I have been very busy, and not able to post too conveniently. I hope everyone is well.
I haven't really been able to follow much in the last month or so, but at least wanted to contribute something. So, here is a simple list I started forever ago. I may not be able to take a breather, and get back here, so do with it whatever is useful.
Debussy in Film
- Dodsworth - 1936: Alfred Newman is using Debussy's Prelude Book I #8 "The Girl With The Flaxen Hair" for the scene between Dodsworth and his wife as they discuss the "summer lease." It is very interesting in that it's performed with violin and piano - I am just about sure the piano only plays about three or four chords to complete some key phrases. Very nice. I cannot offer much more because I have only seen it once, and my DVR is fried now.
- Monsieur Verdoux - 1947: The film was directed by Charlie Chaplin, and he plays the title role as well. I don't think there is any Debussy music used in the film, but Chaplin keeps a portrait of the young Debussy behind his desk. The portrait can be viewed in the scene where he is speaking on the phone, and he discusses an impending stock market crash - the portrait is over his right shoulder. Perhaps an indication of Chaplin's own feelings
- All About Eve - 1950: Debussy's Beau Soir is used before the scene where Eve's newfound success is on full display.
- Giant - 1956: "Uncle" plays Clair de Lune Suite Bergamasque on the Reata house organ during Luz's wake. It's played with a church-service feel. Very nice. I believe Tiomkin did a full arrangement for organ of Clair de Lune for the Giant music, which is pretty bold. I assume that it would be included on a "Giant Complete" CD when that's finally released.
- Casino Royale - 1967: David Niven is playing Clair de Lune Suite Bergamasque about 10-11 minutes into the film. He's shown at the piano for no more than a few seconds. Later, about 117 minutes into the film, Woody Allen plays a few bars of the same to compare himself to James Bond.
- Ocean's 11 - 2001: Clair de Lune Suite Bergamasque is used during the "final meeting" scene by the casino fountains. This is the 1963 performance by the Philadelphia Orchestra under Ormandy, and I believe this is the Stokowski arrangement. The full recording is available on a few different CD releases.
- Ocean's 13 - 2007: Clair de Lune Suite Bergamasque is used, but I don't remember the scene. This is the 1974 version from Tomita's new-age "Snowflakes Are Dancing" record. He is considered to be an early adopter of advanced computing techniques applied to synthesizers and keyboards, and he was classically trained.
Given that lexedo is a fan of actor Jean-Paul Belmondo, I should think he be made aware of LA VIACCIA (1961) in which Claudia Cardinale co-stars with Belmondo and the music score by Piero Piccioni adapts Claude Debussy's Rhapsodie for Saxophone & Orchestra.
There's more to Debussy than meets La Luna.
THE DEBUSSY FILM, made in 1965 by Ken Russell for Britain's OMNIBUS TV program, showcases the music by Debussy as its 'soundtrack' (and Oliver Reed as Debussy!).
There seems to be a recurring theme (no pun intended) to this thread, wherein somebody will post a piece of information and then, a little later, somebody else will post the same piece of information.
Mention of the DODSWORTH violin/piano rendition of Maid With the Flaxen Hair reminds me of Heifetz's violin/piano transcription of that piece, one of his many wonderful encore specialties which was recorded by himself and then, over the years, by many others.
Nice ones everybody. For the "Clare de lune" entries, it would be interesting to know if "moonlight" was somehow germane to the scene in which the music is heard.
Love Jascha H, BTW, and I have a recording of his where he is doing old Gershwin and Broadway stuff. The guy had no boundaries, which is immediately evident in his playing style.
Way off track: one of my fav uses of classical music in film is Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto #2 for Greta Garbo in Grand Hotel. Her face and eyes capture the melancholy of that piece so very well - what an amazing talent she was.