STAN & OLLIE
About The Production
"It's a love story" - WRITING STAN & OLLIE
Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy are widely regarded as the greatest comedy
partnership in movie
history. Between 1927 and 1950, they made over 107 film appearances (32 silent
short films, 40
sound shorts, 23 features, 12 cameos), defining the notion of the double act
chemistry and hilarious routines that seemed effortless but were honed down to
the finest detail.
The pair were part of the very few silent stars to survive and thrive in the
sound era, adding
wordplay to their comedy mastery, "You can lead a horse to water, but a pencil
must be led," quips
Stan in BRATS.
Their influence goes way beyond cold stats and film buff analysis having
amassed a huge and
devoted international fan base, three museums and an appreciation society, Sons
Of The Desert.
Beloved the world over - in Germany, they are Dick Und Doof, in Poland Flip I
Flap, in Brazil O
Gordo e o Magro - they are a gateway to comedy, a passport to a world of sublime
everlasting friendship. Whether you know them from TV reruns, cartoon
adaptations or a Twitter
gif, just to hear their theme tune, The Cuckoo Song, is not only a guaranteed
smile, it's a time
machine to a more innocent age. People admire Chaplin, sit in awe of Buster
Keaton but they love
Laurel and Hardy. There is a hardly a comedian alive who hasn't been influenced
by Laurel and
Hardy, their reach is long.
It is an affection shared by STAN & OLLIE screenwriter Jeff Pope. Weaned on
BBC TV screenings of the pair's legendary two-reelers, Pope was gifted a Laurel
and Hardy DVD
box-set fifteen years ago, watched WAY OUT WEST and started to investigate the
the icons. His research revealed a little-known slice of Laurel & Hardy history:
the double act's
theatre tour of the UK during the early '50s as documented in AJ Marriot's book
Laurel & Hardy:
The British Tours.
"You just have this wonderful picture of these two guys that had been such
giants staying at little
guest houses, playing tiny theatres and not realizing they did it because they
loved each other,"
says Pope. "This is the thing that inspired me to write the whole film. It's a
love story between two
Producer Faye Ward agrees with Pope, saying "Stan & Ollie is essentially
about two best friends.
And what that means to be two best friends at the end of your life, without them
being aware about
the end of their life. But it's also about these two creative forces and how
that magic arrives"
Steve Coogan who plays Laurel and worked with Pope on the Academy Award
screenplay for PHILOMENA immediately responded to Pope's approach of analyzing
year relationship through the prism of the tour.
"It is very smart of Jeff to do that because the mistake is often to try and
do a biography where you
tell the chronological story of someone's life," he says. "It's better to shine
a light on a specific
aspect of their lives and you can learn everything from that. You can see
humanity in a moment."
The filmmakers decided to call the film STAN & OLLIE, not LAUREL & HARDY as
production was dedicated to exploring the men behind the legends, Pope's script
behind their cinematic personas. Whereas Hardy would often take control
on-screen, Laurel was
the creative brains who oversaw every aspect of production; once shooting had
would often go off and play golf. The film also suggests that, while in the
movies the pair were
inseparable, off-screen they were friendly but just work colleagues. As Pope
puts it, 'They were
never really close until they took these arduous tours and they lived in each
other's pockets week
in, week out. The premise of the film is how they became as close in their real
lives as they were
in their fictional lives."
Producer Faye Ward explains "I think it was really important this idea of
getting back to the
homage and essence of Laurel and Hardy and the reason why we didn't want to do a
biopic. We wanted to create something that new and old audiences could enjoy.
Laurel and Hardy
have huge fans around the world, as well as huge comic fans like Ricky Gervais
and Paul Merton,
John C Reilly and Steve Coogan there are millions of others, thousands of people
how inspired they still are by them. I think there's an immediate ease even if
you're new to them
you can feel the inspiration of what that comedy duo did for the comedy we still
Pope's script is peppered with telling, touching details about the central
relationship - Laurel kept
writing sketches for the pair seven years after they had retired - yet Coogan
was constantly aware
STAN & OLLIE needed other colors.
"I knew the film was going to be poignant and sad and emotional, my fear was:
would it be funny
enough?" he says. "You have to earn the right to have the poignancy by charming
people. You can
charm an audience with comedy."
