Funny Girl (1968)

 

 

 

Director:     William Wyler.

Starring:      Barbra Streisand (Fanny Brice), Omar Sharif (Nick Arnstein), Kay Medford (Rose Brice), Anne Francis (Georgia James), Walter Pidgeon (Florenz Ziegfeld), Lee Allen (Eddie Ryan), Mae Questel (Mrs. Strakosh), Gerald Mohr (Branca), Frank Faylen (Keeney), Mittie Lawrence (Emma), Gertrude Flynn (Mrs. O'Malley), Penny Santon (Mrs. Meeker), John Harmon (Company Manager), Thordis Brandt (Ziegfeld Girl), Bettina Brenna (Ziegfeld Girl).

Oscar:          Barbara Streisand as best actress.

Bob Merrill-Jule Styne musical based on the life of comedienne Fanny Brice.  Follow up movie is "Funny Lady."

 

 

 

Spoiler Warning:

 

 

 

 


Historical Background:

 

1891 -- born Fannie Borach, New York's Lower East Side. She is the third of four children of immigrant saloon-owners.

1908 -- drops out of the eighth grade and begins working as a chorus girl in a burlesque review. She begins her career at amateur nights at Kenney's Theatre in Brooklyn singing "You Know You're Not Forgotten by the Girl You Can't Forget." She is a big success in The College Girls singing Irving Berlin's "Sadie Salome, Go Home" with a fake Yiddish accent and dancing a parody of the seductive veil dance in Richard Strauss' opera Salome.

Touring in burlesque shows, Florenz Ziegfield discovers her. Her comedy is performed with a Yiddish accent (even though she spoke no Yiddish).

1910 -- appears in her first Ziegfield Follies.

1912 -- around this time she begins living with Jules "Nicky" Arnstein, who is something of a con man and thief.

1918 -- she marries Arnstein, who serves time in Sing Sing Prison for illegal wiretapping. She has two children with him.

1921 -- she has another big success, this one singing "My Man" in the Ziegfield Follies of that year. (She also has success with "Second Hand Rose."

1923 -- surgically straightens her nose and tries to be accepted in regular, non-ethnic roles with little success.

1924 -- Arnstein is charged in a Wall Street bond theft and goes to prison again.

1927 -- Arnstein gets out of prison and promptly disappears forcing Brice to divorce him.

Marries Broadway impresario Billy Rose and stars in some Hollywood films.

1938 -- begins her own weekly radio show. She rose to great heights with her bratty character Baby Snooks with the famous line "Why Daddy?".

1951-- dies in Los Angeles, while still working on her radio series.

 

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