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 Posted:   May 11, 2008 - 11:58 PM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

Just watched this over the weekend on Public Televison station. I love the Overture of the film and Jerry Herman's songs with Lennie Hayton and Lionel Newmans additional scoring throughout. They also are credited as conducters.

"Put on your sunday clothes" always brings me cheer.

I love the Overture played over the Main Titles as the train is traveling to New York. So 60's Big Main Titles style. When movies were an Event.

Great lines: Barber to Matthau.

"Sit still, If I cut your throat it'll be practically unintentional"

I was cast as Barnaby (years ago) in a local production of the THE MATCHMAKER for which HELLO DOLLY was based. Holy Cabooses the production never got off the ground for some reason, I can't remember now. But now I'm old enough to play Vadergelder and the musical version quite appeals to me.

This was a major 20th Century Fox Production starring Babs Streisand and Walter Matthau with Michael Crawford and Tommy Tune (looking extremely Giraffe like) and was directed by Gene Kelly.

One of my best Hollywood friends the late and missesd Arthur Tovey, who I did many extra gigs with in L.A. is in the picture sitting right behind Babs at the Harmonia Gardens. He is the distinguished white haired gentleman eating and drinking and who claps most energetically when Dolly is introduced. Arthur was "King of the Extras" and a loving friend. He was in everything from THE MUMMY (1933) Boris Karloff Version, GONE WITH THE WIND (worked as Leslie Howard's stand-in and double) to BRIGADOON, THE ROBE (one of Richard Burton's prominent Centurions) NORTH BY NORTHWEST, MY FAIR LADY, ESCAPE FROM THE PLANET OF THE APES, CAPRICORN ONE, BATMAN THE MOVIE (1966), WILLARD and hundreds more. He was in TV Series THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW from time to time and was a Vulcan in STAR TREK THE MOTION PICTURE. I met Arthur on THE NUTTY PROFESSOR (Eddie Murphy Version) in 1996 and we became fast friends. We spent many a wonderful night in his Studio City apartment singing old songs and hearing about the old days in Hollywood. Arthur was an accomplished pianist and composer who could play anything from "Saint Louis Blues" to Jerry Goldsmith's Theme from THE OTHER. He used to play a lot of Goldsmith for me. My good buddy sadly past away in 2000 at the age of 95. I will always treasure his friendship and stories working in the movies. He had a story about everyone from HItchcock to meeting Henry Mancini on the set of GAILY GAILY. Fortunately I have hours of video footage of Arthur playing the piano and telling stories. I plan to make a little film in his honor sometime in the near future.

Wow sorry, for going off on that tangent.

Back to DOLLY.

Please share your thought's on this Musical Film Version of HELLO DOLLY.

Thanks,

Zoob

 
 Posted:   May 12, 2008 - 12:44 AM   
 By:   Browny   (Member)

Zoob, although this film was critically panned at the time, it still has many great moments. Sure Streisand was a little too young for the part, and Matthau a little to grumpy (what's new?) but on the whole the Gene Kelly directed musical is highly watchable with knockout performances, singing and score. The Louis Armstrong cameo is well handled and certainly a highlight. Considered probably one of the last great Hollywood musicals of the 1960s. The 1994 CD reissue which was lovingly remixed from the surviving 35mm audio stems, is the definitive version of the song score; not sure if it's still in print though.

Just as an aside, did you know that some of the set from the Harmonia Gardens, was reused by 20th Century Fox (who obviously didn't throw too much away!) as some of the Promenade Room set from Irwin Allen's 1974 disaster epic "The Towering Inferno"?

Not coincidentally, sharp eyed fans of that disaster classic and diehard Trekkies may be unaware that the dramatic 340 foot cyclorama backdrop of San Francisico bay which was originally designed by Gary Coakley for TTI, was rehashed as the background to Captain Kirk's 23rd Century apartment window in "Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home".

 
 
 Posted:   May 12, 2008 - 12:56 AM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

Thanks Browny, cool trivia.

The Harmonia Sets was also seen in BENEATH THE PLANET OF THE APES, the platform and stairways where all the Mutants did their "thing" on James Franciscus and the Alpha Omega bomb area.

http://www.answers.com/topic/hello-apes-jpg-1

Many orchestrator's such as Herb Spencer and Alexander Courage worked on the score which won an Oscar for best Adaptation I believe.

 
 
 Posted:   May 12, 2008 - 2:08 AM   
 By:   Bob DiMucci   (Member)

"Hello, Dolly!" is one of those films that demands to be seen on the big screen. I saw it twice when it was in general release in 1970, and a few times on video in recent years, but I was totally unprepared for the stunning quality of a new 70mm print that was prepared by Fox a few years ago, and which was finally shown once in Washington by the American Film Institute. In my opinion, that print is the single most colorful, sharp, and eye-popping film I've seen in 30 years of movie-going. With so few 70mm films in existence, it's criminal that they are not more widely seen, and that the technology has been abandoned.

