Fiesta (1947)

104 mins | Drama | July 1947

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HISTORY

The onscreen credits contain the following written acknowledgment: "We wish gratefully to acknowledge the friendly cooperation of the Mexican government and the genuine hospitality of the Mexican people, without whose assistance the filming of this picture in their country would not have been possible." The film marked the American film debut of actor Ricardo Montalban, who had previously starred in Mexican films. HR production charts and contemporary news items indicate that actor Carlos Ramirez was set for a featured role, but he did not appear in the released film. A Sep 1945 HR news item announced that Leonard Smith was set as the director of photography, but the extent of his contribution to the released film has not been determined. News items in HR indicate that prior to the start of principal photography, some shooting took place in Puebla and Mexico City, Mexico in Oct and Nov 1945. It is possible that Smith shot these sequences but they were not included in the film. Most of the picture was filmed in Mexico in Mexico City, Guadalajara, Puebla and Querétaro. A Dec 1945 HR news item noted that M-G-M restored to its original state the Hacienda San Antonio Chatlou, which was used as a location for the fiesta sequences. The film received an Academy Award nomination for Best Scoring of a Musical Picture. The Var reviewer called the picture a "Technicolor trailer for Mexican-American ... More Less

The onscreen credits contain the following written acknowledgment: "We wish gratefully to acknowledge the friendly cooperation of the Mexican government and the genuine hospitality of the Mexican people, without whose assistance the filming of this picture in their country would not have been possible." The film marked the American film debut of actor Ricardo Montalban, who had previously starred in Mexican films. HR production charts and contemporary news items indicate that actor Carlos Ramirez was set for a featured role, but he did not appear in the released film. A Sep 1945 HR news item announced that Leonard Smith was set as the director of photography, but the extent of his contribution to the released film has not been determined. News items in HR indicate that prior to the start of principal photography, some shooting took place in Puebla and Mexico City, Mexico in Oct and Nov 1945. It is possible that Smith shot these sequences but they were not included in the film. Most of the picture was filmed in Mexico in Mexico City, Guadalajara, Puebla and Querétaro. A Dec 1945 HR news item noted that M-G-M restored to its original state the Hacienda San Antonio Chatlou, which was used as a location for the fiesta sequences. The film received an Academy Award nomination for Best Scoring of a Musical Picture. The Var reviewer called the picture a "Technicolor trailer for Mexican-American goodwill." More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
12 Jun 1947.
---
Hollywood Reporter
17 Sep 45
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Sep 45
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Sep 45
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Dec 45
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
12 Dec 45
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Dec 45
p. 15.
Hollywood Reporter
31 Dec 45
p. 13.
Hollywood Reporter
29 Mar 46
p. 22.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Apr 46
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
17 May 46
p. 14.
Hollywood Reporter
12 Jun 47
p. 3.
Independent Film Journal
5 Jan 46
p. 38.
New York Times
27 Jun 47
p. 17.
Variety
18 Jun 47
p. 8.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
WRITERS
Orig scr, Orig scr
Orig scr, Orig scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
COSTUMES
Cost supv
MUSIC
Mus score
Addl orch
Concerto pianist
SOUND
Rec dir
DANCE
Dances staged by
MAKEUP
Makeup created by
PRODUCTION MISC
Unit mgr
COLOR PERSONNEL
Technicolor col consultant
Assoc
SOURCES
MUSIC
"Fantasia Mexicana," based on "El salon Mexico" by Aaron Copland, adapted and orchestrated by Johnny Green
"La Bamba" by Luis Martiniz Serrano
"Jarabe Tapatío (Mexican Hat Dance)," traditional.
SONGS
"La luna enamorada," music and lyrics by Angel Ortiz De Villajos, Miriano Bolanos Recio and Leocadio Martinez Durango
"Romeria Vasca," music and lyrics by Los Bocheros
"La barca de oro," traditional.
DETAILS
Release Date:
July 1947
Premiere Information:
New York opening: 26 June 1947
Production Date:
10 December 1945--9 April 1946
retakes mid April--16 May 1946
Copyright Claimant:
Loew's Inc.
Copyright Date:
11 June 1947
Copyright Number:
LP1109
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Sound System
Color
Technicolor
Duration(in mins):
104
Country:
United States
PCA No:
11630
SYNOPSIS