While much of the comedy comes from meticulous recreations of Laurel and
Hardy's stage acts,
Pope's script also sews in some of their most famous routines into the fabric of
their lives. So, their
attempts to get the trunk up the stairs in a railway station closely mirrors the
sequence of Oscara winning THE MUSIC BOX. "As the script evolved, I realized
were certain points I could tip my hat to their glorious past," says Pope. But
for Coogan, stitching
their skits into everyday situations also says something about the nature of
"As with many comics, there is not a total distinction between a comedy
character an actor plays
and who they are in reality, especially if they are heavily involved in the
creative process," he
observes. "There is an overlap and we try to let the audience see that, really
if you are a Laurel and
Hardy fan, then I think we honor the memory of them for those people for whom
that we don't generalize and that we are specific, and that we're faithful to
who they were. And
for those who aren't, it's entertaining because when we re-create some of their
iconic moments I
think we do it in such a way that it's funny and it still makes people laugh
"It's not like a conventional biopic" - REALISING STAN & OLLIE
Jeff Pope sent the script to Jon S. Baird, who was directing Danny Boyle's TV
Baird, who remembers watching Laurel and Hardy growing up in Scotland had a
recreating the comedy legends. "I've still got pictures of me and a pal dressed
up as Laurel and
Hardy in a school fancy dress show," he laughs. "I was Stan, he was Ollie. He
had a lot of padding,
the first remnants of a fat suit."
The film's journey to the big screen really stepped up when Fable Pictures'
producer Faye Ward
(SUFFRAGETTE) joined the team. Ward had met Baird on film industry initiative
and she immediately recognized the story had a chance to appeal beyond a film
buff fan base.
"Even if the film wasn't about Laurel and Hardy, it's about two best friends who
have lived through
something together," says Ward. "They lived through wives, work, bankruptcy,
highs and lows.
They are reaching a point where they are realizing they are old and might be
towards the end of
their lives. Watching that reflection would be fascinating even if they weren't
Laurel and Hardy.
It was incredibly clear to me when I first read Jeff's script and heard Jon's
vision I could see the
potential of how special the movie could be"
With family near Stan Laurel's hometown of Ulverston, Ward spent many summer
holidays at the
Laurel and Hardy museum. A big fan, she brought a passionate zeal to ensure STAN
didn't fall into the spoon-feeding cliches of true life stories.
The director had a clear take on the compelling dramatic question raised by
Ollie's decision to
make a film, ZENOBIA, without Stan.
"It's about a marriage between these two people who love each other but
someone has committed
an infidelity in the past," he says. "Then the other one has the opportunity to
do the same: do they
Just before shooting began, Baird was struck by appendicitis and had an
emergency operation, but
Jon made an almost miraculous recovery and was back on set in a week! As the
forward, the clarity and confidence Baird brought to the project impressed
everyone. "Jon was
fantastic on set, really specific and clear with his direction," observes Coogan.
"There was no
waffle, which sometimes you get from directors."
John C. Reilly, who plays Oliver Hardy, was similarly taken with Baird's
passion. "Jon is the
person who sat down with me and made me feel I could really do it. He was a true
believer, a very
unflappable optimistic guy. If we have any success with this project, it will be
commitment to the project and belief in us."
Ward says of working with Jon "He is incredible, he's got such a vision for
the piece and I felt he
really got under the skin of Laurel & Hardy and Stan & Ollie"
Baird's cinematic dynamism is present from the get-go. The film opens with a
shot that follows Stan and Ollie from their dressing room across a Hollywood
studio lot, onto set
and into an argument with studio boss Hal Roach.
"I just felt to get that flavor of Hollywood, it seemed like the right
device," notes Baird. "You need
to see it unfold all the way through. I thought the script really called out for
it. I wanted to challenge
myself as well."
Baird's bravura asked a lot not only of his crew but also of his actors, who
had to deliver reams of
dialogue in one go.
"There is a lot of pressure in a shot like that," admits Coogan. "You almost
have to not care about
it. If we were on tenterhooks about screwing up, the casualness would be too
inauthentic. So, you
forget about all the choreography, you just think we are two guys having a
conversation. I think
that comes with experience, realizing the best thing you can do is just relax
and stop giving so
much of a shit about everything."
