This week marks the one centesimal birthday of legendary silver display screen goddess Doris Day. The BBC is working two of her movies tonight, Transfer Over Darling and Calamity Jane, which completely encapsulate her charming and clean-cut Hollywood picture. However behind the scenes, the actress was nothing like her well-known on-screen persona. Years later, she spoke brazenly, revealing that her iconic public picture was “extra make-believe than any movie half I ever performed.” Even on the time, Groucho Marx (the quote can be attributed to pianist Oscar Levant) notoriously mentioned, “I have been round so lengthy, I knew Doris Day earlier than she was a virgin.” In her biography, Doris Day: Her Personal Story, the actress blew away the goodie-two-shoes fable and revealed a really wholesome sexual urge for food, in addition to quite a few affairs with well-known males, together with Ronald Reagan.
When Reagan first arrived in LA in 1937 and signed a seven-year contract with Warner Bros, he had a three-bedroom bungalow on the notorious Backyard of Allah lodge the place he earned the nickname ‘Horndog Reagan.’ He was by no means an A-list identify in a city filled with stars, however he was good-looking and well-liked, and very fashionable with the women. Maybe on account of skills later described by Lana Turner.
The guide Love Triangle: Ronald Reagan, Jane Wyman And Nancy Davis by Darwin Porter and Danforth Prince says the actor, “suffered from what he jokingly known as ‘leadingladyitis'” and routinely bedded his co-stars, in addition to others he squired round city.
Porter was raised in Hollywood inside circles, his mom was a Hollywood costumier, and within the guide he describes how Turner revealed Reagan’s abilities between the sheets. He was, apparently a “forty-minute man” when one other lover, John F Kennedy was solely a “four-minute man.” The stamina was significantly spectacular because the actor was additionally seeing different well-known stars on the similar time.
Reagan informed good friend Dick Powell: “Lana is simply as oversexed as I’m, however I’ve to slide round as a result of I don’t need Susan Hayward to seek out out.”
Nancy Reagan biographer Kitty Kelley claimed Reagan slept with so many ladies that he informed a good friend: “I awoke one morning and I couldn’t bear in mind the identify of the gal that I used to be in mattress with.”
Reagan’s first marriage to Hollywood icon Jane Wyman led to 1949, partly on account of her opposition to his political ambitions. Extremely, though he would go on to change into a two-term Republican US President, on the time he was a Democrat whereas Wyman was a life-long Republican.
Reagan swiftly grew to become smitten with Day (though he was reportedly additionally sleeping with Marilyn Monroe on the time).
The pair had been each below contract to Warner Bros and would go on to star collectively in two movies, Storm Warning (1951) and The Successful Workforce (1952).
In her biography, Day mentioned: “I used to be seeing a number of males — Jack Carson, often my ex-husband. George Weidler, when his band was on the town, and Ronald Reagan, with whom I made two films.
“I had met Ronald Reagan by mutual associates from New York who had come out to Los Angeles to dwell. Ronnie had not too long ago been divorced from Jane Wyman, and he lived alone in an residence excessive above Sundown Strip.”
The pair would sneak again to his place and apparently take pleasure in marathon lovemaking classes whereas having fun with the dazzling views throughout the town.
Day added: “There have been two issues about Ronnie that impressed me: how a lot he favored to bounce and the way a lot he favored to speak. Ronnie is actually the one man I’ve ever identified who beloved dancing. He danced effectively and he had a pleasing character, so I invariably loved going out with Ronnie.”
The actress additionally inspired her lover’s political ambitions: “He wasn’t really in politics, after all, however he had what I might name a political character — participating, robust and really voluble.”
Regan apparently informed associates he was going to suggest and one, George Murphy, replied that Day was the best spouse for his future profession: If individuals get bored along with your long-winded political speeches, she will be able to simply flip up and sing.”
Nonetheless, their affair fizzled out when Reagan’s consideration, as so typically, wandered. Fellow B-list star Nancy Davis, who he first met in 1949, pursued him relentlessly and so they had been married in 1952.
Day, herself, was by no means in need of consideration and went on to marry her third husband Marty Melcher in April 1951.
DORIS DAY: MOVE OVER DARLING AND CALAMITY JANE ARE ON BBC 4 TONIGHT FROM 9PM