In episode 16 we focus on the ‘quiet Bennett’ compared to her volatile film star sister Constance. Joan was fiery in a more subtle way, she didn’t think much of her film career and felt more at home on the stage like her father, the legendary Richard Bennett. She quoted him often in her autobiography ‘The Bennett Playbill’, one of her favourite lines being “We are vagabonds to the heart and we are not ashamed of it”. She said “Well, I’m still a “vagabond” and I’m shamelessly proud of it.”
Her film career was not a long one and she made a little over 70 films but she made a lasting impression, especially in her noir work with Frtiz Lang. We’ve chosen for this episode Private Worlds (1935), Scarlet Street (1945) and The Reckless Moment (1949).
Bennett, J. (1970) The Bennett Playbill: Five Generations of the Famous Theater Family (with Lois Kibbee). New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston.
Kellow, B. (2004) The Bennetts: An Acting Family Lexington: The University Press of Kentucky.
Private Worlds (1935) Dir. Gregory La Cava [DVD] Paramount Pictures.
Scarlett Street (1945) Dir. Fritz Lang [YouTube] Universal Pictures.
The Reckless Moment (1949) Dir. Max Ophüls [DVR} Columbia Pictures.