Paula Prentiss
Filmography


Bachelor in Paradise Black Marble Born to Win Buddy Buddy
Catch-22 Couple Takes a Wife Crazy JoeFollow the Boys
Friendships, Secrets and Lies Hard Four Having Babies II Honeymoon Machine
Horizontal Lieutenant In Harm’s Way Last of the Red Hot Lovers Looking for Love
M.A.D.D. Man’s Favorite Sport? Move Mrs. Winterbourne
No Room to Run Packin’ It In Parallax View Saturday the 14th
Stepford Wives Top of the Hill What’s New Pussycat? Where the Boys Are
World of Henry Orient



(Casts are not listed in strict credits order.)

WHERE THE BOYS ARE
(1960)

Directed by Henry Levin.
CinemaScope, color. 100 min. MGM.
Dolores Hart, Paula Prentiss, Yvette Mimieux, Connie Francis, George Hamilton, Jim Hutton, Frank Gorshin, Barbara Nichols, Chill Wills.

By 1960 we had been exposed to sexy European icons like Martine Carol, Gina Lollobrigida, Brigitte Bardot, and Sophia Loren, so Doris Day was not everybody’s cup of tea — specially for those who were in their early teens. I was 9 years old when I saw Where the Boys Are, the mother of all those “let’s-go-to-the-beach” movies. Paula Prentiss played Tuggle Carpenter, the tall, beautiful, direct young girl behind the wheel, who drove Hart, Francis, and Mimieux to Florida where they learned a few lessons about “boys.” Not a great film, but she impressed enough, and her career was launched. The title song was a hit for Francis. Remade in 1984.

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BACHELOR IN PARADISE
(1961)

Directed by Jack Arnold.
CinemaScope, color. 109 min. MGM.
Bob Hope, Lana Turner, Janis Paige, Jim Hutton, Paula Prentiss, Don Porter, Virginia Grey, Agnes Moorehead, John McGiver, Reta Shaw.

This film was not much appreciated by critics upon its release, and today it’s still regarded as a flat Bob Hope vehicle. It may not be the peak of any of its stars’ careers, but Bachelor in Paradise is more than just that. It is a pre-Altmanesque satire of male values, suburban mores, and morality of the American society, within the restricted confines of the 1960s comedies, still ruled by the Hays Code. Director Jack Arnold, best remembered for his horror B-classics Creature of the Black Lagoon and The Incredible Shrinking Man, was no stranger to comedy and had had a big hit in 1959 with The Mouse That Roared. Prentiss steals every scene she is in as Linda Delavane, a suburban housewife married to Jim Hutton. As a matter of fact, she would have been a perfect Robert Altman regular. The title song by Henry Mancini and Mack David was nominated for an Academy Award and was recently featured in the Rhino CD-compilation “Bachelor in Paradise: Cocktail Classics From M-G-M Films.”

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THE HONEYMOON MACHINE
(1961)
Honeymoon Machine

Directed by Richard Thorpe.
CinemaScope, color. 87 min. MGM.
Steve McQueen, Brigid Bazlen, Jim Hutton, Paula Prentiss, Dean Jagger, Jack Mullaney, Jack Weston.

In her first film under the direction of veteran Richard Thorpe (Night Must Fall, Ivanhoe, Jailhouse Rock), Prentiss was in great form as Pam Dunstan, a nearsighted socialite who mingles with three marines that are trying to beat the roulette in a sound stage-Venice casino. She even overshadows leading lady Brigid Bazlen, a pretty MGM starlet who played Steve McQueen’s love interest. Prentiss was teamed with Jim Hutton for the third time, and they seemed like a good match, reminiscent of old-day film couples.

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THE HORIZONTAL LIEUTENANT
(1962)

Directed by Richard Thorpe.
CinemaScope, color. 90 min. MGM.
Jim Hutton, Paula Prentiss, Miyoshi Umeki, Jack Carter, Jim Backus, Charles McGraw, Marty Ingels, Yuki Shimoda.

