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Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Brian Sharp, Feb 20, 2014.
Paint Your Wagon and Half a Sixpence on Blu-ray?
Don't see it. Lots of financial non-disasters are ahead of them in line.
Could happen. They got a standard DVD release after all. Also, Paint Your Wagon has the Clint Eastwood factor.
But it was such a turkey. It had that nifty dissolve from the opening painting to live action after the credits, but except for the "They Call the Wind Maria" sequence it was painful to watch from then on. Jaw-droppingly awful, a celluloid train wreck.
Question for the ages: Why was Christopher Plummer dubbed (in Sound of Music), but Lee Marvin wasn't?
Well, Lee Marvin singing "Wandrin' Star" did top the hit parade for a few weeks in 1970.
Probably because they cut out the central plot of the stage musical, ie. Clint Eastwood's character originally being a Mexican teen who romances Lee Marvin's daughter. Without it, there wasn't really much reason for anybody to be singing anything, they kept only the rough-mining songs (instead of the romantic ballads), and had to add more 60's Western-comedy hijinks to fill in the space.
(And as for Half a Sixpence, I usually like Tommy Steele, but wow, was that one slow going--
One of HG Wells' workers-arise class-system stories, and about as subtle, but does EVERY SINGLE musical number have to be pushed to "Oliver!" style 11?...I mean, every one?)
I actually had a promo copy of it, and listened to it. And to repeat, why was Christopher Plummer dubbed (in Sound of Music), but Lee Marvin wasn't?
Because Robert Wise and Richard Rogers thought Mr. Plummer could not carry a tune, while Joshua Logan and Alan Jay Lerner thought Mr. Marvin and Mr. Eastwood could carry a tune. But they are totally two different movies and music types. Remember Mr. Lerner was half the team for Camelot and My Fair Lady where on Broadway you had Richard Burton and Rex Harrison more or less talk their way through their songs as did Richard Harris for the also directed by Joshua Logan film version of Camelot.
In the case of Christopher Plummer, as the associate producer of "The Sound of Music", classic musical veteran Saul Chaplin was a firm believer in dubbing those whose singing wasn't up to his high standards. He felt that Plummer's singing just wasn't on a par with Julie's and to have left it in would have brought their scenes together and the entire the picture down. And when you hear his tracks, you realize he was right.
With "Paint Your Wagon" the only cast member who could really sing was Harve Presnell and he had surprisingly little interaction with the rest of the cast apart from his one showcase number. As long as Clint Eastwood and Lee Marvin's songs were largely quiet solos, they didn't have to compete with Harve and they got by. Lee Marvin almost whispers "Wandrin' Star" and really makes it something special. Christopher Plummer's character on the other hand, was never singing at a time when Julie Andrews wasn't within ten feet of him, watching him, when not joining in.
While Plummer is not on the level of Julie Andrews in her prime (and very few are), Plummer was good enough to star in the title role of the musical Cyrano on Broadway in 1973, and earn Tony and Drama Desk Awards for Best Actor in a Musical, so he was far from chopped liver.
I will grant that Eastwood and Marvin didn't bring down Paint Your Wagon; it was pretty much at bottom. The only film musical I've ever seen that bad was A Little Night Music. (Haven't seen Song of Norway, which might be worse than either of them!)
But Hollywood has a history of "huh?" dubbing choices. In at least one case, they even dubbed the person who sang the same part on Broadway just a couple of years earlier, but didn't dub her a few years later!
Christopher Plummer also sang in An American Tail.