Raquel Welch spent some time getting up close and personal with silver screen icon Mae West during one of her final films "Myra Breckinridge" and because of this she claims it's left her with suspicions that Mae West was in fact a male drag queen.
During a Raquel Welch film retrospective in New York, the so-called movie goddess explained a little more about her Mae West beliefs She never worked before 5 p.m. and… she also never moved by herself, so the limo that took her to the studio, to her dressing room, also brought her onto the set. So they had to open the huge door where they load in scenery. She was kind of like a piece of scenery!
"When I went over to say hello to her (one day) I said, 'Hi, it's Raquel, remember?' She sort of extended her hand to me and I went to kiss the ring and one false fingernail painted silver fell to the floor. I looked at the hand and I thought, 'Oh, I'm getting a vibe'. I really think she's a man!
"At this point in her life all bets are off and you're not going to be able to doll it (appearance) up that much. I would say it's pretty accurate that she resembled a dock worker in drag."
Welch did admit that it was a thrill to work with West but she did take a very bad memory away with her from their time together: "I had this beautiful dress and it was black with a big white ruffle around the neck and a black velvet hat, based on a costume that was worn by Greta Garbo. It was very chic and I couldn't wait to wear it. (Costume designer) Theodora Van Runkle designed it for the scene with Mae West because she was wearing all white with black trim, so this would be perfect.
"Apparently Mae got wind of the fact that I was wearing this exquisite dress and I went to the studio that day for our scene together. I got coiffed, got my hair done and went to the closet to get the dress and it wasn't there. I asked my dresser what happened to the dress and she said, 'It's been confiscated. Mae does not want you to wear that dress. You can wear the red dress that you wore in the last scene!'
"Mae had approval over everything that was worn on the set… The producer said, 'It's (dress) a non-color and nobody gets to wear non-colors in the movie but Mae.'"
This outraged Raquel Welch so much that she actually stormed off the set and refused to continue filming until the addresses back in her closet.
She recalled, "For the scene, we never appeared in a two-shot together. She left after she did her lines and I had someone off-camera reading her lines and I had to pretend she was there."
There've been rumors for years that Mae West may have been a drag queen who took her acts from Vaudeville drag queen Bert Savo but so what! If Raquel Welch really had a problem with it why wait till now to bring it up? Could it be that this is now the only way, Raquel can get in press now that each is finally caught up with her? Man, woman, alien or whatever Mae West was a true movie icon and for the roles she played I'm convinced no one could've done it better regardless of gender. I hope you get some control over this Raquel because right now this is making you look like a loser who is just jealous that you will never reach the same level of movie iconism as Mae West.