“There’s nothing worse than being home alone at night – and I have been, too often – I’ve looked at the telephone many a night, and thought that if somebody would just get the wrong number I’d appreciate it. Just to hear the phone ring.” – Judy Garland, 1967
October 3, 1931: Judy, as “Francis Gayne” (which was a stage name that the family was trying out at the time) performed at the Eastern Star State Chapter Conclave in Bakersfield, California. It’s also noted that Judy might have been billed as “Baby Marie Gumm” which was another name the family was trying out.
October 3, 1937: The story of Judy’s first big identifier hit, “(Dear Mr. Gable) You Made Me Love You,” and its odyssey from hit to obscurity to hit again was explained in this news blurb.
October 3, 1938: The Oz that never was. Here are some costume/hair/makeup tests for the original Tin Man, Buddy Ebsen; original Wicked Witch of the West, Gale Sondergard in “ugly” makeup (the photo of the glamorous look is from September 22, 1938); and an unidentified little person in an unused Winged Monkey costume.
Ebsen famously had a near-fatal reaction to the “silver” makeup. Jack Haley was brought in to replace him. Oscar-winner Sondergard was replaced when the decision was made to go with a more traditional “hag” type character for the Wicked Witch of the West. Magaret Hamilton was brought in to replace her. The look for the Flying Monkeys was also changed.
Haley and Hamilton stepped into immortality. Ebsen later said his experience was the worst of his professional career. Sondergaard later said that she had no regrets leaving after the decision was made to try to make her “ugly” rather than glamorous. She was known for her beauty and wasn’t about to be ugly at this point in her career. You can see some disdain in her face in the “ugly” pics. The last image is an early idea for the “hag” version of the witch.
October 3, 1939: Judy and Mickey are tops! Also on this day, Judy appeared on NBC’s “The Pepsodent Show Starring Bob Hope.” Judy was a new regular on the weekly half-hour program. On this night she sang “Comes Love.” No recording of this show exists, but Judy sang the song again on December 16, 1939, on the “Arrowhead Springs Hotel Opening Broadcast.” That version is below.
Meanwhile, that “Oz Caravan” was still making its way around the Midwestern U.S. Here’s advance notice of its upcoming appearance in Des Moines, Iowa.
More details and images of all of Judy’s activities during that golden year of 1939 can be found on The Judy Room’s Garland Centennial 1939 Page.
October 3, 1940: Judy Garland, sweater girl. Judy’s image was also used to sell slips for young women.
October 3, 1940: Here’s something fun. The Sheboygan, Wisconsin fans of Judy and Mickey sent them this big postcard with almost 3,000 names on it.
October 3, 1940: Strike Up The Band was making its way around the country and was another big hit for Judy, Mickey Rooney, and MGM’s new producers of musicals, Arthur Freed.
October 3, 1941: What a difference five years makes. This showing of Pigskin Parade in Connellsville, Pennsylvania, was promoted as if Judy was the main star of the film, reflecting her popularity at the box office. The film wasn’t actually in any kind of major re-release, this was a single engagement. It wasn’t uncommon for films to pop up in theaters several years after their original releases.
October 3, 1941: Another day of filming the extensive “Finale” sequence for Babes on Broadway. Time called: 10 a.m.; lunch: 12:05-1:05 p.m.; dismissed: 5:55 p.m.
Photo provided by Kim Lundgreen. Thanks, Kim!
October 3, 1942: This four-page ad from MGM promoting its upcoming films, including For Me And My Gal, was published in the “Film Daily” trade magazine. Below is a separate ad published in the same issue.
October 3, 1944: Filming on The Clock continued with scenes on the “Exterior Al’s House and Street” and “Exterior Riverside Park” sets.
