By Mark Griffin
Drawing on greater than a hundred interviews with such icons as Kirk Douglas, Angela Lansbury, Lauren Bacall, Tony Curtis, and George Hamilton, Griffin turns the highlight at the enigmatic “elegant director,” revealing long-kept secrets and techniques on the center of Minnelli’s genius.
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Extra info for A Hundred or More Hidden Things: The Life and Films of Vincente Minnelli
Minnelli. It was anything but love at first sight, as almost immediately, the star and her musical director clashed over her accompaniment. Eventually the smoke cleared and the leading lady found herself attracted to this ambitious, obstinate Italian American, who knew his way around a tune and how to charm everyone into doing things his way. C. and Mina were married in Chicago. To those who followed her career as a high-spirited soubrette, Mina seemed to be sacrificing a bright future on the Broadway stage in favor of marriage.
Found themselves engaged by different theater companies. Mina continued performing—as a visibly pregnant ingénue—until the latest possible moment. When she could hold out no longer, she retreated to her mother’s house. On February 28, 1903, Lester Minnelli made his debut in Chicago. Years later, there would be an enormously successful return engagement. AS SOON AS LESTER WAS OLD ENOUGH, his parents worked him into the act. “I played the children’s parts whenever there were any to play,” he recalled.
My life-altering cinematic experience came courtesy of On a Clear Day You Can See Forever, the second-to-last directorial effort of the great Vincente Minnelli. This decidedly offbeat musical not only featured a time-traveling protagonist with paranormal powers but came complete with a poignant theme about the liberating effects of self-acceptance—a message all too eagerly received by St. Dominic Regional High School’s resident misfit. I watched On a Clear Day over and over in the summer of 1984.