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Let Us Be Gay

Let Us Be Gay(1930)

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teaser Let Us Be Gay (1930)

Norma Shearer, "Queen of the Lot" at MGM in the 1930s, took full advantage of the liberated period before the film industry fell under the restrictions of the Production Code. Shearer began the decade with a bang, creating a sexy new image for her Oscar-winning role in The Divorcee that startled even her husband, MGM production head Irving Thalberg. Let Us Be Gay is the story of another divorcee who finds romantic adventure, this time in Paris, while barely enveloped by gauzy gowns knowingly designed by Adrian, Shearers favored costumer. Shearers characters of this period were remarkably forthright in their erotic impulses, although in Let Us Be Gay the accent is on comedy as she wins back her husband by merely pretending to have been "wicked." Biographer Gavin Lambert wrote that the Shearer of this period had "a silky alienation that Scott Fitzgerald admired, kindred to Daisys in The Great Gatsby, her face sad and lovely with bright things in it. " Let Us Be Gay had a shooting schedule of a mere 26 days, hurried along because Shearer was pregnant. Because her condition had become apparent during the last week of filming, Adrian draped his star with even more care than usual and Shearer was photographed behind foreground objects such as furniture and potted plants that obscured her figure. Irving Grant Thalberg, Jr. was born two weeks before the well-received New York opening of Let Us Be Gay, with Shearer fans celebrating her "double triumph."Producer/Director: Robert Z. Leonard Art Direction: Cedric Gibbons Costume Design: Adrian Screenplay: Frances Marion, Lucille Newmark (from play by Rachel Crothers) Cinematography: Norbert Brodine Editing: Basil Wrangell Principal Cast: Norma Shearer (Kitty Brown), Rod La Roque (Bob Brown), Marie Dressler (Mrs. Bouccicault), Gilbert Emery (Townley), Hedda Hopper (Madge Livingston) Roger Fristoe

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