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RIP Stanley Donen (director of 'Singin' in the Rain', ‘Dancing on the Ceiling’)

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RIP Stanley Donen (director of 'Singin' in the Rain', ‘Dancing on the Ceiling’)

Old 02-25-19, 09:58 AM
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RIP Stanley Donen (director of 'Singin' in the Rain', ‘Dancing on the Ceiling’)

Stanley Donen, co-director of ‘Singin’ in the Rain,’ dies at 94

Stanley Donen, who directed or co-directed some of Hollywood's best-known movie musicals, including “On the Town,” “Royal Wedding” and what many consider the greatest movie musical of all time, “Singin' in the Rain,” has died. He was 94.

Donen, a master of filming dance with imagination and style and a director whose nonmusical credits include “Charade,” “Indiscreet” and “Two for the Road,” died of an apparent heart attack Thursday, his sons Joshua and Mark Donen confirmed Saturday.

A onetime Broadway chorus boy whose film career was launched in the 1940s, Donen name was inextricably linked with MGM and its athletic dancing star Gene Kelly.

At age 19, he assisted Kelly on the dance numbers for the 1944 movie musical “Cover Girl,” for which Donen conceived and directed (uncredited) the “Alter Ego” double-exposure number in which Kelly danced with his window reflection after it leapt off the windowpane.

A year later, Donen came up with the equally innovative idea of having Kelly dance with Jerry, MGM's cartoon mouse, in director George Sidney's 1945 musical “Anchors Aweigh.”

“I get all the credit for this, but it would have been impossible for me to do without Stanley,” Kelly told Donen biographer Stephen M. Silverman. Donen, Kelly said, “worked with the cameramen and called the shots in all these intricate timings and movements.”



Charade is such a great movie. RIP.
Old 02-25-19, 10:46 AM
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Re: RIP Stanley Donen (director of 'Singin' in the Rain', ‘Dancing on the Ceiling’)

I had no idea he was still alive, TBH.

Little anecdote about Singin' In the Rain - I once read someone argue that it was the greatest science fiction movie ever made. Basically, following Ray Bradbury's definition of sci fi as a fictional work that shows how technology or technological change affects humanity, and, since SItR documents how the coming of 'talkies' affected Hollywood, it is, de facto a science fiction film. It's a compelling argument, and makes you look at the movie in a different light.
Old 02-25-19, 10:53 AM
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Re: RIP Stanley Donen (director of 'Singin' in the Rain', ‘Dancing on the Ceiling’)

It’s not science fiction but it’s self reflexive. It’s proto-post modern. The thing calling attention to itself as a thing. The movie that shows you how movies are made.

I’ve always enjoyed it because it’s such a fanciful fantasy of how movies are/were made. I love that tracking shot where we are shown like four films being shot at the same time.

The guy was an absolute grand master. One of the last of the era.
Old 02-25-19, 11:48 AM
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Re: RIP Stanley Donen (director of 'Singin' in the Rain', ‘Dancing on the Ceiling’)

I like the sci-fi argument. We just don’t think of it that way because it depicts the past rather than speculating about the future.

RIP Donen. What a great legacy of entertainment. I’m glad Gene Kelly gave Donen credit for his role in Kelly’s accomplishments. (And what the heck: iOS just auto-corrected my “gave” to “Gabe.” If I were paranoid, I’d say it was because Kelly’s character in On the Town was named “Gabey.”)
Old 02-25-19, 11:57 AM
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Re: RIP Stanley Donen (director of 'Singin' in the Rain', ‘Dancing on the Ceiling’)

Watched all his films in order. He had a lot of clunkers, especially later in his career, but his home runs were grand slams.

Imagine if he tried making Blame it on Rio in today's environment.

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