The shot immediately leads into another pressurized and iconic moment for the
actors: Stan and
Ollie's iconic dance to 'At The Ball, That's All' in front of a Saloon backdrop
in the classic WAY
OUT WEST. Coogan and Reilly worked with Director of Movement And Choreography
Sedgwick to get the scene down perfectly. The dance makes a number of
appearances in the movie
as Laurel and Hardy perform it on tour, with the routine getting increasingly
creaky. For the onset
version, Sedgwick even coached the actors to incorporate the mistakes Laurel and
during the filming.
"We choreographed that dance so many times we could do it in our sleep"
"What's great about watching them dance is that they are just sort of throwing
it away and not
appearing to try very hard. It requires a lot of work to make something look
Ward elaborates on the extraordinary dedication Coogan and Reilly showed, she
says "It was
amazing the level of work John and Steve had put in. They'd replicated in so
much detail that
even when the real Laurel and Hardy in the footage get it wrong, they'd
recreated the mistakes
too; they got it absolutely spot on and it is magic to watch"
As well as the dance, Sedgwick, an expert in clowning, also worked with the
actors to create the
skits Laurel and Hardy performed on stage. Sedgwick, Coogan and Reilly built the
routines from the ground up but also invented new shtick especially for the
film. For the actors it
added an extra dimension to the filming.
"We had to forge a bond in those moments because it wasn't just a film,"
recalls Reilly. "Because
of the theatrical nature of the tour we were filming performances with people
out in front of us. It
was not only the pressure of making a film but then there's the pressure of all
these people sitting
there watching us. We've got to deliver for them too. It almost gives you a
battlefield loyalty to
each other. I'll always love Steve for what we went through together."
"It was so intimidating to play these guys" - CASTING STAN & OLLIE
Key to the success of STAN AND OLLIE was finding actors who could not only
inhabit but also
illuminate the inner lives of the central partnership, to shine a light on whom
the men actually
were, what made them tick.
Steve Coogan was the first and last person Jon Baird spoke to about playing
Stan Laurel. Coogan
first met Laurel and Hardy on TV, watching their misadventures in a dressing
gown during school
summer holidays. "It was very accessible to a child," he recalls. "A pure kind
of comedy that is to
do with character not situation. There are no real consequences. It's a happy
world." During Skype
meetings with Baird and Ward, Coogan would effortlessly slip into Laurel's
mannerisms but his
performance also captures the drive and decency of the man. As Ward puts it, "I
think it's great to
see Steve do something you've not quite seen him do before."
Baird elaborates "I met Steve over lunch one afternoon and we were chatting
away about Stan
Laurel, and without any warning he went into Stan, he started doing Stan. And he
would drop his
napkin and then come up and bump his head on the table and the shivers went up
my spine and I
thought 'wow', and it was just that little moment, it was everything. I knew he
was a very clever
guy and I knew that he would absolutely get everything that it was supposed to
be but actually
bringing Stan off the page, in the amount of detail he puts into the voice and
the performance, it
was just a no brainer after about five minutes of speaking to Steve about it.
Everyone got excited
when Steve got involved, for obvious reasons"
"I had a great partner in Steve," says John C. Reilly. "We realized from the
beginning there's no
way to do this unless we learned to love each other. We were pretty much
strangers, but we became
real friends. He is one of the funniest people I have ever met. I'd get this
real lonely feeling
whenever Steve wasn't on the set with me, it would feel like a part of me was
Faye Ward recalls how she felt when Coogan and Reilly were onboard "It was
just so exciting to
get John and Steve, there're really not many actors in the world who could
actually be Laurel and
Hardy, they're just incredibly tuned comedians with a perfect sense of physical
comedy timing. It
was just so wonderful to see those two play Laurel and Hardy, you did feel like
you were watching
two icons playing two icons"
If Coogan's career has been marked as a solo performer, Reilly has worked in
the likes of Will Ferrell. But still the actor was daunted at the prospect of
playing a comedy legend.
"In a way I tried to talk my way out of the project because it was so
overwhelming and intimidating
to play these guys," says Reilly. "I feel we live in an age of Google and
Wikipedia and anything
that anyone wants to know about the facts of someone's life are instantly
available. But the
beautiful thing about this story was you go inside their relationship and it
gives you a glimpse of
what it might have been like working together."
