Wednesday, October 15, 2003

Kate Hit, Remembered

The death of Katharine Hepburn, for most of us, meant a day of quiet reflection and mourning. For Pulitzer Prize winner A. Scott Berg, however, it meant a day to crook his arm and pull his fist back while making a noise like that of a cash register. His book Kate Remembered, which was finished in 1999 and sat in a vault counting the days until Berg's "friend" of 20 years Katharine Hepburn died, has just come out and is revealing quite a lot about the private life of this movie icon.

This article at CBS News gives the lowdown on the book and includes the following passage, which caught my eye for reasons that will become plainly obvious to you after you read it:

    Berg writes that there was one big reason why Tracy and Hepburn never married besides Tracy's Catholicism, his guilt over his son's deafness and his wife's refusal to divorce him:

    "I never wanted to marry Spencer Tracy," she told Berg...

Berg should have included the whole quote, however, and I'm hoping that the misquote-catching folks over at Spinsanity give him what for. Here's the quote in its entirety:

    "I never wanted to marry Spencer Tracy because of his Catholicism, his guilt over his son's deafness and his wife's refusal to divorce him. Also, he was an abusive drunk who liked to backhand me in public. Plus, I have vaginal warts. Please don't tell anyone any of this, A. Scott Berg."

There are two things that I found incredibly interesting about Berg's book:

    1) Hearing Berg on NPR was how I found out that Hepburn died like two weeks ago.

    2) In researching this piece, I was reminded that Gregory Peck just died.

After I continued to dig, I found out that a book similar to Berg's Kate Remembered, but about Gregory Peck, had been released shortly after his death. It's called Greg: Finally Dead, So Here's The Book, and it was written by none other than famous movie actor Gregory Peck.

There were a few Katharine-Hepburn-level revelations in the Peck book. Among them:

    Gregory Peck, toward the end of his life, used to go to the grocery store sometimes as often as twice a week, just to have something to do.

    On the set of How the West Was Won, Spencer Tracy once gave Gregory Peck a dirty look, but it turned out that Tracy had just eaten something very sour.

    Peck used to mow A. Scott Berg's a. front yard in an effort to convince Berg to write a book about him. It didn't work, but Berg had the worst looking yard on the whole block.

    Peck originally died in 1998, but decided to try it again when his first death failed to make a splash.

    Gregory Peck was not gay or anything.

    On the set of To Kill A Mockingbird, Robert Duvall and Gregory Peck became close friends.

Whoa! Let's keep it clean, Peck!

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