Greta Garbo photographed for Queen Christina, 1933
Greta Garbo. Queen Christina, 1933.
Director Rouben Mamoulian on how he got Garbo to laugh:
“They said to me at the studio, ‘She cannot laugh.’ And I said, ‘Well, that’s odd, because in life she has a very childlike infectious laugh, the laugh of a little girl.’ She herself told me she couldn’t do it, too. But I had to get her to laugh at…the Spanish ambassador stuck in the snow. So I went to John Gilbert and Akim Tamiroff and two others and I took them aside and said, ’ You know the child’s game of making faces?…When she comes up, you’re under the carriage trying to free it; you look at her and hold that face.’ I said to Garbo, ‘No matter what happens, go through with the scene. Go into the dialogue, and get it done.’ And she asked me, ‘What’s going to happen?’ I said, ‘Just go ahead.’ She rode in and I kept the camera on her; the others were out of the frame, of course. And when she saw the four faces, she threw her head back and laughed like a lark.”