Dance, Girl, Dance

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Dorothy Arzner, the sole woman to work as a director in the Hollywood studio system of the 1930s and early ’40s, brings a subversive feminist sensibility to this juicily entertaining backstage melodrama. A behind-the-footlights look at friendship,... read more
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Dorothy Arzner, the sole woman to work as a director in the Hollywood studio system of the 1930s and early ’40s, brings a subversive feminist sensibility to this juicily entertaining backstage melodrama. A behind-the-footlights look at friendship, jealousy, and ambition in the ruthless world of show business, Dance, Girl, Dance follows the intertwining fates of two chorus girls: a starry-eyed dancer (Maureen O’Hara) who dreams of making it as a ballerina, and the brassy gold digger (a scene-stealing Lucille Ball) who becomes her rival both on the stage and in love. The rare Hollywood picture of the era to deal seriously with issues of female artistic struggle and self-actualization, Arzner’s film is a rich, fascinating statement from an auteur decades ahead of her time.

Original Release

08/30/1940

US Release

08/30/1940

Links

Cast

Maureen O'Hara Judy O'Brien
Lucille Ball Bubbles
Louis Hayward Jimmy Harris
Virginia Field Elinor Harris
Maria Ouspenskaya Madame Lydia Basilova / Madame Basilova
Ralph Bellamy Steve Adams
Mary Carlisle Sally
Katharine Alexander Miss Olmstead
Edward Brophy Dwarfie Humblewinger / Dwarfie
Walter Abel Judge
(see additional cast & crew)

Directors

Dorothy Arzner, Roy Del Ruth

Writers

Tess Slesinger, Vicki Baum, Frank Davis

Cast

Maureen O'Hara Judy O'Brien
Lucille Ball Bubbles
Louis Hayward Jimmy Harris
Virginia Field Elinor Harris
Maria Ouspenskaya Madame Lydia Basilova / Madame Basilova
Ralph Bellamy Steve Adams
Mary Carlisle Sally
Katharine Alexander Miss Olmstead
Edward Brophy Dwarfie Humblewinger / Dwarfie
Walter Abel Judge
Harold Huber Hoboken Gent
Ernest Truex Bailey #1
Chester Clute Bailey #2
Lorraine Krueger Dolly
Lola Jensen Daisy
Emma Dunn Mrs. Simpson
Sidney Blackmer Puss in Boots
Vivien Fay The Ballerina / Ballerina
Ludwig Stössel Caesar
Ernö Verebes Fitch

Producers

Harry E. Edington Executive Producer
Erich Pommer Producer

Editors

Robert Wise

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