In a small Mexican town, famous matador Antonio Morales is teaching his students bullfighting techniques when he receives word that his wife has gone into labor at their villa. Accompanied by his assistant, Chato Vasquez, Antonio races home and arrives only minutes after his wife has given birth to a baby girl. Antonio, who had hoped for a son that he could model after himself, or mold in his own image, is deeply disappointed when he learns that his new baby is a girl. His disappointment soon turns to joy, however, when the doctor informs him that his wife has had twins, and that the second baby is a boy. After naming his son Mario and his daughter Maria, Antonio boasts to his friends that Mario will become the best matador in the world. Mario and Maria enjoy a happy childhood and grow up to become the best of friends, helping each other whenever they can. When Mario is old enough to enter the bullfighting ring, his father begins a rigorous training regimen. While Mario shows only mild interest in the sport, Maria becomes a bullfighting expert and secretly takes lessons from Chato. Mario's lack of enthusiasm for the sport is shared by his mother, who fears for her son's life and tries to protect him from his father's demands. When Mario composes a sophisticated musical suite, his mother realizes that he is a prodigy and encourages him to continue his music studies. On the day before Mario and Maria's twenty-first birthday, Maria tells her brother that she sent her fiancé, Jose "Pepe" Ortega, to Mexico City to deliver the manuscript of his suite ... +


In a small Mexican town, famous matador Antonio Morales is teaching his students bullfighting techniques when he receives word that his wife has gone into labor at their villa. Accompanied by his assistant, Chato Vasquez, Antonio races home and arrives only minutes after his wife has given birth to a baby girl. Antonio, who had hoped for a son that he could model after himself, or mold in his own image, is deeply disappointed when he learns that his new baby is a girl. His disappointment soon turns to joy, however, when the doctor informs him that his wife has had twins, and that the second baby is a boy. After naming his son Mario and his daughter Maria, Antonio boasts to his friends that Mario will become the best matador in the world. Mario and Maria enjoy a happy childhood and grow up to become the best of friends, helping each other whenever they can. When Mario is old enough to enter the bullfighting ring, his father begins a rigorous training regimen. While Mario shows only mild interest in the sport, Maria becomes a bullfighting expert and secretly takes lessons from Chato. Mario's lack of enthusiasm for the sport is shared by his mother, who fears for her son's life and tries to protect him from his father's demands. When Mario composes a sophisticated musical suite, his mother realizes that he is a prodigy and encourages him to continue his music studies. On the day before Mario and Maria's twenty-first birthday, Maria tells her brother that she sent her fiancé, Jose "Pepe" Ortega, to Mexico City to deliver the manuscript of his suite to the famous symphony orchestra conductor Maximino Contreras. Maximino is greatly impressed by Mario's composition and travels to the Morales villa to invite Mario to study in Mexico City. Maximino arrives at the villa just as Mario is about to fight his first big bullfight. Antonio forbids Maximino from meeting Mario before the fight, and sends him away with a promise that he will tell Mario about his visit after the fight. Antonio is proud of his son's performance in the ring, but neglects to tell him about Maximino's visit. Determined to meet Mario, Maximino follows him to the town of Puebla, where the young man is set to fight his next bullfight. During the bullfight, Maximino manages to get close enough to Mario to meet him and ask him why he did not reply to his invitation. When Mario realizes that his father had deliberately kept the news of Maximino's visit a secret from him, he walks out of the bullfighting ring in anger and leaves for Mexico City. While Antonio is disgraced the following day by newspaper accounts that call Mario a coward, Maria vows to find her brother and restore her family's good name. Hoping to lure her brother back home with a publicity stunt, Maria disguises herself as Mario and fights a bullfight under his name. Maria's plan works when Mario hears about the fight and leaves Mexico City to find her. He finds Maria just as she is being attacked by a bull. Mario saves Maria from further harm by jumping into the ring, and the public's respect for the Morales family is restored. Antonio later makes amends with his son, and finally gives him his consent to study music with Maximino. +

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

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.