Steel Magnolias (1989)

PG | 119 mins | Comedy-drama | 15 November 1989

Director:

Herbert Ross

Writer:

Robert Harling

Producer:

Ray Stark

Cinematographer:

John Alonzo

Editor:

Paul Hirsch

Production Designers:

Gene Callahan, Edward Pisoni

Production Company:

Rastar Productions
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HISTORY


       An 11 Dec 1987 DV article announced Steel Magnolias as one of eighteen upcoming features in a $236 million slate to be produced by Ray Stark’s Rastar Productions. Herb Ross was set to direct and produce the $15-million picture along with Rastar and New World Pictures. However, New World received no further mention in contemporary sources found in AMPAS library files and received no onscreen credit, while Ross received only a directing credit.
       Five of the six lead actresses were cast as of 25 May 1988, according to an HR news item of the same date, including Sally Field, Dolly Parton, Daryl Hannah, Shirley MacLaine, and Olympia Dukakis. Although a 4 Apr 1988 DV brief reported that Meg Ryan had signed on to play the role of Shelby Eatenton Latcherie, the actress did not remain with the project. Ross personally auditioned seventy-five actresses for the role, as noted in the 27 May 1988 HR, which announced the casting of Julia Roberts, who, according to Ross, was poised to have “a truly big career.”
       A 23 Nov 1989 LAT article stated that dialect coach David Alan Stern was hired to work with Olympia Dukakis and Daryl Hannah on their Southern accents. Stern taught Dukakis an affluent, “plantation style” accent for her turn as “Clairee Belcher,” while Hannah’s “Annelle Dupuy Desoto” spoke in a rural Southern twang that more closely matched Dolly Parton’s. Stern’s name does not appear in onscreen credits.
       Filming began 12 Jul 1988 in Harling’s hometown of Natchitoches, LA, the oldest settlement in the Louisiana Purchase territory, and was slated to end early Sep ... More Less


