Virginia Grey

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Virginia Grey (March 22, 1917 – July 31, 2004) was an American film and television actress.


Classic Images Interview, 1994 [citation needed][edit]

  • We filmed in 1956. This was five years after I dated Bob [Robert Taylor] and she filed for divorce. I accidentally put my coat on her chair and she tore into me with a vengeance in front of everyone. She never mentioned Bob, but she resented me for going out with him. She had no other reason for hating me.
  • Hollywood men are a lot of phony balonies.
  • I am a Mormon. Dad was and I was raised in that religion and during the '30s and '40s, I strayed and got into others things. I drank, I smoked, and did things totally opposite, not even thinking of what I had known during childhood. I remember in 1958, two elders came to my door and I began to think about my upbringing and what I learned and than I started to meditate on that and I found solace once again and realized what I had been neglecting, if not forgetting, all those years when I was out of circulation. I returned to my Mormon roots around Christmastime that year and became very active in the church again. I'm glad those young man dropped in and reminded me about what I'd been missing because if not I would've missed out on what the true "big picture" is.

Western Clippings Interview, Mike Fitzgerald, 1998 [citation needed][edit]

  • It’s been released on video, and I have a copy—however, there is an important scene missing. They cut out a big sequence. I cannot remember if it was cut before the film was released, or if it has since been edited out. It was where I had fallen in the river and Uncle Tom saved me—it set up a good relationship between Uncle Tom and Little Eva. The director, Harry Pollard, hated James B. Lowe, or ‘Tom’, who, interestingly, called me several years ago. He was down in Long Beach, from Europe where he normally lived. He tried to get together with me, but it didn’t work out. He was a real sweetheart."
  • That was with Richard Arlen, who had been a big star in silents, he’d slipped into the Bs by this time. We shot that on location up in Lone Pine.
  • The Audie Murphy people—his foundation, have been haunting me about him. But I didn’t know him at all. I’d work, go home, and not socialize with these people. The whole picture is very vague to me.
  • I made so many pictures, that many are a blur in my mind.” One that isn’t a blur is “The Last Command” made for Republic. “We made ours before Duke made his ‘Alamo’. There was a beef with Herbert Yates over the title. We shot it on location in Brackettville, TX, and the John Wayne version used our left-over sets. Although we were in Texas, I never got to San Antonio, so I never saw the ‘real’ Alamo—just the one constructed in Brackettville.
  • And it is ‘Flame of Barbary Coast,’ and not ‘Flame of the Barbary Coast’. Almost everybody gets that title wrong. Ann Dvorak was in it…a big picture, a long shooting schedule…I was not under contract to Republic, but after I left MGM in ‘42 and started to freelance, Republic and Universal used me quite often after that. Yates seemed to like me.
  • Idaho we shot on location in Kernville. Roy Rogers was the star, and he was a nice man to work with. This was before Dale Evans, though. Roy was married to another girl who shortly thereafter passed on.
  • The star was Gene Autry. I had heard tales he had a way with the ladies, but luckily for me, there was no problem. I think he must have known I was dating Clark Gable, and he’d better not try anything with me. That makes any man secondary, after you've dated the best.
  • I played a character called Lorabelle Larkin in ‘Slaughter Trail’ with Gig Young. We made that picture twice. It was around the time Howard Hughes bought RKO-Radio. Howard DaSilva was originally cast in the part Brian Donlevy eventually did. Donlevy was cast after Howard Hughes said DaSilva was a Commie and was kicked off the picture! We reshot virtually the whole film, because Howard Hughes ‘didn’t want no Commies in his movies.This made the picture a financial pleasure. It was way out in left field, a strange offbeat picture, but one of my personal favorite.
  • It was filmed up in Lone Pine, halfway between the Valley and Mammoth Lake, about a three hour drive, so we stayed up there. We shot it in the Spring, or maybe the Fall, because the weather wasn’t too bad. You have the danger of rains when you shoot then, but in the summer, it would be too hot. The desert scenes were shot just beside Lone Pine…that area resembled a desert (the dunes near Olancha—ed.) Fortunately, we didn’t have to go to Death Valley.
  • Even though we stayed on location, I didn’t get to know him. We were too tired, and too dirty (Laughs) to socialize in the evening. Besides that, I don’t recall there being any place to even go at the time. It surely has grown some, but in those days, there was literally nothing there. So, the cast would take a shower, jump into bed (separate beds, of course) (Laughs), grab their script, and study their lines for the next day’s shoot.
  • I don’t believe it. You know, after a picture’s been out for awhile, stories seem to circulate—stories that can no longer be verified, because everyone connected with the incident is dead. People will say anything to sell a book. As for our work with the dinosaurs, it was all done with a backscreen, so none of the actors saw the monsters, until we saw the picture. I liked doing it! It was a crazy picture, and I liked working with Richard Denning and Barton MacLane. They dyed my hair red, but left Denning’s blond locks alone. It’s been so long ago I don’t remember why they did it that way. ‘Unknown Island’ was one of the fun ones.
  • I consider myself a professional who acts, not to express my soul or elevate the cinema but to entertain and get paid for it.

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