The music is a joy to listen to today, and it couldn't be defeated even by the wretched Fox LP pressings of 1970. Aside from Jerry Herman, credit has to go to the army of scorers and orchestrators who worked on the film, including Lennie Hayton, Lionel Newman, Philip J. Lang, Alexander Courage, Herbert Spencer, and Don Costa. According to the IMDB, "Hello, Dolly!" received Oscars for Best Art Direction, Best Scoring of a Musical Picture, and Best Sound, and received Academy Award nominations for Best Picture, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design and Best Film Editing. In its online catalog, the AFI curiously omits mention of the scoring Oscar, but has all the other awards and nominations.

 
 
 Posted:   May 12, 2008 - 3:58 AM   
 By:   Joe Caps   (Member)

in the harmonia gardens set, you can also see some of the gold rimmed mirror used in the von trap villa ballroom from Sound of Music.
BTW, all of the people seen in the music credit are there because anyone who worked on the music had to get credit in the film.
two conductors and tons of orchestrators are listed because the vocal score was orchestrated and recorded twice in two different versions. Miss streisand was not satisfied with the first version and demanded the score be reorchestrated and rerecorded.
I would love to hear the original version.
There are also some changes in the final score.
in the finale of act one (before the parade passes by) the final march is started by streisand with chorus and she ends singing solo.
but originally the chorus sang with here as can partially be heard in one of the trailers.

 
 
 Posted:   May 12, 2008 - 12:56 PM   
 By:   Howard L   (Member)

"Put on your sunday clothes" always brings me cheer.

I watched it Sat. night too but only up to this point. Oh but what a point!

 
 
 Posted:   May 12, 2008 - 2:10 PM   
 By:   MICHAEL HOMA   (Member)

Just watched this over the weekend on Public Televison station. I love the Overture of the film and Jerry Herman's songs with Lennie Hayton and Lionel Newmans additional scoring throughout. They also are credited as conducters.

"Put on your sunday clothes" always brings me cheer.

I love the Overture played over the Main Titles as the train is traveling to New York. So 60's Big Main Titles style. When movies were an Event.

Great lines: Barber to Matthau.

"Sit still, If I cut your throat it'll be practically unintentional"

I was cast as Barnaby (years ago) in a local production of the THE MATCHMAKER for which HELLO DOLLY was based. Holy Cabooses the production never got off the ground for some reason, I can't remember now. But now I'm old enough to play Vadergelder and the musical version quite appeals to me.

This was a major 20th Century Fox Production starring Babs Streisand and Walter Matthau with Michael Crawford and Tommy Tune (looking extremely Giraffe like) and was directed by Gene Kelly.

One of my best Hollywood friends the late and missesd Arthur Tovey, who I did many extra gigs with in L.A. is in the picture sitting right behind Babs at the Harmonia Gardens. He is the distinguished white haired gentleman eating and drinking and who claps most energetically when Dolly is introduced. Arthur was "King of the Extras" and a loving friend. He was in everything from THE MUMMY (1933) Boris Karloff Version, GONE WITH THE WIND (worked as Leslie Howard's stand-in and double) to BRIGADOON, THE ROBE (one of Richard Burton's prominent Centurions) NORTH BY NORTHWEST, MY FAIR LADY, ESCAPE FROM THE PLANET OF THE APES, CAPRICORN ONE, BATMAN THE MOVIE (1966), WILLARD and hundreds more. He was in TV Series THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW from time to time and was a Vulcan in STAR TREK THE MOTION PICTURE. I met Arthur on THE NUTTY PROFESSOR (Eddie Murphy Version) in 1996 and we became fast friends. We spent many a wonderful night in his Studio City apartment singing old songs and hearing about the old days in Hollywood. Arthur was an accomplished pianist and composer who could play anything from "Saint Louis Blues" to Jerry Goldsmith's Theme from THE OTHER. He used to play a lot of Goldsmith for me. My good buddy sadly past away in 2000 at the age of 95. I will always treasure his friendship and stories working in the movies. He had a story about everyone from HItchcock to meeting Henry Mancini on the set of GAILY GAILY. Fortunately I have hours of video footage of Arthur playing the piano and telling stories. I plan to make a little film in his honor sometime in the near future.

Wow sorry, for going off on that tangent.

Back to DOLLY.

Please share your thought's on this Musical Film Version of HELLO DOLLY.

