Thursday, February 01, 2007

Dakota Fanning and (I think) Mary Pickford:

As you can see in this story, the new movie Hounddog is getting some serious criticism because of a rape scene. The girl in the scene, Dakota Fanning, is 12, and she's ready to tell anyone who will listen that she was Acting, not being abused. (The scene is in fact not graphic, according to the above story.)

Now let's go back about a hundred years, to less "PC" days, and to one of the first films Mary Pickford made. (I saw the scene I'm going to talk about, but I can't find references to this story on the web; sorry.) Mary Pickford proved she was an actress in an attempted rape scene. She was playing a teenage girl who has run away from the villain, but he's trying to catch her and overpower her. She's just locked herself in a tiny building, and the guy is trying to beat the door down and get in. When this scene was filmed, Mary Pickford started to scream as the hooligan beat on the door. Her terror was so realistic that one crew member threw up.

And that was a scene in a silent film! She was asked to tone it down, since the audience wouldn't hear her anyway, but she refused. She insisted, "I'm Acting. It makes a big difference to the scene, to be realistic."
You can judge for yourselves whether acting in a rape scene ruined Mary Pickford's life (or anyone else's). There's lots of info about her on the web. I wonder if those who ignore history are destined to get dumber and dumber.

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