QUESTION: Whose performance in So Proudly We Hail! earned them a nomination for Best Supporting Actress?
A) Claudette Colbert
B) Paulette Goddard
C) Veronica Lake
D) Barbara Britton
The year was 1943, and there was a war going on. A big one. Called World War II. The United States became engaged in the fighting after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941, and two years later victory was anything but a sure thing. The military had it tough, and Americans at home had to make sacrifices to ensure that our fighting boys received all the provisions they needed. More important than that, it was important that Americans not lose hope.
So Proudly We Hail! is based on the memoir of one of the "Angels of Bataan," a military nurse stationed in the Philippines during the early years of the war, prior to General MacArthur's withdrawal to Australia to avoid capture by the Japanese. Unfortunately, he could not take all of his troops with him, so those who remained behind were subject to horrible conditions. These nurses did what they could to help, but to little effect. It was directed by Mark Sandrich, known prior to the war for comedies and musicals, he directed numerous war dramas during the conflict. Three of Hollywood's favorite actresses starred in the film - Claudette Colbert, Paulette Goddard, and Veronica Lake - as well as future Superman George Reeves. The film did well, and Americans appreciated the context of the recent tragedies on Corregidor and Bataan in the Philippines. After its release in July 1943, the film's three leading ladies performed it again live for the Luxe Radio Theatre in November.
ANSWER: B) Paulette Goddard. She lost out to Katina Paxinou in For Whom The Bell Tolls. But we suspect you already knew that.