Thanks,

Zoob
......great story , thanks for sharing,,,,,,,,,

 
 Posted:   May 12, 2008 - 2:48 PM   
 By:   SoundScope   (Member)

Sheer entertainment all the way through.
The production design and art direction are stunning and the work of the music departments is the last great gasp of what Fox was capable of.
The whole thing is just a magnificent pile of cake frosting and I LOVE cake frosting!
I was lucky to see it over 5 times in its initial 70mm roadshow release and dragged everyone I knew to see it with me.

When was the last time you sat through a whole picture with a smile on your face?

smile

 
 
 Posted:   May 12, 2008 - 2:53 PM   
 By:   CinemaScope   (Member)

I think the main problem "Hello Dolly" had is that it was made about 15 years too late. It seems to belong to the '50s, not the same year that bought us "The Wild Bunch", but all these years later it doesn't seem to matter.

 
 Posted:   May 12, 2008 - 3:12 PM   
 By:   Ron Pulliam   (Member)

Every time I watch "Hello, Dolly!" I find myself growing more fond of it.

There are so many magnificent moments that it's nearly folly to be picky about what "might" have been done to make it seem more "natural" in terms of characterizations.

The production values are second to none, and the sound recording is exceptionally high quality (as was true of most Fox films), and the Oscar bestowed upon Lennie Hayton and Lionel Newman was well-deserved/well-earned.

This film "upconverts" especially beautifully and the visuals on my plasma HDTV are stunning and pure. The waiters' coats in the Harmonia Gardens sequence are the deepst, most vibrant reds imaginable and there is no bleed.

That sequence with the waiters is one of the most joyous ever committed to film. What an amazing display of dance and athleticism!

"Hello, Dolly!" is one of the joys in my DVD colleciton.

 
 Posted:   May 12, 2008 - 5:24 PM   
 By:   PhiladelphiaSon   (Member)

We've discussed this film before. I think the cast, as a whole, is fairly awful, but the production values and Jerry Herman's score are first-rate. As is Michael Kidd's choreography. I've always been under the impression that the film was virtually directed by Kidd and Lehman. Kelly was overwhelmed by its bigness. At least that's what I've been told. Lehman is solely responsible for casting Streisand, who not only was far too young, but of the wrong ethnicity for the part, as written. I virtually hate her in everything (especially Funny Girl, and On A Clear Day), but I saw Hello, Dolly!, 9 times in its road show version, during it's original release, at The Randolph Theater, in Philadelphia. It's a breathtaking Todd-AO event. Most people think of it as a major flop. It was, in fact, the fifth highest-grossing film of 1969/70. It's just that the film cost so much money, that it needed to do The Sound of Music-type business to recoup. Nothing was doing that kind of business, except The Sound of Music, which was just about to leave theaters after it's record-setting first-run.

By the way, I noticed that our PBS station was showing this, but it was horribly cropped, in a pan and scan presentation. I just changed the channel.

 
 Posted:   May 13, 2008 - 4:49 PM   
 By:   Ron Pulliam   (Member)

Amazing, isn't it, that we can all have reservations on some aspects of this musical film and still LOVE IT!

 
 
 Posted:   May 13, 2008 - 6:21 PM   
 By:   MICHAEL HOMA   (Member)

We've discussed this film before. I think the cast, as a whole, is fairly awful, but the production values and Jerry Herman's score are first-rate. As is Michael Kidd's choreography. I've always been under the impression that the film was virtually directed by Kidd and Lehman. Kelly was overwhelmed by its bigness. At least that's what I've been told. Lehman is solely responsible for casting Streisand, who not only was far too young, but of the wrong ethnicity for the part, as written. I virtually hate her in everything (especially Funny Girl, and On A Clear Day), but I saw Hello, Dolly!, 9 times in its road show version, during it's original release, at The Randolph Theater, in Philadelphia. It's a breathtaking Todd-AO event. Most people think of it as a major flop. It was, in fact, the fifth highest-grossing film of 1969/70. It's just that the film cost so much money, that it needed to do The Sound of Music-type business to recoup. Nothing was doing that kind of business, except The Sound of Music, which was just about to leave theaters after it's record-setting first-run.

By the way, I noticed that our PBS station was showing this, but it was horribly cropped, in a pan and scan presentation. I just changed the channel.
......hi john, my parents took me to the RANDOLPH THEATER to see it when i was a kid,,never will forget that wide, wide screen and streisand running down the path to catch them BEFORE THE PARADE PASSES BY ,,,,, do u remember the names of any other theaters around there ?

 
 
 Posted:   May 13, 2008 - 7:02 PM   
 By:   Bond1965   (Member)

For some interesting behind the scenes information and photos, check out this page from the Barbra Archives site:

http://www.barbra-archives.com/Films/streisand_hellodolly.html

Also be sure to look at the link to the "sights & sounds" page for HELLO DOLLY and see the video with the variations on "Before The Parade Passes By" sequence.