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer thought they had a winning team with Prentiss and Hutton and gave them a film of their own. Both were attractive and worked fine together, but the vehicle did not. Considering the success of The Honeymoon Machine, MGM put them in a service comedy which takes place in a (fake) Pacific island. Prentiss was sexy nurse Molly Blue and, as always, a delight to watch. Don’t ask me what Japanese actress Miyoshi Umeki is doing in this film, after winning an Academy Award for her dramatic performance in Sayonara.

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FOLLOW THE BOYS
(1963)

Directed by Richard Thorpe.
CinemaScope, color. MGM.
Connie Francis, Paula Prentiss, Janis Paige, Dany Robin, Richard Long, Ron Randell, Russ Tamblyn, Roger Perry.

Prentiss’ third and last film with Thorpe was his worst, her third among men in uniform, and her second role as a rich girl, Toni Denham. Follow the Boys had Connie Francis as the center of a group of “seagulls” (marines’ girls) who go after their mates in the French Riviera. Although the subject was unusual and could have been an original comedy, the only assets were the beautiful (and real) European locations. With Russ Tamblyn as her husband, Paula Prentiss seemed ready for better things than listening in the background to Francis’ singing.

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MAN'S FAVORITE SPORT?
(1964)

Cinema Poster
Directed by Howard Hawks.
Color. 120 min. Universal.
Rock Hudson, Paula Prentiss, John McGiver, Maria Perschy, Charlene Holt, Norman Alden, Roscoe Karns, Regis Toomey.

And indeed she was: her role in the screwball comedy Man’s Favorite Sport? was a perfect casting choice. In an interview given during production, maestro Howard Hawks had only great words for her. Those who had not paid attention to Paula Prentiss in the MGM movies now began to compare her to Carole Lombard and Katharine Hepburn in the classic screwball comedies and recognized her as “one of the few promising comediennes of recent years.” As Abigail Page, an aggressive PR woman who convinces a false fishing authority (Rock Hudson) to participate in a fishing tournament, she became a sort of icon of the “new woman,” ready to test herself professionally and sexually with a man, far from Doris Day’s predicaments in both respects. To David Thomson this is Hudson’s best comedy, and as Roger Willoughby he is as good as Prentiss. Man’s Favorite Sport? has been debated regarding the auteur theory. Some argue that it may be a Hawks movie, but it is an old-fashioned Hawksian film, a not-so-fast remake of Bringing Up Baby. With the perspective of all the years that have passed since its release, Man’s Favorite Sport? should be seen as the work of a mature man, a more sedated and wiser Hawks. It is good filmmaking, old-fashioned if you will, but with the same style and skill of his more reputed movies. The title song by Henry Mancini and Johnny Mercer, featured in the 1965 RCA album “Dear Heart and Other Songs About Love,” is now available in the Japanese 5-CD set “The Anthology of Henry Mancini.”"

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LOOKING FOR LOVE
(1964)

Directed by Don Weis.
Panavision, color. MGM.
Connie Francis, Jim Hutton, Susan Oliver, Barbara Nichols, Joby Baker, Jay C. Flippen, Jesse White, Johnny Carson, George Hamilton, Yvette Mimieux, Paula Prentiss, Danny Thomas.

Paula Prentiss was a star now, and as such she came back for a last film at Metro. She makes a cameo as herself with Jim Hutton (now coupled with Connie Francis) who tries to convince her to promote a weird invention which hits her in the face. But not even that or this silly comedy hurt her rising career. As a note of interest, this marked the beginning of her tendency to accept brief roles.

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IN HARM’S WAY
(1964)

Directed by Otto Preminger.
Panavision, B/W. 167 min. Paramount.
With John Wayne, Kirk Douglas, Patricia Neal, Tom Tryon, Paula Prentiss, Brandon de Wilde, Jill Haworth, Henry Fonda, Burgess Meredith, Patrick O’Neal, Barbara Bouchet, Hugh O’Brian, Stanley Holloway, Dana Andrews, George Kennedy, Bruce Cabot, Franchot Tone, Carroll O’Connor, Slim Pickens, Larry Hagman.

