"Instant gratification takes too long." ~Meryl Streep as actress Suzanne Vale in Postcards From The Edge.
This 1990 comedy is one of my favorite Hollywood-on-Hollywood films with one of my favorite Meryl Streep performances. She's the middle-aged actress fresh out of detox who's still treated like a child by her aging former queen-of-movie musicals mother. Not since Lana Turner's Georgia Lorrison in Vincente Minnelli's 1952 classic, The Bad and the Beautiful, has Hollywood offspring displayed such fabulous female co-dependent behavior. Mike Nichols directed Streep to another Best Actress Oscar nomination. The screenplay was written by another actress -- Carrie Fisher. Carrie picked me up once in New York City. Literally. She was one of my wonderful guests when I just started hosting talk shows on VH1 in the late 1980s. I was slimmer then. Carrie, after we'd finished our taping, claimed she could pick me up. Before I could finish saying, "No way!," she'd already done it. I was off the ground for a second or two, lifted by Princess Leia, and someone snapped a Polaroid of that moment. I still have the Polaroid. The interview, by the way, was terrific. Carrie was promoting her first novel, Postcards from the Edge. That book truly did make me laugh out loud. I felt like I had known Suzanne Vale for years. She was like a former high school classmate to me. Yes, I'm a hardcore Carrie Fisher fan. Occasionally, back then in the late 80s and early 90s, I felt like I needed therapy. But I couldn't afford it. So I read Carrie Fisher novels instead. I didn't always discover a solution to my problems but they sure made my problems seem funny when I recognized similar quirks in her characters. Her writing rings true. One of my other favorite guests on VH1 was Carrie's famous mother, Debbie Reynolds. She was a top MGM movie star by the time half the guys on my floor crew were born. They loved her. Debbie came on and killed. She talked about her book, MGM, Madonna and her lack or orgasms during her first Hollywood marriage. She was too damn funny. And motherly.
As for Debbie's daughter -- performances in the original Star Wars trilogy, Hannah and Her Sisters, When Harry Met Sally and Shampoo...her under-appreciated screenplay for Postcards from the Edge based on her novel of the same name...and surviving life as the daughter of Debbie Reynolds and singing star Eddie Fisher. If Jennifer Aniston rates a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, then certainly Carrie Fisher does too. She's Hollywood royalty.
Oh. One more thing about Debbie from my 1988 talk show interview: I asked her what MGM would've done with Madonna had she been a pop star in Debbie's heyday and placed under studio contract. Her immediate response was that MGM professionals would've assigned Madonna a vocal coach to improve her singing and someone to teach her how to lower her speaking voice. In TV interviews promoting her performance as Evita in 1996, I heard Madonna say that she worked with a vocal coach to improve her singing for that film role and she also lowered her speaking voice. And there you have it. Help us, Obi-Wan Kenobi. Help us get Carrie Fisher a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. May the Force be with you.