ON June 11, iconic pop goddess Debbie Harry will perform at amFAR’s “Honoring with Pride” fundraiser. Among the honored: Oscar nominated stylist Patricia Field and the Lady Bunny. The latter is the chanteuse, comic, founder of Wigstock, and never seen unless in full drag. This happens at the Edison Ballroom. Call 212-806-1607. Dress is festive, natch.
On June 15, two of Hollywood’s most enduring stars will be feted in NYC. MGM’s incredible survivor Debbie Reynolds (now playing the Carlyle Hotel) will be honored at a Friar’s Club luncheon. Miss Reynolds, contrary to her old “Tammy” image, has quite a salty, wicked tongue. The Friars adore her.
IN ANOTHER part of town on the same day, Carroll Baker, she of the sexy honky-tonk voice and famous for films such as “Giant,” “Baby Doll,” “The Carpetbaggers” and “Harlow,” receives The Medal of Honor from the National Arts Club. Miss Baker is a fabulous actress and woman, who had to flee to Europe (where she had a hell of a good time!) after being blackballed in Hollywood — she didn’t want to make any more movies like “The Carpetbaggers.” This is a big night — Elaine Stritch, Rex Reed, Marian Seldes, Eli Wallach, Anne Jackson and Mercedes Ruehl pay homage. Call 212-475-3424.
ONE MORE: on June 10, in little old New York, Woody Allen will host a screening of his latest movie, titled “Whatever Works.” It stars Larry David, Evan Rachael Wood, Patricia Clarkson and Henry Cavill (you know Cavill as the handsome, cruel-but-conflicted, Lord Suffolk in “The Tudors.”) This movie is notable in that it marks Woody’s return to the environs of Manhattan after several successful movies set in London and Spain. The Cinema Society hosts. Welcome back, Woody!
Had she lived, Marilyn Monroe would have been 83 on June 1. Impossible. There could never have been an 83-year-old Marilyn! Or even a 40-year-old Marilyn.
Her persona was delicious, silly; sexy, in the most obvious, girlish way; lush and spilling out of her gowns. Would the public have accepted a mature, elegant Marilyn? She was trying out that image a bit, before her death at 36. (Bert Stern’s fabulous fashion pics in Vogue, for example.)
But let’s not think of her unhappy death or “what might have been” — what’s the point? — but rather recall the delightful work she left us, and what more there is of her to be discovered.
Years ago I led the search for the footage from Marilyn’s uncompleted movie “Something’s Got To Give,” which included her famous nude swim scene. I knew more than 2 minutes had been filmed, as 20th Century Fox insisted. (Fox had fired her from the film, so they were not interested in saying anything that put her in a good light, dead or not!) I felt it was film history, going to waste. And in fact, in turned out there were hours of Marilyn, performing coherently and looking ravishing, in and out of the swimming pool.
Now I hear that there is a search for new MM footage… scenes deleted from classics such as “Niagara” “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” “The Seven Year Itch” “Bus Stop” and more “Something’s Got to Give” film! (costume tests in her bikini.) A documentary is being planned. Incredible! Gone nearly 50 years, Marilyn still stirs more interest than most living stars.