This Georgia-made 1939 film adaption of the Margaret Mitchell novel brought newfound attention to the South. The film follows Scarlett O’Hara (played by Vivian Lee) through her life in the South during the Civil War and Reconstruction time periods. The film shows Scarlett as a desirable southern belle and portrays the South as a desirable area to live. “Gone With the Wind” was an immense success, receiving ten Academy Awards in 1940. The film is, to date, the most successful film in box office history, after adjusting for inflation. “Gone With the Wind” has been re-released eight times over the years and is extremely successful each time. Though the film has been heavily criticized for its glorification of slavery, much of the hype around the film is positivity towards the South; painting the area as aesthetically beautiful and giving significance and meaning to the depicted society, the film gives great value to old southern culture. An interesting article from L.A. Stewart, linked below, lists a few fun facts about the film. Five of these facts are:
- Over 1,400 actresses were interviewed for the role of Scarlett.
- In 1999 Michael Jackson paid $1.5 million for the 1939 Oscar for Best Film, "Gone With The Wind."
- The original name of the book was "Tomorrow Is Another Day" and Scarlett’s original name was Pansy.
- Actress Vivian Leigh's (who played Scarlett O’Hara) hands were usually filmed while she wore gloves. This was due to the fact that her hands were very large and disproportional in regard to her petite frame (5'3").
- Clark Gable (Rhett Butler) wore false teeth, as well as having his large ears surgically altered in 1933. He had a chronic case of Halitosis (bad breath) the rest of his life. It was so severe that many actresses would gag during kissing scenes!