Classic movie site with rare images (no web grabs!), original ads, and behind-the-scenes photos, with informative and insightful commentary. We like to have fun with movies!
Archive and Links
grbrpix@aol.com
Search Index Here




Friday, July 25, 2014

Metro's Two For Price Of One

Unlike The Better-Known Hilton Sisters, This Dishy Duo Was Not Conjoined

The Wilde Twins Parent Trapping In Twice Blessed (1945)

Twin teens Lee and Lyn Wilde beating The Parent Trap and its credited story origin by near-fifteen years, which makes me wonder why Metro didn't cry foul when Disney released its higher-profile remake (or was it outright steal?) in 1961. Near as I make it, the German novel (Das doppelte Lottchen) adapted by Disney was written by Erich Kastner in 1949, but surely this author caught Twice Blessed, by then out a while, though more recently to after-war Deutsch patrons. Did he copy Metro's yarn as all appearances indicate? Twice Blessed is hotter-wired to teen habits of its day than safer playing The Parent Trap, and the Wildes are surely a saucier pair than two scrubbed Hayleys. As barometer to jitterbugging 40's youth, Twice Blessed is one priceless capsule, moving brisk along 76 minutes that never goes tiring. The Wildes were a novel parlay with talent enough to score individually, even if MGM never saw fit to part them for individual vehicles. This was their sole starring showcase, otherwise work being specialty placement in Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble and similar pix. Twice Blessed should be better known, and credited, for being first with a concept popularized considerably more by ones who'd borrow brazenly from it.

3 Comments:

Blogger Scott MacGillivray said...

Lee and Lyn were also part of a singing trio: Lee, Lyn, and Lou (Lou Sidwell, who left the act to get married).
In the early forties they worked in Hollywood short subjects:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AYbyrWahrbA

and in Soundies:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ZRyPaZrw2c

11:17 AM  
Blogger John McElwee said...

Thanks, Scott. I really like the Wilde twins, and wish they'd done more starring features.

11:23 AM  
Blogger John McElwee said...

Donald Benson has some ideas about Disney and MGM looking out for each other:


Conspiracy theorist at work:

Conceivably MGM itself had borrowed the story from an even earlier source (perhaps the same one the novelist used?), and chose to settle quietly. That could disincline them from publicly pressing the point with Disney, for fear a visible financial transaction would void the settlement. That could play into any of the following scenarios:

-- In the 50s Uncle Walt announced "Rainbow Road to Oz" on his TV show and had the Mouseketeers do several numbers. While he had the rights to most of the Oz books, MGM certainly could have quietly pressured him to protect the ongoing profitability of their own Oz epic (and possible remake/sequels?). "Rainbow Road" was abandoned. A few years later, MGM thoughtfully looks the other way when Disney remakes a minor 45 release. In fact, one might wonder if MGM even made their own movie a bit less available to TV as part of a gentlemanly agreement.
-- Alternatively, maybe letting "Parent Trap" slide was further payback to Disney for lending Josh Meador to animate the monster in "Forbidden Planet." The fact that they went to Disney and gave Meador AND Disney onscreen credit suggests they were in trouble; otherwise they would have stuck with in-house animation and effects talent.
-- Maybe it was Disney who had to pay back after MGM came and pointed out the resemblance; whether Disney knew "Twice Blessed" existed is a moot point. I don't know of any big 1960s favors to MGM; if it happened it may have been something like the unrelated bargain sale of a Disney-held literary property, or Disney backing away from a different project that seemed to step on MGM's toes.

Influenced by Cartoon Research's article about "Hoppity Goes to Town", which suggests the film wasn't a victim of timing (Pearl Harbor) but of Paramount quietly dumping it.

8:02 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

grbrpix@aol.com
  • December 2005
  • January 2006
  • February 2006
  • March 2006
  • April 2006
  • May 2006
  • June 2006
  • July 2006
  • August 2006
  • September 2006
  • October 2006
  • November 2006
  • December 2006
  • January 2007
  • February 2007
  • March 2007
  • April 2007
  • May 2007
  • June 2007
  • July 2007
  • August 2007
  • September 2007
  • October 2007
  • November 2007
  • December 2007
  • January 2008
  • February 2008
  • March 2008
  • April 2008
  • May 2008
  • June 2008
  • July 2008
  • August 2008
  • September 2008
  • October 2008
  • November 2008
  • December 2008
  • January 2009
  • February 2009
  • March 2009
  • April 2009
  • May 2009
  • June 2009
  • July 2009
  • August 2009
  • September 2009
  • October 2009
  • November 2009
  • December 2009
  • January 2010
  • February 2010
  • March 2010
  • April 2010
  • May 2010
  • June 2010
  • July 2010
  • August 2010
  • September 2010
  • October 2010
  • November 2010
  • December 2010
  • January 2011
  • February 2011
  • March 2011
  • April 2011
  • May 2011
  • June 2011
  • July 2011
  • August 2011
  • September 2011
  • October 2011
  • November 2011
  • December 2011
  • January 2012
  • February 2012
  • March 2012
  • April 2012
  • May 2012
  • June 2012
  • July 2012
  • August 2012
  • September 2012
  • October 2012
  • November 2012
  • December 2012
  • January 2013
  • February 2013
  • March 2013
  • April 2013
  • May 2013
  • June 2013
  • July 2013
  • August 2013
  • September 2013
  • October 2013
  • November 2013
  • December 2013
  • January 2014
  • February 2014
  • March 2014
  • April 2014
  • May 2014
  • June 2014
  • July 2014
  • August 2014
  • September 2014
  • October 2014
  • November 2014
  • December 2014
  • January 2015
  • February 2015
  • March 2015
  • April 2015
  • May 2015
  • June 2015
  • July 2015
  • August 2015
  • September 2015
  • October 2015
  • November 2015
  • December 2015
  • January 2016
  • February 2016
  • March 2016
  • April 2016
  • May 2016
  • June 2016
  • July 2016
  • August 2016
  • September 2016