Anchors Aweigh (1945)

138-140 mins | Romantic comedy, Musical | August 1945

Director:

George Sidney

Writer:

Isobel Lennart

Producer:

Joe Pasternak

Cinematographers:

Charles P. Boyle, Robert Planck

Production Designers:

Cedric Gibbons, Randall Duell

Production Company:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
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HISTORY

Anchors Aweigh marked Frank Sinatra's first film under his new contract with M-G-M, following his departure from RKO, and his motion picture dancing debut. Gene Kelly began his service in the Navy a short time after the film was completed. An Oct 1943 HR news item notes that Eleanor Powell was originally set for the female lead, and that M-G-M later cast Marilyn Maxwell in the role. The same news item indicates that Jackie "Butch" Jenkins, Nancy Walker and Ben Blue were originally set for roles. According to an Apr 1944 HR news item, Ann Miller was considered for a dancing role opposite Kelly. Various news items in HR in 1943 and 1944 indicate that Jack Haley, Keye Luke and Phil Silvers were considered for roles, but they did not appear in the released film. Although their appearance in the final film has not been confirmed, contemporary news items and HR production charts include the following actors in the cast: Jack Lambert, Ella Logan, Dean Murphy, Jan Gilbreath and Peter Whitehead. A Dec 1944 HR news item noted that Sara Berner "completed recording" on the film. Berner, a cartoon voice specialist, may have provided the voice of "Jerry the Mouse." Modern sources note that Sinatra's role was originally intended for actor Eddie Bracken, and that Elizabeth Taylor was considered for a starring role.
       The cartoon sequence in which Kelly enters a mythical kingdom is frequently shown in documentaries about film and film musicals. The experimental technique of combining live action with animation had been used since the 1920s but had not been used ... More Less

