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Ziegfeld Follies (film)

This article is about the film. For the Ziegfeld Follies Broadway shows, see Ziegfeld Follies.

Ziegfeld Follies is a 1945 American musical comedy film released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, primarily directed by Vincente Minnelli, with segments directed by Lemuel Ayers, Roy Del Ruth, Robert Lewis, and George Sidney, the film's original director before Minnelli took over. Other directors that are claimed to have made uncredited contributions to the film are Merrill Pye, Norman Taurog, and Charles Walters. It stars many MGM leading talents, including Fred Astaire, Lucille Ball, Lucille Bremer, Fanny Brice (the only member of the ensemble who was a star of the original Follies), Judy Garland, Kathryn Grayson, Lena Horne, Gene Kelly, James Melton, Victor Moore, William Powell, Red Skelton, and Esther Williams.

Ziegfeld Follies
Theatrical release poster
Directed byLemuel Ayers
Roy Del Ruth
Robert Lewis
Vincente Minnelli
George Sidney
Written byCharles Walters
Produced byArthur Freed
Starring
CinematographyGeorge J. Folsey
Merrill Pye
Jack Martin Smith
Edited byAlbert Akst
Music byRoger Edens
Lennie Hayton
Conrad Salinger
Harry Warren
Distributed byMetro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date
  • August 13, 1945 (1945-08-13) (Boston)
  • July 15, 1946 (1946-07-15) (United States)
Running time
110 minutes
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$3,403,000
Box office$5,344,000

Producer Arthur Freed wanted to create a film along the lines of the Ziegfeld Follies Broadway shows, and so, the film is composed of a sequence of unrelated lavish musical numbers and comedy sketches. Filmed in 1944 and 1945, it was released in 1946 to considerable critical and box-office success.

The film was entered into the 1947 Cannes Film Festival.

Contents

Dance director was Robert Alton, Astaire's second-most-frequent choreographic collaborator after Hermes Pan. All of Astaire's numbers were directed by Vincente Minnelli. The movie's opening featured William Powell as Ziegfeld, who does the prologue.

  • "Here's to the Girls/"Bring on the Wonderful Men": by Roger Edens and Arthur Freed. Sung by Astaire with a short solo dance by Cyd Charisse, followed by Lucille Ball cracking a whip over eight chorus-girl panthers, and finally Virginia O'Brien spoofs the previous scene by singing "Bring on those Wonderful Men"
  • "This Heart of Mine": classic standard by Harry Warren and Arthur Freed and written specially for Astaire who sings it to Bremer and then leads her in an extravagantly romantic dance of seduction and power-play. The choreography integrates rotating floors, concealed treadmills and swirling dance motifs.
  • "Love": another standard, this time by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane, sung by Lena Horne.
  • "Limehouse Blues": conceived as a "dramatic pantomime" with Astaire as a proud but poverty-stricken Chinese labourer whose infatuation with the unattainable Bremer leads to tragedy. The story serves as bookends for a dream ballet inspired by Chinese dance motifs in a vast and extravagant setting, as both Astaire and Bremer perform in yellowface.
  • "The Great Lady Has an Interview": written by Kay Thompson originally for Greer Garson (she turned it down). Judy Garland spoofs a movie star who can only be cast in Oscar-winning dramas, but wants to play "sexy" roles (a la Greer Garson, or Katharine Hepburn) giving an interview to dancing reporters about "her next picture": a bio-pic of Madame Cremantante (the "inventor of the safety pin"). Originally to be directed by Garland's friend Charles Walters, Vincente Minnelli ended up directing the sequence (the two were dating at the time), and Walters was reassigned as choreographer.
  • "The Babbitt and the Bromide": Astaire and Kelly team up in a comedy song and dance challenge in three sections, to music and lyrics by George and Ira Gershwin. All choreography was by Astaire (third section) and Kelly (sections one and two). This was the only time Astaire and Kelly appeared on screen together in their prime. In spite of efforts by Freed and Minnelli, the two would not partner again on film until That's Entertainment, Part II in 1976.
  • "There's Beauty Everywhere": originally filmed as a balletic finale with tenor James Melton singing and Fred Astaire, Cyd Charisse, and Lucille Bremer dancing in a melange of soap bubbles. But when the bubble machine malfunctioned (leaving only a fragment of the number filmed) and the formula flowed into the hallways of the soundstage, the number had to be restaged and the Astaire and Bremer part of this number was cut out altogether." Kathryn Grayson replaced Melton. Segments of the "bubble dance" with Charisse remain in the final film.

