|| Pal Joey
1957 (film version)
[Discography] [On TV] [Go To]
Lyrics by Lorenz
Music by Richard Rodgers
Produced by Columbia
Directed by George Sidney
Starring: Frank Sinatra, Rita Hayworth
and Kim Novak
Screenplay by Dorothy Kingsley
Academy Award Nomination for best art direction, Sound Recording and
Columbia Pictures originally obtained the screen rights to Pal Joey in 1941.
When they were going to make a movie out of it they wanted Rita to play
the younger showgirl, Linda and have her opposite Gene Kelly as Joey in
an attempt to rekindle the success they had in Cover Girl. Vivienne Segal
was to play Vera, the older woman. Both Vivienne and Gene would've been
reprising the original roles they played in the Broadway version of Pal
Joey. Unfortunately, MGM wouldn't loan Kelly to Columbia Pictures so the
original screen version of Pal Joey was shelved.
For the screen version of Pal Joey that finally made it to the screen
Columbia Pictures first wanted Marlene Dietrich or Mae West to play Vera.
When that didn't work out Rita was offered the role of Vera, which she
eagerly accepted. Frank Sinatra would play Joey and Kim Novak was given
the plum role of Linda English. Rita would be playing the older woman
but she was actually three years younger than Frank. At the time Frank
was at the height of his success as a movie star so there was question
as to who would receive top billing, Rita or Frank. Rita was given star
billing and Frank said, "Who else but Rita should get top billing?
After all, in my mind, she always was and always will be Columbia Pictures!
The studio may have built her into a star but just remember it was Rita
Hayworth who gave Columbia status."
Another thing people thought would be a problem was the casting of Kim
Novak as the younger girl. People thought there'd be some sort of feud
between Rita and Kim because Kim Novak was the actress Columbia Pictures
was building up as Hollywood's new "love goddess", but there
was no such rivalry. The two actresses got along well during filming.
Years later, Kim remembered Rita fondly, saying, "she was always
charming and gracious."
Blighted Hollywoodization of the musical by John O'Hara, Richard Rodgers,
and Lorenz Hart, with the score purified along with Joey's character. The
heel-heroĐa hoofer in the Broadway versionĐis now a crooner, in line with
the talents of Frank Sinatra. His singing helps things along, and he also
does the only acting, though Kim Novak's vacuity is rather touching and
isn't as laborious as Rita Hayworth's performance. (It is said that the
studio was out to break Hayworth; she certainly doesn't seem to be getting
a fair shake here.) This sad botch was directed by George Sidney; choreography
by Hermes Pan. The songs include "I Didn't Know What
Time It Was" "Bewitched," "The
Lady Is a Tramp," and "There's a Small Hotel."
With Elizabeth Patterson and Barbara Nichols. Script by Dorothy Kingsley,
based on O'Hara's stage version of his stories in The New Yorker, written
as a series of letters, signed "Your Pal Joey." The singing voice of Novak
was dubbed by Trudy Erwin; Hayworth's singing was dubbed by Jo Ann Greer.
| On TV
Concert Cast 1995
Studio Cast 1950
London Revival - 1980
Revival Cast Members - 1952
Studio Cast - (1957)
Pal Joey by Kenny Drew (Trio jazz )
Pal Joey Suite (Phil Wilson & the NDR Big
Video & DVD