       An 11 Dec 1987 DV article announced Steel Magnolias as one of eighteen upcoming features in a $236 million slate to be produced by Ray Stark’s Rastar Productions. Herb Ross was set to direct and produce the $15-million picture along with Rastar and New World Pictures. However, New World received no further mention in contemporary sources found in AMPAS library files and received no onscreen credit, while Ross received only a directing credit.
       Five of the six lead actresses were cast as of 25 May 1988, according to an HR news item of the same date, including Sally Field, Dolly Parton, Daryl Hannah, Shirley MacLaine, and Olympia Dukakis. Although a 4 Apr 1988 DV brief reported that Meg Ryan had signed on to play the role of Shelby Eatenton Latcherie, the actress did not remain with the project. Ross personally auditioned seventy-five actresses for the role, as noted in the 27 May 1988 HR, which announced the casting of Julia Roberts, who, according to Ross, was poised to have “a truly big career.”
       A 23 Nov 1989 LAT article stated that dialect coach David Alan Stern was hired to work with Olympia Dukakis and Daryl Hannah on their Southern accents. Stern taught Dukakis an affluent, “plantation style” accent for her turn as “Clairee Belcher,” while Hannah’s “Annelle Dupuy Desoto” spoke in a rural Southern twang that more closely matched Dolly Parton’s. Stern’s name does not appear in onscreen credits.
       Filming began 12 Jul 1988 in Harling’s hometown of Natchitoches, LA, the oldest settlement in the Louisiana Purchase territory, and was slated to end early Sep 1988. According to the 3 Jul 1988 LAT, prior to Steel Magnolias, the only Hollywood production to shoot in Natchitoches was the John Wayne picture, The Horse Soldiers (1959, see entry). According to a 17 Nov 1989 HR item, the production fed $4 million into the state’s economy. A makeshift soundstage was set up at a gymnasium on the campus of Northwestern State University of Louisiana (NSU), where many students were recruited to be extras and crewmembers. NSU journalism professor Tom Whitehead served as a liaison between the filmmakers and the Natchitoches community, and receives an onscreen credit as "Production location consultant." According to the 14 Nov 1989 LAT, locals rented furniture and props to the filmmakers, while several well-to-do citizens vacated their homes to rent them to cast members. A 14 Apr 2000 WSJ item published a real-estate listing for one of the homes used in the film, a four-story colonial house built in 1840, which served as the location for several scenes including Shelby’s wedding reception. Another of the nineteenth-century homes where filming took place was converted into a bed-and-breakfast named The Steel Magnolia House, as noted in a 22 Oct 2012 People item. The bed-and-breakfast featured rooms named after characters in the film.
       Although the six lead actresses were said to get along well on set, Dolly Parton alluded to tension between herself, Julia Roberts, and Herb Ross in a 16 Oct 1994 Long Beach Press-Telegram item, stating that the director was dissatisfied with Parton’s acting abilities and disappointed that Meg Ryan had not taken Roberts’s role. In a 31 Jul 1989 Newsweek brief, Roberts was quoted as saying the actresses “were like a band of six” and there was no “negative competition” on set. Echoing her sentiment, Sally Field stated in a 12 Oct 1988 LAT article that the shoot “was like a giant slumber party for three months.” The actresses made publicity appearances as a group on several television programs, including The Oprah Winfrey Show, as noted in a 28 Feb 1990 HR “Hollywood Report” column, and their camaraderie was credited as an integral part of the film’s marketing strategy.
       The touring production of the stage play began a six-week run at Los Angeles, CA’s Wilshire Theater on 11 Jul 1989, as noted in a 13 Jul 1989 DV item. The Los Angeles cast included Marion Ross, Carole Cook, Margo Martindale, Tracy Shaffer and Dawn Hopper. A 5 Aug 1988 HR brief reported that WPA Theatre had negotiated with Rastar to delay the theatrical release until spring 1990. However, a Dec 1989 opening in Los Angeles was being considered for Academy Award qualification, and the film eventually opened in Los Angeles and New York City on 15 Nov 1989.
       A 30 Oct 1989 New York brief stated that the Steel Magnolias trailer included theme music from St. Elmo’s Fire (1985, see entry). The original trailer also contained images of a wedding car decorated with inflated condoms and a line about condoms spoken by Sally Field’s character, “M’Lynn Eatenton.” According to an 8 Oct 1989 LAT brief, the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) forbid the spot from airing on television, but Stark protested the decision in a letter to MPAA supervisor Bethlyn Hand. A 19 Nov 1989 LAT item stated that there were no product tie-ins in the film, but Tri-Star allowed Clairol to affix its logo to 100,000 official movie posters and distribute them to beauty salon members of the National Cosmetology Association (NCA). NCA members were also invited to twenty-five “premiere” screenings held by the organization.
       A benefit premiere took place 9 Nov 1989 at the Cineplex Odeon theater in Century City, CA, raising over $500,000 for the American Diabetes Association (ADA). According to the 13 Nov 1989 LAT, premieres also took place in New York City and Atlanta, GA; including the Los Angeles proceeds, a total of $1 million was raised for the ADA. The film also had a premiere in Natchitoches on 10 Nov 1989, attended by Robert Harling, Dolly Parton, and Daryl Hannah, with a gala party that raised between $40 and $50,000 in NSU scholarships. A 7 Feb 1990 charity premiere in London, England, was attended by the British Royal Family, and on 9 Feb 1990 the film opened the 40th Berlin International Film Festival, where it also showed in East Berlin on the following night, according to a 22 Jan 1990 DV item. A 20 Feb 1990 DV brief noted that Columbia/Tri-Star’s London headquarters received a letter of complaint from Buckingham Palace after the London premiere, stating that the Prince and Princess of Wales were forced to change seats when Herb Ross’s wife, Princess Lee Radziwill, took the wrong seat, displacing Julia Roberts, Olympia Dukakis, and, in turn, Prince Charles and Princess Diana. Buckingham Palace cited the mix-up as a violation of security measures and a “lapse in ordinary decorum.”
       Critical reception was mixed, although a positive review in the 15 Nov 1989 Var correctly predicted Steel Magnolias would be a box-office success. Three months into its release, the film still held a top ten spot in box-office charts, according to a 23 Feb 1990 HR column, grossing $71.3 million to that time. Julia Roberts received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, and a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture. Sally Field also received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama.
       A sitcom based on the film, also titled Steel Magnolias, debuted on the Columbia Broadcasting System network (CBS) in mid-Aug 1990, as stated in a 22 Aug 1990 Washington Post article. Cindy Williams starred as “M’Lynn Eatenton,” Sally Kirkland played “Truvy Jones,” and Elaine Stritch appeared as “Ouiser Boudreaux.” The pilot episode took sixty-eighth place in ratings, and the show was not picked up. On 4 Apr 2005, the stage play opened on Broadway at the Lyceum Theatre, but the short-lived production, featuring Delta Burke, Rebecca Gayheart, Christine Ebersole, and Marsha Mason, closed 31 Jul 2005. A made-for-television re-make of the film, starring an African-American cast, including Queen Latifah, Jill Scott, Alfre Woodard, and Phylicia Rashad, premiered 7 Oct 2012 on the Lifetime network. According to a 10 Oct 2012 USA Today brief, the premiere drew 6.5 million viewers, marking Lifetime’s third most successful telecast to that time.

