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Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953)

Approved | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | August 1953 (USA)
Trailer
2:32 | Trailer
Showgirls Lorelei Lee and Dorothy Shaw travel to Paris, pursued by a private detective hired by the suspicious father of Lorelei's fiancé, as well as a rich, enamored old man and many other doting admirers.

Director:

Howard Hawks

Writers:

Charles Lederer (screen play), Joseph Fields (based on the musical comedy by) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
4,417 ( 2,346)
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jane Russell ... Dorothy Shaw
Marilyn Monroe ... Lorelei Lee
Charles Coburn ... Sir Francis 'Piggy' Beekman
Elliott Reid ... Ernie Malone
Tommy Noonan ... Gus Esmond Jr.
George Winslow ... Henry Spofford III
Marcel Dalio ... Magistrate
Taylor Holmes ... Mr. Esmond Sr.
Norma Varden ... Lady Beekman
Howard Wendell Howard Wendell ... Watson
Steven Geray ... Hotel Manager
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Storyline

Lorelei and Dorothy are just "Two Little Girls from Little Rock", lounge singers on a transatlantic cruise, working their way to Paris, and enjoying the company of any eligible men they might meet along the way, even though "Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend." Based on the Broadway musical based on the novel. Written by Stewart M. Clamen <clamen@cs.cmu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

You've never seen so much fun! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Choreographer Jack Cole had been devising stage movement for non-dancing female stars in Hollywood since the mid-1940s, accenting glamorous hand, arm and hip movements within basic dance steps to camouflage his leading ladies' lack of ability. Cole reached his zenith with Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953). Faced with two stars who had no dancing experience whatsoever, he was determined to showcase them to their best advantage. Cole accomplished this by doubling and tripling the amount of isolations per beat, which meant that Jane Russell and Marilyn Monroe were actually performing a challenging series of steps in each of their numbers, made even more so by the necessity of their executing the steps, turns and arm gestures in absolute unison, which they did brilliantly. In the end, the choreography Cole devised was as intricate as a bona fide dance number. Jane Russell was so impressed by the results that she hired Cole as choreographer for Gentlemen Marry Brunettes (1955), the companion piece that Russell financed two years later. True to form, Cole concocted dynamic, humorous movement duets for Russell and her co-star, Jeanne Crain. See more »

Goofs

When Lorelei is seeing Gus off at the ship, she says "Bye, lover!", but her lips do not move. See more »

Quotes

Lorelei Lee: Dorothy. Mr. Esmond and I are getting married.
Dorothy Shaw: To each other?
Gus Esmond: Of course to each other. Who else to?
Dorothy Shaw: Well, I don't know about you Gus, but I always figured Lorelei would end up with the Secretary of the Treasury.
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Connections

Referenced in Queer as Folk: Preponderance of Death (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Liebestraum nach dem Balle, Intermezzo Op.356
(uncredited)
Written by Alphons Czibulka
It is heard in the dining room scene when Dorothy and Lorelei come in to dinner. The band actually messes-up the song because they are too busy looking at the girls.
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User Reviews

 
Marry For Love, But Get Those Diamonds
1 March 2008 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Anita Loos's famous novel and play Gentlemen Prefer Blondes was done as a musical and ran for 740 performances during the 1949-1951 season. It was the breakout role in the career on Broadway for Carol Channing. But for the screen version a pair of pulchritudinous sex symbols were cast as the showgirls looking for husbands, Jane Russell and Marilyn Monroe.

Two things were done for the film, most of the Jule Styne-Leo Robin score was scrapped and two numbers written by Hoagy Carmichael and Harold Adamson were added. Retained from the original score was Bye Bye Baby, Two Little Girls from Little Rock and the famous theme of goldiggers everywhere, Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend.

The second thing was to update the story from when it was originally written during the Roaring Twenties to the current Fifties. Still the two basic characters of Russell and Monroe remained the same. Both would like husbands, but Russell wants to marry for love, money would be nice though, but Monroe it's strictly mercenary.

The two men they have an eye on are millionaire son Tommy Noonan for Monroe and Russell has her eye on Elliott Reid. Monroe's mercenary ways nearly sink the two of them, but it all kind of works out in the end.

Lorelei Lee was Marilyn's breakout role as well. No big male star names are opposite here, she's only in a friendly competition with fellow sex symbol Jane Russell. Russell's contribution to the film is too often overlooked with Marilyn's legend looming over all. She more than holds her own against Marilyn and in fact unlike in some of her films, there was no friction at all with the two women.

I can see why Howard Hawks was attracted to this film. The women he has in his films are tough minded and more than capable of dealing in a man's world. That Jane and Marilyn are in abundance and boy do those women have a lot of abundance.

And in all the right places too.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

August 1953 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Howard Hawks' Gentlemen Prefer Blondes See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,260,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$648
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Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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