11 April 2011

Dietrich's Producer Cancels Their Friendship

by Earl Wilson, 22 January 1973

NEW YORK, N.Y - Marlene Dietrich's biggest booster in this part of the world, Producer Alexander Cohen, has broken off their very luctrative friendship. He has dropped the glamorous but tempramental grandma from his list of pals.

"I have no time for her whatever," he told me quite bluntly.

He was angry because she made uncomplimentary remarks in advance about his TV special starring her, for which she got $250,000. He was also heated up because she tiffed with the press, alienating most of those who wrote about her.

"Over the six years when she did two one-woman performances in New York and went on tour, I showed up in every city to be of help," Cohen said. "The way that she treated me was no way to treat a friend.

"I have no defense for the things she said to the press," Cohen added. "I have no quarrel with the press - it is only with her highness." Cohen had thought of bringing her back for a third Broadway run but that's dead now. He said, "She's too much trouble."

While her TV show got some excellent reviews, Cohen said her slighting remarks about it cost him some big sales in Europe. "Does Miss Dietrich know your feelings about her?" I asked. Cohen, who sent her champagne, flowers and caviar just a few weeks ago, said: "She certainly does!"

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