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My Fair Lady (1964)

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1:50 | Trailer

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A snobbish phonetics professor agrees to a wager that he can take a flower girl and make her presentable in high society.

Director:

George Cukor

Writers:

Alan Jay Lerner (book), George Bernard Shaw (from a play by) (as Bernard Shaw) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
2,596 ( 317)
Won 8 Oscars. Another 17 wins & 13 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Audrey Hepburn ... Eliza Doolittle
Rex Harrison ... Professor Henry Higgins
Stanley Holloway ... Alfred P. Doolittle
Wilfrid Hyde-White ... Colonel Hugh Pickering
Gladys Cooper ... Mrs. Higgins
Jeremy Brett ... Freddy Eynsford-Hill
Theodore Bikel ... Zoltan Karpathy
Mona Washbourne ... Mrs. Pearce
Isobel Elsom ... Mrs. Eynsford-Hill
John Holland ... Butler
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Storyline

Pompous phonetics professor Henry Higgins is so sure of his abilities that he takes it upon himself to transform a Cockney working-class girl into someone who can pass for a cultured member of high society. His subject turns out to be the lovely Eliza Doolittle, who agrees to speech lessons to improve her job prospects. Higgins and Eliza clash, then form an unlikely bond -- one that is threatened by an aristocratic suitor. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The loverliest motion picture of them all! See more »


Certificate:

G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 December 1964 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mi bella dama See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$17,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$72,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (35 mm magnetic prints)| 70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)| Dolby Stereo (70 mm prints) (1994 re-release)| DTS (35 mm prints) (1994 re-release)| Dolby Digital (35 mm prints) (1994 re-release)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jeremy Brett during his stint on this film was never able to visit the beach or stay out too long in the sun because the producers wanted him to remain pale like his character in the film. See more »

Goofs

When Eliza sings "I Could Have Danced All Night", she goes into the bathroom, turns on the tap, and wets a washcloth which she presses against her chin and neck. She never turns off the tap, and it is still running as she exits the bathroom. In the next shot, you see one of the maids turn off the bathroom light, but she doesn't lean over and turn off the tap. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
[sounds from crowd, occasionally a word or phrase, indistinct and mostly not associated with a character]
Mrs. Eynsford-Hill: Don't just stand there, Freddy, go and find a cab.
Freddy Eynsford-Hill: All right, I'll get it, I'll get it.
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the posters, playbills and the original cast album for the stage version of "My Fair Lady", the credits always read "based on Bernard Shaw's 'Pygmalion' ", letting the audience know what play "My Fair Lady" was actually adapted from. The movie credits simply read "from a play by Bernard Shaw". See more »

Alternate Versions

The intermission is deleted from AMC viewings of the film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in 73 Questions: 73 Questions with Lupita Nyong'o (2015) See more »

Soundtracks

On the Street Where You Live (Reprise)
(1956) (uncredited)
Music by Frederick Loewe
Lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner
Performed by Jeremy Brett (dubbed by Bill Shirley)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A musical with a brain as well as a heart
28 August 2003 | by eliza-doolittleSee all my reviews

There's a lot of negative things been said about Audrey Hepburn's interpretation of the role of Eliza. Perhaps she's not ideal in the earliest scenes of the movie - her "dirtiness" is never quite believable - but it has to be said that despite this smallish drawback she still glows, and makes an amazing Eliza overall.

The reason for this is simple; Audrey Hepburn brings her "own spark of divine fire", (to quote Higgins) to the role and her vulnerability, mixed with her sweet, naive charm and even her wonderfully juvenile pettishness shown in "Just You Wait" all prove what a talented actress she really is. For an example of this, just watch Eliza's facial expression at Ascot, when she realises her opportunity to demonstrate her new-found mastery of the English tongue - sweetly hilarious.

MFL has been criticized as being too romanticized, too overblown. I disagree; musicals are suposed to be lavish affairs, and none pull it off quite so well as "My Fair Lady" does. It's a momentous film but it has its subtle points: watch the way in which Eliza's eyes are centred on Higgins when she enters at the ball, and the way in which the two of them stare at each other for a few seconds at the top of the stairs a few moments later.

It musn't be overlooked that, thanks to its being based on a Bernard Shaw play, "My Fair Lady" has what the great majority of musicals lack: a deeper meaning and something really quite profound to say.

The actor in the role of Colonel Pickering is a little weak, but it must be said that Rex Harrison IS Henry Higgins. In a lot of ways (in fact, in most ways) Higgins has an objectionable personality: rude, snobbish, impatient and even misogynistic, but somehow Rex Harrison pulls it all off and makes us like Higgins without betraying the character. As to romance, his song "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face" is an ode to the kind of love which sneaks up on you. Overall, this movie is romantic, but not too sentimental. It has just enough romance to be dramatically fulfilling, but it never becomes soppy or mawkish. The word "love" is never mentioned at all and the two leads never even kiss. The famous end sequence is perfect and does the movie justice; after all, a big happy bow tied around a perfect romance at the end would simply not fit with everything we have learned about the two protagonists.


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