Sunday, July 29, 2012

Gene Marshall in Encore



I have finally gotten around to shooting Lynne Day's "Encore" outfit; couldn't find the proper earrings or bracelet, so I substituted the closest things I could find in Gene's jewelry drawer. This circa 1947 reminds me of something a Gibson Girl might wear. "Midnight Gamble" Gene stands in for the doll that originally came with "Encore."

From the story card:

After the war, many who served in times of trial faced an even bigger trial themselves: returning to a peace-time existence. Hollywood was aware of this and did its best to give moviegoers a shot of self-confidence, surrounded by good old-fashioned entertainment.



One of these movies was Encore, the story of a G.I. who had not only served on the battlefield but had found his true calling by volunteering in the USO. One of the highlights of the picture's first half was a cameo appearance by Gene Marshall, as herself, performing in a USO show at the front. She is the one who brings the G.I. onstage to sing an inspiring impromptu duet—and inspires him to become a star.



Now the G.I. is back in the States and a big hit. But not so big that he can't host a benefit for "all those folks who don't have it as good as me." The benefit is a smash—and who should be sitting in the front row, resplendent in silver and purple, but Gene Marshall herself.



The G.I. smiles at her. "Y'know, there's a really great lady sitting down in front that made all this possible for me. She picked a simple G.I. out of the audience and gave me the guts to go on. Gene Marshall—it's my turn to ask YOU to come up onstage!" Gene joins him to thunderous applause, and together they "encore" the song that started his career.



And one by one, all the audience members join in the stirring anthem to the American spirit—and the guts to go on.




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