released=3 March 1978
"Sextette" is a 1978 Crown International comedy/musical motion picture starring
Mae West. Others in the cast include Timothy Dalton, Dom DeLuise, Tony Curtis, Ringo Starr, Keith Moon, George Hamilton, Alice Cooperand Walter Pidgeon.
Ken Hughes, produced by Daniel Briggs, Robert Sullivanand Harry Weissfor the production company Briggs and Sullivan, the script was by Herbert Baker based on the play "Sextet" by Mae West. Costumes were designed by Edith Head.
Filmed at Paramount Studios, "Sextette" was Mae West's final movie. Featured are cameos by
Rona Barrett, Regis Philbinand George Raftplaying themselves. West made her movie debut in Raft's " Night After Night" (1932).
Although initially a box-office failure, "Sextette" has become a
cult classicand has, in fact, done well through premium cable movie channel showings, VHS and DVD releases.
movie starand sex symbolMarlo Manners (played by West) is in London, England, where she has just married for the sixth time. She and her new husband, Sir Michael Barrington (played by Dalton), then depart for a honeymoon suite at a posh and exclusive hotel that has been reserved for them by her manager, Dan Turner (played by DeLuise).
The hotel is also the location of an international conference, where leaders have come together to resolve tensions and problems that threaten the survival of the world. As the chairman, Mr. Chambers (played by Pidgeon) is trying to call the meeting to order, but the delegates are crowding to the windows in an effort to catch a glimpse of Marlo when she arrives.
As they enter the lobby, Marlo, now Lady Barrington, and her nobleman husband are swarmed by admirers and reporters. When asked, "Do you get a lot of proposals from your male fans?" she quips, "Yeah, and what they propose is nobody’s business."
Once inside their suite, the couple are unable to go to bed and have sex because of constant interruptions due to the demands of her career, such as interviews, dress fittings and photo sessions, as well as the various men, including some former husbands, diplomat Alexei Andreyev Karansky (played by Curtis), director Laslo Karolny (played by Starr), gangster Vance Norton (played by Hamilton), and an entire athletic team from the U.S., who all want to have sex with her.
Meanwhile, Turner desperately searches for an audiotape containing his client's memoirs, in order to destroy it. Marlo has recorded extensive details about her affairs and scandals, with a lot of dirt about her husbands and lovers. Ex-husband Alexei, who is the
Russian delegate at the conference, threatens to derail the intense negotiations unless he can have another sexual encounter with her. Marlo is expected to work "undercover" to ensure world peace.
An adaptation of Mae West's
Broadway musicalof the same name is considered by some to be one of the most embarrassing sex comedies ever made, which Variety dubbed "a cruel, unnecessary and mostly unfunny musical comedy" [http://www.variety.com/review/VE1117794787.html?categoryid=31&cs=1&p=0] , as an overweight 83-year old (at the time of filming) West maintained her sex kitten role while uttering stale quips as "I'm the girl who works for Paramount all day, and Fox all night" (an earlier version of the scene had much raunchier dialogue), and who croaked a duet with new sixth husband Sir Michael Barrington (a 32-year old Timothy Dalton) a disco rendition of " Love Will Keep Us Together".
"Sextette" became the source of several
urban legends. One such persistent rumor is that West could not remember any of her lines and had to wear a concealed earpiece under her wig to have her lines fed to her. Dom Deluise, Timothy Dalton and other principal players have disputed that claim; however Tony Curtis has supported it, retelling the story in an episode of the program " The Dame Edna Experience". He further stated that because of the frequency of her earpiece she accidentally picked up police frequencies, and at one point mistakenly stated "There's a 608!"
Dom DeLuise has stated many times that Curtis's claims "never happened". Deluise's opinion is lent credence by the fact that he filmed most of the scenes with West. Curtis states in the same interview that West was 92 while filming. (She was 85.) Curtis also has stated that Miss West wrote his part especially for him (although that was not true).
Another story is that West had a cane concealed under her long gown so that she could walk.
Yet another story is that after one scene West stayed in an elevator waiting for hours for the crew to call her out.
Cast (in order of appearance)
Mae West- Marlo Manners/Lady Barrington
Timothy Dalton- Sir Michael Barrington
Dom DeLuise- Dan Turner
Tony Curtis- Alexei Andreyev Karansky
Ringo Starr- Laslo Karolny
George Hamilton- Vance Norton
Alice Cooper- Waiter
Van McCoy- Delegate
Keith Moon- Dress Designer
Walter Pidgeon- Mr. Chambers
Rona Barrett- Herself
Regis Philbin- Himself
George Raft- Himself
Gil Stratton- Himself
* [http://www.jabootu.com/sextette.htm Review] at
Jabootu's Bad Movie Dimension
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