From comedies (STEP BROTHERS) to musicals (CHICAGO) to drama (THE LOBSTER),
Reilly's range was critical in landing the screenplay's balance of laughs and
"He's a fantastic actor," says Coogan. "He is also able to be mature,
poignant and truthful and at
the same time have an understanding of comic technique. They are two different
Comedy is frequently a technical skill and being emotionally open and honest is
about being in
touch with your feelings. There isn't a huge amount of actors who can do both
those things. He is
one of them."
Reilly's casting was also instrumental in landing Coogan. "I asked whom were
they thinking for
Oliver Hardy," Coogan recalls about his early discussions for the role. "They
said they were
thinking of John C. Reilly and I said, 'Well if you get him, I am in.'"
Baird recalls his meeting with Reilly "The thing John said was 'it's a
massive responsibility to
play this character, he's my hero', and Steve had said that as well. But John
said, 'I can't let
anybody else play this part, it's terrifying to take this on but I can't let
anybody else do it'. And I
thought 'well, if that's the kind of guy you are, that's the kind of guy I want
to work with because
it shows responsibility, it shows bravery.
Once both men signaled interest, the team had to check the chemistry vital in
"Jon and Jeff flew out to New York to put them together to make sure they got
Ward. "It was totally nerve-wracking. They left them to it in the restaurant and
then suddenly in
the distance they saw Laurel & Hardy sitting having dinner. It was just like
'They are the ones'."
And that magical combination was felt throughout the shoot, Ward recalls "When
they first did
the live theatre of 'Double Doors', it was in our first week of shoot and in
front the whole crew -
film crews can be somewhat cynical because they see hundreds of movie stars do a
but the whole place fell completely silent in awe and then laughing
hysterically. And in fact,
Harriet who is our second AD was crying, it was just that amazing"
One the most difficult scenes the actors had to perfect was the Way Out West
dance. Steve Coogan
remembers "We had to study what Laurel and Hardy had done on film and then
rehearse it and
choreograph it, but what was peculiar was that we had to not only learn these
dance steps, but the
way they performed them was slightly haphazard and almost deliberately has a
kind of amateurish
charm and there are mistakes in the way they dance, and we had to learn the
dance - with their
mistakes. We had to emulate every misstep they made and every throw away
gesture, that was
quite hard as we had to learn to emulate what was in the original film and we
had to perform the
same dance routine on stage, but without the errors. So, you have to learn the
dance two ways: one
way with some slight, odd errors and another way which is more refined. So, it
got quite confusing,
but we did it so many times that we just knew it, I could probably do it now!"
"It wasn't an easy job to get." - THE WIVES OF STAN & OLLIE
In the fictional world of Laurel & Hardy, the pair's wives are sometimes
portrayed as henpecking
their hapless men into submission often resulting in a madcap scheme. STAN &
conception of Lucille Hardy and Ida Laurel playfully nods to the notion of
nagging wives whilst
simultaneously painting a much more rounded portrayal of two very different
women who were
the bedrock for their partners amid the ups and downs of show business. These
women were strong,
intelligent and forthright and we are left in no doubt that these iconic men
absolutely needed the
women they had standing behind them.
As Ward says "the wives come along and they're also a duo. What Jeff has
achieved so cleverly
in the script with Ida and Lucille is that you don't know a huge amount about
their history together
with the men, as well as their careers, but he shows you enough so that you can
they have gone on a journey for a long time with these men and they have their
own quirks and
energy together - they are their own double act"
Both Coogan and Reilly had input into who played their spouses. Although
Shirley Henderson had
previously worked with Baird twice, it was Reilly who suggested her to play
Lucille, the WAY
OUT WEST script supervisor who became Hardy's third wife, after working with her
OF TALES. Given Lucille was a Texan and Henderson is Scottish, Reilly and Baird
convince the production she was right for the role but, for the actor, the
advocacy was completely
worth it. "As an actor, as I was playing bigger, older and with bad knees, I had
to believe the person
playing my wife not only loved me but was attracted to me," he says. "Shirley
and I developed a
real affection for each other."
Despite having worked with actor and director before, Henderson recalls, "it
wasn't an easy job to
get. I had to do three auditions!" Having fond memories of watching Laurel &
Hardy on Christmas
morning, Henderson reacted to the dilemma in Lucille's love for Hardy during the
"She is concerned he is taking far too much out of himself but acknowledges he
needs it for his
life-blood. She cares very deeply for him. And that's what I latched onto. No
everything was about him, his health and his well-being."
