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Fox Studios/20th Century Fox Musicals

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I do understand this course is very brief and that TCM shows mainly films from Warner Bros/MGM/RKO/Columbia and only occasionally a Fox film will appear on the schedule, as Stowaway with Shirley Temple did the other night.  I just feel it's a real glaring omission, in my opinion, to downplay Fox's contribution to the musical genre. 

The Fox Movietone Follies of 1929 (unfortunately a lost film) was the first musical for the studio and the first to be filmed in a 70mm widescreen process called "Grandeur" that was abandoned only a year later because the theaters that were just making the transition to sound could not justify an additional expense to construct a movie screen to fit 70mm.  But other early Fox musicals like Just Imagine, Happy Days, The New Movietone Follies of 1930 and the true first All-African American sound film musical called Hearts in Dixie (Hallelujah was released a few months after) are worth mentioning.  As far as I know, these films DO exist but are notoriously difficult to get a hold of.  

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Thanks for shining the spotlight on Fox musicals by creating a thread about them.

These also include the many hits at the studio for Shirley Temple; Alice Faye; the Ritz Brothers; Sonja Henie; Betty Grable; Dan Dailey; and Glenn Miller.

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And don't forget one of the almost unforgotten stars of the Fox musicals - Gene Nelson. Had a long career as and actor, dancer (best known for Oklahoma) and director (he directed Elvis films, among others). Also starred on Broadway in Stephen Sondheim's Follies.

 

gloria-grahame-gene-nelson-oklahoma!-1955-D5T165.jpg

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43 minutes ago, Walter3rd said:

And don't forget one of the almost unforgotten stars of the Fox musicals - Gene Nelson. Had a long career as and actor, dancer (best known for Oklahoma) and director (he directed Elvis films, among others). Also starred on Broadway in Stephen Sondheim's Follies.

Thanks for mentioning him. Though Gene Nelson was a Warner Brothers contract player in the 50s, he did appear in earlier films at Fox.

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2 hours ago, Walter3rd said:

And don't forget one of the almost unforgotten stars of the Fox musicals - Gene Nelson. Had a long career as and actor, dancer (best known for Oklahoma) and director (he directed Elvis films, among others). Also starred on Broadway in Stephen Sondheim's Follies.

 

gloria-grahame-gene-nelson-oklahoma!-1955-D5T165.jpg

Gene Nelson is also a favorite of mine. I adore him as Will in, Oklahoma as well as his pairings with Debbie Reynolds, Doris Day and  Virginia Mayo as well as his turns as a.dramatic and comedic actor. Thanks for highlighting him in your post.

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And here I only knew Gene Nelson from his turn as Buddy in "Follies" in the OBC. Thanks for telling me a little more about him.

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As long as we are posting actors from the 30's who reappeared in Follies, here is Ethel Shutta who stopped the show every night with "Broadway Baby."  Here she is in Whoopee! (1930) and Follies (1971).

 

2012948461_EthelShuttainWhoopee.jpg.9945e3afa0b946b7858a86b49e58137c.jpg

 

758894046_EthelShuttainFollies.jpg.fe1dbef54cd8b5fed2f83730c2b6c88f.jpg

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There is an excellent documentary of Fox, The First Fifty Years, which was narrated by James Coburn.  Fox really was a powerhouse in musicals with Shirley Temple, Alice Faye, Betty Grable, Carmen Miranda.

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I posted a thread from the FOX MUSICALS on the general thread. I left some videos on it, as well as a VIDEO from WOODY ALLEN'S RADIO DAYS, where he uses Carmen Miranda singing SOUTH AMERICAN WAY  as a homage to the FOX MUSICALS.

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I enjoy the Fox musicals of the 1940s, especially 1945's State Fair that was the only movie musical Rogers & Hammerstein wrote for the screen, 1940's Tin Pan Alley starring Alice Faye and Betty Grable as sisters and 1945's The Dolly Sisters with Betty Grable and June Haver as supposedly twin sisters.  Mother Wore Tights with Grable scored an Oscar for Musical Score and 1943's The Gang's All Here featured Faye singing "The Polka Dot Polka" and Carmen Miranda with "The Lady with the Tutti-Fruitti Hat"  (now that's Kitsch!).  Betty Grable was the most popular female box office star for 10 consecutive years from 1941 to 1952.  When I watch her I can understand why.  As a critic once wrote: "With those legs and those lips, anything was possible!"  I'm looking forward to seeing her once again in 1941's Moon Over Miami on TCM on June 14th.