An early concept was to have the film introduced by a stop motion animated puppet of Leo the Lion. Although cut before release, this outtake footage survives today.

The New York Times: "The film's best numbers are a couple of comedy skits, especially one done by Red Skelton. Fanny Brice plays a Bronx hausfrau quite funnily. Judy Garland is also amusing as a movie queen giving an interview. Ziegfeld Follies is entertaining – and that's what it's meant to be!" (Bosley Crowther).

Newsweek: "At least three of the numbers would highlight any review on stage and screen. In A Great Lady has an Interview, Judy Garland, with six leading men, displays an unexpected flair for occupational satire. With Numbers Please Keenan Wynn demonstrates, once again, that he is one of Hollywood's foremost comedians. But the dance act for the archives is The Babbitt and the Bromide Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly trade taps and double-takes to a photo finish."

According to MGM records, the film earned $3,569,000 in the US and Canada, and $1,775,000 elsewhere - but because of its large cost, it incurred a loss to the studio of $269,000.

1947 Cannes Film Festival Best Musical Comedy (Prix de la meilleure comédie musicale) Won

The film is recognized by American Film Institute in these lists:

  1. "The Eddie Mannix Ledger". Los Angeles: Margaret Herrick Library, Center for Motion Picture Study{{inconsistent citations}}Cite journal requires |journal= ()CS1 maint: postscript (link).
  2. Fred Stanley (Jan 9, 1944). "HOLLYWOOD 'TAKES': METRO PLANS BI-ANNUAL MOVIE EDITIONS OF 'ZIEGFELD FOLLIES' -- OTHER NOTES". New York Times. p. X3.
  3. Levy, Emanuel (2009-04-14). Vincente Minnelli: Hollywood's Dark Dreamer. St. Martin's Publishing Group. ISBN 978-1-4668-0005-2.
  4. Naremore, James; Naremore, Chancellors' Professor of English and Communication and Culture James (1993-05-28). The Films of Vincente Minnelli. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-38770-5.
  5. "Ziegfeld Follies". Park Circus. Retrieved2021-08-18.
  6. The Films of Judy Garland, Joe Morella and Edward Epstein, p. 132
  7. "Festival de Cannes: Ziegfeld Follies". festival-cannes.com. Retrieved2009-01-06.
  8. "Love" sung by Lena Horne (video)
  9. Original stop motion puppet Leo the Lion introduction to "Ziegfeld Follies" (1946) on YouTube
  10. The Films of Judy Garland, Joe Morella and Edward Epstein, p.134
  11. See also "60 Top Grossers of 1946", Variety 8 January 1947 p8
  12. Staff. "Ziegfeld Follies – Awards". Retrieved8 October 2013.
  13. "AFI's Greatest Movie Musicals Nominees"(PDF). Retrieved2016-08-13.
  • John Mueller: Astaire Dancing – The Musical Films of Fred Astaire, Knopf 1985, ISBN 0-394-51654-0
  • Monder, Eric (1994). George Sidney:a Bio-Bibliography. Greenwood Press. ISBN 9780313284571.
Wikiquote has quotations related to: Ziegfeld Follies (film)

