by Anton Wills-Eve
<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/pleased-to-meet-you/”>Pleased to Meet You</a>
following the wordpress prompt imagining what happened when two famous literary or screen (or both) characters met for the first time.
Our story opens on the bustling set of a new Hollywood blockbuster. A young girl approaches a young man….obligatory in pre-war movies.
“Oh, Mr.Butler. At last. I’ve heard so much about you, and that great photograph by Matt Brady, you were so handsome in it. But in real life you’re even more attractive. I’ve gone all goose bumps, and feel shy which isn’t like me at all.”
“I’m sorry honey, I didn’t catch your name. If you want an autograph you’ll have to see my agent Mrs. Mitchel. They say we’re going to have a civil war any day soon and I don’t want that English creep Leslie stealing the lead role from me, so if you’ll excuse me…”
“Oh No. So cruel. Cruel, too cruel, do you hear me? I too am English and on top of that I can act. Take me instead of him. Please, ” and she aimed a swoon at two outstretched arms, not noticing they were trying to light a five foot long cigar.
“Cut!! For Lords sakes, honey the censor will never pass that scene. You missed his arms and your head hit his knee on your way to the ground. And what did you say your name was? Viv Pink? What sort of a name is that? ” But the debonair Mr.Butler rose to her rescue.
” She’s cuter than Leslie, give her the job and let’s get this movie started or people will have read the book before we have time to ruin it. Also the war’s getting closer and I don’t want to be caught up in Atlanta when the flames hit the fan.”
At this the hitherto unknown lady cried out in an ecstacy of overacting, ” Oh Mr.Butler, thank you. You’ve made my career. Oh just think, I’ll divorce you and marry Larry and have lost of little Scarlets and Retts and be famous and never have to beg on the street corners of Hollywood again.”
The director lost his patience. “Look lady you’ve just been given the lead part in Gone with ….Gone with… what’s this damn movie called? ‘The Wind!?’ No kiddin’! ‘The Wind.’ Okay. So I’ll make ‘The Wind’. Now act or that Olivia dame will get your part and you’ll be on the next boat back to Liverpool, England. Okay guys, roll!”
At that moment Clark Gable – “who the hell’s he? Is he in this movie? You sure? News to me still I get paid thousands just to shout roll and cut so let’s get on with it” – strode onto the set his eyebrows twitching and his nostrils flaring as he tried to emote passion. Thomas Mitchell looked at him and said, “you sure Trigger didn’t get offered your part, bud?” They almost had the whole of the civil war right there and then but fortunately Raymond Massey was having a manicure so they had no one to play the lead in the sub plot, ‘death of a president.’
And as the sun set on the studio filled with our cine-celebrated characters, Viv Pink had a sudden call of nature and in her first natural remark to Clark said, “Could you lend me a coin to go to the ladies?” To which he replied,
“I’m fresh outta dimes, baby, but I could give you a damn!”
And now we see the whole scene closing at sunset with a young wannabe actor struggling to think up a title for a cowboy film he wanted to star in with twelve year old Grace Kelly. On the pad in front of him he had written and crossed out,…. eleven seventeen….eight thirty four….six twenty pm ….
Hollywood legend has it that it took him another ten years to think up the eventual title. “Low Midnight!”