*Actress Chat Transcripts*
From their online chats on Lifetimetv.com-
Bea Arthur: Well hello everybody, are you all there?
Laamtjrs: Which episode of the Golden Girls was your favorite?
Bea: I really think the one in which my mother, Sophia, entered us in the Mother Daughter beauty pagaent at Shady Pines. And where in the talent section we did Sonny & Cher doing "I Got You Babe." It really was quite wonderful. Judy Evans, our costumer, did a wonderful job, she had Estelle in a tiny fur like jacket with a black moustache...
Jeanniebeanieus: Bea, do you enjoy the stage as much as television work?
Bea: For us it was really the same, because we did the show in front of a live audience, it was like being on stage. It was not filmed, we did it with four cameras without stopping. In a theater you have that many more seats, so that many more people, and they are feeding you, telling you how far you can go or what you can do.
Lifetime Host: Was Sophia like your own mother?
Bea: Oh God no! Is anyone's mother like that? I don't think so! I think the mother-daughter between Estelle and me was one made in comedy heaven.
Alphabet_39301: Is your personality anything like Dorothy's?
Bea: Yes....a little bit, I think I am a bubble-pricker... I don't like anything phony.
Richmondstreet6151: Has the popularity of The Golden Girl, across the world, astounded you? I live in the UK and dedicated a Web site to the show -- and since then I've realized just how many people adore the show!
Bea: It's just incredible, truly. I'm here now in Chicago doing my own show, and I think Golden Girl is shown three hours day here, and everybody loves it.
Glassbell_aol: Ms. Arthur, you have said you see no point in reunion shows, but acting-wise, would you find it easy to step back into a role such as Maude?
Bea: Yes, but I have to ask you for what purpose? I don't understand your question. You see I feel we did the best work we could possibly do, I don't think the writing could be any better, so why go back to it? Always leave them wanting more.....
Poanick: Do you like enjoy working with Betty and Rue and Estelle?
Bea: Oh yes, oh God yes, certainly! I've been blessed with both shows, with that and with Maude, working with terrific writers and directors. We are very lucky.
Maresydotes63: Bea, you look better than ever! What is your secret?
Bea: Oh I love you for that, but I don't see how or why! I mean, I've lost quite a bit of weight since I did Maude, but I don't see myself looking better, I think I look older. Because I am!
Pozinsav: What made you get involved in the HIV/AIDS cause?
Bea: Well because so many of my friends either died or were HIV affected. I don't think any of us in the business has been un-effected. Too many people have been hurt by this. you had to get involved in it. Except for one thing, I no longer do benefits for research, I do benefits to make sure the people who are infected are taken care of are treated, and fed and housed, and their lives made a little easier.
Chcgomatt: Ms. Arthur, will you be releasing a CD of the songs you sing in "And then there's Bea"?
Bea: No, possibly later, after we've gone to Broadway. But right now I would see no reason for doing it. Let people come to the show. And we are touring right through the middle of January 2002.
Wennfreak: Bea, saw you at the cubs game the other day! You were great! Do you do things like that often?
Bea: LOL! That was a first! I never, ever thought I'd be doing anything like that, it was such fun. I'd never even been to Wrigley Field. I never even enjoyed baseball that much, but I loved being there, the crowd was lovely, and they all sang with me!
Classy_magnolia: Did you always want to be an actress?
Bea: Oh yes! Except I really wanted to be a small little blonde musical type in the movies. I wanted to be a starlet.
Mandytokarek: Have you been enjoying your tour?
Bea: Oh yes, but you know it is still very early, this is only our fourth city. Unfortunately opening night in Minneapolis I fell of the stage.
Lifetime Host: Are you ok?
Bea: I am OK, I really was very lucky. I thought I was making an exit onto a wing, the Gutherie is an unusual stage, I saw lights and thought it was where I was supposed to go. But it wasn't. Now, first we are going to Savannah, then we are going to Louisville, KY, but we have a week off.
Glassbell_aol: Ms. Arthur, are your dogs traveling with you on your tour?
Bea: Oh God no! I have two enormous Dobermans, they couldn't possibly fly with me. I have a very good friend taking care of them.
Postforest: What made you decide to go ahead with a one-woman show?
