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The Overplayed and the Underplayed


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LOL...I just went back and edited what you quoted. I am now calling this film MY FAIR DUBBED LADY. :)

 

Ooooh...you better watch it, TB!

 

'Cause ya know, IF some of these really big fans of either Audrey OR this movie around here ever find out the address of the house "on the street where you live", you COULD be lookin' at some unwelcome visitor(s) ringing your doorbell, ya know!

 

(..."clever", huh!) ;)

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As if MFL was the only film in history that was dubbed? I agree its on too much.......

 

Yea,  I was watching that The Lady and the Prizefighter the other day and the Loy singing dubb was bad.  Real bad.   It looked like the director just wanted to get this scene over with, it looked so phony.   Also Loy didn't move that well.   While she is one of my favorite actresses she wasn't the song and dance type of gal,  and it showed.

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As if MFL was the only film in history that was dubbed? I agree its on too much.......

Nowhere in my comment did I say or even slightly suggest MY FAIR LADY is the only film in history that was dubbed. But in this case, because it's a musical (as opposed to Myrna's short musical number in the other film that was mentioned)-- and because Julie Andrews was earning plaudits on Broadway for the same role, it deserves to get dinged for having a lead actress whose voice was deemed so inadequate by the studio that she had to be dubbed in 85% of her numbers. A raspy drag queen, or even Lucille Ball warbling in the fog, would have been an improvement.

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Nowhere in my comment did I say or even slightly suggest MY FAIR LADY is the only film in history that was dubbed. But in this case, because it's a musical (as opposed to Myrna's short musical number in the other film that was mentioned)-- and because Julie Andrews was earning plaudits on Broadway for the same role, it deserves to get dinged for having a lead actress whose voice was deemed so inadequate by the studio that she had to be dubbed in 85% of her numbers. A raspy drag queen, or even Lucille Ball warbling in the fog, would have been an improvement.

 

While I like My Fair Lady (and actually don't watch it often because it's so long), my biggest problem with the dubbing, is not the fact that Audrey was dubbed, it's the voice they chose to dub her with.  While the voice on it's own is a very good voice, it doesn't sound like Audrey at all.  I don't believe that Audrey had a bad voice persay, its just that her range was limited.  I don't think Audrey was the type to belt it out when she sang.  Her rendition of "Moon River" in Breakfast at Tiffany's I think is the best example of her voice.  She can carry a tune, but she pretty much sings in one octave.  The studio executives might have thought her voice didn't have the pizzazz they were looking for.  I'm sure they wanted a more Broadway caliber voice.  Had they gone with Julie Andrews, I think the film would have been better.  Not that Hepburn's version is bad (I do enjoy it); but with Andrews singing and using her real voice, it would have worked better.  In addition to Breakfast at Tiffany's, Hepburn's image in My Fair Lady is iconic--especially in regard to fashion.  I believe that her Ascot dress and the dress she wears when she's "a lady" are part of Hepburn's indelible image. 

 

I've noticed with many of the studio era films that the dubbing is often poor.  Not that the singers themselves are bad, it's just that so few of their voices actually match those of the actresses they dubbed.  The studios must have had a few singers on the payroll and assigned them to films when the actress needed dubbed.  One of the few dubbings that I've heard that I thought actually worked well was Rita Hayworth's dubbing in Gilda.  I've noticed in many films that they let the male actor use his own voice and the actress would be dubbed. I  wonder if that was due to a lack of male singers on the payroll? Look at My Fair Lady, Rex Harrison doesn't even sing.  He sing-speaks. 

