Tag Archives: Ginger Rogers

Stanley Donen, 1924–2019

In the clip above, from the 1998 Oscars, Martin Scorsese presents that year’s winner of the Honorary Academy Award, Stanley Donen. There’s a lovely montage featuring some of the best scenes from Donen’s movies and then the man himself steps out, receives his Oscar and goes on to sing and dance! One of the best … Continue reading Stanley Donen, 1924–2019

42nd Street: Easing the Depression

In 1932, the Depression held the United States in a firm grip. Its nationwide effect seeped into every aspect of life, including the cinema. When Warner Brothers hired Busby Berkeley, a renowned Broadway choreographer, for four upcoming pictures, it would turn out to be one of the decisions that helped propel the studio to financial … Continue reading 42nd Street: Easing the Depression

Follow the Fleet: Facing the Music

FUN ABOARD! Director Mark Sandrich and stars Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers had a marvelous hit with Top Hat the previous year. Of course, RKO wanted more of that and the search for new material was on. However, the filmmakers eventually decided to bring back something that had already been done as a silent picture … Continue reading Follow the Fleet: Facing the Music

The Gay Divorcee: Happy to Be Rid of You

THE KING AND QUEEN OF “CARIOCA”! “The Gay Divorce” became a Broadway hit, but once it was time for the film adaptation the folks behind the Production Code (enforced for the first time that same year) objected. There could be people who were happy to get a divorce, they reasoned, that was acceptable… but labeling … Continue reading The Gay Divorcee: Happy to Be Rid of You

Swing Time: The Way It Still Looks

AMERICA’S DAZZLING DANCING STARS EXPLODE IN A GLORIOUS SONGBURST OF GAIETY AND GLADNESS! When Barack Obama delivered his Inauguration Address on January 20th, 2009, he emphasized the need to “pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off”, an obvious reference to the current economic crisis. The line was actually lifted from a Depression-era song, “Pick Yourself Up”, … Continue reading Swing Time: The Way It Still Looks

Top Hat: Getting Caught in the Rain

THEY’RE DANCING CHEEK-TO-CHEEK AGAIN! There was a time in the mid-30s when director Mark Sandrich and the star combo of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers simply owned the genre of musicals. They delivered the best movies, the grandest entertainment. And none of their collaborations were greater than Top Hat. Only Mutiny on the Bounty made … Continue reading Top Hat: Getting Caught in the Rain