On The Town, the 1949 MGM musical film is an adaptation of the Broadway stage musical of the same name produced in 1944. Both the theatre and film productions are based on the Jerome Robbins ballet entitled Fancy Free, which was also produced in 1944. The music was written by Leonard Bernstein and the lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green.
With an all-star song and dance cast including Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra, Jules Munshin, Ann Miller, Betty Garrett and Vera Ellen the film was an instant success. On The Town won the Academy Award for Best Music, Scoring of a Musical Picture, and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Cinematography (Color). Screenwriters Comden and Green won the Writers Guild of America Award for Best Written American Musical.
The Legendary Frank Sinatra, Jules Munshin and Gene Kelly perform New York, New York. The best known line of this song is, “New York, New York, a helluva town. The Bronx is up but the Battery’s down.” For the film version, the word “helluva” was changed to “wonderful” to appease the Production Code offices.
Frank Sinatra, Jules Munshin, Gene Kelly, Betty Garrett, Ann Miller and Vera Ellen
The Broadway revival of On The Town begin previews September 20 at the Lyric Theatre, 213 West 42nd Street, prior to an official opening October 16.