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The Star (1952)

Passed | | Drama, Romance | 11 December 1952 (USA)
Trailer
1:44 | Trailer
A washed-up movie queen finds romance, but still desires a comeback.

Director:

Stuart Heisler

Writers:

Dale Eunson (original screenplay), Katherine Albert (original screenplay)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bette Davis ... Margaret Elliot
Sterling Hayden ... Jim Johannsen aka Barry Lester
Natalie Wood ... Gretchen
Warner Anderson ... Harry Stone
Minor Watson ... Joe Morrison
June Travis ... Phyllis Stone
Paul Frees ... Richard Stanley
Robert Warwick ... R.J., Aging Actor at Party (as Robert Warrick)
Barbara Lawrence ... Barbara Lawrence
Fay Baker ... Faith
Herb Vigran ... Roy
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Storyline

Middle-aged Oscar winning actress Margaret Elliot - Maggie to those that know her - is a Hollywood has-been. Her life is in shambles. She clings to the hope of resurrecting her past movie stardom as a leading ingénue. No one will hire her, she's penniless with creditors selling off anything that she owns that is of monetary value, and she has no one to turn to that can see her through financially. She has in the past supported her sister and brother-in-law, who still want to use her as their meal ticket. Divorced from her actor husband, she shares joint custody of their teen-aged daughter Gretchen, from who Maggie tries to hide her problems. When it looks as if Maggie has hit rock bottom, Jim Johannsen re-enters her life. Jim, who once had the stage name Barry Lester, got his big break in Hollywood movies by Maggie. He came to the quick realization that he was neither good as an actor or that he wanted to do it as a profession. He now works as a boat parts supplier and mechanic. Jim ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The story of a woman...who thought she was a star so high in the sky no man could touch her!

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 December 1952 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Star See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At least two different Oscar statuettes were used in the "c'mon, Oscar, let's you and me get drunk" sequence. For the first 18 years, Oscar statuettes had a short base. Starting with the 1946 awards (presented in 1947), Oscar statuettes had a taller pedestal base with a brass collar designed for personalized engraving. The statuette that Maggie holds in her apartment and in front of her old house have the pre-1946 base. The one she sets on the dashboard of her car has the newer pedestal base. The switch was made because the Oscar had to rest its head on the backside of the car's rear-view mirror in order to balance on the dashboard while Maggie drove around. Davis' two pre-1946 Oscars were too short, so a newer Oscar was used during shots of the car's interior. See more »

Goofs

Late in the movie there is a scene at the home of Harry Stone, Margaret's agent. As he is telling his wife, Phyllis, about the poor results of Margaret's screen test, the two are walking through the house. The shadow of the boom mic can be seen on the wall behind them as they are walking. See more »

Quotes

[to her Oscar statuette]
Margaret Elliott: Come on, Oscar, let's you and me get drunk!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood Mouth 2 (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

Somewhat depressing but fascinating
23 July 2017 | by preppy-3See all my reviews

Davis (in an Oscar-nominated performance) plays Margaret Elliot as washed out has been actress. She was big once but now can't get a job. She's divorced and penniless but refuses to give up hope for one more acting job. She also has a man who loves her (Sterling Hayden) and is trying to get her to face reality. There's also a scene or two of Margaret with her daughter played by an impossibly young Natalie Wood.

It's a depressing movie of course but you can't stop watching. It's short (89 minutes) and moves quickly. It does have a ridiculously false but happy ending that had me getting misty-eyed. This is worth seeing for Davis alone. She's just great. She also gleefully said she modeled her character after Joan Crawford! OUCH!


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