2011–The 75th Anniversary of GWTW, the book, based in part on writings from the Mitchell family scrapbook, shown above.
Among other people, the Marshfield Missouri Cherry Blossom Festival is honoring cast members from Gone With The Wind. Mickey Kuhn and Greg Giese will be attending and the festival has been in contact with the others. The festival is the last week of April.
“We are honoring the surviving cast members who are listed in the credits in the movie,” said the Rev. Nicholas Inman, organizer of the event. “Those receiving awards will be Olivia de Havilland, Ann Rutherford, Mickey Kuhn, Alicia Rhett, and Greg Giese.”
Giese is the exception in that group because he was added after the movie was finished and the credits were done. One of the comments at the “sneak preview” of the movie before it came out was that the babies looked too old. They needed to get an infant to play the part of Bonnie Blue Butler and also of Beau Wilkes so Selznick dispatched an assistant to Rice Maternity Hospital and they found Giese.
GWTW collector Dr. Christopher Sullivan will present the awards to Kuhn and Giese. Artist Joe Yakovetic will also be receiving an award. Dawn Wells who played “Mary Ann” on Gilligan’s Island, Morgan Brittany who played “Katherine Wentworth on Dallas, and former first daughter Jenna Bush Hager are some of the many interesting people to attend the Festival this year.
“Ann Rutherford is unable to attend the ceremony,” said Inman who has known her for a while through a mutual friend of hers who is an actress. “Arrangements are being made to present her with her medal in a private ceremony prior to the festival,”
No one would expect Olivia de Havilland to attend as she lives in Paris, but she is working on a message to send back to the Festival. Inman was able to speak to de Havilland through contacts with a relative of hers. Inman sent her the information about the award, and after waiting a while and almost giving up, he heard back from the star who played Melanie in Gone With The Wind.
“She is going to take a picture of herself with her medal and send it to us,” said Inman. “We are exploring the option of a video greeting from her, like we did with George and Barbara Bush.”
Olivia de Havilland’s appearance in Gone With The Wind was not the biggest thing she ever did, though to GWTW fans her portrayal of Melanie has made her a beloved actor. She was already a major Hollywood actress by the time she persuaded her boss Jack Warner at Warner Brothers to allow her to do it. She starred in The Adventures of Robin Hood, The Heiress, The Snake Pit, To Each His Own, and many more.
For more information the Marshfield Cherry Blossom Festival:
We’ll have a complete list of attendees and schedule in an upcoming article.
Sally Tippett Rains is the author of “The Making of a Masterpiece, The True Story of Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind” (GWTWbook.com) She is also the content manager for StLSportsPage.com. If you are a St. Louis sports fan, please “like” her Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/stlsportspage She also has GWTWbook on Facebook.