If you, like many among us, thought that Fred Astaire maybe didn’t have any feelings about Steve Martin, allow me to gently correct you. He hated him for making Pennies From Heaven, that bonkers-depressing 1981 musical that Pauline Kael loved (which, aside, I have always meant to develop an Opinion about Pauline Kael, because it seems like something that smart people do, but I’ve never subsequently gotten around to reading any of her work, so my opinion remains pretty much just: Oh, I’ve heard of her!)
Anyhow, it’s (obviously) based in no small part on a bunch of Astaire’s 1930s movies, but with, you know, Modern Sadness Added, and Fred Astaire saw it, and said, “I have never spent two more miserable hours in my life…it makes you cry it’s so distasteful.” So now you know that Steve Martin made Fred Astaire cry once, if you didn’t already. What do you think about Pauline Kael, and more importantly, what do you think I should think about her? Please text in your vote now.
Mallory is an Editor of The Toast.