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49 minutes ago, filmnoirguy said:

I enjoy the Fox musicals of the 1940s, especially 1945's State Fair that was the only movie musical Rogers & Hammerstein wrote for the screen, 1940's Tin Pan Alley starring Alice Faye and Betty Grable as sisters and 1945's The Dolly Sisters with Betty Grable and June Haver as supposedly twin sisters.  Mother Wore Tights with Grable scored an Oscar for Musical Score and 1943's The Gang's All Here featured Faye singing "The Polka Dot Polka" and Carmen Miranda with "The Lady with the Tutti-Fruitti Hat"  (now that's Kitsch!).  Betty Grable was the most popular female box office star for 10 consecutive years from 1941 to 1952.  When I watch her I can understand why.  As a critic once wrote: "With those legs and those lips, anything was possible!"  I'm looking forward to seeing her once again in 1941's Moon Over Miami on TCM on June 14th.

In MOON OVER MIAMI Betty Grable has a sister played by Carole Landis.

Screen Shot 2018-06-11 at 1.54.52 PM.jpg

These gals also played sisters in the Fox crime drama I WAKE UP SCREAMING.

Screen Shot 2018-06-11 at 1.54.27 PM.jpg

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I understand why the focus is on MGM and Warner Bros, but I was very disappointed that there was so little Fox.  I remember years ago a TV Special called Fred Astaire Salutes the Fox Musicals.

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0315605/reference

Unfortunately, it's never been released to home video.  It was a worthy companion to That's Entertainment!

I was very pleased when several Betty Grable and Alice Faye films were released to DVD in the early 2000s.  I bought all of them and have loved watching them and watching again to listen to the commentaries.  I also enjoyed the Sonja Henie ice skating extravaganzas.  She was cute and as a figure skater had dance ability.

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Thank so many of you for remembering Gene Nelson.  He was a brilliant dancer and entertainer with a great smile.

I considered him the next Gene Kelly with his athletic style.  You can find him in several Doris Day musicals as well as those already mentioned. 

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On 6/8/2018 at 12:50 PM, TopBilled said:

Thanks for shining the spotlight on Fox musicals by creating a thread about them.

These also include the many hits at the studio for Shirley Temple; Alice Faye; the Ritz Brothers; Sonja Henie; Betty Grable; Dan Dailey; and Glenn Miller.

Interesting enough I watched Pin Up Girl for the first time yesterday with Fox star Betty Grable.

It must be a legal thing that TCM doesn't play much Fox. I saw PUG on the Fox movie channel (their "Fox Retro" schedule where they play Fox classics in the morning).

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3 minutes ago, Brittany Ashley said:

Interesting enough I watched Pin Up Girl for the first time yesterday with Fox star Betty Grable.

It must be a legal thing that TCM doesn't play much Fox. I saw PUG on the Fox movie channel (their "Fox Retro" schedule where they play Fox classics in the morning).

It's not a legal thing, as much as it's a money thing. TCM has to pay Fox to lease/rent those titles. As you say the Fox library of classic films usually airs during the daytime hours on the Fox Movie Channel. So there's still a way to see them.

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Just received in the mail:

Merger Proposed-Walt Disney Company and 21st Century Fox

It took me until page 130 something to finally find out what is included.  Apparently, Fox is dividing in two-the other being called New Fox. 

The studio and library will stay with Century in which Disney is purchasing.  Since Disney already has a relationship with TCM ie The Disney Vault

maybe you will see your favorite Fox films more often.  We can certainly hope anyway. 

 

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On 6/11/2018 at 4:02 PM, pbm said:

Thank so many of you for remembering Gene Nelson.  He was a brilliant dancer and entertainer with a great smile.

I considered him the next Gene Kelly with his athletic style.  You can find him in several Doris Day musicals as well as those already mentioned. 

I actually met him once. It was a Super Bowl Sunday. He was up visiting his son, a classmate of mine at the time.

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On ‎6‎/‎14‎/‎2018 at 5:13 PM, Walter3rd said:

I actually met him once. It was a Super Bowl Sunday. He was up visiting his son, a classmate of mine at the time.

I'm green with envy.....

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In the 2017 Best Pic Oscar winner, "The Shape of Water," Richard Jenkins loves watching old musicals on his black and white TV.  The 3 shown were Betty Grable singing 'Pretty Baby' from "Coney Island," Alice Faye singing 'You'll Never Know' from "Hello Frisco, Hello" and Carmen Miranda bouncing to 'Chica Chica Boom Chic.'

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12 minutes ago, filmnoirguy said:

In the 2017 Best Pic Oscar winner, "The Shape of Water," Richard Jenkins loves watching old musicals on his black and white TV.  The 3 shown were Betty Grable singing 'Pretty Baby' from "Coney Island," Alice Faye singing 'You'll Never Know' from "Hello Frisco, Hello" and Carmen Miranda bouncing to 'Chica Chica Boom Chic.'

THE SHAPE OF WATER was distributed by Fox Searchlight, a division of Fox. So that's why they were able to use clips of old Fox musicals from the 40s.

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