Bea: It's something that people had been talking about and trying to get me interested in. I have decided that I don't want to do any more episodic television. An occasional spot is fine. I did a thing on Malcolm in the Middle which I loved. But I've been doing it most of my adult life, and I like the idea of a one woman show, because it's something I can do when I want to , and not to it when I don't want to do it. It's a very small operation, there are five of us traveling, and I like working with different audiences, seeing how different it is from one night to the next. We just left Florida and now we're in Chicago. It's interesting to see different ages. Down in Florida it was an older audience, and it was interesting to see how they responded to things compared to other audiences, it's been very interesting.
Lisad_19: Ms. Arthur, Golden Girls has changed the way the public views the 50+ age group. How do you feel about Dorothy being a role model to so many women?
Bea: Well I love it, but I tell you, when I first read the very first script sent to me, I though it was one of the funniest, most literate, most adult things I had every read. I didn't stop to think it was for older women, I just thought it was one funny, funny script. But of course, it's very nice to have women realize that women our age can be attractive and well groomed and wear fabulous clothes and earrings, and have a sex life. I think it's wonderful.
Lucyricardo62368: why did you get involved with animals?
Bea: Because I just had to. When you see horror around you, you have to do something to get rid of it.
Sleuthspec: What would you say was the most embarrassing thing that happened on the set of Golden Girls?
Bea: I don't think there was ever an embarrassment, there was such love going back and forth between the audience and us, that nothing was embarrassing. There were one or two times when I couldn't go on because I broke up from laughing, but other than that, there was nothing embarrassing.
Classy_magnolia: Who were you role models growing up?
Bea: Wow....my role models, in the business? In theater? All the little MGM little blond starlets, June Allyson, and that crowd. And of course Mae West when I was very, very young, I thought she was the end. Bette Davis, the usual. Bette Davis was really the top one. And Tululah Bankhead, when I first went to theater and saw her. I liked outrageous people.
Mleeleepe: How did you manage to balance your time between friends, family, and acting?
Bea: Truthfully I don't know that I did. I really don't know. That's another reason that I don't want to do any more series. It really took up more time than I should have allotted to it. With young children...oh I don't know. You talk about quality time as opposed to quantity time....I just did the best I could, that's all I'll say.
Lisad_19: what is your favorite aspect of Dorothy?
Bea: Her bubble-pricking, again, seeing the ridiculousness of people and things. Also I like that she is a very decent human being.
Glassbell_aol: Ms. Arthur, what was it like for your children growing up with "Maude" for their mother?
Bea: I don't know what to say, I don't think they saw that much of the show. We made the move from New York to LA, so I think it must have been a wonderful experience for them, and in certain ways not so nice in having to give up friends back east. I think they enjoyed it. I know they loved Golden Girls and are very supportive of what I am doing now.
Pecanflower1: You have so many fans who absolutely ADORE you, has that ever been a problem for you?
Bea: Just twice I made the mistake of getting involved, and I'm very, very sorry I ever did that. Because it's a burden now dealing with a few people who feel that I'm a part of their lives which I am not.
Stra0420: Bea where did you grow up ?
Bea: In a very, very small town on the eastern shore of Maryland.
Mageborn12000: Were there any social or political aspects of Maude that you disagreed with?
Bea: No, no. I was never that involved in anything political actually. A lot of people regarded me as the Joan of Arc of the feminist movement, but I really wasn't. But I did like the fact that we did a lot of good in presenting problems that had not been tackled before on television.
Scrtrist: What do you do in your spare time (if you have any!)
Bea: I love cooking, I love reading, I love anything that doesn't take too much exercise! There is always something to do. Life is filled with a lot of stuff, you know. There is never a dull moment.
Cjovanoski: Whats your favorite cheesecake?
Bea: Do you know something? Now this goes to the grave with you -- I hate cheesecake!
Lifetime Host: How did you manage to eat all that cheesecake???
Bea: You do what you have to do, you know?!? And there was a lot of cheesecake I tell you !
Richcom70: How many takes were there when rose told the "shooting herring out of a cannon" story?
Bea: I can't answer that, I don't know, Oh Lord! It was a great show it really was. And I miss Stan so much...you know Herb died. He was such a wonderful actor. And I loved that relationship too.
Fatcat3698: Are you considering Broadway again, as in plays?
Bea: Yes, if something wonderful came around. But it might not, in which case I have my lovely one woman show which I am really enjoying.
