Footlight Parade

Footlight Parade

Director: Lloyd Bacon Cast: James Cagney, Joan Blondell, Ruby Keeler

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Overview

The last--and to some aficionados, the best--of choreographer Busby Berkeley's three Warner Bros. efforts of 1933, Footlight Parade stars James Cagney as a Broadway musical comedy producer. Cagney is unceremoniously put out of business when talking pictures arrive. To keep his head above water, Jimmy hits upon a swell idea: he'll stage musical "prologues" for movie theatres, then ship them out to the various picture palaces in New York. Halfway through the picture, Cagney is obliged to assemble three mammoth prologues and present them back-to-back in three different theatres. There are all sorts of backstage intrigues, not the least of which concerns the predatory hijinks of gold-digger Claire Dodd and the covetous misbehavior of Cagney's ex-wife Renee Whitney. Joan Blondell plays Jimmy's faithful girl-friday, who loves him from afar; Ruby Keeler is the secretary who takes off her glasses and is instantly transformed into a glamorous stage star; Dick Powell is the "protege" of wealthy Ruth Donnelly, who makes good despite this handicap; Frank McHugh is Cagney's assistant, who spends all his time moaning "It'll never work"; and Hugh Herbert is a self-righteous censor, who ends up in a censurable position. The last half-hour of Footlight Parade is a nonstop display of Busby Berkeley at his most spectacular: the three big production numbers, all written by Harry Warren and Al Dubin, are "By a Waterfall," "Honeymoon Hotel," and "Shanghai Lil," the latter featuring some delicious pre-code scatology, a tap-dance duet by Cagney and Keeler, and an out-of-left-field climactic salute to FDR and the NRA!

Product Details

Release Date: 09/19/2000
UPC: 0012569510739
Original Release: 1933
Rating: NR
Source: Turner Home Ent

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
James Cagney Chester Kent
Joan Blondell Nan Prescott
Ruby Keeler Bea Thorn
Dick Powell Scotty Blair
Guy Kibbee Silas Gould
Ruth Donnelly Harriet Bowers Gould
Claire Dodd Vivian Rich
Hugh Herbert Charlie Bowers
Frank McHugh Francis
Arthur Hohl Al Frazer
Gordon Westcott Harry Thompson
Paul Porcasi George Appolinaris
Donna La Barr Chorus Girl
Renee Whitney Cynthia Kent
Barbara Rogers Gracie
Philip Faversham Joe Farmington
Herman Bing Fralick, the music director
William Granger Doorman
Billy Barty Mouse/Little Boy
John Garfield Sailor Behind Table
Hobart Cavanaugh Title-Thinkerupper
George Chandler Drugstore attendant
Jimmy Conlin Uncle
Marlo Dwyer Chorus girl
Roger Gray Sailor-Pal in "Shanghai Lil" Number
Fred Kelsey House detective
Sam McDaniel Porter
William V. Mong Auditor
Lee Moran Mac, the Dance Director
Donna Mae Roberts Chorus girl
Marjean Rogers Chorus girl
Harry Seymour Desk Clerk in "Honeymoon"
Billy Taft Specialty dancer
Juliet Ware Miss Smythe
Charles Wilson Cop
Pat Wing Chorus girl
Duke York Sailor on Table in "Shanghai Lil" Number
Dave "Tex" O'Brien Chorus boy
Dorothy Lamour Chorus
Charles Lane Hotel detective in the "Honeymoon Hotel"-number

Technical Credits
Lloyd Bacon Director
George J. Amy Editor
Milo Anderson Costumes/Costume Designer
George Barnes Cinematographer
Busby Berkeley Choreography
Alexis Dubin Songwriter
Sammy Fain Songwriter
Leo F. Forbstein Musical Direction/Supervision
Anton Grot Art Director
Irving Kahal Songwriter
Robert Lord Producer
Jack Okey Art Director
Manuel Seff Screenwriter
James Seymour Screenwriter
Harry Warren Songwriter
Perc Westmore Makeup

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