We just learned, courtesy of our good friends at Polly O Entertainment, personal managers to Mitzi Gaynor, the wonderful news that Twentieth Century-Fox will release arts·meme favorite, “The I Don’t Care Girl” on DVD April 8, 2013.
The biopic, a relatively turgid mid-century look back at vaudeville hottie Eva Tanguay (pictured above with Mitzi who plays her in the movie) features three extraordinary dance numbers by Jack Cole: “The Johnson Rag,” I Don’t Care,” and “Beale Street Blues.” The numbers — inserted at a very late moment in the film’s production at the behest of Fox studio boss Darryl Zanuck — in their thematic range, verve and impact, provide one-stop-shopping for the brilliant dance maker’s output.
“I Don’t Care” [what people think of me] was Eva Tanguay’s theme song. It is also the theme song of artsmeme.com.
ClassicFlix writes about the DVD release here and you can purchase the film through their site.
Cast in the film are some of Hollywood’s greatest dancers, Gwen Verdon, Matt Mattox (who just passed away), Marc Wilder, with the effervescent Gaynor in the lead, fronting a kick-butt chorus of stellar Jack Cole regulars. Pianist-humorist Oscar Levant, always marvelous, plays a leading role in the film, which ranks an overall B minus-minus, but is catapulted into A+ range by Cole’s material. The film’s original choreographer, Seymour Felix, also has admirable work in the film. But you cannot confuse, either in production design or performance, the work of Felix with that of Jack Cole. Enjoy!
A marvelous event held last August 4 at UCLA Film & Television Archive’s Billy Wilder Theater (it was part of the “Archives Treasures” series) featured a screening of a rare 35 mm, IB Technicolor print of the movie. An extended fun and informative discussion followed the screening with film star Mitzi Gaynor in person. Also participating: Archive director of public programs Shannon Kelly, film historian Larry Billman, and arts·meme‘s Debra Levine, all pitching in thoughts and feelings about the film.
Toward the end of this video, I describe Jack Cole’s groundbreaking number “I Don’t Care Girl” to Robert Osborne. It’s a snippet of my co-hosting of “Choreography by Jack Cole” on Turner Classic Movies September 10, 2012.
The video here:
Like this? Read more:
- Jack Cole’s choreography shines through in “The I Don’t Care Girl”
- Mitzi Gaynor hilarious, smart, thoughtful at UCLA “The I Don’t Care Girl” screening
- Mitzi Gaynor to appear with film screening
- “The I Don’t Care Girl”‘s three dance masterpieces
- arts·meme‘s “The I Don’t Care Girl” thread