By: Judy Shields
Ontario, California (The Hollywood Times) September 6, 2016 – “Welcome to the TCM Big Classic Series, this month we have a special 60th Anniversary screening of one of the most celebrated musicals ever made, 1956 Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr star in Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein’s The King and I. TCM host Ben Mankiewicz, told the audience in attendance at the ACM Ontario Mills theatre number 26 last Wednesday before the movie at 7:00 p.m.
It’s time to whistle a happy tune! Rodgers & Hammerstein’s classic movie musical The King and I returned to movie theatres this past Sunday and last night as part of Fathom Event and Turner Classic Movies’ TCM Big Screen Classics series. Marking the 60th Anniversary, “TCM Big Screen Classics: The King and I screened Sunday, August 28 and Wednesday, August 31 at 2:00 & 7:00 and included a specially produced commentary from TCM host Ben Mankiewicz before and after the feature.
Ben Mankiewicz magically appeared before our eyes on the big screen to introduce this wonderful musical. Ben went on to say “that the movie was a highly anticipated big screen adaptation of the hit musical that premiered on Broadway five years earlier in 1951. The King and I tells the vaguely true story of an English woman who became a teacher to the children of the king of Siam 1862. Now Thailand in the nineteenth century, I say vaguely true because even today it’s apparently illegal to even poses The King and I in Thailand due to the nature of the historical inadequacies about the king.”
Ben made us all laugh as he is known to do with this comment: “In a related note, where it is illegal to own a historically inadequate film, we will all be serving consecutive life sentences! Hollywood has always fell free to interpret history as it’s writers saw fit.”
“The original Broadway play starred Gertrude Lawrence as Anna Leonowens and Yul Brynner as the King Mongkut. For the film version Yul was asked to apprize his Broadway role, a no brainer, or as we like to say at TCM, “a no Brynner. Many still consider it the role that Yul Brynner was meant to play. Gertrude Lawrence, the talented actress and singer died of cancer in 1952, while she was still appearing in the stage show. In the big screen adaptation, was played by the somewhat less vocally sophisticated Deborah Kerr. Kerr had her singing dubbed by Marney Nixon, a vocalist who specialized in singing for big name actresses in big screen musicals. Nixon does the signing for Natalie Wood in West Side Story and Kathryn Hepburn in My Fair Lady. Also in The King & I cast is Rita Moreno, still five years away from her Oscar winning performance alongside Natalie Wood in West Side Story.”
Ben ended his introduction with “From 1956, directed by Walter Lange, the winner of five Academy Awards, here is Rogers and Hammerstein’s The King and I.”
I really thought the intro presented by Ben was truly a great idea and how wonderful it would be for that to happen on every movie, say the director said a little something about the movie he or she directed so as to get the audience wanting to see the movie even more. Just a thought!
Ben returned at the end of the movie to speak about Yul Brynner’s career and to say that he hoped we all enjoyed the 60th Anniversary screening of The King & I and that coming next month, TCM Big Screen Classis series will present a comedy about nuclear war, Stanley Kubrick’s “Doctor Strangelove.” To find out more about the upcoming TCM classic films coming to the big screen, visit www.FathomEvents.com
“For Turner Classic Movies, Fathom Events and Twentieth Century Fox, I’m Ben Mankiewicz, thanks for coming, see you next month.”
The film version by Twentieth Century Fox was the winner of five Academy Awards® (Best Actor, Best Musical Score, Best Costume Design, Best Art Direction & Set Decoration and Best Sound) and was nominated for four more (Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actress and Best Cinematography).
Watching this classic musical on the big screen, is the way all classical movies should be shown. Kids of today need to see these classical movies on the big screen to appreciate the way movies were made then from the props to the costumes and especially the music.
The movie was just spectacular, the sound was amazing, and the costumes, so bright and colorful. Yul Brenner was amazing in his role as the King. Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera! I will find myself saying that over the next few days, no doubt!
