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Annie Get Your Gun (1957)

Irving Berlin's stage musical about Annie Oakley and Frank Butler.


Vincent J. Donehue


Dorothy Fields (librettist), Herbert Fields (librettist)
Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Mary Martin ... Annie Oakley
John Raitt John Raitt ... Frank Butler
William O'Neal William O'Neal ... William Frederick 'Buffalo Bill' Cody
Reta Shaw ... Dolly Tate
Donald Burr Donald Burr ... Charles 'Charlie' Davenport
Norman Edwards Norman Edwards ... Tommy Keller
Susan Luckey ... Winnie Tate
Zachary Charles Zachary Charles ... Sitting Bull
Robert Nash Robert Nash ... Gordon William 'Pawnee Bill' Lillie
Stuart Hodes Stuart Hodes ... Wild Horse
Jan Skidmore Jan Skidmore ... Nellie Oakley
Patricia Morrow ... Jessie Oakley
Shelley Windsor Shelley Windsor ... Little Girl
Luke Halpin ... Little Jake Oakley
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Robert Banas Robert Banas ... Indian dancer


Irving Berlin's stage musical about Annie Oakley and Frank Butler.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Musical | Western







Release Date:

27 November 1957 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Irving Berlin's Broadway musical "Annie Get Your Gun," produced by Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein II, starring Ethel Merman opened 16 May 1946. Mary Martin, as Annie, starred in the U. S. National road show musical tour, which started from Dallas, Texas on 3 October 1947. The National Tour played Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, with Mary Martin staying with the tour until mid-1948. The 1948 Tony Awards awarded Mary Martin a "Special Tony Award," cited for the National touring production of "Annie Get Your Gun" spreading theatre to the country while the original cast performed in New York City. See more »


Version of Annie Get Your Gun (1967) See more »

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User Reviews

Miscast Martin still closer to the mark than Hutton
20 August 2005 | by John EscheSee all my reviews

In tackling one of the great Ethel Merman's three or four signature roles, Annie in ANNIE GET YOUR GUN, Mary Martin (possibly the only actress who could surpass Merman as THE musical comedy star of the 20th Century) refused to play the role anywhere near New York where Merman "owned" it. That didn't stop her from winning her first Tony Award for the part - a "Special" award "for bringing Broadway to the nation" when she took out the first National Tour for 11 months from 1947 to 1948, under Joshua Logan's original Broadway direction before going into her career re-defining role under his direction in SOUTH PACIFIC (Martin had begun as a classic sex-kitten in LEAVE IT TO ME, ONE TOUCH OF VENUS and a score of fairly delightful but now largely forgotten Paramount films and two pre-Broadway flops in between).

A decade later, after SOUTH PACIFIC (Broadway and London), PETER PAN (Broadway and TV), an international tour (also winding up on Broadway and TV) of THE SKIN OF OUR TEETH, and a TV production of BORN YESTERDAY, Martin returned to Annie, this time with John Raitt as her Frank Butler and new direction by Martin's favorite director for the later part of her career, Vincent J. Donehue, for runs in San Fransisco and Los Angeles from August through November of 1957, when the show was colorcast on NBC on the 27th.

Native Texan though Martin was (interestingly, the initial scenes in ANNIE GET YOUR GUN are set in Ohio - it's as far west as the show ever goes!), truth be told she was, under Donehue's revised direction, too lady-like and modern to be entirely satisfactory as Annie Oakley, but any Martin performance was (and is) a joy to behold and in the ANNIE GET YOUR GUN broadcast, her supporting cast (including the wonderful Reta Shaw as the comic Dolly Tate) was as close to perfection as anyone could wish.

In the days before videotape, Irving Berlin (who wrote the show's score when Jerome Kern died after first being contracted, and owned the rights) was convinced that the survival of even the improved quality kinescopes which were being made by 1957 would harm the continuing value of his underlying property, and demanded that ALL network copies of the broadcast (AND the later broadcast of the 1967 Broadway revisal with original star Ethel Merman!) be destroyed.

It is our GREAT good fortune that at least one copy survived to resurface years later (the Merman broadcast is still among the missing) to be briefly (and without rights clearances) issued by a tiny company before the Berlin estate could get a "cease and desist" order.

SOMEONE should persuade the estate to negotiate for an official release of this wonderful document, for unless and until the promised film of the piece is made with Reba McEntire (who stood Broadway on its ear when she replaced a miscast but award winning Bernadette Peters in a poorly rewritten 1999-2001 revival), this is by far the most satisfying version extant of the classic musical - and it won't be TOO long before the more reasonable European copyright laws may make the broadcast legitimately available there without generating ANY income for the Estate.

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