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While I like My Fair Lady (and actually don't watch it often because it's so long), my biggest problem with the dubbing, is not the fact that Audrey was dubbed, it's the voice they chose to dub her with.  While the voice on it's own is a very good voice, it doesn't sound like Audrey at all.  I don't believe that Audrey had a bad voice persay, its just that her range was limited.  I don't think Audrey was the type to belt it out when she sang.  Her rendition of "Moon River" in Breakfast at Tiffany's I think is the best example of her voice.  She can carry a tune, but she pretty much sings in one octave.  The studio executives might have thought her voice didn't have the pizzazz they were looking for.  I'm sure they wanted a more Broadway caliber voice.  Had they gone with Julie Andrews, I think the film would have been better.  Not that Hepburn's version is bad (I do enjoy it); but with Andrews singing and using her real voice, it would have worked better.  In addition to Breakfast at Tiffany's, Hepburn's image in My Fair Lady is iconic--especially in regard to fashion.  I believe that her Ascot dress and the dress she wears when she's "a lady" are part of Hepburn's indelible image. 

 

I've noticed with many of the studio era films that the dubbing is often poor.  Not that the singers themselves are bad, it's just that so few of their voices actually match those of the actresses they dubbed.  The studios must have had a few singers on the payroll and assigned them to films when the actress needed dubbed.  One of the few dubbings that I've heard that I thought actually worked well was Rita Hayworth's dubbing in Gilda.  I've noticed in many films that they let the male actor use his own voice and the actress would be dubbed. I  wonder if that was due to a lack of male singers on the payroll? Look at My Fair Lady, Rex Harrison doesn't even sing.  He sing-speaks. 

Good post. If the execs thought Audrey's voice lacked pizzazz, then they shouldn't have hired her. This was a big-budget musical production and should have had the best singer possible. I feel like when Audrey comes on and lip-syncs her way through those numbers that it's Amateur Hour. I'm embarrassed for her. She should have been replaced. 

 

I agree there is a double standard about this issue with regards to some of the male leads (who cannot sing) in musicals. 

 

If MY FAIR LADY had been made in the early or mid-50s, I think Betty Hutton would have been the perfect choice. She was great in her urchin scenes in ANNIE GET YOUR GUN. And she had the range and charisma to really belt out the numbers. Plus, she could transform herself into a glam'd up doll.

 

I also think Judy Holliday might have worked in the role, too. 

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A raspy drag queen, or even Lucille Ball warbling in the fog, would have been an improvement.

 

An improvement over ....... ?

 

Some comments are just too exaggerated to be analyzed . One has to wonder what the intention behind them really is.

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Good post. If the execs thought Audrey's voice lacked pizzazz, then they shouldn't have hired her. This was a big-budget musical production and should have had the best singer possible. I feel like when Audrey comes on and lip-syncs her way through those numbers that it's Amateur Hour. I'm embarrassed for her. She should have been replaced. 

 

I agree there is a double standard about this issue with regards to some of the male leads (who cannot sing) in musicals. 

 

If MY FAIR LADY had been made in the early or mid-50s, I think Betty Hutton would have been the perfect choice. She was great in her urchin scenes in ANNIE GET YOUR GUN. And she had the range and charisma to really belt out the numbers. Plus, she could transform herself into a glam'd up doll.

 

I also think Judy Holliday might have worked in the role, too. 

I didn't know that Judy Holliday sang! I'll admit, I've only seen her in Born Yesterday and It Should Happen to You.  Does she sing in any of her films? or was this only on Broadway?

 

I haven't seen Annie Get Your Gun, so I can't comment on Betty Hutton. 

 

Rex Harrison appeared in the original Broadway show with Julie Andrews and got to reprise his role in the film version and he doesn't even really sing in the film.  I can imagine he probably sing speaks in the Broadway show as well.  It seems like the obvious choice to have Andrews reprise her role as well; but in this case, it seems money won over what would be best for the film. 

 

Even if they had found a singer with a voice closer to Hepburn's, it would have been a little better.  I've also noticed with the dubbed actresses, the actress has to be really good at lip syncing to even have a chance at looking believable.  I think that's why Rita Hayworth's dubbed singing in Gilda works so well for me.  Hayworth is excellent at lip syncing and the singer they selected had a voice similar to Hayworth's.  The first couple of times I saw it, I thought it was Hayworth singing until I found out she was dubbed. 

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I didn't know that Judy Holliday sang! I'll admit, I've only seen her in Born Yesterday and It Should Happen to You.  Does she sing in any of her films? or was this only on Broadway?

