Considering Doris Day

Books and articles about Doris Day.
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ray
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Considering Doris Day

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Any word on promotions on Tv or the newspaper about the new book ,Considering Doris Day? It will be published the 20th of this month.

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Unread post by John M »

Snagged a copy of "Considering Doris Day" on Sunday, after meeting our own Howard for a delightful lunch.

It's better than his Streisand book, but still has a lot of errors in it. Among other things, he gets character names and film dialogue incorrect frequently. However, on the plus side, he really lays into Mitch Miller and Columbia for the excessive amount of novelty tunes they laid on her in the 1950's. Good man! He also thinks VERY highly of one of my fave films which always gets short shrift, I'll See You In My Dreams. It's a fun read, pretty superficial, but that's to be understood when you cover Doris' entire career in one book.

One thing he didn't mention at all in the book, which I consider to be one of her top 3 or 4 vocal recordings ever is "The Party's Over." One of the greatest examples of a singer's phrasing ever (and a sizable hit for Doris, too), and nary a mention. Oh well. To each his own. He also loves the song "Show Time," which I think is one of the worst she ever recorded. LOL!

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Unread post by howard »

I like both those songs: "Show Time" is high spirited, joyful and it captures the excitement (for me) of opening night on Broadway. "The Party's Over" has always been a favorite ... it's from the show "Bells Are Ringing." Now, back to the book: I found the following paragraph on the Amazon.com web site:

Book Description
The biggest female box office attraction in Hollywood history, Doris Day remains unequalled as the only entertainer who has ever triumphed in movies, radio, recordings, and a multi-year weekly television series. America's favorite girl next door may have projected a wholesome image that led Oscar Levant to quip "I knew Doris Day before she was a virgin," but in Considering Doris Day Tom Santopietro reveals Day's underappreciated and effortless acting and singing range that ran the gamut from musicals to comedy to drama and made Day nothing short of a worldwide icon.
Covering the early Warner Brothers years through Day's triumphs working with artists as varied as Alfred Hitchcock and Bob Fosse, Santopietro's smart and funny book deconstructs the myth of Day as America's perennial virgin, and reveals why her work continues to resonate today, both onscreen as pioneering independent career woman role model, and off, as a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States' highest civilian honor. Praised by James Cagney as "my idea of a great actor" and by James Garner as "the Fred Astaire of comedy," Doris Day became not just America's favorite girl, but the number one film star in the world. Yet after two weekly television series, including a triumphant five year run on CBS, she turned her back on show business forever.
Examining why Day's worldwide success in movies overshadowed the brilliant series of concept recordings she made for Columbia Records in the '50s and '60s, Tom Santopietro uncovers the unexpected facets of Day's surprisingly sexy acting and singing style that led no less an observer than John Updike to state "She just glowed for me." Placing Day's work within the social context of America in the second half of the twentieth century, Considering Doris Day is the first book that grants Doris Day her rightful place as a singular American artist.

Methinks Doris is getting her due AT LAST!

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My copy should be shipped today, which is the publishing date!! Another DDay for us fans, with the release of this new book. Good or bad or indifferent, its great to see a current book about Doris! Barnes and Noble said they wouldn't have it in the store but I could order online. It should be in their stores!!! Whats with that??

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Recevied Considering Doris Day Today! And its an impressive looking book, despite the cover photo, which does well in showcaseing the look of Doris late fifties early sixties. The book goes right into Doris being the relucktent Superstar. with her first mettings with the Director fo her first picture. Our Dear Liz Smith writes on the back jacket- "Is there such a thing as a truely underrated icon? You bet. Her name is Doris Day...Luckily, Tom Santopietro exists to put Miss Day's great talent and career into the proper perspective. Passionate and acute in its critique...There is something thrilling about Doris Day being rediscovered, especially when the archacologist of this American treasure--Mr. Santopietro--is so right -on-the-money."

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Skipping around the new book and the Author has amusing things to say about Doris's TV show but never insulting. A touching thing was when he writes that A.E. Hotchner describes a day with Doris where she signed autographs and posed for pictures for an Actors and Others For Animlas benefit. At the end of a long day he says to Doris how much the people love her, and she responds, " If so many people love me, how come I am alone?" Very touching and kinda sad. Doesn't Doris know we would all move in her gueat cottages so she would never be alone.LOL And really she isn't alone, there is much love all around her.