Judy arrived a the studio at 8:40 a.m. and was on the set at 10:20 a.m. for her 10 a.m. call. The assistant director’s reports note that from “10:20-10:40 – Rehearsing; 10:40-11:25 – Line and Light (Miss Garland getting into wardrobe, fixing hair and makeup, etc.); 11:25-11:35 – Miss Garland getting ready; 11:35-11:40 – rehearsing; 11:40-11:46 – Line and Light; 11:46-12:28 – Shooting 11 takes; 12:28-12:30 – stills (publicity stills shot on the set); dismissed at 12:30 (lunch was from 12:30-1:30 p.m.).”
Check out The Judy Room’s Spotlight Section “Judy on the MGM Backlot” for more details about where scenes for the film were shot on MGM’s fabled backlot.
October 3, 1945: Judy was scheduled for dance rehearsals with Robert Alton for Till The Clouds Roll By but had to cancel it because she was ill and so did not go to work.
October 3, 1947: Another day of rehearsals on “A Couple of Swells” for Judy and Gene Kelly, for Easter Parade. Time called: 1 p.m.; Judy arrived at 1:30 p.m.; dismissed: 3:10 p.m.
Photo: Judy with MGM studio boss Louis B. Mayer and songwriter Irving Berlin. Provided by Kim Lundgreen. Thanks, Kim!
October 3, 1949: Judy sent this telegram to Gene Kelly, asking him not to open a personal letter that she mistakenly sent to him. The question is, what was in that letter?
October 3, 1950: Judy’s recent departure from MGM was, of course, news. Her last film for the studio, Summer Stock, was still a hit proving that in spite of her recent personal struggles, her fans still supported her and loved her no matter what.
October 3, 1954: More raves for A Star Is Born, plus some blurbs including one that claims the Oscar seen in the film was the same one that Judy received for her performance in The Wizard of Oz. Obviously, that’s untrue because Judy’s Oz Oscar was a miniature.
October 3, 1961: Judy attended the Broadway premiere of “Sail Away.” She’s seen here with Noel Coward and Lynn Fontanne. Coward wrote the book, music, and lyrics for the show. Judy sang “Sail Away” on April 26, 1962, it was one of the songs she performed for the aborted Capitol album “Judy Takes Broadway” as well as on “Episode Twenty-Five” of “The Judy Garland Show” taped on March 6, 1964.
Photos: Judy with Noel Coward and Lynn Fontanne at the Broadway premiere of “Sail Away” on October 3, 1961. Note that Fontanne starred in the original Broadway version of “The Pirate” which was made into the 1948 film of the same name starring Judy and Gene Kelly.
October 3, 1965: Judy appeared on the CBS-TV show, “The Ed Sullivan Show” broadcast live in color from Television City in Hollywood, CA.
Judy sang: “Come Rain Or Come Shine”; “By Myself”; and “Rock-A-Bye Your Baby.” Judy’s arm had been in a cast since her September 14th trip over her dog which resulted in its being broken. She took it off for the show.
This was Judy’s only real appearance on the famous variety show, as her April 1963 appearance consisted of clips from a March 10, 1963, appearance on a London variety show. This October 3, 1965, show was rerun on August 7, 1966.
October 3, 1967: The second in the series of four articles from “The Plot Against Judy Garland” that was originally published in the Ladies Home Journal.
October 3, 2009: The subscription streaming service Netflix streamed The Wizard of Oz for free all day. The service also aired (again for free) clips from its concert in New York’s Central Park that featured: Contemporary interpretations of classic songs from the “The Wizard of Oz” by the Academy Award®- winning actress and Grammy Award®-winning singer Jennifer Hudson and two-time American Country Music Award® and two-time “Dancing with the Stars” winner Julianne Hough. The show is being directed by and will also feature The Roots’ Grammy Award-winning drummer and record producer Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson and a band assembled especially for the show. Following the concert, which kicks off at 7:30 p.m. at Central Park’s Rumsey Playfield, the movie will be shown on a giant inflatable screen.
Check out The Judy Room’s Wizard of Oz 70th Anniversary Home Media Page here.
Check out The Judy Room’s Spotlight on The Wizard of Oz here.