“It’s not a question of talent but… time of life”. Il mito della star decaduta in La primavera romana della signora Stone, dal romanzo di Tennessee Williams al film di José Quintero

Diletta Pavesi


The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone (1950) is the first experience of Tennessee Williams in the field of novel writing. As much as his successful plays, this short novel soon attracted the attention of Hollywood producers. In 1961 José Quintero directed a cinematic adaptation starring Vivien Leigh and Warren Beatty. In spite of Quintero’s elegant direction and Leigh’s intense acting performance, The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone was coldly welcomed both by the moviegoers and by film critics. This article aims to show that this forgotten though audacious adaptation offers interesting analogies between the way Williams outlines the figure of the declining star, embodied by Karen Stone, and the portrayal of similar characters in several Hollywood metafictional films from the same years. In The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone, as much as in some eminent “Hollywood on Hollywood movies” released between the late Fifties and the early Sixties, the declining diva emerges as a figure of disruption that challenges the relationship between femininity and the show-business, sexuality and the coming of age.

Parole chiave

Tennessee Williams, José Quintero, Vivien Leigh, Fading Stars, Hollywood on Hollywood Movies

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15160/1826-803X/2092


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ISSN: 1826-803X

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