Real life "Roxy Hart" or "Velma Kelly"?

Hello! It’s been a long time since I’ve posted at these boards, and this is probably my first question in over a year. So please be patient with this rusty Doper.

Anyway, I’ve just seen the new movie Chicago three times already. One of the things I have heard about this musical (which used the 1926 play by Maurine Dallas Watkins) is that it’s based on a true story. Watkins apparently worked as a court reporter (don’t know if that means she worked as a journalist or a stenographer) in the 20’s and her play Chicago was based on court cases she witnessed. Does anybody have more information about this? Thanks! :slight_smile:


Fem Four: The World’s Greatest Women’s Comic Team!

On-Cue Profile: Maurine Dallas Watkins

John Elliott is writing a biography of her and has produced a web site about her. (It is a bit odd, with separate views for IE or Netscape.)

Each of the sites mention her work for the Tribune, but each notes that her reporter stint did not last long and neither delves into how much material she incorporated into the play.

This site plays up her crime reporter resume, but aside from some lurid headlines, does not explore the actual relationship. (In fairness, it is siimply a puff piece (apparently, a box story accompanying a movie review), that does not pretend to be a full treatment.)

Thanks a lot! Looks like the last article you showed me really answers my question. I could probably learn even more by ordering this book at, but I figured that could wait until later. You really were a great help, and I appreciate it!


The very end of the end credits (yes, I’m that sort of cinemagoer) has a fairly unusual disclaimer. Something to the effect of “This is based on a true story, but the names and details have been changed.” Since it goes on to specify UK copyright law, it may be relevant to say that I saw it in the UK.
Nice references tomndebb.

I didn’t see that disclaimer. The one part of the credits I was most interested in was the credit that stated Catherine Zeta-Jones, Renée Zellwegger, and Richard Gere did their own singing and dancing in the movie…