Jeanniebeanieus: Do you find the pace exhilarating or somewhat exhausting?
Bea: It's very exhilarating. But now we are ostensibly doing the same show every day. But we are adding to it, it's a work in progress, so it's very exciting. You find some things don't work so you delete those and add other things.
Glassbell_aol: Ms. Arthur, it has been widely reported that you have sometimes been billed as "Jane Ross," and that you were once a guest star on an episode of "Star Trek" in 1966. Yet it seems these reports are incorrect. Are they?
Bea: No, never ! Somebody else asked me that! I don't even know what you are talking about!
Glassbell_aol: Ms. Arthur, there is a running gag by Maude, and later by Dorothy, in which you flail your arms in frustration and say, "Wiiiiiiiiiiiiiilllll you?" or "Give me thaaaaaaaaaatttt!" This seems like a classic gag-- did it have origins in vaudeville?
Bea: I was never in vaudeville. I don't know where I got that, but it strikes me as very funny.
Sportangel007: What is your most proud accomplishment, on or off screen?
Bea: I guess having two kids who are bright and articulate and have great humor and are decent.
Womanwithquirks: Bea, was "Dorothy" your first choice in characters to portray?
Bea: Oh no, that was presented to me. In fact, I'll never forget that because the script said "For Dorothy, a Bea Arthur type".
Mageborn12000: Who are some of your favorite musical composers?
Bea: Julie Styne, Sy Coleman, Kurt Weill, and of course my darling Billy Golderberg, who is doing the show with me... Marilyn & Alan Bergman.
Toyboxnc: Are there any television shows you watch regularly or do you watch it at all?
Bea: Yes, I watch them now, when I was doing the show I'd never watch them, because I was afraid I would say, Oh, why did I do that or look that way? And I thought it would cripple me. I do watch now and Maude and I must say I think they look good. I still do say, oh why did I do that? But that's one of the nice things about doing a stage show, if something doesn't work out, you have the luxury of working on it over time.
Mageborn12000: Have you ever considered writing an autobiography?
Bea: No, I never have. And I hate autobiographies, I don't know why. Why should I, maybe Einstein should have, but....I don't know. Plus I am in awe of writers, I could never do it. I think they are really the kings, they are the ones who should be getting most of the credit.
Ashleygreen2000: Is there someone in particular that you haven't had the opportunity to work with yet that you'd like too?
Bea: Hmm. No, I can't really say that....I'm sure after we have finished our conversation I'll think of someone and say, oh why didn't I say that? But I've been so damned lucky, we did a Maude once with John Wayne, and once with Henry Fonda. I've been very lucky working so many wonderful people.
Map_06516: Who designs your wardrobe? I think it is classy and chic!
Bea: I'm so upset, Judy Evans was our wonderful costumer, and she decided to retire, and she now lives in Washington State. I miss her terribly, there is nobody like her. Not only in terms of making spectacular outfits, but she was so into the character of each person. The way she dressed Betty was so different from the way she dressed Blanche, or my mother, or me. She was wonderful.
Bea: Yes and no. When you are working with someone it's like family, you are together every day. Then we go do our own thing, we stay in touch by phone. It's not a close thing, I adore all of them, but I don't see them that much.
Sarahjbfan: Do you have a favorite line of dialogue that still sticks out in your mind?
Bea: I wish you had sent me this question a week ago I would have thought of something! Everything was so delicious!
Ironicwit: You've spoken of your middle-aged Cinderella story. Do you think it's best to have a little chronological maturity before achieving stardom?
Bea: Gee I don't know. I don't know how to understand. You mean is Britney Spears going to continue being wonderful and popular. I don't know how to answer that. It happens when it happens. But I was doing a lot of theater work when I was young, in and around New York. It's just that I wasn't really well known until I started in television in 72.But I wasn't really a late bloomer, I was just discovered later on. Experience does of course help. Every time you perform you learn a little bit more.
Smouthone: Did you ever have them rewrite any lines during golden girls, or were you happy with the dialog?
Bea: Well no, it was really give and take - also true with Maude - if one of us felt something was not quite right, we'd discuss it with the writer or the director. We were really part of a very democratic organization in both cases.
Messiah072475: If you hadn't become an actress, what would you have probably done?