The theater was half full and there were even some teenage boys, with their Mother and The Hollywood Times spoke with them after the movie
Velia Carrillo, told The Hollywood Times that she saw the movie with her Mom and Dad the first time, a long time ago most likely in the 60’s. She said the one scene she really likes in the scene where he makes her head can’t be higher than his and gets lower and lower and she loves the music. I asked her how she found out about the screening tonight and she said she didn’t that her son did. She was on a date night with her son and he bought the tickets and it was a surprise for her. What a great son!
Her son’s name is Jason and he found it on, none other than a app. The world of apps! Atom was the app he used to buy movie tickets online. Jason is 15 years old and this was the first time he saw the movie. He thought it was really a great movie and really enjoyed the music and it being a musical. His Mother Velia said that she loves musical so that her sons grew up with them and see them all the time. Her other son Austin is 18 years old and he truly enjoyed the movie, especially because he has taken a film class and was able to have a better appreciation for the movie. His favorite scene in the movie was the play about Tuptim’s version of Uncle Tom’s Cabin – which is presented as a traditional Siamese ballet. How they did the play during the movie and their adaptation of the book and he liked seeing how movies where done back then compared to today’s time. Austin said he had hoped that the King would have lived and married Anna and got rid of his other wives. Velia said it was sad part of the movie and she liked that there were no sex scenes and no violence, no complaints whatsoever and they all three enjoyed the movie immensely.
The Hollywood Times spoke with Mario Lucero and Jo Richardson. Mario said he found out about the movie on TCM, which he watches all the time! Way to go Mario. They are looking forward to attending the TCM Film Festival next April. Mario is looking forward to coming to see Strangelove.
Mario said he saw this movie during the “Movies until dawn” on channel five, how cool is that. He suffered from asthma as a child so he would stay up late and watch classic movies. Mario and Jo both loved being able to see it on the big screen, how it was meant to be seen with the full scope, great movie theater and the new remastered surround sound.
Mario’s favorite part was also the play about the book and very clever and he loved it as a kid as well. Jo also agreed that the play was her favorite scene. Jo said that she expected the King to come alive and not die. They both laughed during the Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera! part, every time. These two are truly big classic movie film goers and you can tell they love Turner Classic Movies.
Click on the link to find out about all the upcoming Fathom/TCM movies
There are some great movies coming up, so make a special date night and get out to see these classic movies. Also, take the teenage kids to see these great upcoming films, they will appreciate it.
Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is an American movie-oriented basic cable and satellite television network owned by the Turner Broadcasting System subsidiary of Time Warner. TCM is headquartered at the Techwood Campus in Atlanta, Georgia‘s Midtown business district.
Historically, the channel’s programming consisted mainly of featured classic theatrically released feature films from the Turner Entertainment film library – which comprises films from Warner Bros. Pictures (covering films released before 1950) and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (covering films released before May 1986). However, TCM now has licensing deals with other Hollywood film studios as well as its Time Warner sister company, Warner Bros. (which now controls the Turner Entertainment library and its own later films), and occasionally shows more recent films. The channel is available in United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, Latin America, France, Spain, Nordic countries, Middle East, Africa and Asia-Pacific (Wikipedia)
Turner Classic Movies essentially operates as a commercial-free service, with the only advertisements on the network being shown between features – which advertise TCM products, network promotions for upcoming special programs and the original trailers for films that are scheduled to be broadcast on TCM (particularly those that will air during the primetime hours), and featurettes about classic film actors and actresses. In addition to this, extended breaks between features are filled with theatrically released movie trailers and classic short subjects – from series such as The Passing Parade, Crime Does Not Pay, Pete Smith Specialties, and Robert Benchley – under the banner name TCM Extras (formerly One Reel Wonders). In 2007, some of the short films featured on TCM were made available for streaming on TCM’s website. Partly to allow these interstitials, Turner Classic Movies schedules its feature films either at the top of the hour or at :15, :30 or :45 minutes past the hour, instead of in timeslots of varying five-minute increments.