In Harm’s Way was a wise move by Prentiss to prove herself in drama, and her only B/W film. Back in the military world, she plays Bev McConnel, the wife of an official (Tom Tryon) in Pearl Harbor during the Second World War. Prentiss had fifth billing in a cast that included many established Hollywood names, but only four scenes, two of them dramatic dialogues with John Wayne and Tryon. The movie had poor reviews in 1964, but in the early ’90s Film Comment magazine reevaluated it. Some critics are too much concerned with the model ships of the battle sequences. Don’t pay much attention to them and enjoy. Jerry Goldsmith contributed one of his finest scores.

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THE WORLD OF HENRY ORIENT
(1964)

Directed by George Roy Hill.
Panavision, color. 106 min. United Artists.
Peter Sellers, Paula Prentiss, Angela Lansbury, Tippy Walker, Merrie Spaeth, Tom Bosley, Phyllis Thaxter, Bibi Osterwald, Philippa Bevans, Al Lewis, Peter Duchin, Fred Stewart.

A much-loved motion picture about friendship and family relations, with great outdoor locations in New York City shot by Boris Kaufman and Arthur J. Ornitz, and a beautiful score by Elmer Bernstein, this was the third film by George Roy Hill, director of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and The Sting. Prentiss had second billing but few scenes as Stella, a paranoiac married woman having an affair with pianist Henry Orient (Peter Sellers). They are followed everywhere by two adolescent fans, played by Tippy Walker and Merrie Spaeth, the real stars of the movie. However, every time Stella appears, she is the center of the fun as she tries to conceal herself from potential witnesses. When the police follow her, thinking she is Jayne Mansfield, she appears no more: Angela Lansbury enters as Walker’s mother, and the film turns into a drama. One curious fact: I have always wondered if the characters played by Phyllis Thaxter (Spaeth’s mother) and Bibi Osterwald (her live-in girlfriend) were lovers. If they were, and since the situation was taken as normal, this was a very liberal movie for its time. A very good film, available in a deluxe laser disc edition.

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WHAT’S NEW PUSSYCAT?
(1965)

Directed by Clive Donner.
Color. 108 min. United Artists.
Peter O'Toole, Peter Sellers, Romy Schneider, Capucine, Paula Prentiss, Woody Allen, Eddra Gale, Ursula Andress, Katrin Schaake, Jess Hahn, Eléonor Hirt.

Promo ad Prentiss

I always wonder why Woody Allen never made another film with Prentiss, who seemed like his perfect match back in 1965. But they don’t even cross a word in What’s New Pussycat?, although both work in the Crazy Horse Saloon. Written by Allen, Pussycat is emblematic of the sexual behavior of the middle ’60s, of op and pop art designs, and a blend of cinematic influences, from Lubitsch to Fellini (including not only a parody of the harem scene from 8 1/2 but also an actress from that film, Eddra Gale, as Sellers’ wife). Not as successful as it sounds, it is actually more noise than Lubitsch and more pastiche than Fellini. But Prentiss (wearing mod clothes specially designed for her) and Capucine are very funny, respectively as Liz Bien, a poetess turned striptease with suicidal tendencies, and Renee Lefebvre, a nymphomaniac who dominates her husband. Burt Bacharach wrote the score and the hit title song; Tom Jones, Dionne Warwick, and Manfred Mann sang in the soundtrack, and Richard Burton (as a patron in the Crazy Horse Saloon) and French pop singer Françoise Hardy (as a secretary in the last scene) made uncredited cameos. During production of What’s New Pussycat? Prentiss had a nervous breakdown, and after its release she retired for five years.

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MOVE
(1970)

Directed by Stuart Rosenberg.
Panavision, color. 90 min. 20th Century-Fox.
Elliott Gould, Paula Prentiss, Genevieve Waïte, John Larch, Joe Silver, Ron O’Neal, Rudy Bond, Richard Bull, Graham Jarvis.

