“The Way We Wore” by Marsha Hunt

In an inteview with Marsha Hunt by Gary Sweeney on The Midnight Palace, Miss Hunt tells us, “my whole goal was to act.”

You can listen to the interview and see more pictures of Marsha.

Marsha Hunt

Marsha Hunt

Interviewer Gary Sweeney asks Miss Hunt how she was able to get her start at Paramount.  Her answer may be most interesting to those who are trying to make a start of any career for it shows the courage and good fortune that combine to make things happen in your favor, even when times are tough.

Miss Hunt started her career during the Great Depression.

The ever beautiful Miss Marsha Hunt

Quoted from the interview:

MP:Can you explain the circumstances that led Paramount to sign you in the early 30s?”

Marsha:I tricked Paramount into wanting to test me. It was not my idea, I was never that clever. A couple of photographers we had posed for in New York came out here, thought that maybe they could persuade Hollywood that I was worth testing and so they pulled a whole publicity campaign that worked. Paramount tested me with a very careful test. I did two or three scenes and we rehearsed them well over a week, and then they liked the test enough that they did sign me – at 17!

We think Paramount was fortunate to have found Marsha Hunt. 

If you see her in Smash Up or These Glamour Girls, Raw Deal, Lost Angel, or Pride and Prejuice you will have seen a star performance.

We were lucky enough to meet Marsha Hunt in 2004 at the Hollywood Gene Convention at the Biltmore.  She was wonderful and gracious, amazingly energetic and full of fun.

We spent time over three lovely days with Miss Hunt including a wonderful murder party on the Queen Mary!  Marsha Hunt was the guest of honor.  She and her friend Jane Withers were simply grand.  We were blessed to be seated at the head table with these two wonderful women and Mel Odom for this fabulous murder party.  And by no favoritism, our “table” solved the murder.  Actually, one of our tablemates, Dr. Michele, solved the murder and our entire table of ten won prizes, wonderful prizes!!   

Marsha Hunt, Photo by Terri in 2004

But we want to talk about Marsha’s book, The Way We Wore.  If you have an opportunity to see and read this book, please take the time.  You will be richly rewarded for your effort.

This entire book is filled with actual photographs of Marsha during her first two decades in Hollywood.

At the Hollywood 2004 convention, we received several one-quarter scale replicas of Marsha Hunt’s outfits made to fit the sixteen inch Miss Gene Marshall doll.  We each received Marsha Hunt’s wedding suit.  These really bring the book alive.

Marsha told Gary Sweeney, “…it (the book) has proved to my delight to be a kind of reference work and a bible of authenticity for designers interested in that period or looking for some retro touches to bring back, and for costumers who are putting a play on or a film of that period. All the pictures in the book are from those two decades, so they certainly are authentic.”

Thank you, Marsha!

Pink Paradise wedding suit reproduction - photo Marcia Friend

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3 Comments

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3 responses to ““The Way We Wore” by Marsha Hunt

  1. elise

    Thank you for your lovely post!
    I am enjoying Miss Hunt’s “The Way We Wore” enormously — the photos are beautifully shot (what else would one expect from artists such as Clarence Bull?) and the clothes almost make me want to weep! Weep because they are so beautiful, and that sort of fashion beauty — the fabrics, the lines, the cut, the sewing — has truly disappeared from the world in which we live. The clothes were cut for the female eye then, rather than the male eye, which seems to dominate fashion currently. These clothes (and hats, and shoes!) not only made a woman look and feel beautiful (as all clothes should), they also gave a woman presence and emphasized her natural power as female (and I don’t mean the crass sexuality of form, I mean the power to act and choose and exude the woman one wishes to be).
    The book, referring to both commentary and photos, is gorgeous! How I would one day love to possess my own copy of this book signed by the authoress! Unfortunately, the book that I now hold in my hands must be returned shortly to my local library. : (
    Let other women keep their dreams of looking like current Hollywood fodder or the walking depressed of the fashion world — my eyes glance farther to the past, where I imagine that it is I and not Miss Hunt who is appearing on each and every one of the pages of “The Way We Wore”! (yes, I feel the warm softness of the furs, the perfect fit of the leather footwear…)
    Thank you so much for sharing your story of an evening with Miss Marsha Hunt.
    .

  2. Anonymous

    who is “we”?

    • fashionnation1on1

      That “we” is actually similar to the “Papal we”. It is really just me, myself and I – blogging away. I use we to be less “I” oriented.

      And if you are talking about the book title, I would assume the “we” is Hollywood stars of the era covered.

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