mycroftmy Lady in the Dark is a musical with music by Kurt Weill, and lyrics by Ira Gershwin. It was produced by Sam Harris. The protagonist, Liza Elliott, is the unhappy female editor of a... See full summary »
Film costume designer Edith Head is credited for Ginger Rogers' modern day dress in the Paramount Pictures feature film-musical "Lady in the Dark." Broadway-film couturier/set designer Raoul Pene du Bois is credited in the feature film as the costume/set designer in the circus dream-musical dance sequences. Paramount film studio art department supervisor Hans Drier was the Paramount feature film's Production Designer. The film's director Mitchell Leisen, (formerly a set and costume designer), supervised and contributed his creative imaginative set and costume ideas, suggestions, in the creation of the film's scenery and costume applications. Leisen was instrumental in creating the mink-fur skirted gown lined in jewels for Ginger Rogers' musical circus sequence. Raoul Pene du Bois designed this costume which has usually been attributed to the films lead costumer Edith Head. The first mink gown was created, and during fittings and rehearsals, the costume's fur lined jeweled weight was just too heavy for Ginger Rogers to walk, nor to stand (up) during long filming sequences, nor to dance or perform in a choreographed production number. The first original gown, lined with matched paste-glass rubies and emeralds, cost $35,000 (in 1944 dollars) to manufacture. Brief shots of Rogers in the fur skirted paste-jeweled gown were photographed. The New York costume wizard Barbara Karinska was at the cross town - Culver City MGM studio collaborating with the costume designer Irene on the Ronald Colman and Marlene Dietrich filming of "Kismet." Raoul Pene du Bois, who had collaborated with Barbara Karinska in New York City's Broadway theatricals, begged, imploring Madam Karinska to remake the fur skirt to enable Ginger Rogers to perform and dance in the musical production number. Karinska made a second version of the mink dress, lined with sequins, which, less bulky - weighed less, was lighter for Ginger Rogers's choreographed dream-circus-dance production number. Studio costume departments maintained a fur vault providing fur pelts for coats and costume trimming. The floor length mink skirt for Ginger Rogers used mink pelts from this vault. The original show-piece mink skirt, too heavy to wear, was rebuilt as a new costume. Karinska built a wire hoop covered with a fine netting, hanging and spacing the mink pelts apart from each other; supported by net, reducing the number of mink pelts on the skirt's total weight, allowing the skirt's flexibility on the actress' body during the dance sequence. Both gowns are shown in the movie. The original fur-skirted gown with the paste-glass jewels was donated to the Smithsonian Institution. The second fur skirted gown was DE-constructed, with the fur pelts returned to the studio's fur vault. Karinska was never credited for building this particular Ginger Rogers - dance-costume. See more »
The lady is in the 'dark' about being a lesbian. Oh why can't somebody just say it. I guess you could on Broadway and with Gertrude Lawrence in 1940 but at Paramount in '44 with Ginger, well, she just had to stay in the dark and have repressed sexual dreams about her fur in a cage and her eggs at a circus (see the Jenny number) ... and see that dress she unfurls.. a vagina representation of ever I saw one on a movie screen that wasn't x rated. In this ultra glamorous dreamy musical film Ginger is a business woman in business attire (read: lesbian .....) and she is tormented between her real business and society's demands that she marry and be with a man. Hence dilemma, dreams and fur openings and the egg circus (see the Jenny number) ... the storyline demands she relate to a man when she does not want to hence the dream sequences of antagonism and sexual wonderings. Ray Milland is the sop she is deemed to marry when anyone from this century can see she really wants to stay in a women's world and stop being a frustrated big angry prowling pussy in a cage (see the Jenny number) .... Kurt Weill knew what he was on about and so do we... but Paramount, in masking it for the masses in '44 pushed the pussycat into the fantasy sequences, hired a gay director and let loose on the dreams and shot the lot in the best most stylish Technicolor you ever saw outside of YOLANDA AND THE THIEF and THE PIRATE. In this according to Paramount, all Ginger needed was a jolly good roger.... ing.....
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