Via my friend Martin:
In Hollywood, Paramount arranged a private screening for the various studio heads and specially invited guests. ” Louis B. Mayer berated Wilder before the crowd of celebrities, saying, “You have disgraced the industry that made and fed you! You should be tarred and feathered and run out of Hollywood!”
Wilder’s reply to Mayer’s response after the Hollywood screening was both insulting and abrupt. Upon hearing of Mayer’s slight, Billy in characteristic fashion strode up to the mogul and said: “I am Mr. Wilder, and go fuck yourself!”
He was always witty and good with dialog.
“My Aunt Minnie would always be punctual and never hold up production, but who would pay to see my Aunt Minnie?”
There are any number of studio bosses and executives who could stand to be told that! Of course today it should be the choosier moviegoers (not the dimbulbs. Am I a snob? Yer darn tootin’!) using Wilder’s words to them. And as for those creepy corporate robots who *own* the studios… Oy. No words are too poisonous.
Good old Billy! I wonder if anyone ever said similar to Harry Cohn?
“It proves what Harry always said: give the public what they want and they’ll come out for it.” Red Skelton on Harry’s funeral.
Oh yes, of course, I love that quotation! As always you are a treasure trove of Hollywood lore and a wonder to boot (while I can’t help but use ten words when one would do. Heh.)
Ha! That made me laugh. You could always trust Billy Wilder, hey?
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