I’ll be the first to say, actually I would run to make sure I was the first person in line to say that A Guide For The Married Man is not a great movie. It’s also not a horrible movie, but perhaps I wouldn’t make the same effort to say that. It’s a good, funny movie with a great cast: Walter Matthau, Robert Morse, Inger Stevens, Lucile Ball, Phil Silvers, Art Carney, and someone named Jayne Mansfield. ( Perhaps you’ve heard of her as well ) Except for the bit part or cameo A Guide For The Married Man is right up Jayne’s dress, I mean ally for her. Comedy especially romantic comedy was her shtick and it would’ve been nice if she had a bigger role in this movie. Perhaps playing one of Robert Morse’s 10 girlfriends in the movie.
By 1967, Jayne Mansfield was doing most of her work and making most of her money outside of Hollywood. She literally was on the nightclub circuit and doing comedy and music all over America. Think about that for a second: one of the most popular Hollywood Goddesses from the 1950s reduced to singing and doing comedy at nightclubs by 1965 or so. She was also doing films in Britain and Europe, including in Italy. She was tired of doing comedy in Hollywood and by the early 1960s, wanted a newer role and do other things and expand her acting resume.
Which is sort of like saying that Michael Jordan or Larry Bird is tried of shooting the basketball and scoring points, so what they’re going to do instead is just rebound and play defense, pass the ball when they have it instead of leading their team in scoring and leading them to victory. Comedy for Jayne Mansfield, was like the passing game for the New England Patriots, it was her bread and butter, her go to offense and what made her famous and popular to go along with her goddess body and little girl adorable appearance. And ironic that her last trip back to Hollywood for work was to do another comedy which is what she was doing in the late 50s with movies like Will Success Spoil Rockwell Hunter and The Girl Can’t Help It.
If you want a full post or report on A Guide For The Married Man, I suggest you go somewhere else for that, because I’m really just interested in Jayne Mansfield’s role in it. She plays the comic relief in a movie that’s pretty funny to begin with but is so good at it playing the mistress of a man who is married and her wife catches them together in their bed and he and Jayne play it off like nothing is going on at all and the wife is completely imagining what she’s seeing. And the guy and Jayne just get out of bed, make the bed, get dressed while the wife is in the room and has already seen everything and Jayne leaves the room and house as if nothing had just happened. And they do it so perfectly that the wife starts actually believing that she’s imagining everything that she just saw. Great scene with Jayne just making a pretty funny movie even funnier.
“Jayne Mansfield (born Vera Jayne Palmer; April 19, 1933 — June 29, 1967) was an American actress in film, theatre, and television, a nightclub entertainer, a singer, and one of the early Playboy Playmates. More Jayne Mansfield:
She was a major Hollywood sex symbol of the 1950s and early 1960s. Mansfield was 20th Century Fox’s alternative Marilyn Monroe and came to be known as the “Working Man’s Monroe”. She was also known for her well-publicized personal life and publicity stunts.
Mansfield became a major Broadway star in 1955, a major Hollywood star in 1956, and a leading celebrity in 1957. She was one of Hollywood’s original blonde bombshells, and although many people have never seen her movies, Mansfield remains one of the most recognizable icons of 1950s celebrity culture. With the decrease of the demand for big-breasted blonde bombshells and the increase in the negative backlash against her over-publicity, she became a box-office has-been by the end of the 1960s. Her career declined first to low-budget foreign movies and major Las Vegas nightclub dates; then to television guest appearances; next to touring plays and minor Las Vegas nightclub dates; and finally ended in small nightclub dates.
While Mansfield’s film career was short-lived, she had several box office successes and won a Theatre World Award and a Golden Globe. She enjoyed success in the role of fictional actress Rita Marlowe in both the 1955–1956 Broadway version, and, in the 1957 Hollywood film version of Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?. She showcased her comedic skills in The Girl Can’t Help It (1956), her dramatic assets in The Wayward Bus (1957), and her sizzling presence in Too Hot to Handle (1960). She also sang for studio recordings, including the album Shakespeare, Tchaikovsky & Me and the singles Suey and As the Clouds Drift by (with Jimi Hendrix). Mansfield’s notable television work included television dramas Follow the Sun (1962) and Burke’s Law (1964), game shows The Match Game (1964) and What’s My Line? (1956–1966), variety shows The Jack Benny Program (1963) and The Bob Hope Show (1957–1963), the The Ed Sullivan Show (1957) a large number of talk shows.
By the early 1960s, Mansfield’s box office popularity had declined and Hollywood studios lost interest in her. Some of the last attempts that Hollywood took to publicize her were in The George Raft Story (1961) and It Happened in Athens (1962). But, towards the end of her career, Mansfield remained a popular celebrity, continuing to attract large crowds outside the United States and in lucrative and successful nightclub acts (including The Tropicana Holiday and The House of Love in Las Vegas), and summer-theater work. Her film career continued with cheap independent films and European melodramas and comedies, with some of her later films being filmed in United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, and Greece. In the sexploitation film Promises! Promises! (1963), she became the first major American actress to have a nude starring role in a Hollywood motion picture.
Mansfield was married three times, first to her public relations professional Paul Mansfield (married 1950–1958), second to actor–bodybuilder Mickey Hargitay (married 1958–1963), and third to film director Matt Cimber (married 1964–1966). She had five children: Jayne Marie Mansfield (born 1950), Miklós Jeffrey Palmer Hargitay (born 1958), Zoltán Anthony Hargitay (born 1960), actress Mariska Magdolna Hargitay (born 1964) and Antonio “Tony” Cimber (born 1965). In 1967 Mansfield died in an automobile accident at the age of 34.”
This Is Your Life Jayne Mansfield, is a short story in years, but a fascinating story that plays more like a long, but great soap opera for a woman who comes from very humble meanings at least in the sense that wasn’t known at all until she went to Hollywood and started landing parts in movies. But then hits it big in Hollywood in the mid 1950s with roles in The Burglar, Will Success Spoil Rockwell Hunter, The Girl Can’t Help it, making it clear to Hollywood that she was a good comedian and comedic actress with great timing including musical comedy. Had Jayne stayed on that track I believe we’re talking about one of the best comedians and musical comedians of her generation at least.
But by 1960 she was moving away from Hollywood because she was tired of just doing comedy and wanted to expand her career as an actress and move into drama. The problem that she had was that Hollywood just saw her as a comedian and as a sex symbol. A woman who was obviously gorgeous with the great body, yet who was also as cute as a little girl really up until she died in 1967. And they wanted to use her to sell movies with her sex appeal and comedy. But she wanted to move to drama instead which is who she ends up in Britain in the early 1960s with the movie Too Hot To Handle. But unless you’re a huge, dedicated fan of Jayne Mansfield or have lived in Britain, you probably haven’t heard of Too Hot To Handle.
It’s Hollywood where Jayne always belonged and if it was drama she wanted to do, then it was soap operas and dramatic comedy like working with Alfred Hitchcock where she should’ve been working. Instead of trying to do serious roles in TV and films. I tweeted on Twitter ( of all places ) a few weeks ago about Jayne Mansfield with one of my followers ( but not my only follower, ha, ha ) replying to me that she was never taken seriously and wasn’t a serious actress. Which is true, but I would qualify that by saying that she wasn’t meant to be taken seriously. She wasn’t a dumb blonde, but she wasn’t cut out for serious roles.
Similar to Mary Tyler Moore, Carol Burnett, Bette Midler, and I’m sure other actresses and comedians she was a natural comedian who was born to entertain and to make people laugh. Which is what she should’ve been doing her whole career and would’ve had a great career in Hollywood as a comedian and not try to move away from that.