DANA PLAYED TOM IN SUMMER STOCK AND SO REVIEWS WERE MAINLY ANNOUNCEMENTS OF PERFORMANCES. I DON'T THINK A MAJOR CRITIC EVER REVIEWED DANA'S PERFORMANCE IN THE PLAY, AND THAT IS A SHAME. DANA KNEW TENNESSEE WILLIAMS AND HAD GREAT RESPECT FOR HIS WORK. I WOULD HAVE LOVED TO TALK TO WALTER MATTHAU (I DID FOR MY BIOGRAPHY OF LILLIAN HELLMAN0, BUT MATTHAU WAS GONE BY THE TIME I BEGAN WORK ON MY DANA ANDREWS BIOGRAPHY. DANA'S CHILDREN WERE TOO YOUNG TO HAVE A CLEAR IDEA OF HIS PERFORMANCE. THE BEST PERSON TO EVALUATE HIM WOULD HAVE BEEN HIS WIFE MARY. SHE WAS HIS BEST CRITIC. BUT MARY, TOO, WAS GONE BY THE TIME I BEGAN MY BOOK.JackFavell wrote:Hi, Carl! It's great to have you at the Oasis this weekend. I am very excited about your book!
You mentioned that Dana played the role of Tom in The Glass Menagerie. I can't think of a better person to play this role! I only wish I could go back in time to see this performance. Do you have any more information about this play, the role, how Dana felt about it, what the reviewers thought, his co-stars, how he approached acting, etc?
I feel a lot of frustration in Dana's best performances, and some self loathing... was this a part of his makeup in real life, or was it all just what he made up for the characters?
I DON'T THINK SELF-LOATHING WAS PART OF THE MAN EVEN IF IT COMES OUT IN HIS CHARACTERS. HE FELT VERY FORTUNATE AND VERY HAPPY. SOME MIGHT THINK HIS ALCOHOLISM REFLECTS UNHAPPINESS OR SELF-LOATHING. BUT I DON'T THINK SO. WHAT I DO THINK I'LL SAVE FOR ANOTHER POST.
DANA CAME FROM A BIG TEXAS FAMILY, AND HE WAS A BIG FAMILY MAN. HIS CHILDREN ADORE HIM. I DO THINK, THOUGH, HE KEPT CERTAIN THINGS TO HIMSELF AND UNDERSTOOD CHARACTERS WHO WANTED TO DO THE SAME.This is related to the last question - You say he liked to get away from Hollywood, was he a big family man? Or was he reticent with his family? I sense an introspection that maybe kept him from fully enjoying himself even when at home? But perhaps that's just something I am getting from his characters.
HENRY FONDA HAD GREAT RESPECT FOR DANA AS AN ACTOR. REMEMBER THERE WERE IN THE OX-BOW INCIDENT TOGETHER. I THINK FONDS DOES VERY WELL IN DAISY KENYON, BUT WHAT CAN I SAY? I'M PARTIAL TO DANA.How did he and Fonda get along? It's pretty amazing to say that in Daisy Kenyon, it is Andrews who walks off with the better performance. Did they have a rapport?