The 1944 film noir classic, Laura, was based on the best selling novel by Vera Caspary. She was also involved in the movie script. Caspary was a writer of novels, plays, screenplays, and short stories. In the film, Laura is played by Gene Tierney. Dana Andrews plays Mark, a detective who investigates her death.
Gene Tierney was born in 1920. She had a successful career on the stage and then films. Laura was one of her best films, however I preferred The Ghost and Mrs Muir because it had a more romantic theme . . . except the ghost part.
When Mark McPherson first falls in love with Laura, he knows he’s in love with a phantom—for Laura is dead, and he’s in charge of her murder investigation. From her portrait, her letters, her personal effects and from his contacts with the three men who loved her, Mark has created an image of a woman tantalizingly alive and real. As the detective grows obsessed with the case, he finds himself falling in love with the dead woman. What really happened to Laura?
Dana Andrews was a leading man in films in the 40s and 50s. I liked him in the Ox-Bow Incident (1942), and Laura (1944), but The Best Years of Our Lives (1946) made him a star.
In the 1970s I was in Union Station. I saw a man in a dark red suit with white patent leather slip-ons walk into the men’s room. When he came out, I recognized him as Dana Andrews. I told him how much I admired his work in films, especially Laura. He thanked me for the kind words. He was shorter than I thought he would be. As he walked away and up the stairs to the empty rotunda he sang to himself. I could almost make it out, “Tell Laura I love her, tell Laura I need her, Tell Laura not to cry, My love for her will never die . . . the tune echoed and faded. I think he may have been performing at the Bob Denver Dinner Theater in Lakewood.
On April 26th Tacoma Little Theatre will brings Laura back to life. The play runs through May 12th. For more information, please visit the TLT website – tacomalittletheatre.com/blog/20182019/laura