“Judy Garland’s grabbing all of the eligible guys now since her big calorie count-down. – Earl Wilson, 1963
January 10, 1931: “The Gumm Sisters (Judy and her sisters) performed at the opening of Big Brother Ken’s Dance Studio in Los Angeles, California.
January 10, 1935: Judy and her sisters, as “The Garland Sisters,” tested and were signed to Universal Studios for their upcoming biopic of Florenz Ziegfeld titled “The Great Ziegfeld.” When the property was sold to MGM in the spring the sisters were dropped from the project. The film would go on to become one of MGM’s biggest hits, earning several Oscars including Best Picture and Best Actress, the marvelous Louise Rainer. Nine months later Judy would successfully audition for MGM.
Check out The Judy Room’s “Films That Got Away” page that includes information about this and many other film projects that Judy was either cast in or wanted for.
January 10, 1943: Judy was riding high with her recent huge success in For Me And My Gal. This article by Dee Lowrance was published in quite a lot of papers around the country. Although there are some facts contained in the article, much of it was obviously fed to Lowrance by the MGM publicity department. Where they came up with the bit about Judy singing for a group around a campfire at Lake Tahoe is anyone’s guess!
Don’t Worry About Judy Garland —- She’s Still the Same Sweet Kid
Marriage has not changed her — But she’s a big-name star now!
By DEE LOWRANCE
Not so many months ago, Judy Garland was one of Hollywood’s outstanding child brides. At the time she was said to have hoped aloud that no one would ever say “marriage has changed Judy Garland.”
On the highest authority – that of her close friends – one can report that Judy’s hope has been fulfilled. Ask any of them and the answer is quick and enthusiastic: “Judy,” they announce in one breath, “is just the same week kid she ever was!”
But Judy has changed – a little. The wide, friendly smile still flashes easily over her gamin features. Her forthright manner and uncomplex sincerity have not altered since, as a 13-year-old, she made her very first picture – a short with Deanna Durbin.
But Judy is a more mature sweet kid these days. She’s prettier, for one thing, much prettier. The gangling, childish lines of her face and form have remolded themselves into a grown-up grace.
She’s more serious, too. With so many other thousands of young wives the nation over, she shares the loss of a husband to Uncle Sam. For David Rose has enlisted as a private in the Air Corps and now Mrs. Rose is living alone again; waiting for letters from her husband, making pictures, working in camp shows, and on the radio.
Since she became one of the 10 top money-making stars of 1941, her studio has kept her breathlessly busy making films. While reviewers were cheering her in “For Me and My Gal,” she was finishing up her last weeks of work on another musical, “Presenting Lily Mars.”
It’s hard to run a home with a work schedule of that sort, but Judy did.
When the Roses were married they bought a White House set on a hill that overlooks the sweeping green valley below Bel Air. Not a pretentious mansion, it’s still too big for one person. And Judy doesn’t know whether she should try to sell it and move to a smaller place.
“You can see,” she said seriously, “why I’d hate to give this place up. We’ve got everything I’ve ever wanted in houses. I love it – the view, the quietness, the away-from-it-all of this spot.”
“The pool isn’t big but it’s just the right size for us. And I adore the way the lawn edges out to a sheer drop right into the canyon. Then, too, there’s Dave’s railroad – that’s another problem.”
David Rose has a passion for any sort of an engine that is steam-driven. The Gar-Rose Railway is his special hobby. It is also one of the wonders of Hollywood.
A mutual love of music brought the Roses together. A growing appreciation of the beauties of steam engines has been added since they have known each other. But the music goes on.
Dave, before he left, was teaching Judy to play the piano. A composer by profession, he wanted his singing wife to know how to play. The house boasts three pianos but the favorite is a small white one, nightclub size, beside which Judy and Dave spent any an evening – with Dave composing music and Judy writing lyrics.
A few free hours that the studio allows Judy always finds her listening to music. They also find her otherwise busy while keeping her ears filled with melodic sound of all varieties.
She does her own hair, for instance, manicures her own nails – rather un-movie-starish, but she likes to. On rainy days she entertains herself by cleaning out closets. And she reads a great deal – biographies or books on medicine.
“Anything that’s written on medicine,” she elaborated. “I’m even able to read quite professional books on the subject. I started that interest years ago when I wanted to be a nurse. What girl doesn’t?”
One can wonder, looking over the full biography of Judy, when she ever had time to learn to be a nurse. At 3, she marched herself out on the stage of the New Grand Theater in Grand Rapids, Minn, and sang “Jingle Bells” without being asked.
Most babies of 3 wouldn’t have had such an ideal setup as Judy did had they entertained such precocious desires to become an entertainer. For Judy’s father was the manager of the theater and Judy’s mother played the piano for the singing act Judy’s two elder sisters, Su and Jinny [sic], were presenting.
She was the youngest of the Gumm family then and after she had made her first appearance on the stage, she was included in the act. The three girls sang first as an act of their own. Then her father would come out on the stage and do a short dance routine. Then he would introducer her mother.
Mrs. Gumm was noted for her tiny hands. So Mr. Gumm always introduced her as “the pretty little lady with the pretty little hands.”