 

If you look Judy up on the IMDb, and click on the Soundtrack link on her page, you will see she performed songs in four of her films. She also performed a number in a TV movie.

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I note that those holiday classics, THE WOMEN and THE PHILADELPHIA STORY, will appear during Christmas week.

 

TPS is a dual threat, it will again air a week before Valentine's Day (and it was shown on November 13, albeit for a very worthy cause).

 

As TB no doubt remembers, THE WOMEN was shown almost every month a couple of years ago.

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I note that those holiday classics, THE WOMEN and THE PHILADELPHIA STORY, will appear during Christmas week.

 

TPS is a dual threat, it will again air a week before Valentine's Day (and it was shown on November 13, albeit for a very worthy cause).

 

As TB no doubt remembers, THE WOMEN was shown almost every month a couple of years ago.

Yes, THE WOMEN was definitely overplayed (almost to the point of exhaustion). 

 

I love Judy Canova, by the way, and she certainly has a great vocal range (she was trained in opera). Most of Canova's movies were Cinderella-type stories.

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Yes, THE WOMEN was definitely overplayed (almost to the point of exhaustion). 

 

I love Judy Canova, by the way, and she certainly has a great vocal range (she was trained in opera). Most of Canova's movies were Cinderella-type stories.

I was just thinking of the fact that cockney is sort of the British version of hillbilly as far as the movies are concerned.

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I was just thinking of the fact that cockney is sort of the British version of hillbilly as far as the movies are concerned.

I agree. Good comparison. 

 

Unfortunately, Judy Canova was a B film star, not an A lister-- but she could have done a very interesting interpretation of the character if she had been cast.  Maybe she would have been perfect for a TV movie version. In the late 60s, she appeared in a television remake of LI'L ABNER.

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Nowhere in my comment did I say or even slightly suggest MY FAIR LADY is the only film in history that was dubbed. But in this case, because it's a musical (as opposed to Myrna's short musical number in the other film that was mentioned)-- and because Julie Andrews was earning plaudits on Broadway for the same role, it deserves to get dinged for having a lead actress whose voice was deemed so inadequate by the studio that she had to be dubbed in 85% of her numbers. A raspy drag queen, or even Lucille Ball warbling in the fog, would have been an improvement.

 

 

I disagree there. Lucille Ball should've been dubbed too..........

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I disagree there. Lucille Ball should've been dubbed too..........

Oh yes, if we're talking about MAME, most definitely. She was dubbed in the musical number she does in SORROWFUL JONES. She should have known then that was the way to go for her, in all her pictures.

 

I mentioned her because as bad as her singing voice may be, it's better than Audrey trying too hard and not being able to deliver the goods. At least with Lucy, we know she's not acting like she belongs at the Met. But Audrey actually thought she could sing. 

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THE WOMEN is overplayed because it's the only film that's certain to please the female demographic.

 

Well  my wife would disagee.  She feels the overall plot says that a wife needs to put up with a husband that cheats because, well boys will be boys, and women need a man and can't be single, happy and sexual all at the same time.

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Well  my wife would disagee.  She feels the overall plot says that a wife needs to put up with a husband that cheats because, well boys will be boys, and women need a man and can't be single, happy and sexual all at the same time.

 

Well - could they back then? Would they have been permitted to be?

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Well  my wife would disagee.  She feels the overall plot says that a wife needs to put up with a husband that cheats because, well boys will be boys, and women need a man and can't be single, happy and sexual all at the same time.

 

Yes, but isn't the "oh so sweet" and "oh so forgiving" Miss Shearer just so "wonderful" in that role?!!! LOL

 

(...I like the way your wife thinks, James!)

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Cockney is an urban speech pattern so it's actually more the British version of a Brooklyn accent.

 

After reading this line of yours Holden, I started thinking(always a dangerous proposition in my case of course) that if you but add the letter "e" to the end of the word "urban" you just used, your sentence makes no sense at all.

 

(...see, I told ya it was "dangerous" for me to think, now didn't i?!) ;)

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