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The Band Wagon (1953) Poster

Quotes

Jeffrey Cordova: I'm sick of these artificial barriers between the musical and the drama. In my mind, there is no difference between the magic rhythms of Bill Shakespeare's immortal verse and the magic rhythms of Bill Robinson's immortal feet.

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Lester Marton: Shhh! Someone's liable to think we are quarreling!

Lily Marton: We're not quarreling! We're in complete agreement! We hate each other!

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Gabrielle Gerard: Oh, that's a very early Degas, isn't it?

[examines painting]

Gabrielle Gerard: 1877.

Tony Hunter: [playing up their age difference] Yeah, I swiped it from his desk in school. Was he sore.

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Tony Hunter: She was bad. She was dangerous. I wouldn't trust her any farther than I could throw her. But... she was my kind of woman.

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Lester Marton: I can stand anything but failure!

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Lester MartonLily Marton: Rah, rah Tony! Rah, rah Tony! Tony! Hunter! Sis boom bah!

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Stagehand: You got more scenery in this show than there is in Yellowstone National Park!

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Tony Hunter: No, don't say it - "Tony Hunter! 1953!" I hereby declare my independence. Tony Hunter, 1776.

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[narration during the Girl Hunt ballet]

Tony Hunter: She came at me in sections - more curves than a scenic railway. She was bad! She was dangerous.

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Jeffrey CordovaLily MartonLester MartonTony Hunter: [singing] That's En-ter-tain-ment.

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Gabrielle Gerard: The show's a big hit, Tony... It's going to run for a long time.As far as I'm concerned, it's going to run forever.

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Tony Hunter: The city was asleep. The joints were closed. The rats and hoods and killers were in their holes.

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Lester Marton: Joe - tell Mrs. Marton that I've gone to Tahiti. To paint!

[Walks into a bar]

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Tony Hunter: Oh, I'm afraid I've been awfully rude, I haven't told you how wonderful you were tonight.

Gabrielle Gerard: Oh, thank you, I'm a great admirer of yours too.

Tony Hunter: Oh, I didn't think you'd ever even heard of me.

Gabrielle Gerard: Heard of you? I used to see all your pictures when I was a little girl. And I'm still a fan, I recently went to see a revival of them at the museum.

Tony Hunter: [offended] Museum? 'Step right this way, ladies and gentlemen, Egyptian mummies, extinct reptiles, and Tony Hunter, the grand old man of the dance!"

Gabrielle Gerard: Oh I-I didn't mean...

Tony Hunter: Young lady, I want you to know I can still thread a needle without my eyeglasses and still occasionally do a soft-shoe shuffle! Nothing balletic, of course.

Gabrielle Gerard: You're not a ballet devotee, are you?

Tony Hunter: Oh, yes! I was going to the ballet before you were born. I saw Pavlova, Carsanova, all the real ballet greats. You don't see dancing like that nowadays. Oh, I'm terribly sorry.

Gabrielle Gerard: Oh, that's all right! I don't expect you to class me with Pavlova. In fact, if she were around, I doubt if she'd be good enough to dance with you. You'd probably insist on an audition first!

Tony Hunter: I sure would, I'd audition my own grandmother.

Gabrielle Gerard: Then why don't you audition mine? She'd be just about right for you! Oh, I'm terribly sorry.

Tony Hunter: Oh, no you're not.

Gabrielle Gerard: No I'm not!

Tony Hunter: Neither am I!

Gabrielle Gerard: Good!

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Tony Hunter: I could smell trouble a mile off. And this poor kid was in trouble! Big trouble! She was scared! Scared as a turkey in November.

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Lester Marton: I can stand anything but pain!

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Jeffrey Cordova: [pitching his idea for the show] Exploiter of children! Purveyor of evil!

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Tony Hunter: [Doubtful] This guy can direct a musical?

Lester Marton: [Enthralled] This guy can do anything!

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Man on train 1: Say, your're from sunny Cal, I bet you know a lot of movie stars out there?

Man on train 2: Well, I gotta confess, I'm just like you and me. I only get to see them in the movies. But, I read about them and I know all about them.

Man on train 1: Yeh. Boy, I'd sure like to meet that Ava Gardner.

Man on train 2: Well, you're a little late. She's married, you know.

Man on train 1: Yeh. Oh! You know this one?

[Showing a photo in a magazine]

Man on train 2: Who's that?

Man on train 1: Tony Hunter.

Man on train 2: Oh, him, the singing, dancing fellow.