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Unread post by jmichael »

Received my copy yesterday and devoured about half the book in one evening. I love the fact that he respects her singing talent and spends a lot of time putting her right up there with the greats. Haven't got to the TV series or all of the movies yet but I really like the index at the back of the book where he rates all of her films, recordings and TV appearances (on a scale of A thru F). Overall this book is well done in spite of a few inaccuracies and it is a must have for her fans. BTW he rates "Tunnel of Love" as her worst film. He finds it truly offensive.
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Observations.

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1/ - New Book - 'tried' to order it yesterday, was told it is only released here at the end of the month and I can order it then! Really looking forward to reading it. I asked the girl in the shop if they would be ordering in several copies "no", she replied "we do not have alot of space" - I pointed to the cinema collection and stated "Maybe one less [of the ten plus] books on Marilyn and you could stock it"!!! They do have the paperback of the UK 2000 biography though.

2/ Forgot to say before, there is a little collection of books "Guide to Comedy" etc and in "Ultimate Guide to Chick Flick Movies" - the lady author really rates Doris Day and she is mentioned ALOT! I know it not on the scale of the new book [above] but I think it is great when Doris is mentioned and appreciated, and in this, it is so good. As we have all said before, it is so infuriating to read a book on 1950's or 1960's cinema and for there not even to be a mention of Doris - absurd!

3/ Thanks Howard, for that post.

4/ Re- Tunnel of Love - I don't rate it much either, could be that Doris is not on screen as much as in previous films, her clothes, although done by Helen Rose - were not as impressive as others and she had started to wear her hair differnt [post Lover come Back, and pre- Pillow Talk] that I didn't like so much.

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Unread post by John M »

That "Then why am I alone" story he tells is lifted directly from the epilogue of Doris' book (page 295 in the hardback) describing the Actors & Others For Animals benefit at Warner Bros.

It's interesting to read his take on films & songs, but everything else in the book is simply lifted from other books or magazine articles.

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Unread post by jmichael »

I'm enjoying this book enormously but I think he's a bit hard on Doris when it comes to "Romance on the High Seas" and "Calamity Jane."

He is correct that Doris was untrained as an actress when she made her first film but I find her performance to be natural and completely captivating. I just don't agree that she overdoes the "hip chick" routine. She seems confident, charming and comfortable in that role.

And he feels her performance in Calamity was bordeline manic. Well Ok she is very athletic and boisterous but hell that's who the character was....she was bombastic and outrageous. Doris is "on fire" in that role and I cannot imagine any of her contemporaries (Judy, Betty Hutton or June Allyson) coming close to what she does in that role. Her Calamity is a classic.

On the other hand I give him props for praising her brilliant work in "Love Me or Leave Me" and "The Man Who Knew Too Much." He really gets her work here and rightly states that she should have been nominated for Academy awards for both performances. I love the fact that he appreciates the great writing in both films and how perfectly realized the characters were. Perfect examples of how Doris's "image" overshadowed her true gifts as an actress.
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Unread post by John M »

jmichael wrote:I'm enjoying this book enormously but I think he's a bit hard on Doris when it comes to "Romance on the High Seas" and "Calamity Jane."

He is correct that Doris was untrained as an actress when she made her first film but I find her performance to be natural and completely captivating. I just don't agree that she overdoes the "hip chick" routine. She seems confident, charming and comfortable in that role.

And he feels her performance in Calamity was bordeline manic. Well Ok she is very athletic and boisterous but hell that's who the character was....she was bombastic and outrageous. Doris is "on fire" in that role and I cannot imagine any of her contemporaries (Judy, Betty Hutton or June Allyson) coming close to what she does in that role. Her Calamity is a classic.
I totally agree, jmichael. I love Doris in both films. And I think he was a little hard on the film of Romance on the High Seas in general. I think it's quite charming and funny.

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I have yet to see in the book any mention to the 1989 Golden Globe appearance where Doris looked glorious! Does he cover that imprortant event?