Bea: I think possibly be a vet. I really don't know. I never thought about it one way or another.
Scrtrist: Ms. Arthur, do you believe you're work reaches and affects the younger audience? (I'm 16 and love the GG)
Bea: Oh yes! Kids love it, children 4, 5 and 6. Because it's so anti-establishment, all ages love it. Which was also true of Maude.
Anjilica_b: Out of everyone you've worked with so far, whom did you most enjoy working with?
Bea: Hmmm. I guess Angela Lansbury. I don't know though, I look at the old Maude series now, and say what a wonderful bunch of actors we were, Bill Macy, Conrad Bain and Rue McClanahan.
Classy_magnolia: What character did you play that most resembled you?
Bea: I would say Dorothy. Or maybe the one I would most want to emulate.
Allyseoster: Was the episode where "Dorothy" has Chronic Fatigue Syndrome personal to you?
Bea: Oh no, not at all. That was Susan Harris, who wrote the show, a great deal of it, did suffer from it, so she wrote something about it, because at that time it was really unknown. I don't know if people even understand it now.
Justlikeheaven_13: Hello, Ms. Arthur! What would you say is your personal life philosophy? What do you say has kept you so wonderful and vibrant?
Bea: I guess just, I don't know, I didn't know I was that vibrant, I just love being alive, and I love people, and I find something wonderful everyday. Some people say I'm only happy when I'm working, or not working, I'm happy whether i"m working or not, my animals, my kids, anything. What did Mame say, "Life's a banquet, but some poor sons of bitches...." I don't know you'll have to get the exact quote. But it's true.
Olebron2000: What do you think about today's sitcoms???
Bea: I tell you I haven't watched that much of it. I watch a lot of news shows and I love Nick at Night, and the Comedy Channel. I think the Daily Show is brilliant. I love Celebrity Death Match or whatever that it. I like "Malcolm in the Middle" very much, and "Frasier." Some of them are wonderful. Let's not forget "Seinfeld" and there are a number of them. I do love waking up in the middle of the night and watching those old, old....even "Gilligan's Island" is on, not that I ever watched it. But I love watching all those old shows.
Star_lite_72: How old were you when you first began singing?
Bea: Oh God, you mean at home? I think I always sang, I always used to listen to old Bessie Smith records, and Kate Smith. And Billie Holiday. Before television when there was radio.
Beverlyxxx: Did you find Rose's St. Olaf stories unbearable sometimes?!!
Bea: LOL! No, I thought they were wonderful. They were so bizarre, I loved that!
Psychologist2b: Did you have as much fun in Mame as it looked?
Bea: The movie was not a pleasant experience. I enjoyed the stage show so much, but I didn't enjoy the movie. I adore Lucy but thought she was miscast. She's a clown, she wasn't this patrician lady, Angela was so wonderful. So I think the thing worked better on the stage than it did as a movie. It was written for the stage and I think that's where it should have stayed.
Goldengirlskatie: I've heard that there was a lot of practical joking on the set of Golden Girls. What are some of your favorite memories of the joking that went on backstage?
Bea: I hate to say this, I don't think there was any joking backstage, I don't remember any. We were all too involved with the work. The work ethic was so wonderful.
Nuttybutter2002: What is the one thing you have always wanted to do but haven't done it yet?
Bea: The only one I wanted to do that I didn't was Gypsy, but by the time they got around to asking me, everybody in the world had played thing, so I thought now is not the time. Although I do one of the numbers in my show. Thank you so very much!
Rue McClanahan: Hi everybody! So wonderful to be in touch with everybody, so sorry I missed last week. I hope we have 1000's of wonderful, naughty questions!
kittheleader: Do you ever find yourself singing the theme song to the golden girls? It is so catchy.
Rue McClanahan: Yes I do! I thought it was a perfect song for the show. And a lot of people sing it to me.
ruemcclanahanfan: Hi Rue! It's Katie -- I attended Communicating Doors 3 nights in a row- Could you please tell us a bit about your clothing line, Very Rue? Who designed it? Is it still available to purchase? (if so, where?)
Rue McClanahan: The first clothing line I had was called Very Rue. Then we changed the name and moved to QVC, and the name became A Touch of Rue. We had a little logo of the Rue plant, a little flower. We stopped doing my clothing line about five years ago, so it isn't available anymore. Except I have a few pieces I saved out of it that I'll be selling online one of these days. I'll probably let Katie know so she can put it on the website.
chelybug19: Where you originally cast to play Blanche?
