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The Great Ziegfeld (1936)

Not Rated | | Biography, Drama, Musical | 8 April 1936 (USA)
The ups and downs of Florenz Ziegfeld Jr., famed producer of extravagant stage revues, are portrayed.

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Writer:

(screenplay)
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Won 3 Oscars. Another 1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Jack Billings
...
Fannie Brice (as Fannie Brice)
...
Audrey Dane
...
Sampston
...
Ray Bolger
...
Sidney
...
Dr. Ziegfeld (as Joseph Cawthorne)
...
Harriet Hoctor ...
Herself
...
Mary Lou
Paul Irving ...
Erlanger
...
Costumer
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Storyline

At the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, sideshow barker Flo Ziegfeld turns the tables on his more successful neighbor Billings, and steals his girlfriend to boot. This pattern is repeated throughout their lives, as Ziegfeld makes and loses many fortunes putting on ever bigger, more spectacular shows (sections of which appear in the film). French revue star Anna Held becomes his first wife, but it's not easy being married to the man who "glorified the American girl." Late in life, now married to Billie Burke, he seems to be all washed up, but... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Sensation of the Century! See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 April 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El gran Ziegfeld  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (roadshow)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Myrna Loy, who received second billing for this film, does not actually appear on screen until 2 hours and 15 minutes into the movie. See more »

Goofs

Ziegfeld is depicted as dying in New York City. He actually died of lung disease in Hollywood, California, a few days after moving there from a specialty hospital in New Mexico. See more »

Quotes

Florenz Ziegfeld Jr.: [after catching Ray Bolger doing a little softshoe backstage] Buddy, you're better with your feet than you are with your broom.
Ray Bolger: Mr. Ziegfeld, you think so? Gee, I wish you'd give me a chance. I've got talent, and I'd like to get away from shifting scenery and moving props.
Florenz Ziegfeld Jr.: How long have you been a property boy?
Ray Bolger: Five years, but my heart hasn't been in it.
Ray Bolger: You've been working a long time without your heart, buddy.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits display the title of the film and the names of the stars in marquee lights, as they would be on Broadway. See more »

Connections

Referenced in MGM Parade: Episode #1.6 (1955) See more »

Soundtracks

Harriet Hoctor Ballet
(1936) (uncredited)
(also called "A Circus Must Be Different in a Ziegfield Show")
Music by Con Conrad
Lyrics by Herb Magidson
Sung and danced by male and female choruses
Danced by Harriet Hoctor
See more »

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User Reviews

 
MGM Lifts Its Weight in Oscar Voting
3 March 2011 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

First impressions find William Powell (as Florenz "Ziggy" Ziegfeld Jr.) acting a little inebriated and a somewhat uncertain about his characterization; his "My Man Godfrey" (also 1936) performance is superior. Early on, co-star Frank Morgan (as Jack Billings) and Mr. Powell are reciting lines in the dark. They are more comfortable as the hours pass. The second half-hour introduces French-accented showgirl Luise Rainer (as Anna Held), who won an "Academy Award" as "Best Actress" for her supporting role...

Ms. Rainer occasionally adds some spark to the story, but her award for giving the best female performance of the year 1936 is arguable to the extreme. After an hour, dancer Ray Bolger takes the spotlight. Then, just before the intermission, watch for the extravagant "A Pretty Girl Is Like a Melody" production number; this is the film's highlight. After the hour and a half point, find Mr. Bolger's dance solo. Just around the two-hour mark, Fanny Brice appears, to sing a partial "My Man". Myrna Loy (as Billie Burke) finally arrives, also. Rainer's tearful telephone scene follows. MGM corralled their then majority vote at "Oscar" time.

***** The Great Ziegfeld (3/22/36) Robert Z. Leonard ~ William Powell, Luise Rainer, Myrna Loy, Ray Bolger


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