Friday, August 20, 2010

Pot O' Gold's Debut "Actress"


"Comes the sequel: Not many moons ago, a haughty New Yawk matron bought a package of needles in a department store, and ordered them delivered to her Long Island home. Now comes the wife of a well-known bandleader in Movietown, who wangles herself a screen debut in James Roosevelt's Pot O' Gold production. The lady spent 350 iron men for her wardrobe and screen guild card, then she asked for a stand-in, and got the gal who serves none other than Roz Russell. When Mrs. Bandleader's big moment came, she had a one-word line in a scene. Asked a question, she said "yes". Simply that and nothing more. Only thing she missed was a retake. And she might have wangled that if she'd muffed the line and said, "no"." (Film Fun, 1941)





I tried hard to figure out who this might have been. Only 3 actresses made their screen debut in Pot O' Gold (as far as I can tell). Their names are: Jewel McGowan, Beverly Andre, and Donna Wood. Jewel McGowan was a well known dancer, so I doubt she was the likely prospect. I couldn't really find any info about Beverly Andre, except that she appeared uncredited in only 2 other films. Donna Wood seems like the likely prospect except for the New York bit. Donna Wood was apparently a big band singer, as was her sister Gloria. 


Mena Farragut original on set candid still POT O GOLD 1941

Donna and Her Don Juans were part of bandleader Horace Heidt's act, and since he was in Pot O' Gold, it seems logical that Donna would be too. She married bandleader Lee Hackler.  Donna died in 1947 of a heart condition, but she seems to have a ghost following on the web.


 It was quite difficult to sift through reality and people claiming they learned things through her ghost. There's also a few people writing novels about her. So basically, I guess I can't really figure out who Film Fun was alluding to. Who do you think it was?

Donna Wood


9 comments:

Matthew Coniam said...

How utterly fascinating! I loved reading this!

Amanda said...

Thanks Matthew!

Leslie_Siegel said...

I wrote all the stuff on Donna Wood. I started about 15 years ago when Net was just starting. No one knew who she was. I worked at newspaper in L.A. and old guy called and said he had all stuff from Donna Wood so we went and he gave me all her stuff. She kept diaries and notes and photos, lots of photos, and we found out where she was buried by looking at the photos of her funeral in 1947 and matching them to the photos they took then. She is connected to me. i am the one who has said she has told me things like lottery numbers and people from my past by using the tv as a mouth piece. It's her. GO HERE TO FIND OUT MORE: http://WhereTheWoodsWere.blogspot.com and I AM THE ONLY ONE WRITING ANYTHING ON HER IN BOOK FORM. Book is online. It WAS NOT Donna. Donna got part when she was with Horace H. She never said "YES" in Pot of Gold. She had a small line, she said, "I sing in a band with my sister!" Paulette Goddard didn't want Donna in too many scenes due to Donna's beauty and charm. Also, James Stewart liked Donna and I have photos of him and her together as well as big ones from the movie it self. it was one of the other women who said "yes". Not Donna WOOD.

LeslieSiegel said...

Go here and read a capsule of Donna Wood and you will see it was not her: http://www.zimbio.com/Paranormal/articles/14/FORGOTTEN+GHOSTS+HOLLYWOOD+BOULEVARD+WOOD Donna Wood was nowhere in time before I wrote several things on her and dedicated many blogs to her. I also have a book on the whole family. I knew Donna's cousin Virginia Wood and Donna's brother in law Lee McGeorge! Her sister Gloria Wood had a huge crush on Lee Hackler the man that married Donna Wood. So I did notice that Lee McGeorge had the same blue yes and blond hair and look as Lee Hackler did. They moved to Beverly Hills - 132 S. Canon Drive Apt. 6. It still stands. I used to live almost across the street at 261 S. Reeves, just a stone throw from her old place. I've had ghost sightings and you can see her ghost in the link above. Thanks and keep Donna and Gloria Wood alive. i love this column. I could add to it and make it even better with stories of the Wood Sisters.

Matthew Coniam said...

Yikes!

Lee Vid said...

Yikes?

Leslie Siegel said...

Ummmmm "Yes"!

Leslie Siegel said...

OK I have proof it WAS NOT Donna Wood. It was Beverly Andre, because she'd already had been unnamed in two films, which means she probably messed up those little lines there. Donna Wood married Lee "HACKLER" not Hacker in February of 1943, and Pot O' Gold was filmed in 1941. Donna Wood was in a big scene where James Stewart is playing the harmonica (which was slipped in there after war broke out when they were promoting the film) and you see Donna appear, sing with the biggies, and even dance on camera. She also says one line perfectly on the rooftop! So Beverly is the culprit.

Amanda said...

Thanks so much for the updates. I always appreciate corrections. I wish I knew what the answer was, but alas, the author assumes the readers knew. Your guess sounds like an educated one. Thanks!

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