Before she died in , Joan Crawford reportedly said that, if a movie were ever made from her life, Faye Dunaway was the only actress who could do the role justice. But " Mommie Dearest " was certainly not the biopic she had in mind. Based on the memoir by Joan's daughter, Christina Crawford -- a controversial best-seller -- the film portrayed Joan as an alcoholic, a compulsive clean freak, and an abusive parent. And Dunaway's operatic performance, widely ridiculed when the film was released 35 years ago this week, tarnished not only Crawford's reputation but Dunaway's as well. Today, it's acknowledged as a camp classic and we celebrate its 35th anniversary with these facts every movie fan should know. Anne Bancroft was initially cast as Joan, but she dropped out because she didn't like the screenplay. Bancroft did win for " The Miracle Worker " , and Crawford accepted the statuette on her behalf at the Hollywood awards ceremony. She also says Dunaway held nothing back during the knock-down, drag-out sequence where Joan attacks Christina, Carol Ann, and a visiting journalist. Alda claims Dunaway was a terror to nearly everyone on the set, even to veteran, multiple-Oscar-winning costume designer Irene Sharaff , who came out of retirement to swathe Dunaway in period glamour.
Where you've heard it
No wire hangers! What's wire hangers doing in this closet when I told you no wire hangers ever!? Mommie Dearest is the allegedly true story of film star Joan Crawford's completely bonkers home life. Based on a tell-all book by Crawford's adopted daughter, Christina, the film casts Faye Dunaway as Crawford, and shows her at her craziest. One night she flips out at finding wire hangers in her daughter's closet instead of nice padded ones, so she screams at her daughter and You hear this line whenever someone is talking about someone else going crazy. Or at a drag show. If you were to drop this quote at a dinner party, would you get an in-unison "awww" or would everyone roll their eyes and never invite you back?
Mommie Dearest is a American biographical drama  film directed by Frank Perry. The film depicts Christina Crawford 's adoptive mother, actress Joan Crawford as an abusive and manipulative mother who hurt her adopted children. The film was distributed by Paramount Pictures , the only one of the Big Eight film studios for which Crawford had never appeared in a feature film. Despite receiving mostly negative reviews from critics, the film's bizarre script and highly charged acting, particularly on the part of Dunaway, have brought a cult following to the film as an "unintentional comedy". Joan Crawford is a driven actress and compulsively clean housekeeper who tries controlling the lives of those around her as tightly as she controls herself. When Helga, a new maid, thinks Joan's living room is spotless, Joan finds a minor detail she overlooked and loses her temper. Joan is in a relationship with Hollywood lawyer Gregg Savitt, but her career is in a downswing.
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