After her absence from the screen, it seemed adequate to come back in a comedy which today is better defined as early post-modernist, a fragmented reflection of a time when all metalanguages began to crumble. The reviews I have read seem to come from people who have never seen the film, but those of us who watched it in 1970 were dazzled. As James Monaco states in his book American Film Now it is a “hip” icon from the New American Wave, “evocative of a very brief and rather self indulgent period of our history.” Shot in New York, Prentiss plays Dolly Jaffe, the wife of a writer with a creative block (Elliott Gould, a fashionable star for this type of film in those days). They go through very strange happenings while trying to move from one apartment to another. Gould’s fantasies are so puzzling and bizarre that I have only a vague memory of them, but I know I enjoyed the movie, specially when I saw it on TV again in 1990.

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CATCH-22
(1970)

Directed by Mike Nichols.
Panavision, color. 121 min. Paramount.
Alan Arkin, Bob Balaban, Martin Balsam, Richard Benjamin, Marcel Dalio, Art Garfunkel, Jack Gilford, Buck Henry, Olimpia Carlisi, Bob Newhart, Austin Pendleton, Anthony Perkins, Paula Prentiss, Martin Sheen, Jon Voight, Orson Welles.

Great moviemaking from a fine adaptation of Joseph Heller’s novel done by Buck Henry. This was Mr. and Mrs. Richard Benjamin’s first film together and her fifth movie among military men. She played nurse Duckett but had little to do, since her character (though quite present in the novel) is mostly absent in the final cut. But it is good for anybody’s curriculum to be in this masterful production.

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BORN TO WIN
(1971)

Directed by Ivan Passer.
Color. 97 min. United Artists.
George Segal, Paula Prentiss, Karen Black, Jay Fletcher, Héctor Elizondo, Robert De Niro, Marcia Jean Kurtz, Sylvia Simms.

To some this is a comedy. I find it one of the most disturbing films on drug addiction that I have seen, with a very good performance by George Segal. It does have comic scenes, but what prevails is a dramatic portrait of the downfall of a hairdresser turned junkie. Director Ivan Passer, after writing screenplays for Milos Forman and directing the successful Intimate Lightning in his native Czechoslovakia, migrated and made this American debut which is still underrated. Prentiss had second billing and a brief part as Veronica (a name with Biblical resonance), the junkie’s wife who has abandoned him for the pusher (Elizondo).

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LAST OF THE RED HOT LOVERS
(1972)

Directed by Gene Saks.
Color. 98 min. Paramount.
Alan Arkin, Sally Kellerman, Paula Prentiss, Renee Taylor, Sully Boyar.

Almost as a rule I find Neil Simon’s comedies rather silly or empty. Last of the Red Hot Lovers is no different. So I am not so sure if this one deserves a turkey and others don’t. One may say it is a matter of taste, but I do not see much difference between The Goodbye Girl and this. Though all the blame has gone to Gene Saks, it might also have to do with Simon’s claustrophobic adaptation of his play. I saw Last of the Red Hot Lovers with a feminist, and she loved it. I am not crazy about it, but I have seen worse films. Prentiss is in the middle section as Bobbi Michele, a kooky actress, and that she knows how to do very well.

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THE COUPLE TAKES A WIFE
TV Movie

(1972)

Directed by Jerry Paris.
Color. 73 min.
Bill Bixby, Paula Prentiss, Valerie Perrine, Myrna Loy, Robert Goulet, Nanette Fabray, Larry Storch, Penny Marshall.

La señora Prentiss wants to work, so she and husband Bill Bixby hire a “wife,” sexy Valerie Perrine, who assumes her job quite professionally. It seems most of Prentiss’ TV movies deal with an issue, and this sort of screwball comedy had a little to do with feminism, 1970s style. It was also good to see Myrna Loy again (as Prentiss’ mother).

