Cinema: Dead Cats

Hollywood woke up one morning last week to find its self-satisfied air full of dead cats. The slingers: Manhattan's Independent Theatre Owners Association. Inc. Their targets: Greta Garbo. Marlene Dietrich. Mae West. Joan Crawford, Kay Francis. Katharine Hepburn. Edward Arnold. Fred Astaire. The reason: These highly-publicized great ones were "poison at the box office." "WAKE UP." screamed the theatre owners to Hollywood's producers. "Practically all of the major studios are burdened with stars—whose public appeal is negligible—receiving tremendous salaries . . . Garbo, for instance . . . does not help theatre owners...

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