Monday, August 7, 2017

CBS: 'The Jayne Mansfield Story (1980) CBS Wednesday Night Movie'

Source:Danijel Ostojic- Hollywood Babydoll Loni Anderson, as Hollywood Babydoll Jayne Mansfield.

"Not from Chicago, but aired via another CBS affiliate, WJBK Channel 2 in Detroit, MI, here's The CBS Wednesday Night Movies' "television premiere" presentation of "The Jayne Mansfield Story," with Loni Anderson as the ultimately doomed blonde bombshell, and Austrian-born Arnold Schwarzenegger as her husband, Hungarian-born Mickey Hargitay. Followed by the first three minutes of Eyewitness News, with Norm Wagy, Jill Geisler, Bill Fouch and Joanne Williams, and a report from Tom Fenton." 

Source:Chicago Classic Television- Hollywood Babydoll Loni Anderson, as Hollywood Babydoll Jayne Mansfield, in The Jayne Mansfield Story (1980)

From Chicago Classic Television

“Made-for-TV** – WJBK 2 Detroit – The Jayne Mansfield Story (Made-for-TV) – This is the Original Oct.29,1980 broadcast with Commercials followed by a few minutes of Local News.

“The Jayne Mansfield Story” (Made-for-TV) CBS Wednesday Night Movie (Oct.29,1980)

Promo for the rerun of the 1980 made for TV movie “The Jayne Mansfield Story” starring Loni Anderson and Arnold Schwarzenegger on the April 27, 1982 CBS Tuesday Night Movies.

Opening to the world premiere of “The Jayne Mansfield Story” from 10/29/80.”

From Danijel Ostojic 

"Loni Anderson in 1980 film "The Jayne Mansfield Story" wears a lovely mermaid dress to die for, dances and gets a lift from the future governor of California." 

Source:M Doli Vetti- Hollywood Babydoll Loni Anderson, as Hollywood Babydoll Jayne Mansfield, in The Jayne Mansfield Story. If there is one actress who is adorable and funny enough to play Jayne Mansfield, it's Loni Anderson. I think she does a great job in this TV film.

From M Doli Vetti

"The movie tells the story of Hollywood movie star Jayne Mansfield. Like Marilyn Monroe, Mansfield was a sex symbol of the 1950s. She was able to succeed in Hollywood, became the owner of several theater awards. She also appeared several times in Playboy magazine. Her tragic death in a road accident ended her life at age 34." 

Source:IMDB- CBS's Wednesday Night Movie

From IMDB 

"Martha Saxton's 'Jayne Mansfield And The American Fifties' is a fascinating, deeply probing biography on the short, tragic life of a Hollywood ... symbol. " 

Source:Good Reads- Martha Saxton's book

From Good Reads 

"Thanks to social media, it’s now easier than ever to become “famous,” often for doing as little as Tweeting a joke (or someone else’s joke, if you’re Josh Ostrowsky). Sometimes you don’t even need to try–merely saying something funny in a “man on the street” interview will turn you into someone’s “spirit animal.” Back in Hollywood’s golden age, however, you had to work hard to get publicity, let alone keep it, and no one worked harder than Jayne Mansfield." 

Source:Tune In Tonight- Hollywood Babydoll Loni Anderson, as Hollywood Babydoll Jayne Mansfield, in The Jayne Mansfield Story (1980) 

From Tune In Tonight

At risk of sounding old here: when I was growing up in the 1980s and even when I was in high school in the early 1990s. network original movies that were made and produced by the networks, were actually worth watching.

CBS, NBC, and ABC, all had their own movie companies that were part of their entertainment divisions and had one night a week and sometimes multiple nights if they were showing a mini-series where they should show two-hour movie and sometimes longer than that.

The networks would produce their own movies and of course would show movies that were from Hollywood and perhaps had been out for a year or so, or longer. Very similar to what HBO, Showtime and others do on cable.

Probably watched 5-6 of James Bond series of movies in the summer of 1992 alone on ABC. The networks did this because they were good at it and knew what movies to pick and how to promote them and what kind of cast they could put together and so-forth. But also because cable wasn’t as dominant in the 1980s as it became in the 1990s. CBS, NBC, and ABC, were worried about each other. And not so much what HBO, Showtime, Cinemax, TNT, USA, etc, were doing on cable.

The cable networks simply didn’t have the resources that the broadcast networks had back then and to certain extent today as well, but cable networks are much powerful and influential today than they were back then.

I only mention all of this because I’m trying to bore you into a coma. Especially if you weren’t even born yet in the 1980s. Actually, I have other reasons as well. Because the Jayne Mansfield Story was a TV network movie that CBS put together with the producers, directors, creators, and writers of the movie.

And The Jayne Mansfield Story and I’m only 4 years old when it came out in October, 1980 so I didn’t see it and only finally heard about it a year or so ago and saw a video for it on YouTube and the finally got to see the whole movie on cable (of course) on Get-TV last February and saw it again a few months after that.

And this was a network movie where you have Loni Anderson as the lead actress playing Jayne Mansfield and Arnold Schwarzenegger playing her husband and long time lover Mickey Hargitay. (The father of Mariska Hargitay) If there is just one woman who is adorable and funny enough to play Jayne Mansfield, as well as being a good enough actress and comedian, it's Loni Anderson. I think she plays Jayne perfectly in this movie.

Loni was already a star at this point with her guest appearances on Threes Company in the late 1970s playing Jack Tripper’s love interest. And then she lands WKRP in Cincinnati in 1978. (One of the best sitcoms of all-time) Arnold wasn’t a star as an actor yet, but he was a superstar professional bodybuilder and already well-known at this point. Mickey Hargitay was a superstar bodybuilder before become an actor as well.

This is a very good and funny movie and a lot of that has to do with Loni Anderson. Who has great comedic ability and one of the top comedic actresses of her generation, at least. And she happens to playing a very funny woman in Jayne Mansfield who was very funny in real-life both intentionally and unintentionally, because she was so adorable and very immature and then add her comedic timing and you had a very funny woman who might still be working today had it not had been for her tragic car accident in 1967.

The movie covers Jayne’s life from when she became star in the early 1950s looking for work and basically forcing herself on her future agent Bob Garrett (played by Ray Buktenica) and he tells her if he’s going to represent Jayne that she’s going to have to change her hair and a few other things. But sees potential in her as a comedian.

And the movie goes from Jayne being discovered in the early 1950s where Hollywood wasn’t ready for her alway up to her fall and struggling to find work in the early and mid 1960s, to her tragic death in 1967.

Loni Anderson is just plain hot, sexy, adorable and funny as Jayne Mansfield. She’s as cute as a little girl with personality to match, but with body of a goddess with those legs, curves, chest and everything else, as well as the face. 

Arnold playing Jayne’s wife is also great as a very loving and caring husband of Jayne who tries to look out for her best interests and tries to manage her immatureness and irresponsible behavior, but fails at both and they split up in the movie.

I believe Jayne Mansfield in real-life would have been proud for how Loni played her and at least give her credit for doing such a great and accurate job. Because I think knew herself real well and didn’t try to be anyone other than herself even if she seemed overly adorable and even childish to even the people who loved and cared about her like Mickey Hargitay and her business people. 

This is a very entertaining movie that covers the struggles as Jayne making it as a great comedic actress, but someone who also wanted to be taken seriously in Hollywood and get serious parts with more meaning.

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  1. You can also see this post at The Daily Press: on Blogger.

  2. You can also see this post on WordPress:

  3. You can also see this post at FRS FreeState: on WordPress.

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