Rue McClanahan: No. Originally they wanted me for the role of Rose. And Betty White was going to be Blanche. But I wanted to play Blanche, and the director asked me if I would read for the role of Blanche. So I did.
lifetime_host: I couldn't imagine you in a role other than Blanche.
Rue McClanahan: And then he decided that he liked it better the way it turned out, and so did Betty and so did I. It was a miracle as far as I was concerned. I really wanted to play Blanche. I didn't have an instinct of how to play Rose, and Betty did.
www_prowrestlingdaily_com: Rue, what was it like to work with Betty White? Is she as funny in person as she is on TV?
Rue McClanahan: Well she couldn't be funnier than she is on TV, but she is every bit as funny, a darling woman. And of course, a fellow animal lover.
girlfriend2479: What kind of pets do you have?
Rue McClanahan: At the moment I have one white, part Siamese kitty cat named Bianca, who is 11 years old. My three dogs, who used to be five dogs, are living very happily living in California, with a friend of mine who pampers them outrageously.
iluvpopculture: Rue... I just saw you in a very "so bad its SO GOOD" movie you made back in 1961 called Five Minutes To Love. I was wondering if that was your first feature film and if you feel like you paid your Hollywood dues in the early 60s with a string of B and WB movies that were very entertaining =)
Rue McClanahan: In the sixties I made four or five B movies. We thought of them as art films. Shoe-string movies. And I learned a lot from those wonderful little pictures. I have three of them in my library. I can't find the other two.
dawsonpotter69: Ms McClanahan - I think you are cooler than cool. We were recently given the option to have fish in our dorm at my college and I named mine "ruemcclanahan" (one word). I was wondering - what's your favorite episode of the golden girls?
Rue McClanahan: My goodness, there are so many! Let me think of one. I liked the one where Blanche is going through menopause. And I like the one where she is thinking of getting a facelift, but because the plastic surgeon develops a crush on her and likes her the way she is, she doesn't. I love the one where the lesbian comes to visit and has a crush on Rose, and Blanche gets outraged because it's Rose and not her. And she says, "What's wrong with being a lesbian, Danny Thomas is one?!?". And I think Dorothy says, "It's lesbian, not Lebanese!".
CupidsToy: Do you have any 'southern roots'? As a southerner myself, I often wondered how /where you got the motivation and spirit that it tool to portray so accurately a southern belle.
Rue McClanahan: I come from a section of southern Oklahoma known as Little Dixie. Although we are not considered a southern state, I guess that little pocket of southern Oklahoma is as south as it is southwest. I also lived in Louisiana and on the Gulf coast of Texas.
limissnj1950: I was wondering how Ms. McClanahan is healthwise? Isn't she a breast cancer survivor, or am I wrong about that.
Rue McClanahan: Yes I am, I have been a breast cancer survivor for four years now, and my health is excellent. My only health problem is trying to lose 15 pounds that I'd like to get rid of.
kmh213us: Hello Rue, I think you have such a lovely smile, what makes you laugh and are you ticklish?
Rue McClanahan: I'm terribly ticklish. What makes me smile....well, sweet people make me smile. My husband makes me smile. My son makes me smile. My sister is very funny. Loving people make me smile.
spayne1963: I have a front row seat to see "The Women" in November. How are the previews going? Are you having fun?
Rue McClanahan: Previews are almost selling out, the audiences are howling, and I'm having so much fun it should be illegal.
kabeerahmed: I want to ask you that in the dance marathon episode of Golden Girls did really Betty White dance like that.
Rue McClanahan: We had a stunt double to do the cartwheels and the splits. Betty and I danced in 3 or 4 episodes throughout the years.
kittylyn1: Do you watch a lot of TV, and if so what is your favorite show?
Rue McClanahan: No, I don't watch much TV at all, and my favorite show is - I think there must be two - Seinfeld reruns and the Simpsons.
drapelje: Hi Rue, Do you really love cheesecake?
Rue McClanahan: I love every dessert ever invented, but I don't eat it.
edithbunker500: Ms. McClanahan- Does it surprise you about the mail you get from 'youngsters' as my self (I'm 12)? I mean, does it surprise you that young kids and teens watch re-runs of Golden Girls?