Ziegfeld Follies (film)
Ziegfeld Follies film Language Watch Edit This article is about the film For the Ziegfeld Follies Broadway shows see Ziegfeld Follies Ziegfeld Follies is a 1945 American musical comedy film released by Metro Goldwyn Mayer primarily directed by Vincente Minnelli with segments directed by Lemuel Ayers Roy Del Ruth Robert Lewis and George Sidney the film s original director before Minnelli took over 3 Other directors that are claimed to have made uncredited contributions to the film are Merrill Pye Norman Taurog and Charles Walters 4 5 It stars many MGM leading talents including Fred Astaire Lucille Ball Lucille Bremer Fanny Brice the only member of the ensemble who was a star of the original Follies Judy Garland Kathryn Grayson Lena Horne Gene Kelly James Melton Victor Moore William Powell Red Skelton and Esther Williams Ziegfeld FolliesTheatrical release posterDirected byLemuel Ayers Roy Del Ruth Robert Lewis Vincente Minnelli George SidneyWritten byCharles WaltersProduced byArthur FreedStarringFred Astaire Lucille Ball Lucille Bremer Fanny Brice Judy Garland Kathryn Grayson Lena Horne Gene Kelly James Melton Victor Moore Red Skelton Esther Williams William Powell Edward Arnold Marion Bell Cyd Charisse Hume Cronyn William Frawley Robert Lewis Virginia O Brien Keenan WynnCinematographyGeorge J Folsey Merrill Pye Jack Martin SmithEdited byAlbert AkstMusic byRoger Edens Lennie Hayton Conrad Salinger Harry WarrenDistributed byMetro Goldwyn MayerRelease dateAugust 13 1945 1945 08 13 Boston July 15 1946 1946 07 15 United States Running time110 minutesCountryUnited StatesLanguageEnglishBudget 3 403 000 1 2 Box office 5 344 000 1 Producer Arthur Freed wanted to create a film along the lines of the Ziegfeld Follies Broadway shows and so the film is composed of a sequence of unrelated lavish musical numbers and comedy sketches Filmed in 1944 and 1945 6 it was released in 1946 to considerable critical and box office success The film was entered into the 1947 Cannes Film Festival 7 Contents 1 Cast 2 Key songs dance routines 3 Surviving outtake of introduction 4 Reception 5 Box office 6 Accolades 7 References 8 Further reading 9 External linksCast EditFred Astaire as Fred Astaire Lucille Ball as Lucille Ball Lucille Bremer as Princess Fanny Brice as Norma Edelman Judy Garland as The Star Kathryn Grayson as Kathryn Grayson Lena Horne as Lena Horne Gene Kelly as Gentleman James Melton as Alfredo Victor Moore as Lawyer s Client Red Skelton as J Newton Numbskull Esther Williams as Esther Williams William Powell as Florenz Ziegfeld Jr Edward Arnold as LawyerKey songs dance routines EditDance director was Robert Alton Astaire s second most frequent choreographic collaborator after Hermes Pan All of Astaire s numbers were directed by Vincente Minnelli The movie s opening featured William Powell as Ziegfeld who does the prologue Here s to the Girls Bring on the Wonderful Men by Roger Edens and Arthur Freed Sung by Astaire with a short solo dance by Cyd Charisse followed by Lucille Ball cracking a whip over eight chorus girl panthers and finally Virginia O Brien spoofs the previous scene by singing Bring on those Wonderful Men This Heart of Mine classic standard by Harry Warren and Arthur Freed and written specially for Astaire who sings it to Bremer and then leads her in an extravagantly romantic dance of seduction and power play The choreography integrates rotating floors concealed treadmills and swirling dance motifs Love another standard this time by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane sung by Lena Horne 8 Limehouse Blues conceived as a dramatic pantomime with Astaire as a proud but poverty stricken Chinese labourer whose infatuation with the unattainable Bremer leads to tragedy The story serves as bookends for a dream ballet inspired by Chinese dance motifs in a vast and extravagant setting as both Astaire and Bremer perform in yellowface The Great Lady Has an Interview written by Kay Thompson originally for Greer Garson she turned it down Judy Garland spoofs a movie star who can only be cast in Oscar winning dramas but wants to play sexy roles a la Greer Garson or Katharine Hepburn giving an interview to dancing reporters about her next picture a bio pic of Madame Cremantante the inventor of the safety pin Originally to be directed by Garland s friend Charles