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Evening star. [volume] (Washington, D.C.) 1854-1972, February 27, 1955, Image 100

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045462/1955-02-27/ed-1/seq-100/

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A REAL “LIVE” STAR—Claudette Colbert amazes her friends
In the movie-making colony by her attitude, but she is a
firm believer in the superiority of “live” television drama over
the filmed variety. She will make her second “Best of Broad
way” appearance on Wednesday night at 10 (WTOP-TV) in
“The Guardsman,” for which she is rehearsing here with
Franchot Tone.
How Can an Actress Shun TV,
Claudette Colbert Asks
By Margaret McManus
Claudette Colbert sat on a
green sofa in her plushy 12th
floor suite at the Sherry
Netherlands Hotel, a copy of
the Ferenc Molnar play, “The
Guardsman” in her lap.
With her was Paul Nickell,
director of the play in which
Miss Colbert will star, with
Franchot Tone, in “The Best
of Broadway” series at 10 p.rr.
this Wednesday on CBS-TV.
They were discussing the de
gree of cynicism of a specific
This may rightly indicate
how much of a perfectionist
Miss Colbert is.
A small, very slim woman,
who has been a star in motion
pictures for 23 years, she looks
amazingly the same as she did
in that now classic “It Hap
pened One Night,” made with
Clark Gable in 1934.
The short Colbert hair-do,
with the part in the middle
and the fluffy bangs across
the forehead, has never been
Miss Colbert has a very in
dividual face. The wide-set
brown eyes, the high cheek
bones, the expressive, well
shaped mouth, taken as fea
tures apart, or together, could
belong to no one else.
Miss Colbert is as bright
and witty as the movie hero
ines she so often played, and
she loves television, both
watching it and performing
on it.
New and Exciting
"How could an actress not be
in television?” she asked, in
her deep-throated, so familiar
voice. “It’s a new medium. It’s
exciting. It gives one an op
portunity to play to an audi
ence of millions in one single
night, and right in their own
homes. I love it.”
She said television is par
ticularly intriguing to her be
cause it is like doing a play in
the theater, except you do it
only once, and not over and
over again until you’re bored
to extinction.
“Most of my friends in Hol
lywood think I’m mad because
I like doing live television
shows. I don’t like to do tele
vision on film and I wouldn’t
want to do a weekly program.
“When I do a performance
I must do it the very best I
can. I want to give everything
to it. I couldn’t sustain that
effort week atfer week,” she
Miss Colbert said she turned
down a weekly television series
for this reason, but she is go
ing to do a third “Best of
Broadway” show, and on April
7 she will star in “Private
Worlds” on “Climax,” done
from the coast.
“I’m terribly concerned
about doing a good job with
‘The Guardsman,’ ” she ex
plained, “because the Lunts
did it so magnificently and I
do admire them so, I really do
want this to go well.”
Miss Colbert has been mar
ried for almost 20 years to Dr.
Joel Pressman, a professor of
surgery at UCLA. She met him
shortly after she arrived in
Hollywood in 1932, when she
went to him as a patient. <
The Pressmans live in “kind
of a Georgian type house, very
simple, in Holmby Hills, LA.
24,” and their friends are other
motion picture jpeople and
doctors —“lots of doctors.”
Miss Colbert said they live
the sort of suburban life that
people everywhere live.
“We have little dinner par
ties for our friends," she said,
“and they have little dinner
parties for us. Once in a while
we go to a premiere but thank
heavens there aren’t as many,
as there used to be. And of
course, we all watch a lot of
She said she rarely misses
the television shows of her
friends— “ Burns and Allen,
Jack Benny, I Love Lucy,
Danny Thomas, Loretta’s show
(Loretta Young), I watch them
all. I do love the theater
Color Television
For This Week
Today, 7:30-9 pm., WRC
SENTS, Ray Bolger, Martha
Raye, Milton Berle, Fred
Clarke, Bambi Linn and Rod
Alexander in a musical revue,
“Big Time.”
Wednesday, 7-7:30 p.m.,
WRC-TV, NORBY, domestic
comedy with David Wayne
and Joan Lorring (film).
Wednesday, 10-11 p.m.,
BROADWAY. Claudette Col
bert, Franchot Tone, Regin
ald Gardiner and Mary Bo
land in Ferenc Molnar’s “The
shows, especially the United
States Steel Hour.
“You can see how busy I am
in front of that television set.”
Miss Colbert, incidentally,
made her television debut as
a guest on Jack Benny’s pro
gram and made her dramatic
television debut last Septem
ber in the first of the “Best of
Broadway” series. “The Royal
“That was rather hectic,”
she said. “It was my first play
on television. There was a
heat wave. The drfy before the
show was to go on, all I could
think was, how did I ever get
into this? But when it was all
over, what a thrill it was,
what a satisfaction.”
Miss Colbert moved her
hands, which are quite beauti
ful, in that upward, graceful
gesture so well remembered
from her movie days of “The
Gilded Lily” and "Imitation of
Life" and “No Time for Love,”
and so many others.
Play's the Thing
She picked up her pale lav
ender-framed glasses from
the coffee table and opened
the play script, tucked into a
real leather cover, marked
with her name in gold letters. |
“This cover was a Christmas
present,” she said. “I’ll carry
it around for a few days until
it gets heavy. Then I just
tote a few pages.”
The pace in Miss Colbert’s
suite was beginning to quicken.
In the other room her maid- j
companion, who travels with
her, was hanging up the cos
tumes which Hollywood’s Orry
Kelly designed for her to wear
in the play, and for which she
has to stand for final fittings.
Newspaper and magazine re
porters were phoning for inter
views. Paul Nickel], the di
rector, left to have his dinner,
but made an appointment to
return later, with Felix Jack
son, the producer of “The
Guardsman.” for another
script conference.
“I see there’ll be no theater
for me this week,” said Miss
Colbert. “I hate to be in New
York and not see even one
play, but when I rehearse all
day and work this hard, I have
to get to bed at 10, or I can
never do the job.”
Obviously, with Miss Col
bert, the play—her play—is
the thing.
(Released by the Bell Syndicate.)
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