Rue McClanahan: No, not at all, I think kids and teenagers can have just as good taste as anybody.
edithbunker500: Hi Rue. I know that you appeared on 'All in The Family' once or twice, and I was wondering, how was it to work with Jean Stapleton (Edith Bunker)?
Rue McClanahan: Jean Stapleton is like a warm hearth. It was wonderful working with her.
CupidsToy: My question: are you married? if not: will you marry me?
Rue McClanahan: At the moment, I'm very happily married to my sixth husband...how old are you?
coxenrider: How many did you sleep with in real life?
Rue McClanahan: Let's just put it this way...I've been married six times, and unlike Elizabeth Taylor, I didn't marry every man I slept with.
kaelynn_2121: What other shows or movies have you been in since the Golden Girls?
Rue McClanahan: Out To Sea with Walter Mattheau and Jack Lemon, Dear God, This World, Then The Fireworks, a Sundance festival movie, Starship Troopers, The Moving of Sofia Miles, A Saintly Switch, The Vagina Monologues, and Ladies Man, and let's see.... A Colombo special, some plays back here on the east coast, and now, The Women, and I've probably left out a dozen.
jbfleurquin: Rue, I've read that you participated to a "bawdy" game in a in a Chelsea bar : how did you come up with the idea? Is it still running?
Rue McClanahan: I didn't come up with the idea, I was asked to MC a game show based on family feud. Four times during the month of June for Gay Pride Week, but we did it for four weeks. And it was a lot of fun.
gardenharmonica: Were you (White, Arthur, and Getty) as playful and sarcastic with each other off screen as you were on screen?
Rue McClanahan: Yes, in a word.
kaelynn_2121: Mrs. McClanahan, what do you think about most now that you have survived breast cancer?
Rue McClanahan: I think about the same things I thought about before. My family, that is my son, sister and neices and nephews, my friends, my career, animal rights, eating and exercising well to stay healthy. And, like every good Miss America, world peace. I also, of course, stop every now and then to give thanks that I am a survivor.
holly_berry06: Rue- What do you like doing best: TV, movies, or theater?
Rue McClanahan: I like doing live theater the best. After that I like writing. I've written a couple of musicals, some short stories, some screenplays. After that, I like doing comedy, and I think television and film equally.
trenasinga: How old is your son?
Rue McClanahan: I stopped giving my son's age because I stopped giving my age actually. Age is only a number, but mine is unlisted. I'll just say he's in his late thirties.
chonglr: Hi there Rue are you the youngest of the Golden Girls?
Rue McClanahan: By far.
trenasinga: I thnk I'm going to cry my eyes out if I can't at least say hi. hee hee
Rue McClanahan: Oh, how sweet.
hotc_1: How have the events of Sept 11th changed you?
Rue McClanahan: They have made me a lot more overtly patriotic. Made me appreciate our wonderful country, and this wonderful city of New York even more.
gardenharmonica: Did you date any of the male actors that performed on the Golden Girls?
Rue McClanahan: No, I didn't, I can't think of a once. I spotted George Clooney to be a star in the making when he was on our show early on, but of course I was old enough to be his mother. No I didn't date any of them. But I dated the prop guy!
ruemcclanahanfan: During the years of The Golden Girls, I noticed that you always wore the same thin gold necklace. Does this necklace have a special meaning?
Rue McClanahan: That was a little necklace that I picked up in Ohio when I was doing a play there in 1975. It was tiny, tiny with a tiny little diamond, and I loved it so much. I'm sorry to say that when I moved to NY it got lost in the shuffle somewhere. I really hope to find it again one day.
kittylyn1: I think of you as a person who collects a lot of romance novels. Do you?
Rue McClanahan: No, and I don't read them either. But I love Harry Potter.
trenasinga: Who are some of your close friends in Hollywood?
Rue McClanahan: The lady who now is the caretaker of my dogs, her name is Sandy Shepperd, and she is a documentary film maker. Jarod Barkely is a friend of mine from my very first Equity show in 1962. He is an underwater photographer. Ken Raskoff, a producer I met in the seventies... He is a television producer... let's see. I'm friends with Susan Ruttan from LA Law. So nobody famous really.
edithbunker500: Ms. Rue- Are you considering being on another sitcom sometime in the future?
