Addison DeWitt quotes

Addison DeWitt The Sarah Siddons Award for Distinguished Achievement is perhaps unknown to you. It has been spared the sensational and commercial publicity that attends such questionable 'honors' as the Pulitzer Prize - and those awards presented annually by that film society. This is the dining hall of the Sarah Siddons Society. The occasion is its annual banquet and presentation of the highest honor our theater knows - the Sarah Siddons Award for Distinguished Achievement...The minor awards, as you can see, have already been presented. Minor awards are for such as the writer and director [playwright Lloyd Richards and director Bill Sampson are briefly viewed] since their function is merely to construct a tower so that the world can applaud a light which flashes on top of it. And no brighter light has ever dazzled the eye than Eve Harrington. Eve. But more of Eve later, all about Eve, in fact.

To those of you who do not read, attend the theater, listen to unsponsored radio programs or know anything of the world in which you live - it is perhaps necessary to introduce myself. My name is Addison De Witt. My native habitat is the theater. In it, I toil not, neither do I spin. I am a critic and commentator. I am essential to the theater.

She is the wife of a playwright, therefore of the theater by marriage. Nothing in her background or breeding should have brought her any closer to the stage than Row E, Center. However, during her senior year at Radcliffe, Lloyd Richards lectured on the drama. The following year, Karen became Mrs. Lloyd Richards.

There are in general two types of theatrical producers. One has a great many wealthier friends who will risk a tax deductible loss. This type is interested in art. The other is one to whom each production means potential ruin or fortune. This type is out to make a buck.

Margo Channing is a Star of the Theater. She made her first stage appearance, at the age of four, in Midsummer Night's Dream. She played a fairy and entered - quite unexpectedly - stark naked. She has been a Star ever since. Margo is a great Star. A true star. She never was or will be anything less or anything else.

Eve. Eve the Golden Girl, the Cover Girl, the Girl Next Door, the Girl on the Moon. Time has been good to Eve. Life goes where she goes. She's the profiled, covered, revealed, reported. What she eats and what she wears and whom she knows and where she was, and when and where she's going. Eve. You all know All About Eve. What can there be to know that you don't know?

Dear Margo. You were an unforgettable Peter Pan. You must play it again soon.

Every now and then some elder statesman of the theater or cinema assures the public that actors and actresses are just plain folks. Ignoring the fact that their greatest attraction to the public is their complete lack of resemblance to normal human beings.

I have lived in the theater as a Trappist monk lives in his faith. I have no other world; no other life - and once in a great while, I experience that moment of revelation for which all true believers wait and pray. You were one. Jeanne Eagels another...there are others, three or four. Eve Harrington will be among them.

We all have abnormality in common. We're a breed apart from the rest of humanity, we theatre folk; We are the original displaced personalities.

[confronting Eve] I had lunch with Karen not three hours ago. As always with women who try to find out things, she told more than she learned. Now do you want to change your story about Lloyd beating at your door the other night? ... That I should want you at all suddenly strikes me as the height of improbability, but that, in itself, is probably the reason. You're an improbable person, Eve, and so am I. We have that in common. Also a contempt for humanity, an inability to love and be loved, insatiable ambition - and talent. We deserve each other...and you realize and you agree how completely you belong to me?

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