“It sounds a little corny now,” Judy said, “but it always brought a lump to my throat when I heard him say it. When we girls were on the stage, Mother and Dad would sit in the audience and clap for us. Then, when they were on, we’d be down there, clapping them. It worked beautifully – carrying our own claque with us!”
Eventually, the Gumm act became “The Gumm Sisters,” but most of their activities seemed destined to be confined to playing benefits. They had almost given up when they were offered a chance to sing in Chicago.
They went, their hopes high. But Chicago audiences didn’t like them. They flopped dismally. George Jessel, who was on the same bill, tried to comfort the forlorn group of Gumms. He took Judy on his knee, dried her tears and told her she was “as pretty as a garland of flowers.”
That night “The Garland Sisters” was born and Baby Frances became Judy, simply because she thought the name was pretty.
As Garlands, they did a little better. But not well. In between scattered and few engagements, the girls went to school – they had settled near Los Angeles by the. The older daughters both married.
Judy continued at school. Then one day her mother and father took her to Lake Tahoe for a vacation. The first night there, Judy sang for a group around a campfire.
A talent scout was there. He grabbed Judy and gave her a pitch about Hollywood being the place for her. The Gumm-Garland trio left for Hollywood the next day. With her father beside her, Judy, then 12, started out for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer all her own.
“How we got into the studio,” she chuckled, I’ll never know. But the casting department was firm. ‘No babies today!’ They said. I almost left.”
But she didn’t. Even then, the gal was determined. She sat on the edge of a desk in the outer casing office and just sang. An audience gathered. Judy sang harder. Finally, word went up to the office of the biggest bigwig of them all at the studio – Louis B. Mayer. He sent for her and she and her father walked out with a signed contract.
That first short that she made with Deanna Durbin started both of them on their way – Deanna into stardom more quickly but Judy making a fine showing of her own. Her first real hit was “Love Finds Andy Hardy.” Mickey Rooney was establishing himself then and when Judy sang “I’m Just an In-Between,” she was in.
After that came a series of pictures with Mickey, all of which were hit films added to the snowballing of her stardom. But her last few pictures have been her own – “For Me and My Gal” was without benefit of Mickey and did beautifully.
And now, “Presenting Lily Mars” is another full-starrer for Mrs. David Rose – “the same week kid” – ask anyone in Hollywood who knows her!
January 10, 1944: Filming on Meet Me In St. Louis continued with scenes shot on the “Interior Lower Hall” and “Interior Stairs” set. Time called: 11:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:40 p.m.
January 10, 1945: Judy was in rehearsals for The Harvey Girls, which would not begin filming until January 12th.
The assistant director’s notes state: “Judy had an 11:00 a.m. ready call to make wardrobe tests. She arrived at the studio at 10:45. At 12 noon she called Griffin – an assistant on the picture [Harvey Girls] – to say that she couldn’t be ready till after lunch. Lunch was at 12:30 and on return she still was not ready; she arrived on the set at 3:07 p.m. all made up but not in wardrobe; she came on set dressed at 3:25. At 4:00 she left stage without making a test, for a conference with LB [Mayer] and did not return to the stage again.”
January 10, 1945: Judy was going to marry Vincente Minnelli. Lucky for us she did or we wouldn’t have Liza!
January 10, 1946: This two-page ad promoting The Harvey Girls appeared in the “Film Daily” trade magazine.
January 10, 1948: Filming continued on Easter Parade with scenes shot on the “Interior Hannah’s Dressing Room” and “Interior Pastini’s” sets. Time called: 7:00 a.m. in makeup; Judy arrived on set at 9:00 a.m.; dismissed: 5:05 p.m.
January 10, 1953: The recent death of Judy’s mother, Ethel Gumm, and their complicated relationship, became a cautionary tale.
January 10, 1961: The court case involving Judy and columnist Marie Torre, that went to the Supreme Court (they did not review it), was withdrawn by mutual agreement of both parties (see clippings). See October 15, 1958, for more details.
The case began on January 11, 1957, when Marie Torre’s column reported on a disagreement between Judy and CBS-TV (see the clippings) and quoted a “network official” who said that Judy did not want to do the special “because she thinks she is terribly fat.” Judy sued the network for 1.3 million dollars. The Judge demanded that Torre reveal the source of the quote but she refused, claiming that being forced to do so was a violation of her rights as a reporter under the First Amendment (Freedom of the Press).
The Judge sentenced Torre to 10 days in jail. She (via her paper, the New York Herald Tribune) appealed. The case went to the Supreme Court who refused to review it, so the decision of the Court of Appeals stayed. Torre served her 10 days in jail in 1959. She never revealed her source, according to the NY Times obituary published after her death in 1997.
Photos: Above, notices about the dropping of the case, including one with a photo of Judy looking as though she’s auditioning for a part in Doctor Zhivago! The last two are two versions of the original column in question.
January 10, 1963: Garland glamor.
January 10, 1966: You saw it on TV the night before, now get the soundtrack album!
Also, here’s an interesting article tying in the showing of The Wizard of Oz to a show about “The World of the Teen-ager.” It makes one want to see that NBC News Special.
January 10, 1967: Here’s a nice little blurb about Liza in her new film, Charlie Bubbles, and Judy.