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Sunday, 27 May 2012

Spotlight on Movie Mothers - Mothers Dearest and Screenwriter Birthday - Isobel Lennart

Star Birthday - Isobel Lennart

Isobel Lennart was born on 18 May 1915 and was responsible for writing a number of popular comedies. She began working for MGM in the mail room, but lost her job after she attempted to organise a union.

Lennart joined the Communist Party in 1939, and in order to save her career,  in 1947 she was forced to testify and name 21 individuals whom she knew had been members of the Communist Party.

Recommended viewing

Keeping with the spotlight on Movie Mothers throughout May, I have selected her screenplay for Please Don't Eat the Daisies (1960), which starred Doris Day and David Niven for my blog.

Please Don't Eat the Daisies (1960)

Please Don't Eat the Daisies (1960) is a very funny comedy starring Doris Day and David Niven as Kate and Lawrence Mackay.

The film was directed by Charles Walters, produced by Joe Pasternak and screenplay written by Isobel Lennart, based on the book (of the same name) by Jean Kerr.

The movie tells of a theatre critic Lawrence Mackay, his wife Kate, their four sons (David, Gabriel, George and baby Adam), and their dog Hobo. It co-stars Janis Paige, Richard Haydn and Spring Byington in her final film.

Between George eating the daisies, and baby Adam dropping water bombs from their apartment window onto the heads of unsuspecting people outside, the Mackays have a difficult time keeping their out of control kids behaved. They are also forced to keep baby Adam padlocked in his playpen, which resembles a cage. They do this so "he won't get out."

Musical highlights

Doris Day sings three songs in this film: "Please Don't Eat the Daisies", "Anyway the Wind Blows" and her signature tune "Whatever Will Be Will Be (Que Sera, Sera)". "Anyway the Wind Blows" was originally meant to be included in Day's previous film "Pillow Talk", and is the musical highlight from the film.

Concluding remarks

Aside from being one of Doris Day's favourite films from her career, it also one of mine. Having the seen this film at least 8 times, I enjoy it more and more each time I see it.

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