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CRAZY JOE
(1973)

Directed by Carlo Lizzani.
Color. 100 min. Columbia.
Peter Boyle, Paula Prentiss, Rip Torn, Eli Wallach, Fred Williamson, Luther Adler, Charles Cioffi, Fausto Tozzi, Carmine Caridi, Sam Coppola, Michael V. Gazzo.

This is the film Vincent Canby asked what Paula Prentiss was doing in it. Well, I guess she is there because of her Italian roots. An Italian-American co-production financed by Dino de Laurentiis (when he moved his production offices to the United States), it was directed by one of the most popular but least talented neo-realist Italian filmmakers. Carlo Lizzani was not a great director when he made Bitter Rice in 1948, and Crazy Joe, a not-so-bad biography of mafioso Joe Gallo, shows no significant improvement. Again Prentiss had second billing and was briefly seen as Anne, Gallo’s tearful bride. She gives a good shout at the end when Joe dies in her arms, and her image freezes.

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THE PARALLAX VIEW
(1974)

Directed by Alan J. Pakula.
Panavision, color. 102 min. Paramount.
Warren Beatty, Paula Prentiss, Hume Cronyn, William Daniels, Walter McGinn, Chuck Waters, Kelly Thordsen, Earl Hindman, Anthony Zerbe.

After Klute, this was the second installment of Alan J. Pakula’s trilogy of political paranoia, which concluded with All the President’s Men. Since it benefited from the coverage given to the Watergate scandal, President’s was the most successful at the box-office and the most talked about of all three. But The Parallax View is the best by far, due — at the same time — to its roots in American history (“As American as apple pie,” read the ads) and its detachment from any given historical fact. It has only a slight resemblance to the John and Robert Kennedy assassinations, it has no triumphalist resolution, and now it seems prophetic since Watergate exploded a few months after its release. All this gave Pakula more freedom to use techniques from the thriller genre. Prentiss plays Lee Carter, a reporter who witnessed a political assassination. She informs colleague Joe Frady (Warren Beatty) of the strange circumstances in which all the witnesses to the crime are dying; she is terrified and thinks she is next. Although Lee is the only relevant female character in the film, she is killed after 18 minutes of projection, adding to the film’s atmosphere of conspiracy and insecurity for the average citizen. The Parallax View is one of the best American films of the ’70s with great cinematography by Gordon Willis, direction by Pakula, and acting by the entire cast.

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THE STEPFORD WIVES
(1975)

Directed by Bryan Forbes.
Color. 115 min. Columbia.
Katharine Ross, Paula Prentiss, Peter Masterson, Patrick O’Neal, Nanette Newman, Tina Louise, Josef Sommer, William Prince, Mary Stuart Masterson, Carol Rossen, John Aprea, Kenneth McMillan, Dee Wallace.

This subversive and suburban horror/black comedy is no Bachelor in Paradise. William Goldman’s intelligent adaptation of Ira Levin’s novel really takes off when Bobby Markowe enters the scene, after we have been following zombie-like leading lady Katharine Ross for 30 minutes. Played by Prentiss in a very sexy fashion, Bobby is an independent housewife bored to death in Stepford, Connecticut, where women look and act like Playboy bunnies-cum-robots. Bobby meets Joanna (Ross), becomes her best friend, and together they try to organize a women’s lib chapter in town; but in a very funny scene Joanna discovers that Bobby has been turned into a clone. Luckily the film really gets down to business and Joanna faces her destiny. Filled with jokes and caustic remarks, feminists did not like its humor. Almost everybody else did, but Prentiss’ fans had to wait another five years for her second comeback.

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HAVING BABIES II
TV Movie

(1977)

Directed by Richard Michaels.
Color. 100 min.
Rosanna Arquette, Tony Bill, Cliff Gorman, Carol Lynley, Lee Meriwether, Rhea Perlman, Paula Prentiss, Nicholas Pryor, Wayne Rogers, Jamie Smith-Jackson, Susan Sullivan, Cassie Yates.

Paula Prentiss had become a mother in real life, so this time she was in a TV movie dealing with the Lamaze technique of natural childbirth, adoption, and love among the young.

