Search transcripts:    Advanced Search
Notable New     Yorkers
Select     Notable New Yorker

Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
Photo Gallery

Session:         Page of 1029

amusing man and might take her to a lot of first-nights and introduce her to theatrical notables. Bennett Cerf, on the other hand, would probably make a pass at her the first time he met her but took these things very lightly and wouldn't care whether she said no or yes. That was what Miss Spitzer told her.

So Mary Astor arrived in New York and decided that I sounded a little more interesting than George Kaufman for a starter so she called me up. When she told me that it was Mary Astor on the phone, I thought somebody was kidding me. I said, “Where are you staying, Miss Astor?" She said that she was at the Gotham Hotel. I said, “I'm very busy. I'll call you back in a few minutes.” As soon as I hung up, I called the Gotham to make sure she was registered there because I thought somebody was kidding me. She was there all right. I called back. She sounded like fun over the phone. She told me about the two letters and what Marian had said. I laughed and said that I wasn't that way at all.

She said, “I'm dying to see New York and meet people.” I said, “You came on just the right day. There's a big cocktail party this afternoon, being given by Kay Swift, who is Mrs. James Warburg.” Besides being Mrs. James Warburg, she was the great love of George Gershwin, and had written a couple of musicals on her own too. She was a very clever girl. Warburg of course was a very rich man. They lived in a great big private house.

© 2006 Columbia University Libraries | Oral History Research Office | Rights and Permissions | Help