The white dress that Cinderella wears to the ball was so heavy that after 12 hours of shooting, Lesley Ann Warren was unable to move her shoulders and had to be injected with a muscle relaxant.
Shot on videotape, this production introduced Lesley Ann Warren to television and film audiences.
This production features rare on-camera appearance by two notable movie musical dubbers, who appear as a couple. Betty Noyes, credited in this film as Mother, dubbed Debbie Reynolds' singing voice in Singin' in the Rain (1952). Bill Lee, credited as Father, dubbed for John Kerr in South Pacific (1958) and for Christopher Plummer in The Sound of Music (1965). The couple sings briefly about their daughter.
The clear slippers seen in the show were constructed such that Lesley Ann Warren was able to actually dance in them. However, they were made of plastic, not glass. Ordinary glass would have shattered, but safety glass would be strong enough.
Jack Jones was originally cast as the prince. Stuart Damon was a last-minute replacement. He was a New York-based actor who would go on to appear in Richard Rodgers' DO I HEAR A WALTZ? on Broadway, later that same year. His agent had to lend him the airfare to Los Angeles in order to play the prince.
Features the song "Loneliness of Evening", which Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II had deleted from their 1949 stage musical version of "South Pacific". (However, the song's lyrics did turn up in the movie version of South Pacific (1958) in the form of a poem that Emile de Becque sends to Nellie Forbush.)
The production was rehearsed for ten days and shot on tape in three days. All of the singing was live and was not dubbed in later.
The first take of Leslie Ann Warren's song "My Little Corner" had to be rejected because she was crying so hard she couldn't be understood. The director told her to lighten it up a bit.
Leslie Ann Warren owns her princess crown from this role. It was for sale at a Vermont costume shop and her husband bought it for her on eBay.
Leslie Ann Warren had a bad audition and was initially rejected for the role by Richard Rogers. However, the director had seen her on Broadway in "110 in the Shade" and insisted that Rogers see her again. She had a second, private audition with Rogers at his piano where he taught her to sing "My Funny Valentine" (a major Rogers hit) exactly as he wanted it sung, and he was so impressed that he green-lighted her for the part.
The melody being played when Cinderella arrives at the ball is an arrangement of "Boys and Girls Like You and Me". Rodgers and Hammerstein originally wrote it for OKLAHOMA!, but it was cut from the score before opening. It was then sold to M-G-M producer Arthur Freed, who tried unsuccessfully to integrate it into two separate projects. The song was first assigned to Judy Garland for the fairgrounds sequence of Meet Me in St. Louis (1944), which was ultimately deleted. Frank Sinatra then recorded and filmed it for Take Me Out to the Ball Game (1949), but this sequence was also cut. The visual and audio elements of Sinatra's rendition have survived, as has the Garland prerecording.
Rodgers and Hammerstein were dissatisfied with the original television production in 1957 (with Julie Andrews) because they thought it was too "modern". So in this remake Rodgers insisted that it stick to its fairy tale origins, with scenes and costumes more attuned to medieval times.
Jo Van Fleet (b. 1915) was only 12 years older than Pat Carroll (b. 1927) and 15 years older than Barbara Ruick (b. 1930), despite playing their mother.
Walter Pidgeon, who plays the king, was the uncredited narrator in the 1955 film The Glass Slipper, starring another Leslie, Leslie Caron as Cinderella.
The film features three Oscar winners (Ginger Rogers, Celeste Holm and Jo Van Fleet) and two Oscar nominees (Walter Pidgeon and Lesley Ann Warren).