      End credits include the statements: “Originally produced on the New York stage by the WPA Theatre (Kyle Resnick, Artistic Producer)”; “Special thanks to Northwestern State University of Louisiana, Dr. Robert Alost, President, Jerry Pierce, Assistant to the President”; and, “Filmed in the city and with the people of Natchitoches, Louisiana.”

              The following dedication also appears in end credits: “For Susan, from Bob.” The dedication refers to writer Robert Harling’s sister, Susan Harling Robinson, who inspired the character “Shelby Eatenton Latcherie.” According to a 27 Sep 1988 LAT article, Robert Harling’s stage play, Steel Magnolias, began as a short story paying tribute to his sister, Susan, a diabetic whose kidneys failed after childbirth. Although Susan and Robert’s mother had donated a kidney to Susan, the transplant was unsuccessful and she passed away in late 1985, leaving behind a two-year-old son she had against her doctors’ advice. Robert Harling, an actor who did not consider himself a writer, turned the short story into a play, set “in a beauty parlor on four Saturday mornings over the course of 2½ years,” which he finished in just ten days. In late Mar 1987, WPA Theatre, a non-profit organization, mounted the play off Broadway. Soon after, film producer Ray Stark optioned film rights for a reported $350,000 “plus escalation clauses” based on the length of the play’s run and the film’s box-office earnings, as noted in a 2 Oct 1987 DV news item. Harling was hired to write the screen adaptation. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
Jan 1990.
---
Daily Variety
2 Oct 1987.
---
Daily Variety
11 Dec 1987
p. 1, 38.
Daily Variety
4 Apr 1988.
---
Daily Variety
13 Jul 1989.
---
Daily Variety
14 Jul 1989.
---
Daily Variety
8 Nov 1989.
---
Daily Variety
22 Jan 1990.
---
Daily Variety
20 Feb 1990.
---
Hollywood Reporter
25 May 1988
p. 1, 16.
Hollywood Reporter
27 May 1988
p. 1, 8.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Jul 1988.
---
Hollywood Reporter
5 Aug 1988.
---
Hollywood Reporter
13 Jan 1989
p. 28.
Hollywood Reporter
9 Nov 1989
p. 4, 18.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Nov 1989.
---
Hollywood Reporter
23 Feb 1990.
---
Hollywood Reporter
28 Feb 1990.
---
Long Beach Press-Telegram
16 Oct 1994.
---
Los Angeles Times
3 Jul 1988
Calendar, p. 24.
Los Angeles Times
27 Sep 1988.
---
Los Angeles Times
12 Oct 1988
Calendar, p. 1.
Los Angeles Times
8 Oct 1989
Calendar, p. 34.
Los Angeles Times
13 Nov 1989
Section E, p. 8.
Los Angeles Times
14 Nov 1989
Section F, p. 5.
Los Angeles Times
15 Nov 1989
p. 1.
Los Angeles Times
19 Nov 1989
Calendar, p. 24.
Los Angeles Times
23 Nov 1989
Section J, p. 1.
New York
30 Oct 1989.
---
New York Times
15 Nov 1989
p. 21.
Newsweek
31 Jul 1989.
---
People
11 Jul 1988
p. 114.
People
27 Nov 1989.
---
People
22 Oct 2012.
---
USA Today
10 Oct 2012
Section D, p. 4.
Variety
15 Nov 1989
pp. 20-21.
Washington Post
22 Aug 1990
Section B, p. 6.
WSJ
14 Apr 2000.
---
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXTS
Tri-Star Pictures presents
a Rastar production
a Herbert Ross film
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Unit prod mgr
1st asst dir
2d asst dir
2d 2d asst dir
2d 2d asst dir
PRODUCERS
Prod
Assoc prod
Exec prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
Cam op
1st asst cam
2d asst cam
2d cam op
Gaffer
Elec best boy
Key grip
Best boy grip
Dolly grip
Still photog
ART DIRECTORS
Prod des
Prod des
Art dir
Art dir
Illustrator
Asst to Mr. Pisoni
FILM EDITORS
1st asst ed
Asst ed
SET DECORATORS
Set des
Set dec
Set dec
Prop master
Asst prop master
Const coord
Greensman
COSTUMES
Cost supv
Costumer
Costumer
Costumer
Costumer
MUSIC
Supv mus ed
Scoring mixer
Scoring mixer
SOUND
Sd mixer
Boom op
Boom op
Supv sd ed
Supv sd ed
Supv ADR ed
Sd ed
Sd ed
ADR ed
Asst sd ed
ADR group coord
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Re-rec mixer
Foley by
Foley artist
Foley artist
Foley rec by
Foley rec
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff coord
Titles & opticals by
DANCE
MAKEUP
Key make-up artist
Make-up artist
Make-up artist
Make-up artist
Key hairstylist
Hairstylist
Hairstylist
Hairstylist
PRODUCTION MISC
Casting
Scr supv
Loc mgr
