Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Oomph Girl, c. 1940s

The "Oomph" Girl: Ann Sheridan. You can read about her life and movie career here.
I liked her in "Angels with Dirty Faces," (1938), "It All Came True," "City for Conquest," "They Drive By Night," (all three in 1940), and "Kings Row" (1942) to name a few.
From a letter to the New York Times,  September 12, 1988:

To the Editor:
Russell Baker, writing of an earlier, more innocent era when women could be given nicknames like ''The Blonde Bombshell,'' wonders how Ann Sheridan was dubbed ''The Oomph Girl'' (''A Bird by Any Other Name,'' column, Aug. 20). Bob Taplinger was head of publicity at Warner Brothers at the time, 1939. I asked Bob about this very subject when we were with another company, almost three decades later.
Bob told me Walter Winchell had seen Ann Sheridan in a sexy bit role and, liking to coin words, wrote in his column, ''she's got an 'umphy' quality.'' Bob changed the spelling to ''oomph'' and gave the world the ''The Oomph Girl'' at an ''Oomph Dinner'' for Warner movie stars.
For years after that, whenever Ann Sheridan was asked what ''oomph'' meant, she would say she didn't know, but described it as the sound that a fat man says when he bends over to tie his shoelaces in a phone booth. ART ROGOFF New York, Aug. 22, 1988

1 comment:

  1. Wow, she looks stunning! Now I have to check her out (some of these movies have indeed high ratings at IMDb).