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An aging actor, about to marry for the fourth time, is surprised when a young woman, who is the daughter he never knew he had, appears with a "letter of introduction". It seems that she is an actress and is trying to make it on Broadway. He tries to establish a relationship with her but finds it difficult to tell the world of their true relationship.Written by
An actor from a family with long and illustrious tradition of theaters (Shakespearean? it is mentioned his parents played Romeo and Juliet to packed houses for ages) has left theater and migrated to Hollywood. Now, in his fifties, trying desperately to hide his age, suddenly is introduced to his daughter, a struggling actress, in her twenties., around the age his latest fiancee, about to become his fourth wife.
The daughter wants his help in starting her career on stage, and he has to struggle to do it, without divulging the relationship, lest the Casanova's real age is known to public. Without the clarifications, gossip magazines have a field day, destroying the romances of both father and daughter.
This has too interesting to be a mere coincidence similarity with the great but equally tragic (alcohol curse) actor John Barrymore - of the revered Barrymore family (here the name is changed to Mannering family), and the daughter Diana (here Kay martin) is from first wife, instead of real-life second wife.
This movie (1938) precedes what happened in real life - and the difference isn't too far. Diana, also beset with tragedy as her father, was estranged from John, and landed up in Broadway one year later, in 1939. John was married four times, here Mannering's just missed the fourth. The fourth wife, Elaine was 21, and he was 54 (in this movie, it was 22 and 52, not too far away). Even the last stage appearance of John has remarkable similarity with this - only that happened four years after this movie was released.
One of the comments here talks of what Diana and John thought about it - it should be in fact other way - they didn't learn from it - and in fact followed what was depicted here.
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