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Luise Rainer: Live from the TCM Classic Film Festival (2011)

TV Movie  |   |  Documentary  |  12 January 2011 (USA)
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100-year-old Oscar-winning actress Luise Rainer sits down with Robert Osborne at the 2010 TCM Classic Film Festival.


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Title: Luise Rainer: Live from the TCM Classic Film Festival (TV Movie 2011)

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A few months after her 100th birthday, two-time Oscar winner Luise Rainer joins Robert Osborne onstage at the first annual TCM Classic Film Festival in April 2010. Rainer discusses her brief Hollywood career, including her Oscar-winning portrayal of a Chinese farmer's wife in THE GOOD EARTH (1937) and her thoughts about co-star Paul Muni and MGM boss Louis B. Mayer. Rainer explains her philosophy on acting, an art form she takes very seriously (she was never interested in simply being a "star"). She even touches upon her two marriages and the effects of growing old (her hearing aid had broken and Osborne had to write out his questions on a pad of paper). Written by Jimmy L.

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The Great Rainer
14 January 2015 | by (Earth) – See all my reviews

This is a short, but extraordinary interview with 100-year-old actress Luise Rainer, by Turner Classic Movies (TCM) TV host Robert Osborne. It was conducted as part of the first TCM Film Festival, 25 April 2010, prior to the screening of Ms. Rainer's film "The Good Earth" (1937). Rainer walks in with a cane and immediately announces she's broken her hearing aid. Don't let that dissuade you from watching because Rainer is bright and captivating. After difficulty understanding Mr. Osborne's questions, the audience suggests he write them down for Rainer. This works. Osborne's questions are soft and respectful, but Rainer is revealing. First, we hear her speak about the making of "The Good Earth". Additional questions prompt Rainer to remember clashing with co-star Paul Muni and MGM studio head Louis B. Mayer...

Rainer says she refused to sit on Mayer's lap. She quotes the movie mogul as lamenting, of his creation, "This girl is a Frankenstein!" MGM and Mayer had immediately assigned the young German actress top productions and helped her win back-to-back "Academy Awards" as their leading actress. Then and now, many feel the awards should have been won by Greta Garbo. Most likely, Mayer was looking for another star like Garbo; but, one with which he could exert more control. He failed. Sadly, for Rainer, the Oscar-winning experience caused an almost immediate backlash. After only a few films, Rainer and MGM parted company. She acted occasionally and lived a long, apparently very happy life. This interview is a delight and Rainer exits the stage on the best terms possible; she leaves us wanting more.

******* Luise Rainer: Live from the TCM Classic Film Festival (1/12/11) Sean Cameron ~ Luise Rainer, Robert Osborne

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