Man on train 1: My wife used to go to see all of his pictures. Almost broke up our home. Tony Hunter. Tony Hunter.

Man on train 2: Well, he was good 12, 15 years ago, but the columnist out there say he's through.

Tony Hunter: [Face hidden. Speaking behind a magazine] Through? He's washed up. Hasn't made a picture in three years.

Man on train 1: Did you say something mister?

Tony Hunter: [Puts magazine down] I said I agree with you. That Tony Hunter's a has been. Gotta match? I wouldn't go to see him if they gave away five dollar bills with the ticket.

Man on train 1: Well, we should be pulling...

Tony Hunter: Funny thing about what you're saying boys is that your absolutely true. Here, have an exploding cigar.

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Girl In Train Station: Gee, there's a mob of reporters and photographers over there!

Man In Train Station: Yeah, there must be some big shot aboard. Maybe the president.

Girl In Train Station: No, too many for that. Probably a movie star.

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Dancer: I should have listened to my mother. She told me only to be in hit shows.

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Jeffrey Cordova: You used the phrase 'he sells his soul to the Devil', now that's the line you have to carry straight through. Just like Faust, this man is tempted by the Devil and his compromise, his sell out, must end in eternal damnation

Lester Marton: That'll leave 'em laughing!

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Auctioneer: [First lines] Yes sir, ladies and gentlemen, we are in luck today here in Los Angeles. Through the years the Bullwinkle Galleries have brought up for auction many collections of the personal effects of your famous movie stars. But, today, today is in deed a red letter day: the personal effects of Tony Hunter. Lot 94. Ladies and gentlemen, lets start out with lot 94. Some of the potpourri of Mr. Hunter's own personal costumes that he used in his famous dancing, singing pictures. Remember this? Pehaps the most famous top hat and stick of our generation. Yes, the one he used in "Swinging Down to Panama" and all his other famous pictures. Let's start with 5 dollars. Do I hear 5 dollars? Its worth a lot more. All right, let's start with 2. Well? 50 cents? Anything?

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Ava Gardner: Honestly, isn't all this stuff an awful bore.

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Train Porter: Those poor movie stars. People just won't let them alone, will they?

Tony Hunter: No. I don't know how they stand it.

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Tony Hunter: What's happened to 42nd Street? I just can't get over it! I just can't understand it? I mean, this used to be the great theater street of the town. The New Amsterdam - I had one of my biggest successes there. It ran a year and a half. Noel Coward and Gertie were over here in "Private Lives".

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Tony Hunter: Listen, you kids, you go on over to Sardi's and I'll see you later. Driver, take them on over. Order me a steak. See you in a few minutes.

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Tony Hunter: [singing] I gotta shine on my shoes, I gotta shine on my shoes, I gotta shine on my shoes, I gotta shine on my shoes, I gotta shine on my shoes, I gotta shine on my shoes, I gotta shine on my shoes, I gotta shine on my shoes, Shine the shoes, Shine the shoes, Shine the shoes, Shine the shoes, Shine the shoes, Shine the shoes, Shine the shoes, Shine the shoes, I gotta shine the shoes, Shine the shoes, Shine the shoes, Shine the shoes, Shine, Shine, Shine on my shoes, I gotta Shine on my shoes, I gotta shine on my shoes, I gotta a shine on my shoes, I gotta a shine on my shoes, I gotta a shoe shine, I gotta a shoe shine, I gotta a shoe shine, I gotta a shoe shine, I gotta a shoe shine, I gotta shoe shine, I gotta a shoe shine, I gotta a shoe shine.

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Jeffrey Cordova: Order me a corned beef sandwich, will you? Lean, now. No fat. No grizzle. Oh, and a cream soda and a pickle!

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Jeffrey Cordova: I tell you, if it moves you, if it stimulates you, if it entertains you, its theater. When the right combination gets together and it spells theater, well I got to be right in there up to my armpits.

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Lily Marton: I knew that you could say it so beautifully.

Jeffrey Cordova: Oh, Lily, you splendid animal!

Lester Marton: Hey, take your hands off my wife and let's get down to business.

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Lily Marton: With Tony in mind, we naturally visualize a light and intimate show. But, we want to give him a chance to play a charming guy with just enough plot to make him do lots of gay and varied numbers.

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Jeffrey Cordova: Tony, nobody admires you more than I. I've seen every show and every move you've ever done. But, let's face brutal facts, times have changed, Tony, and you haven't changed with them. You've gone stale!

