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~ The Sand Man ~ (Fred Astaire Favorites)


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Alright! Thanks for all the info on Hugh... One of my

favorite Brits! :) Love to hear it from the mouth of a

fellow Brit, thanks so much Julie! I love Rowan Atkinson

as well, and grew up watching him as Mr. Bean.

 

I knew it it was Mr. O'Connor! I love Donald

O'Connor but his movies seem a little hard to find... I

keep hearing about roles that he would have

played but was detained by illness or other

circumstances. Does anyone know anything about this?

Were there any films where Astaire and O'Connor danced

together?

 

On a little different note... I've been looking forward

to seeing Summerstock for two months now so I

hope the weather here clears up :( Oh, if I miss I will

be so dissappointed ...

 

Thanks again for all the info, pictures, and just all

around great conversation... My affection goes out to

each of you! :x

 

bhf1940

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Hello !

"Quite" when I meant "Quiet"...oh dear, oh dear ! Sorry !

I watched " Shall We Dance " yesterday and noticed something odd. F & G roller skating come to a stop: hands stretrched out and we thing that is it, but then they chase one another and fall on the grass. I read that the roller skating idea was Ginger's and that both enjoyed it a lot. Is it possible that they carried on and then the director edited the ending. It really looks like they really had fun doing this scene.

Cheers !

Julie

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Of all the routines that would be tough to catch in one or two shots, that would be it, as A&R were great on skates, but not quite as certain as they were on their toes.



What has always impressed me most about the very end of the skating number is that it is obviously them--not doubles--taking that hard fall onto the grassy bank. I sure hope it was fake grass with some padding under it, but it really doesn't look like it. Oh, well, dancers do know how to fall.



143509~Shall-We-Dance-Posters.jpg
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Mifty:

 

I gather, in case I missed you saying, that you haven't seen his show from here called "House." He has been quite busy with that. It's a pretty big hit here. He plays a doctor who specializes in diagnosing particularly hard cases. He is at the same time a thoroughly detestable character but likeable enough when you get to know him.

 

Hopefully, you'll get it there before long.

 

Chris

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Hi, Chris !

No, sorry, but I have not heard about "House". Maybe I am too busy watching old movies and missing out on other channels ! ( I am a TCM fan). Its great to hear that Hugh is a hit in the USA...good for him. I will look at my TV guide.

Kind regards,

Julie

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Yes, yes. Mifty, I forgot to mention that. I'm a huge fan of Hugh's USA show House. He doesn't have a British accent, rather speaks with an American accent. I think he is quite good at it, but the first season was a bit iffy. Um, House is in it's third season here, I think.

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[nobr]Here are some more pics for you Astaire fanatics... I've been digging 'em up for a while and that's why I haven't been posting many. Enjoy...[/nobr]

 

[nobr]astaire21.jpg[/nobr]

 

[nobr]astaire22.jpg[/nobr]

 

[nobr]astaire23.jpg[/nobr]

 

[nobr]astaire24.jpg[/nobr]

 

[nobr]astaire26.jpg[/nobr]

 

[nobr]Another pic of Fred with his son, aside from the popular "Life" photo...[/nobr]

[nobr]withson.jpg[/nobr]

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Danny, you have excelled yourself ! Those photo's are great. I love the one with Rita nad the one with Jnr.

I watched "Royal Wedding" on TCM this afternoon and I was rather disappointed. Why ? Jane Powell was good but her songs were not. As for Sarah Churchill....sorry, I did not like her or her role. FA was good but looked a bit uncomfortable in the scenes with SC (they did not seem to click). The best parts of the film for me were when FA did his dancing on the ceiling, in the gym, and as the "cheating boyfriend" with his "sister" on stage. So much more could have been made of the film; the script was very "iffy". That is only a personal opinion, you understand !

I cannot find "House" on any channel. Maybe it has been shown here and I missed it. Why does Hugh have an American accent ? What role does he play ?

No wonder he has not been seen for a while over here. I hope he continues with his success over the pond.

