Maureen O’Hara passed away on October 24th, 2015. She was 95 years old. The spunky green-eyed, red-headed actress was best known for playing fiercely passionate but sensible heroines, and often worked with director John Ford and longtime friend John Wayne. She was one of the last surviving stars from the Golden Age of Hollywood.
O’Hara was born in Dublin, so when she played the role of Kate in “The Quiet Man”, it was a genuine and sincere performance. It’s tradition in our house to watch the popular movie every St. Patrick’s Day. Rarely do you see a true connection between actors – but in this film, you can tell that Maureen O’Hara and John Wayne have a true connection and worked well together.
Have you seen “The Quiet Man”? If so, you are probably just as curious as I am to know what Maureen O’Hara whispered in the Duke’s ear at the end of the movie! At the film’s conclusion, after the credits, we see Kate and Sean standing in their garden waving good-bye. Maureen O’Hara turns to John Wayne and whispers something in his ear, evoking a priceless reaction from Wayne. What was said was known only to O’Hara, Wayne and director John Ford. In exchange for saying this unscripted bit of text, O’Hara insisted that the exact line never be disclosed by any involved parties. In her memoirs she says that she refused to say the line at first as she “couldn’t possibly say that to Duke”, but Ford insisted, claiming he needed a genuine shock reaction from Wayne. The line remains a mystery to this day.
I’ve tried to find out – I’ve searched and googled it… it seems she took the secret with her – sadly. Whatever she whispered to him – it definitely got the desired shock reaction from him! I won’t say it’s my favorite part of the movie, but I will say – it’s the most interesting – just because I’m nosey and want to know what she whispered. Oh well…
I miss movies that have a bit of mystery. Ones that hold a little back and make us want more. Nowadays – everything just hangs out, leaving us in a perpetual state of TMI overkill. The Golden age of Hollywood is gone. I will miss Maureen O’Hara. 🙂