Rue McClanahan: I would be on another sitcom if it were as well-written and cast as Golden Girls, but I ain't holding my breath.
dawsonpotter69: Rue - in my English 519 class we are studying "A Street Car Named Desire" and I've noticed quite a few similiarities between Blanche DuBois and Blanche Devereaux -- you know, minus the drunken, psycho thing -- do you know if the writers intended this?
Rue McClanahan: Susan Harris created the character of Blanche Devereaux, and I often wondered myself if she named her Blanche because somewhere she was thinking of Blanche Dubois. I see hardly any similarities. I see that Blanche Devereux is more like Scarlett O'Hara.
monicarose220: Rue, since I think you are the best actress ever, I was just wondering who were your role models growing up?
Rue McClanahan: Well, of course, when I was a kid, my role models were my mother and two of my teachers who put on plays, musical reviews. One in the third, fourth, fifth and sixth grades. Later one, I suppose I'd have to say Dame Edith Evans and Lawrence Olivier, and Marlon Brando, and Kim Stanley and Geraldine Page. And Uta Hagen...as far as acting goes.
michigan_dave: I am younger than you rue and I think you are very sexy!
michaelann1973: Rue, how old were you when you first had sex?
Rue McClanahan: Well let's see, if my son's in his late thirties.... Actually I was 23.
Candy_717: Do you still keep in touch with the former cast members?
Rue McClanahan: Yes I do, all three of them.
edithbunker500: Ms.McClanahan- Do you have any idea if you'll be coming out to the West Coast (Washington State) to do some plays? I ADORE all of the actresses, but, golly, no one comes out here!
Rue McClanahan: I'll be doing this play on Broadway through the end of January, The Women. And I might be doing another one following that in New York. My husband is producing another Broadway play for me, which might take place, maybe, next year. I don't have any immediate plans to come to the west coast.
slimeshow: Rue - is you first name short for Ruthy?
Rue McClanahan: No. My full name is Eddi-Rue, named after my father and my mother. But when I was doing my first professional job, I was 22, and someone suggested that Rue Mcclanahan would be a better name. He said it would fit on a marquee.
crayzee_aj: I know you promote a lot of issues (esp. dealing with animal rights and breast cancer) , which do you think is most important at this time??
Rue McClanahan: I suppose they are equally important because they both affect life and the quality of life, one for women, and one for animals.
beckymuth: What was the hardest episode of the Golden Girls for you to film, and why? Were there any episodes that you really didn't want to film?
Rue McClanahan: The hardest one for me to do was the one in which I was involved with a baseball player, and I had to hit a home run, I had to hit a baseball on camera, with a bat... dressed in a Susan Sarandon type of outfit, sort of a takeoff on that film she did with Tim Robbins. I practiced all week and I actually did it. That was a huge triumph for me, just hitting that ball.
atc921: I'm going to be in a school play soon and I was just wondering what kind of advice would you give someone that wanted to go into acting?
Rue McClanahan: Act every opportunity you get. Be in every play you can be in. You learn by doing. And of course, by studying with the best teachers. And when you act, look the other person in the eye and mean what you say. Forget about yourself.
holly_berry06: You said you've written some musicals and screenplays. Do you think any will make it to the stage or screen?
Rue McClanahan: One was produced in 1991 to great success in a little theater in Burbank, CA. I am going to soon be working with a composer to finish the music on the second one, and we are going to try and get it done here in New York.
spayyourpets: Rue are you a vegetarian? What is Rues favorite food?
Rue McClanahan: Yes I am a vegetarian. Since I had breast cancer, I do eat salmon because my doctor has advised me to. I don't eat anything though that walks. My favorite food, I just have too many to name! I love chocolate.
mrs_allison: Do you do anything with your sorority sisters from Kappa Alpha Theta? Theta is VERY proud to have you as a member!
Rue McClanahan: I spend my social time, which is limited, with one or two good friends at a time, and with my husband of course.
italian_chick77: Are you a little like Blanche?
Rue McClanahan: I hope every woman is a little like Blanche.
dawsonpotter69: Rue -- why do you think the Golden Girls is so timeless? I mean it has such a huge and diverse fan base today (I am 19), long after the series finale. - p.s. thank you so much for the autographed picture you sent me in response to my letter!