Asst loc mgr
Prod accountant
Asst prod accountant
Prod coord
Prod secy
Unit pub
Extras casting
Transportation coord
Animal coord
Teacher/Welfare worker
Location projectionist
Prod loc consultant
Local contact
Secy to Mr. Stark
Asst to Mr. Ross
Secy to Mr. Ross
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
Prod asst
COLOR PERSONNEL
Col by
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the play Steel Magnolias by Robert Harling (New York, week of 27 Mar 1987).
SONGS
"I Got Mine," written and performed by Ry Cooder, courtesy of Warner Bros. Records Inc., by arrangement with Warner Special Products
"Ma Louisianne," written and performed by Zachary Richard, courtesy of Rounder Records Corp.
"Cajun Christmas," "Would You Fly," written by Marsha Brown, performed by Monty and Marsha Brown, courtesy of Swallow Records
+
SONGS
"I Got Mine," written and performed by Ry Cooder, courtesy of Warner Bros. Records Inc., by arrangement with Warner Special Products
"Ma Louisianne," written and performed by Zachary Richard, courtesy of Rounder Records Corp.
"Cajun Christmas," "Would You Fly," written by Marsha Brown, performed by Monty and Marsha Brown, courtesy of Swallow Records
"Gypsy Blood," written and performed by Mason Ruffner, courtesy of CBS Records, by arrangement with CBS Records Music Licensing Department
"Lookin' For You," written and performed by Holly Dunn, courtesy of Warner Bros. Records Inc.
"Two Step Mamou," written by Wayne Toups, Jay Miller, Jean Arceneaux, performed by Wayne Toups & Zydecajun, courtesy of Polygram Special Products, a division of Polygram Records, Inc.
"Old Time Rock And Roll," written by George Jackson and Tom Jones III, performed by Tommy Funderburk
"Jambalaya," written by Hank Williams, performed by Tommy Funderburk
"Les Grands Bois," arranged and performed by Jo-El Sonnier, courtesy of Rounder Records Corp.
"Yankee Doodle Dandy," written by George M. Cohan
"Winter Wonderland," written by Felix Bernard and Dick Smith.
+
DETAILS
Release Date:
15 November 1989
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles and New York openings: 15 November 1989
Production Date:
12 July--early September 1988
Copyright Claimant:
Firestar Film Enterprises
Copyright Date:
2 January 1990
Copyright Number:
PA442233
Physical Properties:
Sound
Dolby Stereo ® in Selected Theatres
Color
Lenses
Lenses and Panaflex® camera by Panavision®
Duration(in mins):
119
MPAA Rating:
PG
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
29428
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In Chinquapin Parish, Louisiana, Drum Eatenton shoots at birds perched in trees outside his house in preparation for his daughter Shelby’s wedding reception. Meanwhile, Annelle Dupuy, a mousy newcomer, passes the Eatenton residence on her way to Truvy’s Beauty Spot, a small beauty parlor at the home of Truvy Jones. Annelle proves her skills by doing Truvy’s hair, and Truvy gives her a job. Although Truvy tries to find out more about the girl by asking personal questions, Annelle will only reveal that she has been staying at Ruth Robeline’s boardinghouse and has no car. A wealthy widow named Clairee Belcher arrives, and Truvy introduces her as the former first lady of Chinquapin. At the Eatenton’s, Shelby’s fiancé, Jackson Latcherie, sneaks through a window and surprises his bride-to-be in the bathtub. He teases her about threatening to leave him at the altar, then promises to make her very happy. On their way to Truvy’s salon, M’Lynn Eatenton and Shelby see M’Lynn’s curmudgeonly friend, Ouiser Boudreaux, at the front door with her distressed St. Bernard. The women avoid Ouiser by sneaking out the back door. Drum Eatenton greets Ouiser, who berates him for the incessant shooting that has caused her dog to lose its hair. Drum claims he must drive out the birds before the reception, or M’Lynn will be angry with him. At the salon, Truvy asks about Jackson Latcherie. Shelby beams as she describes her bridegroom, a good-looking lawyer. Although she plans to keep her nursing job, M’Lynn wishes Shelby, who suffers from diabetes, would quit after the wedding because nursing puts a strain on the circulatory system. Shelby and her mother bicker over the details of ... +