Anchors Aweigh marked Frank Sinatra's first film under his new contract with M-G-M, following his departure from RKO, and his motion picture dancing debut. Gene Kelly began his service in the Navy a short time after the film was completed. An Oct 1943 HR news item notes that Eleanor Powell was originally set for the female lead, and that M-G-M later cast Marilyn Maxwell in the role. The same news item indicates that Jackie "Butch" Jenkins, Nancy Walker and Ben Blue were originally set for roles. According to an Apr 1944 HR news item, Ann Miller was considered for a dancing role opposite Kelly. Various news items in HR in 1943 and 1944 indicate that Jack Haley, Keye Luke and Phil Silvers were considered for roles, but they did not appear in the released film. Although their appearance in the final film has not been confirmed, contemporary news items and HR production charts include the following actors in the cast: Jack Lambert, Ella Logan, Dean Murphy, Jan Gilbreath and Peter Whitehead. A Dec 1944 HR news item noted that Sara Berner "completed recording" on the film. Berner, a cartoon voice specialist, may have provided the voice of "Jerry the Mouse." Modern sources note that Sinatra's role was originally intended for actor Eddie Bracken, and that Elizabeth Taylor was considered for a starring role.
       The cartoon sequence in which Kelly enters a mythical kingdom is frequently shown in documentaries about film and film musicals. The experimental technique of combining live action with animation had been used since the 1920s but had not been used extensively until the 1945 Disney film The Three Caballeros (see below). The cartoon mouse featured in the Anchors Away sequence is "Jerry the Mouse" of the Tom and Jerry cartoon series. According to a Dec 1944 HR news item, M-G-M formed a new cartoon unit of animators, writers and other specialists to handle the extra footage for the live-action and animation sequence. Modern sources note that Fred Quimby was one of the animators of the cartoon sequence, and that M-G-M had initially sought permission to use "Mickey Mouse" for the part of the mouse king. Disney, however, refused to allow "Mickey" to be used in the film. A biography of choreographer/director Stanley Donen indicates that Donen spent one year working on the "Jerry the Mouse" sequence, and that the picture was held from release until the sequence was completed.
       HR production charts and a Jul 1944 HR news item lists Thomas Richards as the film's editor, but only Adrienne Fazan is credited onscreen. In a 1947 interview, composer Jule Styne stated that the song "The Charm of You," which Sinatra sang to Pamela Britton in the film, was originally intended to be sung to Kathryn Grayson. The five songs composed by Styne and Sammy Cahn were written especially for the film. In addition to the songs listed above in Songs , the film contains an unidentified tango composed by Carmen Dragon, according to the Var review. A 1944 HR news item noted that twenty-three musical numbers had been completed for the film. Musical numbers that were considered or recorded and that were not used in the final film include: "It Could Only Happen in Brooklyn," a duet planned for Sinatra and Britton, composed by Styne and Cahn; "I'll Be Waiting Here," a song planned for Britton, composed by Earl Brent; "Caro nome," from the opera Rigoletto by Giuseppe Verdi, and a selection from the opera Lucia di Lammermoor by Gaetano Donizetti, to be sung by Grayson; "Another Kiss," composed by B. G. DeSylva and Ted Grouya, to be sung by Sinatra and Grayson; "Loveland" by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane; "The Kid That I've Never Seen" by Herman Ruby, Bert Kalmar, Al Jolson and Harry Akst; "My Follies Girl," by Jolson and Akst; and "As I Recall," "When I Get to Town," "Love and I Went Waltzing" and "Don't Be Subtle, Don't Be Coy" by Styne and Cahn.
       Some filming took place on location at the Hollywood Bowl, in Los Angeles, CA CA, and at the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, MD. Sinatra, Grayson and Kelly recreated their roles for a Lux Radio Theatre broadcast of the story, which aired on 29 Dec 1947. A HR news item in Jan 1946 indicates that M-G-M planned a sequel to Anchors Aweigh entitled All Ashore , written by Columbia Pictures producer Robert Taplinger. The sequel was to reteam Sinatra, Kelly and Grayson under the direction of George Sidney. Although All Ashore was shelved in Sep 1946, a film bearing the same title, and with a similar story, was released by Columbia in 1952. The 1952 film was directed by Richard Quine and starred Mickey Rooney and Dick Haymes.
       Anchors Aweigh received an Academy Award for Best Scoring of a Musical Picture, and was nominated for awards for Best Picture, Best Actor (Gene Kelly), Best Cinematography and Best Song ("I Fall in Love Too Easily"). More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
14 Jul 1945.
---
Daily Variety
18 Jul 45
p. 3.
Film Daily
19 Jul 45
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
1 Jul 42
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
13 Oct 43
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Dec 43
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
2 Mar 44
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
3 Apr 44
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Apr 44
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Jun 44
p. 14.
Hollywood Reporter
15 Jun 44
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
16 Jun 44
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
20 Jun 44
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Jun 44
p. 17.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Jul 44
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Jul 44
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
20 Jul 44
p. 3, 7
Hollywood Reporter
31 Jul 44
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
13 Sep 44
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Sep 44
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Nov 44
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Nov 44
p. 22.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Dec 44
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
20 Dec 44
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Jul 45
pp. 2-3.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Jul 45
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
27 Jul 45
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
2 Jan 46
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Sep 46
p. 2.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
14 Oct 44
p. 2142.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
21 Jul 44
p. 2553.
New York Times
17 Dec 1944.
---
New York Times
20 Jul 45
p. 15.
New York Times
12 Oct 1947.
---
Variety
18 Jul 45
p. 34.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
Sam Finn
Romere Darling
Bob Homans
Thomas Quinn
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
COSTUMES
Cost
Assoc
MUSIC
Mus dir
Kathryn Grayson's vocal arr
SOUND
Rec dir
Unit mixer and re-rec eff mixer
Re-rec and eff mixer
Re-rec and eff mixer
Re-rec and eff mixer
Re-rec and eff mixer
Re-rec and eff mixer
Re-rec and eff mixer
Mus mixer
Mus mixer
Mus mixer
VISUAL EFFECTS
Matte paintings
Matte paintings cam
DANCE
Dance seq created by
Dance dir
MAKEUP
Makeup created by
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod mgr
ANIMATION
"Tom & Jerry" cartoon by
COLOR PERSONNEL
Technicolor col consultant
Assoc
SOURCES
LITERARY
Suggested by the short story "You Can't Fool a Marine" by Natalie Marcin in This Week (14 Feb 1943).
MUSIC
"Donkey Serenade" by Rudolf Friml, Bob Wright and Chet Forrest
Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
"Second Hungarian Rhapsody" by Franz Liszt
+
MUSIC
"Donkey Serenade" by Rudolf Friml, Bob Wright and Chet Forrest
Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
"Second Hungarian Rhapsody" by Franz Liszt
"Weigenlied (Cradle Song)" by Johannes Brahms
"Jarabe tapatío (Mexican Hat Dance)" "Jesusita en Chichauha" and "España Carri, " traditional.
+
SONGS
"We Hate to Leave," "I Begged Her," "What Makes the Sun Set," "The Charm of You," "I Fall in Love Too Easily," music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Sammy Cahn
"Largo al factotum," from the opera Il barbiere di Siviglia , music by Gioacchino Antonio Rossini, libretto by Cesare Sterbini
"Anchors Aweigh," music by Charles A. Zimmerman, lyrics by R. Lovell and Alfred Hart Miles
+
SONGS
"We Hate to Leave," "I Begged Her," "What Makes the Sun Set," "The Charm of You," "I Fall in Love Too Easily," music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Sammy Cahn
"Largo al factotum," from the opera Il barbiere di Siviglia , music by Gioacchino Antonio Rossini, libretto by Cesare Sterbini
"Anchors Aweigh," music by Charles A. Zimmerman, lyrics by R. Lovell and Alfred Hart Miles
"If You Knew Susie (Like I Know Susie)," music and lyrics by B. G. DeSylva and Joseph Meyer
"Cielito lindo," traditional
"Jalousie," music and lyrics by Jacob Gade and Vera Bloom
"(All of a Sudden) My Heart Sings," music and lyrics by Henri Jamblan Herpin, English adaptation by Harold Rome
"Tonight We Love," music based on the first movement of Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, music adapted by Bobby Worth, lyrics by Ray Austin and Freddy Martin
"El relajo," music and lyrics by Lamberto Leyva, Jesus Castillón and Oscar Felix
"Waltz Serenade," music from Serenade in C, Opus 48 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, lyrics by Earl Brent
"La cumparsita," music by Matos Rodriguez, lyrics by Carol Raven.
+
DETAILS
Release Date:
August 1945
Premiere Information:
New York opening: 19 July 1945
Production Date:
19 June--7 November 1944
Copyright Claimant:
Loew's Inc.
Copyright Date:
9 July 1945
Copyright Number:
LP13444
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Sound System
Color
Technicolor
Duration(in mins):
138-140
Length(in feet):
12,542
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
10433
Passed by NBR:
Yes
SYNOPSIS