James

 
 
 Posted:   May 13, 2008 - 8:25 PM   
 By:   Howard L   (Member)

Amazing, isn't it, that we can all have reservations on some aspects of this musical film and still LOVE IT!

Oh you beat me to it. I was going to add that despite the excruciating Streisand and Crawford performances, there is still so much to enjoy. Someone else hit it earlier: the JOY running throughout the picture is downright infectious. "My heart is about to burst, my head is about to pop..." and then the incredible dancing in the park! I especially love the gentle dance segue back to drama from the number's triumphant conclusion.

 
 Posted:   May 13, 2008 - 10:35 PM   
 By:   PhiladelphiaSon   (Member)

...hi john, my parents took me to the RANDOLPH THEATER to see it when i was a kid,,never will forget that wide, wide screen and streisand running down the path to catch them BEFORE THE PARADE PASSES BY ,,,,, do u remember the names of any other theaters around there ?

I remember the names of all the Center City theaters that were around during my lifetime, and all the neighborhood theaters that were near my home. Hard to believe today, but when I was a kid, there were 7 movie theaters within walking distance of my home!

Some of the Center City theaters were: The Goldman, The Fox, The Stanley, The Stanton, The Milgrim, Theatre 1812, and the ones closest to The Randolph were, The Trans-Lux and The Midtown. There was also The Boyd, which was the Cinerama theater. Sadly, not a single one exists as a theater, anymore. Almost everyone has been destroyed. The Boyd has been saved, and I believe is now protected from destruction.

 
 
 Posted:   May 13, 2008 - 10:51 PM   
 By:   zooba   (Member)

Thanks bond1965 for the great link.

Love that comparison alternate take footage. Barbara definately excelled in the take they used.

I'm happy to see so many responses to this thread.

Thank you all for sharing.

Zoob

 
 Posted:   May 13, 2008 - 10:54 PM   
 By:   PhiladelphiaSon   (Member)

Technically, they used both takes. One in 70MM, one in 35MM. The hat-grabbing take is on the laserdisc version.

 
 Posted:   May 13, 2008 - 11:34 PM   
 By:   Ron Pulliam   (Member)

Amazing, isn't it, that we can all have reservations on some aspects of this musical film and still LOVE IT!

Oh you beat me to it. I was going to add that despite the excruciating Streisand and Crawford performances,


How funny it all is. I consider Streisand brilliant in this film. It's not like anyone ever played the role better. Channing has always been over-the-top and no more the ideal of Wilder's character than Shirley Booth who played her in the straight film version.

Someone mentioned that Streisand was not ethnically right to play Dolly Levi. Why? On the basis of what? The fact that Wilder gave her a Christian name of Gallagher? Dolly Gallagher Levi? Whatever Wilder's intent, Dolly IS a yenta!

Yah, yah, I know all about how no wealthy man named VanDerGelder at the time of this story would EVER have associated with, much less married, a woman named Levi UNLESS she were Christian by birth...but gimmabreak! The model for Dolly is a Jewish matchmaker of unparalleled magnificence. The names are all wrong for the characterizations we're given.

Streisand is/was Dolly Levi...better than any that have come, thus far. And wouldn't it be a joy to see her do the role NOW?!!!???

No shiksa was ever so Jewish a "matchmaker". Shirley Booth and Carol Channing weren't ethnically right, IMO. The only drawback to Streisand was her age and the fact that no woman like her would have given the ludicrous Matthau the time of day. She sang the hell out of the role...something the cartoonish Channing could never have done.

Yes, yes, and unlike Mr. Maher, I think Streisand is particularly brilliant/inspired and unparalleled in her movie roles in "Funny Girl" and "On A Clear Day..."! Her Oscar for the former -- not to mention the phenomenal hats-in-the-air reviews that nearly declared her an international saint -- pretty much sums up how much she was/is respected for her screen debut.

 
 
 Posted:   May 14, 2008 - 12:18 AM   
 By:   quiller007   (Member)



I have the 1967 London Cast recording
of Hello Dolly (an RCA LP), which stars
Mary Martin as Dolly. She was my favorite
Dolly (recording-wise). Martin was in
her mid-50's at the time, in keeping
with the character. Her voice was far
more pleasing to my ears than Channing
(or Pearl Bailey's rendition). That said,
I never had a problem with Streisand
in the role, aside from the age difference.
Streisand made the role her own, as much
as any of the others who played it.

And what's with not liking Babs in
FUNNY GIRL?!!! That DEFINITELY is
Streisand's role all the way. She
starred in the original Broadway
production, ya know. Not only that,
but no other actress bore a striking
resemblance to Fanny Brice than
Streisand. She was born for the part,
and owns it!

Den

 
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