Rue McClanahan: It's because it's so well written. It was so beautifully produced, the cast was ideal. It's one of those rarities, the show that was truly well put together. Really good comedy survives.
canadagal_ca: Ms. McClanahan, what advice would you give someone who's sister has just been diagnosed with breast cancer?
Rue McClanahan: I would say get three opinions, go to three different oncologists, and go to three different surgeons. And then do a lot of meditating and perhaps talking with other breast cancer survivors.
special90746: I saw you on your Intimate Portrait, you still look sexy and wonderful, what is your secret?
Rue McClanahan: Good lighting! Well, I think a lot of it much be attributed to being a vegetarian, and to a lot of exercise. Of course, I also don't smoke.
ColleensGraphics: How can I obtain an autographed photo, I have a photo to mail if you could supply an address, or do you mail out photos? Thank you.
Rue McClanahan: I send photos to everyone who asks, and I can give you the address, it goes to my accountant of all people, at AMEX, 1185 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10036. It's care of Chris Reed. He's the one who gets my fan mail. He sends it to me, and then I send it to the people. And a stamped return envelope is a very good thing! And if you send an 8x10 stamped envelope, you get an 8x10 picture.
holly_berry06: What is the name of the animal rights group you are a part of?
Rue McClanahan: I'm a part of about a dozen of them. Some are PETA, World Wildlife Fund, North Shore Animal League, Best Friends, and many others. I should mention Alley Animals in Baltimore.
xtcice: Rue, when you played Blanche on Golden Girls, did people see you as a "slut" (pardon my French) in real life too? Did they ever discriminate?
Rue McClanahan: No, never. I never ran into anybody that dumb.
edithbunker500: Why do you live in NYC, verses, living in Hollywood?
Rue McClanahan: Because I want to work on Broadway. And because this is where my husband lives. And because I love New York City.
derwood316: Did you keep any props from the Golden Girls?
Rue McClanahan: No, the props belonged to Thomas Harris, the producers. However, I got all my costumes. From eight years. And I had to turn one of my bedrooms into a closet.
eciskc: Will there ever be a reunion show, Rue?
Rue McClanahan: No. I'm sorry to say.
susie1234540299: Thanks for allowing us the freedom to love sex!
Rue McClanahan: It worked that way for me too.
kosciusko1: Rue, are you typing your responses, or is someone else doing the entry? Whoever has excellent typing skills.
Rue McClanahan: No, I have a very handsome young man who is doing it for me!
wild_guitar_playing_chic: Halloween is coming up. Do you like Halloween and do you believe in ghosts?
Rue McClanahan: Halloween has always been very exciting for me, from the third grade on, it was a big deal in my school. I have dressed up and gone to Halloween parades on several occasions, I won't this year because I'll be playing in the Women. It was always my son's favorite holiday. I don't know that I believe in ghosts, but that doesn't mean that they're not there.
derwood316: Do you have a fan club?
Rue McClanahan: I guess my website can be considered a Fan Club, it's run by Katie....www.ruemcclanahan.net.
goldengirlfan91730: Rue are you aware of your huge gay following?
Rue McClanahan: Very, very clearly. And grateful for it.
ruefan87: What are your thoughts about Britney Spears and the other younger girls who bare a little too much?
Rue McClanahan: I think it's more provocative to leave certain things to the imagination.
phillil87: Dearest Ms. McClanahan, you have led such an interesting and inspirational life, do you ever plan to publish your memoirs or perhaps an autobiography? We would be the first in line if so.
Rue McClanahan: Yes, I do have a book I plan to write. I have two in fact. The first one is entitled My First Five Husbands. It will also cover my career that happened simultaneously with those marriages. The second one would start when I moved to New York, my breast cancer, my new marriage, and this new phase of my career.
lifetime_host: Thank you so much for chatting with us tonight, Rue!!!!!!
Rue McClanahan: Thanks!
lifetime_host: Hope you had as much fun chatting tonight as we did, and we hope to see you back chatting with our next Golden Girl soon! Good night and happy chatting!
dancingurl111: Thanks Rue you are an inspiration!
claredelune69: I think you're great, Rue!!!
dougster15: Thank you for a great evening.
asimp85: Thank you Rue we love ya.