After eight months at sea, sailors Clarence Doolittle and Joseph Brady are granted a four-day shore leave in Hollywood, California. Joe, an incorrigible philanderer, plans to see one of his sweethearts while on leave, and later offers the shy and bookish Clarence advice on how to meet women. Clarence and Joe set out to find their shore leave romances but their plans are soon thwarted by a police sergeant, who demands that they help him with an unusual situation involving a young boy named Donald Martin. The police sergeant explains that Donald has run away from home to join the Navy and refuses to tell the police where he lives. Joe and Clarence easily win Donald's trust and agree to escort him home, where he lives with his widowed aunt, Susan Abbott. While Joe is eager to avoid any further involvement with the young boy, Clarence falls in love with Susan and promises to return the following day. When Joe and Clarence return to Susan's, they meet Bertram Kraler, a man Susan hopes will introduce her to the famous maestro José Iturbi. As Susan dresses for her date, Joe, convinced that Bertram is a new suitor who will only get in the way of Clarence's romantic pursuit of Susan, scares Bertram away by suggesting that Susan is a notorious Navy sweetheart. When Susan learns what Joe has done, she breaks down in tears and believes that her chances at breaking into show business are doomed. Joe tries to comfort Susan but only makes matters worse for himself when he tells her that Clarence and Iturbi are good friends and that he can arrange an audition ... +


After eight months at sea, sailors Clarence Doolittle and Joseph Brady are granted a four-day shore leave in Hollywood, California. Joe, an incorrigible philanderer, plans to see one of his sweethearts while on leave, and later offers the shy and bookish Clarence advice on how to meet women. Clarence and Joe set out to find their shore leave romances but their plans are soon thwarted by a police sergeant, who demands that they help him with an unusual situation involving a young boy named Donald Martin. The police sergeant explains that Donald has run away from home to join the Navy and refuses to tell the police where he lives. Joe and Clarence easily win Donald's trust and agree to escort him home, where he lives with his widowed aunt, Susan Abbott. While Joe is eager to avoid any further involvement with the young boy, Clarence falls in love with Susan and promises to return the following day. When Joe and Clarence return to Susan's, they meet Bertram Kraler, a man Susan hopes will introduce her to the famous maestro José Iturbi. As Susan dresses for her date, Joe, convinced that Bertram is a new suitor who will only get in the way of Clarence's romantic pursuit of Susan, scares Bertram away by suggesting that Susan is a notorious Navy sweetheart. When Susan learns what Joe has done, she breaks down in tears and believes that her chances at breaking into show business are doomed. Joe tries to comfort Susan but only makes matters worse for himself when he tells her that Clarence and Iturbi are good friends and that he can arrange an audition for her. With her faith in Joe and Clarence restored, Susan takes them to a Mexican restaurant and sings a song for them. While Joe dances with Susan, Clarence meets a friendly waitress, whom he nicknames "Brooklyn," after their hometown. Realizing that he must honor Joe's promise to Susan for an audition with Iturbi, Clarence tries unsuccessfully to meet with Iturbi at the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios. Meanwhile, Joe, who has become quite fond of Donald and Susan, tells Donald's classmates a story about his experience in a mythical kingdom populated by animals: In the kingdom, Joe discovers that the animals that live there are sad because their mouse king has prohibited them from singing. Determined to help the animals, Joe visits their unhappy king and shows him the beauty of song and dance. Joe's story concludes with the king repealing his edict and allowing the animals to sing. As a new romance develops between Clarence and Brooklyn, Joe falls in love with Susan. One day, Susan has a chance encounter with Iturbi and discovers that Joe and Clarence have been deceiving her and do not really know Iturbi. Feeling embarrassed and betrayed, Susan breaks down in tears. Iturbi, however, understands her situation and arranges a screen test for her. The test is a great success, and Iturbi soon presents Susan at one of his shows. Before returning to his ship, Joe makes amends with Susan, and Clarence and Brooklyn embrace. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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