Tuesday, October 10, 2006

I am a good girl,I am :)

I just totally love this dialogue:)..and every time i watch 'My Fair Lady' i can laugh at this particular dialogue for like hours.it's definately the best in the movie!
and the way it is delivered by Audrey Hepburn.no one can do it like her.like they say,she was the best.always wondered how she din't come to win an oscar for her role in the movie.
FYI,Elizabeth Taylor desperately wanted to play the role of Eliza Dolittle,but couldn't sing well and thus the role went to Audrey Hepburn.Also,Rex Harrison did not want to play Prof Higgins but was forced into the movie and it won him the oscar for the Best actor.the movie also won best film that year.it is truly a classic.
Trivia for
My Fair Lady(thanks to IMDb)
Audrey Hepburn's singing was dubbed by Marni Nixon, despite Hepburn's lengthy preparation for the role.

Jeremy Brett's singing was dubbed by Bill Shirley, despite the fact that his singing was actually remarkably good.

James Cagney was originally offered the role of Alfred Doolittle. When he pulled out at the last minute, it went to the man who played it on Broadway, Stanley Holloway. Cary Grant, Noel Coward, Michael Redgrave and George Sanders were all considered for the role of Higgins before Rex Harrison was finally chosen to reprise his Broadway role.

Rex Harrison wanted Julie Andrews for the role of Eliza, since they had played together in the Broadway version.

Stanley Holloway originated the role of Alfie Dolittle on Broadway, but it was thought that a better known actor would be more suited for the film version.

Because of the way Rex Harrison sang/talked his musical numbers, they were unable to prerecord them and have him lip-sync, so a wireless microphone (one of the first ever developed) was rigged up and hidden under his tie. However, this meant that his mouth and words were completely in sync and everyone else's looked off, since they were lip-syncing (when everyone is lip-syncing, it's not that noticeable). The studio thought that this was too obvious so they altered Harrison's soundtrack, lengthening and shortening notes in various places so that his synchronicity is slightly off like all the other actors.

Gladys Cooper, who plays Mrs. Higgins (Henry Higgins' mother) in this film, played the same role in the 1963 Hallmark Hall of Fame television production Pygmalion (1963) (TV), the play on which this film is based.

Julie Andrews was the first choice for the role of Eliza Doolittle, but Warner Brothers, which had paid $5.5 million for the rights to the Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe musical, didn't want to risk a stage actress in the central role of a $17-million film, despite lobbying from Lerner himself. It is also reported that Jack L. Warner didn't think Andrews would be photogenic enough. He invited her to do a screen test, but she refused, so he forgot about her altogether.

Although her singing was dubbed by Marni Nixon, Audrey Hepburn's singing does actually appear in the form of the first verse of "Just You Wait, Henry Higgins". However, when the song heads into the soprano range (76 seconds in), Nixon takes over vocals. Hepburn sings the last 30 seconds of the song as well as the brief reprise. She also sings the sing-talking parts for "The Rain in Spain". Overall, as Hepburn reportedly said, about 90% of her singing was dubbed. That was far more than what she expected, as she was initially promised that most of her vocals would be used. According to Nixon, Hepburn was upset that she could not play the role vocally, and always blamed herself for that.

According to actress Nancy Olson, who was married to lyricist Alan Jay Lerner at the time he was writing the musical, Lerner and Frederick Loewe had the most trouble writing the final song for Henry Higgins. The two writers had based the whole concept of the musical around the notion that Higgins was far too intellectual a character to emotionally sing outright, but should speak his songs on pitch, more as an expression of ideas. However, both composer and lyricist knew that Higgins would need a love song towards the end of the story when Eliza has abandoned him. This presented an obvious problem: how to write an emotional song for an emotionless character. Lerner suffered bouts of insomnia trying to write the lyrics. One night, Olson claims, she brought him a cup of tea to soothe his nerves. As she entered his study, Lerner thanked her and said "I guess I've grown accustomed to you...I've grown accustomed to your face." According to Olson, his eyes suddenly lit up, and she sat down and watched him write the entire song in one sitting, based on the idea that although Higgins couldn't "love" Eliza in the traditional sense, he would surely notice the value she represented as part of his life.

Musical theater writers Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II had attempted to adapt George Bernard Shaw's "Pigmaylion" as a musical long before Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe, but had abandoned the project as unadaptable. Rogers and Hammerstien felt that Shaw's style of writing intellectual dialog and the emotionless character of Henry Higgins did not lend themselves to a musical. Lerner and Lowe overcame these problems by leaving Shaw's duologue largely intact, and working under the notion that Higgins must be played by a great actor, not a great singer. Thus, the wrote the role especially for Rex Harrison, and adopted the idea that Higgins should not sing outright, but talk on pitch, less an expression of emotions than ideas.