TCM’s film content has remained mostly uncut and uncolorized (with films natively filmed or post-produced in the format being those only ones presented in color), depending upon the original content of movies, particularly movies released after the 1968 implementation of the Motion Picture Association of America‘s ratings system and the concurrent disestablishment of the Motion Picture Production Code. Because of this, TCM is formatted similarly to a premium channel with certain films – particularly those made from the 1960s onward – sometimes featuring nudity, sexual content, violence and/or strong profanity; the network also features rating bumpers prior to the start of a program (most programs on TCM, especially films, are rated for content using the TV Parental Guidelines, in lieu of the MPAA’s rating system).
The network’s programming season runs from February until the following March of each year when a retrospective of Oscar-winning and Oscar-nominated movies is shown, called 31 Days of Oscar. As a result of its devoted format to classic feature films, viewers who are interested in tracing the career development of actresses such as Barbara Stanwyck or Greta Garbo or actors like Cary Grant or Humphrey Bogart have the unique opportunity to see most of the films that were made during their careers, from beginning to end. Turner Classic Movies presents many of its features in their original aspect ratio (widescreen or full screen) whenever possible – widescreen films broadcast on TCM are letterboxed on the network’s standard definition feed. TCM also regularly presents widescreen presentations of films not available in the format on any home video release.
Occasionally, TCM shows restored versions of films, particularly old silent films with newly commissioned musical soundtracks. Turner Classic Movies is also a major backer of the Descriptive Video Service (created by Boston PBS member station WGBH-TV), with many of the films aired on the network offering visual description for the blind and visually impaired, which is accessible through the second audio program option through most television sets, or a cable or satellite receiver.
About Fathom Events
Fathom Events is owned by a newly formed entity called AC JV, LLC. Fathom is the recognized leader in the alternative entertainment industry, offering a variety of one-of-a-kind entertainment events in movie theaters nationwide that include live, high-definition performances of the Metropolitan Opera, the performing arts, major sporting events, music concerts, comedy series, Broadway shows, original programming featuring entertainment’s biggest stars, socially relevant documentaries with audience Q&A and much more. Additionally, Fathom events take audiences behind-the-scenes and offer unique extras – creating the ultimate entertainment experience for fans of all ages. Co-owned by the three largest movie theater circuits in the United States, AMC Entertainment Inc. (NYSE: AMC), Cinemark Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: CNK) and Regal Entertainment Group (NYSE: RGC), Fathom’s live digital broadcast network (“DBN”) is the largest cinema broadcast network in North America, bringing live events to more than 820 locations in 177 Designated Market Areas® (including all of the top 50).
About The King and I
The King and I is a 1956 American musical film made by 20th Century Fox, 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, based in turn on the novel Anna and the King of Siam by Margaret Landon. That novel in turn was based on memoirs written by Anna Leonowens, who became school teacher to the children of King Mongkut of Siam in the early 1860s. Leonowens’ stories were autobiographical, although various elements of them have been called into question. The film stars Deborah Kerr and Yul Brynner.
Another film adaptation of the same musical, the animated film The King and I, was released in 1999.
Strong-willed, widowed schoolteacher Anna Leonowens arrives in Bangkok from Wales with her young son Louis after being summoned to tutor the many children of King Mongkut. The two are introduced to the intimidating Kralahome, King Mongkut’s confidante and Siam’s prime minister. The Kralahome explains he has come to escort them to the Royal Palace where they will live – a violation of Anna’s contract, which calls for them to live in a separate house outside the walls of the palace. Despite her threat to leave, Anna reluctantly disembarks with Louis and the Kralahome.
Anna is prepared to leave Siam with Louis when Lady Thiang says that the King is dying. He refuses to eat or sleep, isolating himself from everyone since the night of the banquet. Lady Thiang gives Anna an unfinished letter from the King that states his deep gratitude and respect for her, despite his harsh differences with her. This prompts her to go to his bedside in tears moments before their ship departs for Britain. The King gives Anna his ring, insisting that she wear it as she has always spoken the truth to him, persuading her and Louis to stay. King Mongkut then passes his title to Prince Chulalongkorn, who then issues a proclamation that brings an end to slavery and states that all subjects will no longer bow down to him. Satisfied that he is leaving his kingdom in capable hands, the King quietly dies with only Anna and the Kralahome noticing, (Wikipedia)