In Chinquapin Parish, Louisiana, Drum Eatenton shoots at birds perched in trees outside his house in preparation for his daughter Shelby’s wedding reception. Meanwhile, Annelle Dupuy, a mousy newcomer, passes the Eatenton residence on her way to Truvy’s Beauty Spot, a small beauty parlor at the home of Truvy Jones. Annelle proves her skills by doing Truvy’s hair, and Truvy gives her a job. Although Truvy tries to find out more about the girl by asking personal questions, Annelle will only reveal that she has been staying at Ruth Robeline’s boardinghouse and has no car. A wealthy widow named Clairee Belcher arrives, and Truvy introduces her as the former first lady of Chinquapin. At the Eatenton’s, Shelby’s fiancé, Jackson Latcherie, sneaks through a window and surprises his bride-to-be in the bathtub. He teases her about threatening to leave him at the altar, then promises to make her very happy. On their way to Truvy’s salon, M’Lynn Eatenton and Shelby see M’Lynn’s curmudgeonly friend, Ouiser Boudreaux, at the front door with her distressed St. Bernard. The women avoid Ouiser by sneaking out the back door. Drum Eatenton greets Ouiser, who berates him for the incessant shooting that has caused her dog to lose its hair. Drum claims he must drive out the birds before the reception, or M’Lynn will be angry with him. At the salon, Truvy asks about Jackson Latcherie. Shelby beams as she describes her bridegroom, a good-looking lawyer. Although she plans to keep her nursing job, M’Lynn wishes Shelby, who suffers from diabetes, would quit after the wedding because nursing puts a strain on the circulatory system. Shelby and her mother bicker over the details of the wedding, including Shelby’s signature colors, two shades of pink she calls “blush” and “bashful.” They laugh about the one thing they agree on, a grotesque, armadillo-shaped groom’s cake made by Jackson’s Aunt Fern. After Truvy reveals Shelby’s hairdo, the bride starts to sweat and pull at her collar. Truvy fails to notice, complaining about her husband Spud’s unemployment. Shelby pounds on her chair, and M’Lynn rushes over, recognizing that her daughter has gone into diabetic shock. Shelby regresses and fights her mother off, but M’Lynn forces her daughter to drink orange juice until she calms down. M’Lynn reveals that Shelby’s doctor recently informed her she should not have children. Returning to normal, Shelby asks her mother not to talk about her as if she is not present. Jackson has promised her they will adopt, or even pay for a child, if necessary. Ouiser arrives, complaining about Drum’s incessant shooting. She eyes Annelle suspiciously and forces the girl to identify herself. When Annelle says she is married, Ouiser demands an explanation, and Annelle confesses that her husband, who is in trouble with the law, stole her money, car, and belongings, and disappeared. Ouiser affirms that men are horrible creatures who ruin lives. Embarrassed by her checkered past, Annelle promises Truvy that her personal tragedy will not interfere with her job performance. Hoping to cheer her up, Shelby invites Annelle to the wedding and offers her a dress to wear. Later that day, Drum walks Shelby down the aisle, which is draped in pink. The reception takes place under a tent in the Eatenton’s backyard, where attendees dance to a live band and enjoy Aunt Fern’s armadillo cake. M’Lynn pulls Jackson aside on the dance floor and pleads with him to think carefully before making any big decisions about family. Annelle meets Sammy Desoto, a bartender who flirts with her and offers her a ride home. As the party winds down, wedding guests bid goodbye to the happy couple, who drive off in a car covered in inflated condoms. Months later, Shelby and Jackson, who now live in Monroe, return to Chinquapin for Christmas. At the Chinquapin Christmas festival, Shelby reunites with Truvy and Annelle, who has become a bubbly, devout Christian. Truvy returns home to Spud, who is despondent after losing a bid for a construction job. She encourages him to watch fireworks with her, but he refuses. Clairee, who has just bought local radio station KPPD, performs her new job as color announcer for The Devils, a local football team. Amidst naked football players in the locker room, Ouiser corrects Clairee when she reports on the colors of the team’s uniforms rather than the game. At the Eatenton home, Shelby tells M’Lynn she is pregnant, and M’Lynn expresses