Kind regards,

Julie

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I've been gone for a bit but have enjoyed reading the posts - very fun and informative. My first FA movie was The Gay Divorcee which I picked up for $1 in a used book store. That was about 10 years ago and I've been hooked ever since. My favorite partner is Ginger but there are lots of numbers I love.

I'll just leave you with this:

 

How could you believe me when I said I loved you when you know I been a liar all my life?

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[nobr]Hi BIRDY! Glad you are enjoying the thread... ;) I love the lyric you posted![/nobr]

 

[nobr]Julie:[/nobr]

 

[nobr]Where do I start? I never liked SC in that role in Royal Wedding and I don't see the chemistry between Astaire and her. What did you think of the hat scene near the end of the picture? Always been one of my favorites.[/nobr]

 

[nobr]Mr. Laurie is playing an American doctor. He was acting in Flight of the Pheonix when he auditioned for the part. In the clip of him auditioning, he used an American accent (which he obviously mastered in the Stewart Little movies over here). The producers of the show were looking for an American actor, and as the legend goes over here: Laurie was played and the creator of the show said "Yes! See... That's what I want, an American guy!"[/nobr]

 

[nobr]The show has been a big hit over here and is certainly one of my favorite shows to watch. It's so big, infact; that alot of shows have tried to recreate his character. Some are even doing spoofs of him on other stations. He plays a mean unshaven doc who talks badly to his patients and down talks his team. Infact, right now the commercial is on tv for the show, announcing he just won a Golden Globe. This is his second for the show, and I believe he won an Emmy early on. Here's what Hugh looks like as he appears on the show:[/nobr]

 

[nobr]hugh_laurie_02.jpg[/nobr]

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Hi, Danny !

Do you mean the Haiti hat ? I did like that and the way the monkey jumped and FA was re-united with his hat !

The main problem , I think, with the film is : it is too short and most scenes are too long. It really would have worked better as a musical if the romantic bits were left out. Why on earth was SC brought into it is beyond me. The story could have been better with more banter between brother and sister and FA dancing with a few more good chorus girls. The songs were very poor and Jane Powell was singing too long and too much in the scenes with Peter Lawford. However, I did like KW playing twins. It is worth watching if only for FA doing his solos !

It seems that Hugh is really doing well ! Hope they show "House" here at some point in time.

Another question (sorry !): I loved "The Betty White Show" with John Hillerman in it (I think it was made in 1977). What has happened to JH ? I know that I enjoyed "Magnum" and his Jonothan Higgins role, but I really loved him as Betty White's ex-husband.

All the best,

Julie :)

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I am puzzled...well, perplexed ! Did FA have blue or hazel eyes ? In some coloured photos, his eyes seem light brown and yet in other blue. Also: in "The Barkleys of Broadway" they are blue, but in "Silk Stockings" they look hazel.

Thanks.

Julie

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According to his daughter (born in 1942) and to his dance partner Barrie Chase (who knew him from about 1957 on), his eyes were a very light blue, and somewhat sensitive to light.

 

But here is the puzzling thing: in a few articles I have read from the 1930s, his eyes are described as brown. On his own draft card from 1918, he lists them as brown. I sometimes wonder if his eyes changed color as he grew older, or if he wore colored contact lenses in some color-era roles (to protect his eyes from the strong lights, perhaps).

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Thanks, Ayres, for shedding light on the issue I raised.

It does seemed somewhat odd when I first noticed the difference in FA's eye colour and could not explain it. However, having looked at most of the photo's (mostly from this fab site) and watched the technicolour films, I am of the personal opinion that F's eyes were brown. Blue, green, hazel, brown ...it does not make any difference: the gent is gorgeous !

You will soon get fed up with my questions (if you have not already done so), but I have to ask this one since I cannot find the answer anywhere: how tall was FA ? To me he looks about 5ft 8in. I base this on Cyd Charise who had to wear flat shoes when dancing with him. Ginger seemed to be about 5ft 4in and with heels adding approx. 2ins, gave him a couple of inches advantage over her. I hate guessing !

