If you have read my book Sweethearts, you know that one of Nelson Eddy‘s few “real” friends in Hollywood was Clark Gable. Nelson, as you know, had a walk-on role in one of Gable’s 1933 hits, Dancing Lady. The two men enjoyed the outdoors, hated the Hollywood phoniness and admired each other’s “maverick” personalities.
Here’s a blurb from an upcoming biography of MGM director Victor Fleming:
Clark Gable nearly walked off the set of “Gone With the Wind” because of racism, an upcoming book reveals. In “Victor Fleming,” a bio of the director of the beloved Hollywood epic, Michael Sragow describes how a group of black extras, upset at studio bathrooms with “White” and “Colored” signs, approached Gable. “I’ll be goddamned,” the jolted star told them. “He got on the phone to Fleming, who called the prop master and told him, ‘If you don’t get those signs down, you won’t get your Rhett Butler,’ ” writes Sragow. “The signs came down immediately.” The book’s out in December.
Again, if you are familiar with my book, you also know that Nelson Eddy was intolerant of racism.