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Trivia / Steel Magnolias

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  • The Danza: Jonathan Ward plays Jonathan Eatenton.
  • Hostility on the Set: Sally Field and Shirley MacLaine said in an interview that director Herbert Ross was very difficult to work with, telling the main lead actresses they couldn't act, and singling out Julia Roberts in particular, to the point that she would be left in tears.
  • Dedication/In Memoriam: The movie was dedicated to Robert Harding's sister Susan, who was the inspiration for Shelby.
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  • Real-Life Relative/Fake Shemp: In the scene set on Jack Jr.'s first birthday, the actual mom of the baby who played Jack Jr. took over for Julia Roberts when she reportedly got scared of sitting on her knee.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Meg Ryan was offered the role of Shelby. She turned it down for When Harry Met Sally.... Winona Ryder was also considered for the part. The producers liked her but decided she was too young for the role. Laura Dern auditioned, but while she gave a good reading, she didn't look like Sally Field.
    • When Bette Davis saw the off-Broadway play, she thought it would be a great film for her, envisioning herself as Ouiser, Katharine Hepburn as Clairee, and Elizabeth Taylor as Truvy. However, when she contacted the rights holders for the movie adaptation, she found out that they intended to cast much younger actresses.


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