Many thanks and kind regards,

Julie

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hee hee; This, too, is a hotly debated issue. Astaire said he was a little over 5 ft 9 in., but I know people amongst the most knowledgeable about him who are sure he was about an inch shorter than that. It's hard to compare him with his female partners accurately because of their shoes, his shoes, and a tendency on the part of studio publicity to minimize the height of its women stars (Example: In It's Always Fair Weather, a boxer tells Gene Kelly at Stillman's Gym that there's a woman there to see him, and describes her as "about 5 ft 4 in," but Cyd Charisse was in reality 5 ft 6 in.

 

Gene Kelly was about 5 ft 7 in, and when Cyd dances with him you will notice that she often plies or bends around him and avoids standing straight next to him. In The Band Wagon, there is a scene where Fred and Cyd stand next to each other on the stairs. She is wearing what look like 1.5 or 2-inch heels, and he is trying to discern whether he is taller than she (the character he plays in the movie is very concerned about whether she is too tall a dancing partner for him). He does look a couple of inches taller than she in the scene, and it is presented full-body, so he can't be standing on a box or something. My guess is that he was about 5 ft 8 1/2 in.

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Thanks again, Queen Ayres.

Do you really love answering questions ? OK...here I go again !

I just finished Ginger Rogers "My Story" and in that she says that FA dated her and they had a 5min kiss that would not have passed the Hays (censorship) Office...well, I never ! Who else is known to have dated him before he married , during (doubtful), and after his first wife died ? There is a lot about his sister and her boyfriends mentioned in "A Step In Time" but he does not say a word about his girlfriends (not that I expected this real gentleman to do so).

Don't you just love gossip ? Infact, I really do not, but I am curious ! :)

Kind regards,

Julie

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Danny, my English reserve has flown out of the window since I joined this marvellous site ! I have become more prone to asking awkward questions and (thankfully) getting answers. :)

It may well be that because I am interested in EVERYTHING concerning FA, I am coming out of my sheltered shell !

Kind regards,

Julie

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Well, there are some things that even I don?t know (LOL).



As you say, Astaire was extremely discreet. In the obit of an Englishwoman named Renee Gadd who worked with him on the London stage (and went on to make a few
English and American movies), she is quoted as saying she and Astaire were lovers in the 1920s. Surrounded by beautiful showgirls all the time, and having the wealth and fame he had by the time he was about 24, I imagine he played the field quite a bit until the time he met his first wife, Phyllis Potter (in 1931, when he was 32).



He may have dated dancer Marilyn Miller while they were working on the show ?Smiles? in 1930?she went on vacation with him and his sister. (I get confused, though, as Miller was probably sleeping with Flo Ziegfeld at around the same time!) Anyway, she announced to some members of the press that they were engaged, much to Fred?s consternation. Maybe that was to make the married Ziegfeld jealous?



His name was also "romantically linked" as they say, to socialite Audrey James and wealthy horsewoman Lillian Bostwick.



In my opinion, Astaire and Rogers were most likely fully involved, albeit briefly, in New York in 1930.



When Astaire was working on Silk Stockings a few years after his wife's death, he got to know the lovely young dancer Barrie Chase (though American, she plays one of the three flirtatious French girls in the ?Too Bad? number?she's the one in the narrow gold lame gown). He began to think about asking her to be his dance partner in the television special he was planning. On the Silk Stockings DVD is a bit of an interview with Cyd Charisse in which she states that Fred ?fell in love with? Barrie during the making of the movie.



Friends and relatives and Barrie herself are all quite mysterious about whether the two were ever more than friends, or mentor and protege (she was 35 years his junior, but he was an incredibly energetic guy well into his sixties); magazine articles hinted broadly that they were headed to the altar, but it never happened and Barrie married a doctor in 1972. She and Fred made three more dance specials after the resoundingly successful first one (it still holds the record for most Emmys won), and I wish you could see them dance together?there are almost as many sparks as when he dances with Ginger, only Barrie is a much more Cyd-like, trained dancer.



Before Astaire married jockey Robyn Smith in 1980, he hung out with a few other young women, including Carol Lynley and Nancy Sinatra, but (though he described himself jokingly to Dick Cavett as a ?dirty old man?), according to the ladies, there was never anything but friendship there.



[nobr]Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting[/nobr]
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