Walters Vincente Minnelli ended up directing the sequence the two were dating at the time and Walters was reassigned as choreographer The Babbitt and the Bromide Astaire and Kelly team up in a comedy song and dance challenge in three sections to music and lyrics by George and Ira Gershwin All choreography was by Astaire third section and Kelly sections one and two This was the only time Astaire and Kelly appeared on screen together in their prime In spite of efforts by Freed and Minnelli the two would not partner again on film until That s Entertainment Part II in 1976 There s Beauty Everywhere originally filmed as a balletic finale with tenor James Melton singing and Fred Astaire Cyd Charisse and Lucille Bremer dancing in a melange of soap bubbles But when the bubble machine malfunctioned leaving only a fragment of the number filmed and the formula flowed into the hallways of the soundstage the number had to be restaged and the Astaire and Bremer part of this number was cut out altogether Kathryn Grayson replaced Melton Segments of the bubble dance with Charisse remain in the final film Surviving outtake of introduction EditAn early concept was to have the film introduced by a stop motion animated puppet of Leo the Lion Although cut before release this outtake footage survives today 9 Reception EditThe New York Times The film s best numbers are a couple of comedy skits especially one done by Red Skelton Fanny Brice plays a Bronx hausfrau quite funnily Judy Garland is also amusing as a movie queen giving an interview Ziegfeld Follies is entertaining and that s what it s meant to be Bosley Crowther Newsweek At least three of the numbers would highlight any review on stage and screen In A Great Lady has an Interview Judy Garland with six leading men displays an unexpected flair for occupational satire With Numbers Please Keenan Wynn demonstrates once again that he is one of Hollywood s foremost comedians But the dance act for the archives is The Babbitt and the Bromide Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly trade taps and double takes to a photo finish 10 Box office EditAccording to MGM records the film earned 3 569 000 in the US and Canada and 1 775 000 elsewhere but because of its large cost it incurred a loss to the studio of 269 000 1 11 Accolades Edit1947 Cannes Film Festival Best Musical Comedy Prix de la meilleure comedie musicale Won 12 The film is recognized by American Film Institute in these lists 2006 AFI s Greatest Movie Musicals Nominated 13 References Edit a b c The Eddie Mannix Ledger Los Angeles Margaret Herrick Library Center for Motion Picture Study inconsistent citations Cite journal requires journal help CS1 maint postscript link Fred Stanley Jan 9 1944 HOLLYWOOD TAKES METRO PLANS BI ANNUAL MOVIE EDITIONS OF ZIEGFELD FOLLIES OTHER NOTES New York Times p X3 Levy Emanuel 2009 04 14 Vincente Minnelli Hollywood s Dark Dreamer St Martin s Publishing Group ISBN 978 1 4668 0005 2 Naremore James Naremore Chancellors Professor of English and Communication and Culture James 1993 05 28 The Films of Vincente Minnelli Cambridge University Press ISBN 978 0 521 38770 5 Ziegfeld Follies Park Circus Retrieved 2021 08 18 The Films of Judy Garland Joe Morella and Edward Epstein p 132 Festival de Cannes Ziegfeld Follies festival cannes com Retrieved 2009 01 06 Love sung by Lena Horne video Original stop motion puppet Leo the Lion introduction to Ziegfeld Follies 1946 on YouTube The Films of Judy Garland Joe Morella and Edward Epstein p 134 See also 60 Top Grossers of 1946 Variety 8 January 1947 p8 Staff Ziegfeld Follies Awards Retrieved 8 October 2013 AFI s Greatest Movie Musicals Nominees PDF Retrieved 2016 08 13 John Mueller Astaire Dancing The Musical Films of Fred Astaire Knopf 1985 ISBN 0 394 51654 0Further reading EditMonder Eric 1994 George Sidney a Bio Bibliography Greenwood Press ISBN 9780313284571 External links EditWikiquote has quotations related to Ziegfeld Follies film Ziegfeld Follies at IMDb Ziegfeld Follies at the TCM Movie Database Ziegfeld Follies at AllMovie Ziegfeld Follies at the American Film Institute Catalog The Judy Garland Online Discography Ziegfeld Follies pages Retrieved from https en wikipedia org w index php title Ziegfeld Follies film amp oldid 1039817388, wikipedia, wiki, book,

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