Donald O’Connor on working with Walter Lang, the Director of “There’s No Business Like Show Business.”

“He was a strange guy.. His claim to fame was that he wasn’t a good Director, but all of his pictures made money. To tell you what he was like, we were doing the sequence where Marilyn is rehearsing with the band. Thanks to her bouffant hair and high heels she looked taller than me — even though she was about five-foot-five and I’m five-nine– So Lang came over to me and asked if I’d stand on an apple box. I said ‘Why don’t you ask her to take off her shoes?’ and he said ‘I’m afraid to.’ I went to Marilyn and I said ‘Marilyn, this idiot’s afraid to ask you to take off your shoes, but I’d feel very strange working with you, standing on an apple box.’ She said, ‘Oh Christ! the guy’s nuts..’ So, she kicked off her shoes and everything was fine.”


Source: “Blonde Heat: The Sizzling Screen Career of Marilyn Monroe” by Richard Buskin.