and oh, how the previous proceedings paled in comparison. Some folks in the tech crew are still trembling to this day. Mostly due to the fact that they are now 112 years old, but still… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah yes. Bette and Joan. Those jabs and swipes. Like a fencing match without the swords. I wonder who would have won such a match? Petty jealousy. So fascinating to watch! 😀

    • Certainly fascinating. Things were so much more clever and subdued in those days. Now? Some folks don’t even bother to finesse their hatred with any degree of artistic subterfuge. And one of them is now the President…


      • Ugh! I can’t believe he’s still in office! I mean what does it take?? I “almost” miss W. (not really, but you know what i mean.) I also can’t believe no one has taken his twitter away. I guess you really can’t take xandy from a baby…

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Joan: Someone’s kidnapped the baby!
    Robert: What baby? Are you hallucinating again?
    Joan: Why must you be so snarky? Someone took the baby – see, here’s a ransom note.
    Robert – That’s a piano note! Go home and sleep it off.
    Joan: C’mon Bette, let’s get out of here!
    Woman in the Back: If she thinks I’m Bette, maybe she’ll get me a part in her next movie.

    Liked by 1 person

    • And then everyone was swept away by an unexpected hurricane, because they were filming in Louisiana and, at that time, the locals hadn’t yet figured out that “big ass storm headed our way” could translate to “your ass is airborne if you don’t get out of here”…

      I’m not sure why I went THERE with my comment. Oh wait, yes I do. It’s 2AM in the morning and I really should be in bed… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

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