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There's No Business Like Show Business (1954)

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Molly and Terry Donahue, plus their three children, are The Five Donahues. Son Tim meets hat-check girl Vicky and the family act begins to fall apart.

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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
...
Johnnie Ray ...
...
Richard Eastham ...
...
Charles Gibbs
Frank McHugh ...
Eddie Dugan, Vicky's Agent
...
Lee Patrick ...
Eve Miller ...
Helen - Hatcheck Girl
Robin Raymond ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ed Oliver ...
Bandleader (as Eddie Oliver)
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Storyline

Molly and Terry Donahue, plus their three children, are The Five Donahues. Son Tim meets hat-check girl Vicky and the family act begins to fall apart. Written by Ed Stephan <stephan@cc.wwu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

16 December 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Irving Berlin's There's No Business Like Show Business  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(optical prints)| (Western Electric Recording) (magnetic prints)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Marilyn Monroe was promised the lead role in The Seven Year Itch (1955) if she appeared in this film to boost its box-office potential. The role of Vicky was written especially for this purpose, and songs such as "Heatwave", originally intended for Ethel Merman, were assigned to her. See more »

Goofs

On the billboard on opening night the Donohue daughter's name is spelled "Katie"; on the poster for "34th week" it is spelled "Katy". See more »

Quotes

Molly Donahue: You start worrying about your kids the day they're born, and you never stop. Even after they bury you, I bet you never stop worrying.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Matzav Ha'Uma: Episode #7.11 (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

A Pretty Girl Is Like a Melody
(uncredited)
Written by Irving Berlin
Sung by Ethel Merman
Danced by Dan Dailey
See more »

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User Reviews

Mr. Berlin, Madame Merman and Miss Monroe in unequal measure!
3 June 2003 | by (Portland, Oregon) – See all my reviews

When Darryl F. Zanuck virtually forced exhibitors and most of his fellow studio mogul rivals to adopt CinemaScope as a panacea for TV's devastation of Hollywood's weekly box office bonanza, he dictated that virtually all of Twentieth's output was to be filmed in that eye-stretching process. "There's No Business Like Show Business," directed by that old pro, Walter Lang, seems to be the prime example of Darryl's minions saying to their boss: "You want wide? We'll give you W-I-D-E!!"

Everything about it was designed and lensed to emphasize the original ratio of the CinemaScope process and viewing it on a video that isn't letterboxed must look like what a one-eyed person must experience in everyday life. I never did see it in a theater but I have seen it on a TV broadcast which more-or-less recreated its widescreen ratio. It's a glorious mish-mash. Every Berlin tune that could be stuffed into it is given at least one run-through; John de Cuir's production design must have occupied every inch of several of Twentieth's West Los Angeles soundstages; Ethel Merman, after her terrific movie repeat of her Broadway success in "Call Me Madam" for Fox (and now, as of 2005, available on video), trumpets away in number after number (Must have been an ear-rending experience over those original four-track stereophonic sound systems.); Dan Dailey, Donald O'Connor and Mitzi Gaynor give it their energetic best; and then there's Marilyn. What can we say, with all that so sadly, in her personal life, came after she reluctantly fulfilled her contractual obligation in this one? She dazzles in, let's face it, a rather vulgar way, and seems shoehorned in to boost the potential box office. And they even added Johnnie Ray, a huge jukebox success at the time (and, due to his hearing deficiency, performing his songs at an even greater volume than La Merman.)

All in all this one shouldn't be missed if you want to view an example of Hollywood at its brassiest, in a production fairly bulging with elements that may not coalesce very harmoniously but which was, no doubt, worth the price of admission to those movie palaces before they were carved up to become the precursors of today's sterile multiplexes.


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