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Calamity Jane

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Doris did have her nervous breakdown around the time of Calmity Jane. The actress's of that period were strecthed to their limlits with film demands, such as Doris, Judy Garland and Marilyn Monroe. Good thing Doris had Marty and her Christian Science and a Dotor that kept her away from pills to solve the frenzy of those times with movies back to back.

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Unread post by jmichael »

Ray, I haven't finished reading the book but so far I have not seen anything regarding her Golden Globe appearance in 1989. What an oversight if he did not include her memorable return to Hollywood.
Probably the last time she was there too.
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Unread post by John M »

He mentions the Golden Globes Award, but he does not describe the event at all. This is an analysis of her work, not a biography.

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Review

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Blog review of the book:

http://lvrofbooks.blogspot.com/2007/05/ ... y-tom.html

Might be worth responding if anyone has time.
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Unread post by Debbi Austen »

Nice blog review from someone that is a new fan.

I also agree with JMichael. I thought her acting in her early films was very natural. However, Calamity Jane was her 14th or 15th film and I thought she over acted a bit. Could it have been bad direction and not inexperience? The real shame is she was put in several not so good films because Warner Bros knew they could make money off her name. I do agree with the author that she did perfect her great talent in comedy by the sixties.

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Calamity Jane

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Debbi, I respect your opinion but I really never thought Doris was over-acting in "Calamity Jane" (anymore than the part demanded, which was quite a lot!) . It was always my favourite Doris film and the one that made me a total Doris fan as a very young boy. I just thought it was the perfect Doris Day film. To me that is saying something like the munchkins were over acting in "The Wizard of Oz"!
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Unread post by John M »

I agree Bryan. It was just a big, rowdy, boisterous musical, and I never thought of Doris as overacting in it.

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Good Read.

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Just finished the book, really enjoyed it, so nice to read such due praise for Doris Day. I agree with the vast majority of what is written. Especially that perhaps her best ever performances were in 'Teacher's Pet'. and 'Thrill of it all'. For me Teacher's Pet is so understated and so grown up; a really intelligent [yet funny and sexy] film.

I do think some regard should have been given to her return to the spotlight for the 1989 Golden Globes though, and some silly errors, such as stating Doris had two sons in 'It happened to Jane' and showing a pic [obviously from around 1958] and stating it was from a 1961 recording. I can pin-point Dodo give or take a year, by her dress/style and hair style!

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Unread post by dayniac »

Well - I'm with you on being able to pinpoint the year by hairstyle. I think I've maybe looked at too many pictures of Doris !!

I thought the book was pretty good. I differed a bit on his ananlysis of some of her movies. I thought she was amazing in Romance on the High Seas and Calamity Jane. And several other movies --- I had differing opinions on. As a whole - he wasn't too off on them I guess. (of course I watch all Doris movies just to enjoy her)

I tended to agree with him more on his critique of her singing career. I thought he gave her lots of praise -- and isn't it about time !!! He really had good things to say about her music. (I agree he should have pointed out The Party's Over - always one of my favorites and perfect for her voice.)

I thought the book was good and I was happy to read something with kudos for Doris !! A definite must for all Doris lovers.
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Unread post by dorisdayicon »

I liked Santopietro's book on the whole , but ,didn't ,at all, agree with his asessment of Calamity Jane and Pillow Talk. In Calamity Jane Doris gave a bravura performance ,and both films are are jewls in her acting crown. In Pillow Talk she established a gold standard for romantic comediennes. If anybody today gave the performances that Doris gave in those 2 movies, they would get an Oscar. and I'll tell that to Santopietro when I meet him this Sunday in CT.

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Unread post by dayniac »

You said it !! She should have gotten one !!
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I liked Santopietro's book on the whole , but didn't at all agree with his asessment of Calamity Jane and Pillow Talk. In Calamity Jane Doris gave a bravura performance and both films are are jewls in her acting crown. In Pillow Talk she established a gold standard for romantic comediennes.
Velda, I couldn't agree more. Calamity Jane and Pillow Talk are the two icons of Doris' film legend. It's like saying The Wizard of Oz and Breakfast at Tiffinies could have been improved on. Of course they could, but they are what they are. Would you like to re-paint the Mona Lisa? :lol:

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Unread post by howard »

Check out this web site for the latest reviews on "Considering Doris Day."

http://www.tomsantopietro.com/cddReviews.htm

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