If Lucille is quiet and undemonstrative, Laurel's wife Ida, played by Nina
Arianda, is a tour de
force with a flair for the dramatic. Arianda caught Baird's eye following her
role in FLORENCE
FOSTER JENKINS and met the actor for a meeting in a New York restaurant.
"We must have had three or four bottles of wine," he laughs. "I was under the
table and she was
still there, absolutely solid. I thought 'This is my girl.' I think she is one
of the best actors I have
ever worked with. It was a total mixture of what we were looking for: somebody
who was quirky
but had that sense of tough love which is kind of an Eastern European
sensibility. She was perfect."
A Tony award-winning actor, Arianda was drawn to the story's exploration of
"the public vs.
the personal." A dancer in Hollywood, Ida understood Stan's creative ambitions
and his need to
be "on." Yet beneath her histrionics, there was an empathy and vulnerability
that Arianda found
"I thought she was wonderful in both her warmth and strength," she says. "I
loved that she adored
this man so deeply. The thing that struck me in doing research was that the
first thing that attracted
her to him was his loneliness. I thought it was a very specific woman who was
attracted to a man's
loneliness. I found that fascinating."
Ward recalls "Shirley and Nina both spent so much work researching the real
wives It was
incredible to work with Nina and Shirley they are also both such fantastic
heavyweights and we
were just so fortunate to have them in the roles".
The arrival of the two women in London is when, according to Baird, "events
start hotting up.
Things are brought up from the past. They are the catalyst for the argument that
leads to the split."
"Laurel and Hardy were my girls and booze" - THE MONEY MEN OF STAN & OLLIE
Key to the break-up of Laurel & Hardy long-time collaborator, producer Hal Roach
Danny Huston. The actor spent some of his childhood in Italy so only knew the
comedy duo as
Stanlio e Ollio dubbed into Italian. "I remember coming to London as a child and
that they were speaking in English," he laughs. Huston plays the hard-nosed
Roach as a "cigar-
chewing studio boss" refusing to pay the pair what they are clearly worth,
pitching the performance
between broad comedy and something more realistic. Yet for all the potentially
of the character, he is quick to acknowledge Roach's importance in the Laurel
and Hardy story.
"You could also say he discovered them," says Huston. "They were both
as actors, but he had the genius of putting them together. I use the word
'genius' lightly because
they were the geniuses, but he was able to capitalize on them. He had a keen
enough eye to know
they would be a triumph together."
"There is nobody who knows Hollywood like Danny Huston," says Baird. "He's
steeped in it. He's
a very handsome guy and we wanted him to be that very commanding studio head. He
some incredible tales about his dad, John Huston, and some of the stuff that was
going on then. He
was great to have around as a reference for that time period."
"Hal Roach is only in the film a small amount" Faye Ward says "what we needed
from the Roach
character was a 'super injection' of Hollywood, so to speak, we are depicting
old Hollywood in its
purest form so who else to ask but an actor with Hollywood running through his
veins - Danny
Huston. When he arrived on set he simply had this aura of 'Huston' to him, which
Hollywood mogul. He was perfect"
She continues "Physically there had to be an element of somebody who seemed
scary to John C
Reilly and Steve Coogan, and there's not many people in the world that has that
gravitas that you feel like this gentleman could hire and fire these two icons
in a second. Danny
has that in spades"
A kind of British theatrical version of Roach, Bernard Delfont is the
impresario who brought
Laurel and Hardy for a UK tour in the '50s. As played by Rufus Jones, Delfont is
showbiz schmoozer. "He'll never stab you in the back, but he might deliver live
laughs Jones. "He's two cups Bob Monkhouse, one cup Denholm Elliott in RAIDERS
LOST ARK and a dash of Ian Faith from (THIS IS) SPINAL TAP. He's very urbane,
Faye Ward describes Jones' energy on set "Rufus brings this modern, youthful
energy into Delfont.
It is 1953 and far into the career of these two men and it is a joy to watch him
standing next to
these giants of comedy with this youthful energy. Delfont enters their lives, he
television, he understands the modernity of life. Laurel and Hardy haven't yet
reached that point.