When asked why he turned down the role of Henry Higgins, Cary Grant remarked that his original manner of speaking was much closer to Eliza Doolittle.

According to one of Rex Harrison's biographers, Alexander Walker, the song "I've grown accustomed to her face" held special memories for the actor, as during the original Broadway run he used to sing the song to his third wife Kay Kendall, who would stand in the wings watching his performance. Harrison later admitted that when he sang the song in the film he was thinking all the time about Kendall, who had died a few years before from leukemia.

During the parts of "Wouldn't It be Loverly" featuring Audrey Hepburn's own singing voice, her lip-syncing does not match her own singing as well as it does Marni Nixon's singing, even though Hepburn filmed the scene with her own track.

Warner Bros. won the bidding war for the film rights in 1962 with an offer of $5.5 million and nearly half the profits above $20 million.

Amusement park trams were rented to carry ballroom scene extras across the studio lot, in order to prevent their makeup and costumes from getting dirty or damaged.

Audrey Hepburn announced the assassination of Pres. John F. Kennedy to the devastated cast and crew immediately after filming the number "Wouldn't It Be Loverly?" on the Covent Garden set on 22 November 1963.

27A Wimpole Street in London (Higgins' address) does not exist (there is a 27 Wimpole Street).

The role of Eliza Doolittle was originally played on Broadway by Julie Andrews. However, she was denied the role because the film's producers didn't think she was "known" enough as a film actress. Many felt that this snub as well as Audrey Hepburn's singing being dubbed led to Hepburn's not being nominated for the Best Actress Oscar nomination.

Cary Grant told Jack L. Warner that not only would he not play Henry Higgins, but if Rex Harrison was not cast in the role, he wouldn't even go see the picture.

When Eliza Dolittle demands to see what Henry Higgins has been writing about her, in the beginning of the film, he shows her his notebook, which she cannot read. The notation in the notebook is "Visible Speech", a phonetic notation invented by Alexander Melville Bell (father of Alexander Graham Bell) and extended and used heavily by Henry Sweet, a real-life phonetician and apparently the basis of the Henry Higgins character.

Audrey Hepburn herself revealed years later that had she turned down the role of Eliza, the next actress to be offered it would not have been Julie Andrews but Elizabeth Taylor, who wanted it desperately.

Apparently, Shirley Jones was one of the actresses to whom Jack L. Warner planned to offer the role of Eliza Doolittle if Audrey Hepburn (his first choice) turned it down.

Veteran actor Henry Daniell, who is unbilled as The Ambassador, died of a heart attack on 31 October 1963 just hours after completing the dress ball sequences.

About twenty minutes before the end of the film, Colonel Pickering offers to go off and find the missing Eliza. He exits the library set - and is never seen in the movie again!

The 1994 restoration by Robert A. Harris used a variety of methods to return the film to its original condition. The opening credits were digitally re-created using pieces of surviving frames. A few shots were digitally restored by scanning the 65mm negative or separation masters and output back to VistaVision (and enlarged back to 65mm). Some shots were simply re-composited via separation masters. Despite this, most of the film was able to be restored directly from the camera negative. For the sound, only the six-track magnetic print master (used to add sound to 70mm prints) survived. This was digitally restored and used to create a new six-track mix (faithful to the original version), as well as new Dolby Digital and DTS 5.1 mixes for modern sound systems.

Despite intensive vocal training during pre-production, and constant practicing until her final re-recording during the post-production, Audrey Hepburn was never able to sing "Without You" properly. That song is far beyond her vocal range. However, it is widely agreed that her renditions of "Wouldn't It Be Loverly?" and "Show Me" were good enough to be left undubbed.

In the scene where Eliza is practicing her "H's", she sits down in front of a spinning mirror attached to a flame. Every time she says her "H's" correctly, the flame jumps. If you look closely at the paper she is holding in her hand when it catches fire, you will see handwritten upon it the dialog that she and Professor Higgins have been saying previous to this. "Of course, you can't expect her to get it right the first time," is the first line written on the paper.

Average Shot Length = 10 seconds

The original choice to direct the film was Vincente Minnelli but when his salary demands were too high, the job went to George Cukor.

Connie Stevens, then a Warners contract player, campaigned for the role of Eliza Doolittle.

In the scene where Henry Higgins knocks a record player that is playing a recording of vowel sounds, the voice on the record is that of Dr. Peter Ladefoged, a linguist who worked as a consultant on the film.



Raghu said...

you may enjoy this one...

A rare version of the song "Wouldn't It Be Loverly?" from the 1964 Audrey Hepburn film "My Fair Lady", as originally performed--in her own voice!


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