disappointment that neither Shelby nor Jackson took her doctor’s advice. Shelby, who has always dreamed of having a child of her own, wishes M’Lynn would be happy for her, and claims adoption would be impossible due to her medical condition. She argues that she “would rather have thirty minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of nothing special.” The next day, at the beauty salon, Shelby tells Ouiser she recently saw Owen Jenkins, Ouiser’s old boyfriend, in Monroe. Ouiser recalls her two failed marriages, which produced three ungrateful children, and says she does not want to “open another can of worms.” Nevertheless, Shelby surprises her by inviting Owen Jenkins to the Eatenton's Christmas party. Ouiser seeks out M’Lynn to complain just as Drum announces Shelby’s pregnancy. Clairee, Truvy, and Annelle congratulate M’Lynn, but Ouiser reveals M’Lynn’s true feelings about the pregnancy. The women console her. Sometime later, the Eatentons celebrate the first birthday of Shelby and Jackson’s son, Jack, Jr. Shelby goes to Truvy’s beauty salon with M’Lynn and asks Truvy to cut her hair short. Truvy sees bruises and track marks on Shelby’s forearm, and Shelby announces that having Jack, Jr. caused her kidneys to fail, as doctors predicted. She has been undergoing dialysis, and will check into the hospital for surgery the next day, as will M’Lynn, who is donating a kidney to her daughter. Later, Annelle, who is now engaged to Sammy, frets over the red beans and rice she plans to take to the Eatentons. She finds beer in the refrigerator and reprimands Sammy, who further angers her by taking the Lord’s name in vain. Annelle threatens not to marry him if he does not plan to make it into heaven. Sammy replies that he would rather eat dirt than pray. That Sunday, Truvy takes Annelle to her church service, hoping to tone down the girl’s newfound religious fervor. Clairee and Truvy tease Ouiser when she shows up, assuming she has come to see Owen, who sings in the church choir. Ouiser claims they are just friends, but Owen would like more. Later that day, Shelby’s kidney transplant is successful. At Halloween, Truvy and the ladies surprise Annelle with a wedding shower at the salon, while, in Monroe, Shelby leaves her nursing shift to trick-or-treat with Jack, Jr. However, when she tries to pick him up, she collapses. Jackson returns home to find Jack, Jr. crying and Shelby unconscious on the floor. Later, a doctor reports that Shelby, who is now on life support, has contracted an infection as a result of the kidney transplant. M’Lynn does not move from her daughter’s bedside, attempting to revive her by showing her photographs and reading to her. Eventually, the life support is cut off and Shelby dies. The day of the funeral, Spud Jones, who has recently obtained work on an offshore oil rig, dresses up and asks to join Truvy. She is touched when he admits he does not know what he would do without her. At the cemetery, Drum consoles his sons while M’Lynn stands over Shelby’s coffin. Truvy goes to comfort her, closely followed by Clairee, Ouiser and Annelle, who promises her Shelby has become a guardian angel in heaven. Inconsolable, M’Lynn describes the moment Shelby died, when Drum and Jackson both left the room and she stayed behind. She bursts into tears and says she wants to hit something. Clairee offers up Ouiser, and everyone but Ouiser laughs. Later, Clairee apologizes, and the women elbow each other playfully until Ouiser pushes Clairee off a bench. Annelle, who is now pregnant, tells M’Lynn she wants to name her baby Shelby, since she was the reason she and Sammy met. M’Lynn offers her blessing. Sometime later, at the Chinquapin Easter egg hunt, Jackson helps Jack, Jr. put eggs in his basket. Sammy grudgingly wears an Easter bunny costume as Annelle complains about being nine months pregnant. On their way to the festivities, Spud surprises Truvy with a new salon location called Truvy’s West, and she is overjoyed. Clairee plays a prank on Ouiser by telling Jack, Jr. a scary story about her, prompting the child to slap Ouiser when she arrives. M’Lynn rushes to Jack, Jr.’s aid just as Annelle’s water breaks. Truvy and Spud take Annelle to the hospital in their truck, while Sammy, still in his bunny costume, hitches a ride on the back of Truvy’s son Louie’s motorcycle. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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