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NO ROOM TO RUN
TV Movie

(1978)

Directed by Robert Michael Lewis.
Color. 101 min.
Richard Benjamin, Paula Prentiss, Barry Sullivan, Ray Barrett, Noel Ferrier, Anne Haddy, Cul Cullen, Phillip Hinton.

Mrs. Richard Benjamin played Terry McKenna in her first TV movie with her husband. It is a thriller dealing with corporate spying and corruption, shot in Australia.

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TOP OF THE HILL
TV Movie

(1979)

Directed by William A. Graham.
Color. 200 min.
With Adrienne Barbeau, Sonny Bono, MacDonald Carey, Rae Dawn Chong, Mel Ferrer, Gary Lockwood, Wayne Newton, Paula Prentiss, Elke Sommer.

Sports, sex, and male midlife crisis combine in this adaptation of Irwin Wallace’s novel about the 1980 Winter Olympics.

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FRIENDSHIPS, SECRETS AND LIES
TV Movie

(1979)

Directed by Ann Zane Hanks & Marlena Laird.
Color. 104 min.
Cathryn Damon, Shelley Fabares, Sondra Locke, Tina Louise, Paula Prentiss, Stella Stevens, Loretta Swit.

Female bonding is at the heart of this melodrama made by women filmmakers. Prentiss is very good as a mother and dance instructor who is accused of lesbianism when the discovery of a newborn baby’s skeleton in a sorority house throws suspicion upon a group of old girlfriends. Fabares turns out to be the real lesbian, and all the girls tell her “Don’t worry, honey, so is the script girl” ... or something like that.

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THE BLACK MARBLE
(1980)

Directed by Harold Becker.
Panavision, color. 110 min. Avco Embassy.
Robert Foxworth, Paula Prentiss, Harry Dean Stanton, Barbara Babcock, John Hancock, Judy Landers, Marilyn Chris, Raleigh Bond, Anne Ramsey, James Woods.

It was worth waiting five years. Prentiss made a great comeback to the big screen with the intimate comedy The Black Marble, an independent film produced by Frank Capra, Jr., and Joseph Wambaugh. Although it is often associated with The Onion Field (1979) as part of a diptych from Wambaugh’s novels, I see both of them as parts 1 and 2 of a trilogy made by Harold Becker, concluding with Fox’s Taps (1981). All three films deal with the basic humanity of the persons who, in the police force or a military academy, protect civil life or learn how to do so. With warmth Becker shows the intimacy of these characters in all three films. The Black Marble is a romantic comedy so distant from the routine police movies that it was not appreciated by most critics, although it received good reviews by Jay Cocks and Roger Ebert. Prentiss plays Natalie Zimmermann, a pragmatic sergeant who is paired with Valnikov (Robert Foxworth), an investigator of Russian origin. From her tough attitude she loosens up gradually and reveals a centered woman with strong emotional needs. It was wonderful to find Prentiss aging like good wine, as beautiful, skeptic, and pushy as ever. Harry Dean Stanton as the sleazy villain, Owen Roizman’s cinematography, and Maurice Jarre’s score are additional assets.

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SATURDAY THE 14TH
(1980)

Directed by Howard R. Cohen.
Color. 75 min. New World.
Richard Benjamin, Paula Prentiss, Severn Darden, Jeffrey Tambor, Rosemary DeCamp, Kari Michaelson, Kevin Brando.

It sounded like a great idea, but it was not clever enough to end the slasher-film fad started with Halloween. It is a mixture of Dracula, House on Haunted Hill, The Birds, Jaws, and many others, that never gels. Maybe it was fun to shoot a movie with Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin as John and Mary in a haunted house, but the creators provided them with poor material. Of special note, in a spoof of Tippi Hedren’s trip to the room upstairs in The Birds, Prentiss is attacked by bats and vampirized. If it was intended for kids, it surely is a classic.

