1/8/18 O&A NYC HOLLYWOOD MONDAY: The King and I

Hollywood Mondays

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The King and I is a 1956 musical film made by 20th Century Fox. The movie was directed by Walter Lang and produced by Charles Brackett and Darryl F. Zanuck. The screenplay by Ernest Lehman is based on the Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II musical The King and I. The musical starred Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr. It was Brynner who pressed for Kerr to play the role. Marni Nixon provided Kerr’s singing for the film. 

It is based in turn on the book Anna and the King of Siam by Margaret Landon. The plot comes from the story written by Anna Leonowens, who became school teacher to the children of King Mongkut of Siam in the early 1860s. Leonowens’ story was autobiographical, although a recent biographer has uncovered substantial inaccuracies and fabrications.

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Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr perform Shall We Dance

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The March of the Siamese Children

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Getting To Know You– Marni Nixon (dubbing Deborah Kerr) and Chorus 

The film was a huge critically and financially success. Due to the representation of King Mongkut of Siam, the film was banned in Thailand. Also, due to the changes with the replacement dialogue, as well as the omission of three original songs Shall I Tell You What I Think of You?, I Have Dreamed and My Lord and Master, the film got some mixed reviews.

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The King and I was nominated for nine Academy Awards and won five; Best Actor in a Leading Role (Yul Brynner), Best Art Direction /Set Decoration/ Color  (John DeCuir, Lyle R. Wheeler, Walter M. Scott, Paul S. Fox), Best Costume Design/ Color (Irene Sharaff) Best Music/ Scoring of a Musical Picture (Alfred Newman and Ken Darby) and Sound Recording (Carlton W. Faulkner; 20th Century Fox Sound Department).

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