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Call Me Madam (1953)

Approved | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | April 1953 (USA)
Washington hostess Sally Adams becomes a Truman-era US ambassador to a European grand duchy.

Director:

Writers:

(musical "Call Me Madam"), (musical "Call Me Madam") | 1 more credit »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Sally Adams
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Kenneth Gibson
...
...
General Cosmo Constantine
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Pemberton Maxwell
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Prince Hugo
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August Tantinnin
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Prime Minister Sebastian
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Grand Duke Otto (as Ludwig Stossel)
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Grand Duchess Sophie
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Sen. Brockway
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Sen. Charlie Gallagher
...
Sen. Wilkins
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Storyline

Boisterous, fun-loving, and popular Washington D.C. hostess Sally Adams is appointed U.S. Ambassador to the Grand Duchy of Lichtenburg, Europe's smallest country. In Lichtenburg, the Duke and Duchess are negotiating a political marriage for their niece, Princess Maria in exchange for a substantial dowry. However, the country is desperate for funds, and turns to the inexperienced ambassador for a much needed U.S. loan. Sally refuses to talk money, that is, until she meets the ultra charming Gen. Cosmo Constantine. Meanwhile, Sally's press attaché Kenneth Gibson falls head over heels for Princess Maria. Written by L. Hamre

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

April 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Irving Berlin's Call Me Madam  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie contains two vintage Irving Berlin songs written before his 1950 Broadway score. "The International Rag" (as Ethel Merman sings it, although the official title is "That International Rag") had been introduced by Mr. Berlin himself at the London Hippodrome in 1913. Sophie Tucker made the ditty famous via her vaudeville act. In the picture, just prior to delivering this number at the presentation ball, Ethel jokes with the orchestra leader (played by Leon Belasco) about this "hot" new tune from 40 years earlier. Donald O'Connor's song-and-dance-solo, which had him tearing up a tavern -- "What Chance Have I With Love?" -- was first performed by Victor Moore in Irving Berlin's 1940 Broadway musical, "Louisiana Purchase." Although Mr. Moore would appear in Paramount's 1941 screen adaptation, his lament to love would not carry over to this film score. See more »

Quotes

Cosmo Constantine: You are the most American American I have ever met.
Sally Adams: That's the nicest thing anyone's ever said to me.
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Crazy Credits

During the opening credits, as each word in the title appears onscreen, we hear, but do not see, Ethel Merman exclaiming, in a demanding tone of voice: "Call..me..madam!" See more »


Soundtracks

Marrying for Love
Written by Irving Berlin
Performed by George Sanders
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User Reviews

Now available on DVD - AT LAST!!!
3 April 2003 | by (Portland, Oregon) – See all my reviews

There's been a long wait to revisit the delights of this brassy film recreation of a big Broadway hit, but now we can once again enjoy it, fairly bursting from the screen, with its several lively production numbers, John DeCuir's classy production design, Irene Sharaff's flattering costumes, plus Robert Alton's absolutely first-rate choreography. Check out Vera-Ellen and an ultra-well-rehearsed chorus of dancers in "The Orcarina" number, as well as her amazing dance duets with Donald O'Connor, who smoothly displays his exceptional terpsichorean ability, so well showcased two years earlier in MGM's "Singin' in the Rain." George Sanders's singing is a wonderful surprise, holding his own with leather-lunged Madame Merman, who had triumphed on Broadway with this votive offering to her stardom, so cleverly crafted by Irving Berlin. Alfred Newman's Oscar for his endlessly inventive musical direction was more than well-deserved. For anyone who thinks that M-G-M was the only studio to adequately mount a film musical, this one might convince fans of this genre otherwise. (The DVD, by the way, is a very nice transfer, and boasts a quite informative commentary by "Musical Film Scholar" Miles Kreuger.)


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