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BUDDY BUDDY
(1981)

Directed by Billy Wilder.
Panavision, color. 96 min. MGM.
Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau, Paula Prentiss, Klaus Kinski, Dana Elcar, Miles Chapin, Joan Shawlee Michael Ensign, Fil Formicola, Bette Raya, Ed Begley Jr., C.J. Hunt.

Paula Prentiss returned to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer under different conditions for the studio, sold in the ’70s. Directed by film great Billy Wilder, Buddy Buddy is an adaptation of Francis Veber’s play L’emmerdeur, already made in 1973 by Edouard Molinaro. Wilder and I.A.L. Diamond wrote a screenplay that is as offensive as a sexist joke, but that’s no news in Wilder’s movies. The film has a fast pace and funny moments, mostly sustained on the verbal interplay between Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau as two misogynists typical of Wilder’s cinema. Prentiss plays Celia Clooney, a TV reporter who has abandoned husband Lemmon for Klaus Kinski, a sexologist who runs a clinic to improve people's sexual life. Lemmon goes after Celia, but he gets into trouble when he meets Trabucco, a hit man (Matthau). All men in this film are so dumb that it is almost logical that by the film’s end Celia has run away with another woman (the receptionist at Kinski’s clinic, played by Wilder regular Joan Shawlee). After the indifferent reception to Wilder’s last film, Prentiss retired from the big screen for 15 years.

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PACKIN’ IT IN
TV Movie

(1982)

Directed by Jud Taylor.
Color. 92 min.
Richard Benjamin, Paula Prentiss, Tony Roberts, Andrea Marcovicci, Molly Ringwald, Mari Gorman, Kenneth McMillan, Susan Ruttan.

This time the issues were ecology and ordinary fascism. As Dianna Webber, Prentiss moves with her husband (Benjamin) and daughter (Ringwald) from polluted Los Angeles to a survivalist community in the Oregon woods. But things are as bad there as they are at home.

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M.A.D.D.: MOTHERS AGAINST DRUNK DRIVING
TV Movie

(1983)

Directed by William A. Graham.
Color. 100 min.
With Mariette Hartley, Paula Prentiss, Bert Remsen, Cliff Potts, John Rubinstein, Grace Zabriskie, David Huddleston, Nicolas Coster, Elizabeth Huddle.

The title tells all in this based-on-a-true-story TV movie taken from Candy Lightner’s struggle to organize M.A.D.D. Prentiss has second billing and, yes, she appears briefly as Candy’s friend.

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MRS. WINTERBOURNE
(1996)

Directed by Richard Benjamin.
Color. 104 min. Tri-Star.
With Shirley MacLaine, Ricki Lake, Brendan Fraser, Miguel Sandoval, Loren Dean, Susan Haskell, Peter Gerety, Jane Krakowski.

Though Benjamin paid her a little tribute in Made in America, where a movie marquee announces a “Paula Prentiss Retrospective,” this was the first time she appeared in one of his films, in an uncredited cameo. Mrs. Winterbourne is the third remake of Cornell Woolrich’s mystery novel I Married a Dead Man, but this time it was turned into a comedy, so it is more than appropriate that Prentiss plays a variation of nurse Duckett, trying to drug Ricki Lake. As always, her timing is correct and her trademark voice is used to good advantage. For a third comeback, it is a pity she had so little screen time.

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HARD FOUR
(2010)

Directed by Charles Denis
Color. 82 min. Foo Dog / Virgil / National Lampoon.
With Ross Benjamin, Samuel Gould, Ross Benjamin, Samuel Gould, Charles Dennis, Charlene Blaine, Edward Asner, Mitzi McCall, Dabney Coleman, John Getz, Fayard Nicholas, Prentiss Benjamin, Ed Begley Jr., Paula Prentiss.

Paula returned to the screen in a comedy produced and starred by her son Ross and Elliott GouldÕs son, Samuel. She plays Sweet Cherrie, owner of a cafeteria, and appears in a scene where she intearacts with dancing celebrity Fayard Nicholas, of The Nicholas Brothers duo. Her daughter Prentiss plays a nun called Sister Ragusa.
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