After catching Our Souls At Night (Netflix, 9.29), the Robert RedfordJane Fonda love story, I was inspired to re-watch Barefoot in the Park, the 1967 adaptation of the Neil Simon play about young marrieds in which they co-starred. Redford also costarred in the original Broadway version, in which Elizabeth Ashley played Fonda’s role. It opened on 10.23.63, or almost exactly a month before JFK’s assassination. Redford recounted that period this morning on the Today show:

“We did the play in 1963. It was a different time. There was a lot of innocence in the world, and laughter was different. There was laughter at a certain points in the play, of course, and then Kennedy died and the play went quiet for a couple of nights because it had to, and then we came back again. I was concerned about ‘what are we going to do with the comedy?” It’s going to be hard when you say a line that’s supposed to get a laugh. But we had to do it. What I noticed was that the laughter from the audience was different, and has been different ever since. There was something harsh about the laughter. And it hit my ear and I thought, ‘This is weird…the laughter is there and it’s even stronger, but there’s an edge to it.’ And from that point on, it’s been the same ever since.”