Plus, Rufus is very, very funny and extremely likeable which is so key with
As a kid, Jones was a self-proclaimed "Laurel & Hardy completist nerd"
joining the fan club Sons
of the Desert and buying Super-8 two-reelers to project against his bedroom
wall. Such an
important pillar of his childhood - "Laurel & Hardy were my girls and booze
before I could
afford girls and booze." - Jones was nervous picking up Jeff Pope's script as a
through the pages, he breathed a sigh of relief.
"I think Jeff did a fabulous job of giving you everything you wanted to see
in terms of the iconic
Laurel and Hardy scenes with such really delicious references to their work but
at the same time
presenting Stan and Ollie as opposed to Laurel and Hardy and realising them as
"It was like wearing a mask on your whole body" - BECOMING STAN & OLLIE
Coogan and Reilly's physical transformation was overseen by make-up supervisor
Woodhead and Mark Coulier, the talented prosthetics designer who won Academy
THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL and THE IRON LADY.
"Mark Coulier is an absolute genius" said Producer Faye Ward "The level of
work that went into
perfecting the look for the two boys was unbelievable and having talent like
Mark onboard and
working alongside Jeremy just elevated the whole process to a whole new plane"
After lots of experimentation, the team made the decision to dial back the
make-up for a less is
"You have to be very careful the viewer isn't thinking, 'What incredible
Coogan. "They have to get lost in the performance, in the story. So, we didn't
want anything too
"It's not a waxwork," says Woodhead of the prosthetic. "You've got to design
it in a way they can
move, talk, perform and do all these things. It's not a carbon copy but it's as
near as we can get it
to enable the actors to do their bit."
In the end, Coogan opted for a false chin, teeth and customized tips to make
his ears stick out. In
a strange coincidence, Coogan has brown eyes and needed blue and Reilly had blue
needed brown so both men wore colored contact lenses. For Stan's hair, raised in
a quirky quaff
on screen, Woodhead stuck to the back-to-basics philosophy
"Steve uses his own hair, but it is coloured to match Stan Laurel's," he
says. "Stan was actually a
red-head. We toyed with the idea of going red, but it gets distracting - it
becomes a surprise that
his hair was red. By the end of his life, he was colouring his hair anyway."
To become Ollie, Reilly endured four hours in the make-up chair. By the '50s,
near 400lb, but the team took the decision not to go that heavy. Coulier and
Woodhead tried four
different fat suits made out of reticulated foam. To get the look right, the
team drew inspiration
from Hardy's own life.
Ward says "We worked for a long time with John C Reilly to get his look
right, he came in and
did 100s of different sessions and we built his suit in many different ways. And
of course, there
are a huge amount of practicalities in regard to prosthetics because not only do
you have to look
the part but you have to be able to act through it, you have to be able to feel
the magic of John C
Reilly through the suit but be perceived as Hardy"
"Oliver Hardy's nickname was 'Babe' because he had the shape and proportions
of an overgrown
baby," says Reilly. "I started sending baby pictures to Guy and Mark and it
started to click."
Reilly had different suits for the various stages in Hardy's life, the 1937
version more firm and
controlled. Although reticulated foam is lightweight, it still retained the
heat, so Reilly was plugged
into an ice machine in between takes. The whole process was helpful for Reilly
to increase his
confidence to play the character.
"Only my face and the flats of my hands were exposed," he recalls. "The rest
was encased in
prosthetics or a fat suit. So, in a way it was like wearing a mask on your whole
body. The mask
was so convincing it made me believe from the outside in that I could play this
Shirley Henderson recalls the first time she saw Coogan and Reilly in full
costume and make up
"It was just mind-blowing. I saw them first on the Blue Ridge Mountains song,
you know when
he knocks him over the head with a hammer and everything. Nina and I were in the
back of the
auditorium, our characters are meant to be sitting, later on we're meant to be
what they're up to. But all day we were just sitting there watching them perform
this, and it was...it
was like it was Laurel and Hardy, it was phenomenal. That they could just do
obviously little hints in their faces, but the prosthetics and the voice and the
dancing, it was just
immaculate, incredible to watch"
Jon Baird remembers the first time he saw them "There was complete silence,"
he recalls. "I
thought there was something wrong. But there wasn't. People were just astounded
by how they
looked." Nina Arianda got her first glimpse of the pair shooting a scene where
Ida watches them
perform. "I forgot where I was for a moment," she marvels. "I felt like I was
watching Laurel and
Hardy. In that room I can't tell you how magical it was. On that day I
completely forgot what I
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