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Jeffrey Cordova: You could be greater than you ever were! We're going to make you explode on the theater scene like a skyrocket. Not just the old trademark with the top hat, tie and tails; but, a great artist in the peak of his powers. The new Tony Hunter. Tony Hunter 1953!

Tony Hunter: But, can I do it?

Jeffrey Cordova: Oh, its a challenge. Its a challenge to all of us; but, that's what the theater is about. The challenge!

Tony Hunter: Well, whatever I am, whether its the new me or the old me; remember, I'm still just an entertainer.

Jeffrey Cordova: Well, what do you think I am? What do you think they are? What do you think the theater is? It's all entertainment!

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Lily Marton: [singing] The plot can be hot, simply teeming with sex...

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Jeffrey CordovaLily MartonLester MartonTony Hunter: [singing] Some great Shakespearean scene, Where the ghost and a prince meet, And everyone ends in mincemeat...

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Jeffrey CordovaLily MartonLester MartonTony Hunter: [singing] The world is stage, The stage is a world of entertainment!

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Tony Hunter: This girl, Gerard, its not just her dancing. On top of everything, she's too tall for me. This girl is a giantess!

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Gabrielle Gerard: What does he want with me? He's a famous movie and stage actor. He's practically an historical character by now! Dancing with him is like - dancing with a statue of General Grant.

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Jeffrey Cordova: These four walls will be our universe. Our private world. We enter with nothing but a dream. But, when we leave, we'll have a show!

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Tony Hunter: Let's get this straight, I am not Nijinsky. I am not Marlon Brando. I am Mrs. Hunter's little boy, Tony, song and dance man.

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Tony Hunter: Now look, now look, I thought I was the only nervous wreck around here. All this time, you've been behaving...

Gabrielle Gerard: [Sobbing] I've behaved terribly to you and I know it. I'm not used to behaving horribly. Its a big strain!

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Gabrielle Gerard: [Sobbing] Don't be nice to me! It just makes me seem twice as ugly.

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Gabrielle Gerard: Tony, can you and I really dance together?

Tony Hunter: I don't know. Let's find out.

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Tony Hunter: El Morocco, please.

Gabrielle Gerard: Oh, no!

Tony Hunter: Well, the Stork? The Waldorf?

Gabrielle Gerard: No, look, I'm not dressed. I just came from rehearsal. I can't go to any of those places.

Tony Hunter: You look fine to me.

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Hansom Driver: Where to?

Tony Hunter: Oh, eh, leave it to the horse.

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Tony Hunter: Do you know what those are on those benches? People. Happy people. Would you believe it, they don't even care if we have a damnation scene in our show or not.

Gabrielle Gerard: Neither do I.

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Gabrielle Gerard: Are we really supposed to open tomorrow night?

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Jeffrey Cordova: Up to now, I've been giving you orders as director. But, when next you see me, I shall be just as one of you: an eager ham, anxious to make good. Actors, let's go!

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Cast Party Bartender: What do you say Mr. Hunter? Scotch, rye or beer?

Tony Hunter: Beer's fine.

Cast Party Bartender: Cold beer, coming up.

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Tony Hunter: [singing] How I love a glass of beer.

Lester Marton: More beer!

Tony Hunter: Beer goes very good with beer.

Lester MartonLily Marton: More beer!

Tony Hunter: When I'm drinking beer, I'm thinking, Ach, life is beer...

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Lester Marton: Gosh, with all this raw talent around, why can't us kids get together and put on ourselves a show! Maybe, we could find ourselves a barn or something.

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Tony Hunter: Oh, sweetie, I just want to say that no matter what happens tonight, its been...

Gabrielle Gerard: I know, Tony, its been that for me too.

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Tony Hunter: There was something about this kid that made you want to protect her - from life.

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Tony Hunter: [singing] I'll go my way by myself, All alone in a crowd, I'll try to apply myself, And teach my heart how to sing, I'll go my way by myself, Like a bird on the wing, I'll face the unknown, I'll build a world of my own...

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Tony Hunter: Will you have a cigarette?

Gabrielle Gerard: No, thanks. I don't smoke.

Tony Hunter: Never?

Gabrielle Gerard: Well, I don't think that dancers should smoke.

Tony Hunter: Oh, I see.

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Tony Hunter: Say, who's the pretty girl? Why, this couldn't be the mousy little Miss Gerard. You've been with the firm for years, and I've never seen you with your glasses on. Say, you're beautiful!

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See also

Trivia | Goofs | Crazy Credits | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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