tirsdag 23. februar 2010

Greta Gynt 1916 in Oslo - 2000 London

Margrethe Woxholt....

As a child she came with her parents to England and started dancing lessons at the tender age of 5. Eventually they moved back to Norway. At 12 she started out as a dancer at the Chat Noir shows in Oslo. After the Swedish film Sången till henne 1934, her mother, costumdesigner Kirsten Woxholt, felt her daugher would have better luck in England. She got a letter of recommendation from Fox Film and moved to the UK.

Her most famous film is the 1939 Bela Lugosi film The Dark Eyes of London/The Human Monster and it has always been available on video and - later - dvd. In it she plays Diana Stewart and her portrayel is a not a cowardly leading lady a`la Fay Wray in King Kong 1933 or Lugosi`s other leading ladies... Gynt`s Diana is a headstrung woman and stands up to him.

Gynt was a temperamentel actress who just didn`t have the talent for careerplanning. She would have been greater and far more remembered had she not chosen her name after Greta Garbo and Peer Gynt. In the late 40s she also returned from Hollywood to England after the successes of Dear Murderer and Take My Life on the grounds that her family was in Norway(she left the country for good in the late 30s), her lover i England as was her son and his father.
When MGM beckoned she bitched about knowing her lines when asked casually if she knew them already and the end resulted in a small part in the 1951 Soldiers Three with David Niven and Stewart Granger.

This also happened when George Sanders asked for a screentest for the 1959 Bluebard`s 10 Honeymoons. She felt Arlene Dahl was dull in Fortune is a Woman 1957 in which she had a smaller part and later singled out herself quoting the critics at the time.

She also blamed an exhusband on the grounds that he advised her to accept top salary for supportings roles in the 50s....

She loathed the fact that she was not given the Kay Kendall part in the musical Technicolor turkey LONDON TOWN 1946, meaning she could have danced that part.

Her last film was a Columbia Pictures release - the 1963(released 1966) The Runaway in which she played the lead.

As an actress she had a cool style and had a true gift for cinema acting. When she had learned her craft, her underplaying was a treasure to behold. Her English accent was by far the best from a Scandinavian actress. Neither Bergman, Garbo, Ullmann or Henie could match her fluency in the adopted language, but it must be remembered that she did learn English quite young.

Her talent survives in three excellent movies - Mr Emmanuel 1944, Take My Life and Dear Murderer(both 1947)

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