singin' in the rain
the year: 1952
the genre: musical
the cast: Gene Kelly (Don Lockwood); Debbie Reynolds (Kathy Seldon); Donald O'Connor (Cosmo Brown); Jean Hagen (Lina Lamont)
the plot: It's 1927: Don Lockwood and Lina Lamont are the darlings of the silent silver screen. Offscreen, Don, aided by his happy-go-lucky friend and piano accompanist, Cosmo Brown, has to dodge Lina's romantic overtures, especially when he falls for chorus girl Kathy Selden. With the advent of sound in motion pictures, it is decided to turn Don and Lina's new film into a "talkie" and a musical at that. The only problem is Lina's voice, which words cannot describe. Kathy is brought on to dub her speaking and singing voice in secret, and Don's on top of the world - until Lina finds out...
count: the number of takes before R.F. pulls the rug (er, cord) out from under Lina.
don't miss: the diction lessons. Rrrrooooound tones.
check out: Cyd Charisse's role as the dancer in the Broadway Melody number. That role gave MGM the impetus to finally star her in pictures. Her next film was The Band Wagon (1953), starring Fred Astaire.
listen for: "People"? I ain't 'people.' I am a - 'a shimmering, glowing star in the cinema firmament.'"
also listen for: "Dignity. Always, dignity."
extra bonus points: if you can name the actress who played Zelda Zanders. She would later go on to star in The King and I and West Side Story.
did you know: Gene Kelly insulted Debbie Reynolds for not being able to dance. Fred Astaire, who was hanging around the studio, found her crying under a piano and helped her with her dancing.