G | | Documentary, Family, Musical
Various MGM stars from yesterday present their favourite musical moments from the studio's 50 year history.
Arthur Freed is honored at the end of the film credits for his extensive contributions to establishing MGM as the home of the musical. One child star, Shirley Temple, wrote in her 1988 autobiography that when aged twelve she was interviewed by Freed with a view to transferring her career to MGM. During the interview he unzipped his trousers and exposed himself to her. Being innocent of male anatomy, she responded by giggling, and he threw her out of his office.
The year is 1929; the singer, Cliff Edwards, also known as Ukelele Ike. The film: "Hollywood Revue"; it is the first all-talking, all-singing, all-dancing movie ever made. In the years that followed, "Singin' in the Rain" would become a theme song ...
During her narrative section, Liza Minnelli erroneously states that her mother, Judy Garland "once told me that MGM seemed obsessed with Shirley Temple. They even offered Fox Clark Gable and Jean Harlow just to obtain Temple for a picture Metro was preparing. But the deal fell through, so MGM went head with the picture and cast Momma in the role of Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz (1939)." In fact, Jean Harlow died before MGM began preparations for The Wizard of Oz.
Producer Jack Haley Jr.'s credit appears over a still image of his father, Jack Haley, as the Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz.
The 2004 DVD release presents the film in both an enhanced widescreen transfer (which replicates the film's original theatrical presentation, with the sides of the screen"masked" for the 1.37:1 material, as presented in the original theatrical release) and a standard 4:3 version that properly letterboxes CinemaScope sequences. In the widescreen version the image often expands (as it did during the film's initial theatrical engagements) so that especially splashy musical numbers not originally shot in CinemaScope can fill the entire screen. DVD release also includes both overture and exit music.
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