Romance on the High Seas

You are invited to rate and comment on the 39 films of Doris Day.

How do you rate "Romance on the High Seas"?

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0
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2
3%
Good
15
23%
Excellent
47
73%
 
Total votes: 64

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Musiclover
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Musiclover »

Just perused a copy of David Kaufman's biography of Mary Martin, in which he writes that she was Jack Warner's first choice for the role Doris played in ROTHS. I think Martin would've been miscast as Georgia Garrett, due to her age for one thing. It's our good fortune that she (according to Kaufman) turned down the part!

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jmichael
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by jmichael »

That’s interesting info, Judy. I wonder how accurate it is because we’ve already heard a half dozen conflicting versions of who was considered to play Georgia Garrett before Doris came along. If recall correctly, weren’t Lauren Bacall, Judy Garland, Janis Paige and Betty Hutton considered or actively pursued before Doris tested for the part?

I keep meaning to read David’s book on Mary Martin but haven’t done so yet.

Thanks for sharing this tidbit with us.

Michael
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howard
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by howard »

It's a wonderful book, Michael. Like the Doris Day book, it is extremely well researched.
Like Irene Dunne done.

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Johnny
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Johnny »

In The Doris Day Scrapbook, there is a letter to the author Alan Gelb from Doris' co-star Janis Paige about working with Doris in Romance On The High Seas and then again twelve years later in the film, Please Don't Eat The Daisies.

Ms Paige writes:

"...She really broke the mold of prettiness that prevailed in those first years of ours at Warner Bros. She was not the traditional type of star and she had an incredible instinct for acting.She was totally natural in front of the camera and I always felt she had a major talent for both acting and singing. I am sure her years of fronting a band gave her a great deal of poise and assurance before she reached motion pictures. For any of us who worked clubs or gotten any of that stuff called experience were blessed. There is no replacement for it. She was always a hard worker and would try things in her performance to be better. I admire her enormously and always have. She keeps herself in top condition and looks great.

To me the atmosphere on the set was always one of hard work and hat's the way I like it. She is totally professional and always was. I think she handled her husband's death and the ensuing problems with dignity and courage. Having lost my own husband seven months ago, I understand what one goes through at a time like that....there is not much more that I can add except to say that her co-workers were very loyal to her and everyone was treated with respect and affection. I give her an A plus."

These are particularly good words when one considers that Miss Paige first met and worked with Doris when Doris was making her motion picture début;,ten years later, Doris was a great box-office attraction. It's nice to know that she managed to be consistent.

My own observation from reading about Doris, I have the impression that she has a strong sense of self. Thinking about a photo of Doris as child in a dance uniform, she has a look of confidence in her stance that seemed to follow her in her professional life. More importantly, Doris's joy in her work is always present even in difficult circumstances.
Johnny

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Peter Flapper
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Peter Flapper »

Hi Johnny,

Thanks for that reply of Janis Paige. A great read!

P

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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Jas1 »

Thanks for that Johnny, all the more impressive considering:-

Doris got the Georgia Garrett role [over Janis]; and,

Doris [on screen] played the role Janis created on stage [Babe Williams]; and,

Doris was at the top of her game come Daisies time- when Janis was reduced to co-starring film roles.



Janis Paige always had style and class and elegance.

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jmichael
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by jmichael »

Yes, thank you Johnny, for posting her gracious tribute to Doris.

I've always loved Janis Paige. She was a scene stealer and ideally suited to play the sassy bad girl or the romantic rival to the leading lady. I think what she says about Doris shows how classy both of them are. As Jas pointed out, there was apparently never any jealousy or tension between them even though Doris got the Georgia Garrett part (which Paige tested for) and the Babe Williams role in Pajama Game.

Scott Dreier was very close to getting Paige to sit down for an interview about Doris for the DVD he produced a few years ago. Unfortunately, they weren't able to make the scheduling work out and it never happened.

Paige may not be a household name but she represents the best qualities of the golden age of Hollywood.

Michael
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howard
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by howard »

I agree, Michael. Janis Paige was a classy performer, and multi-talented to boot. She was a good singer, a fine actress, and she stole every scene she appeared in in "Please Don't Eat the Daisies." I think she deserved a nomination for that role.
Like Irene Dunne done.

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Johnny
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Johnny »

Excellent observation Howard!

It prompted me to think about past and present actors who have been overlooked and underappreciated by the Academy Awards. Janis Paige truly deserved s nomination for Please Don't Eat The Daisies.

Since it is Academy Awards nomination season, I will introduce a new topic in OFF TOPICS focusing on this subject.
Johnny

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Musiclover
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Musiclover »

One of the final singles Doris recorded with Les Brown in August, 1946, was "Sooner or Later." Its lyricist was Ray Gilbert, who passed away 30 years later. His widow is Janis Paige.

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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Jas1 »

Betty Grable considered too for the Janis Paige part in Daisies = all these possibilities really intrigue me - though JP was fabulous in that sultry role.

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Johnny
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Johnny »

Thank you Musiclover and Jas for your interesting comments. I had not heard about Betty Grable being a choice. I think Janis Paige was perfect in the role.

I am currently searching for books that focus on casting stories for films made in the 1950's and 1960's.

I have a lead on a book called How The Greatest Casting Decisions Were Made and Why. I am not sure it covers the 50's and 60's.
Johnny

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Musiclover
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Musiclover »

Johnny, that book does include casting info about some '50s and '60s films. It's available at Amazon.com for a very modest price.

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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Jas1 »

Thanks for the heads up re the casting book - must check myself.

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howard
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by howard »

Just watched a YouTube video of the "Put 'EM In a Box" number, and came upon this interesting tid bit:

"I was friendly with Page Cavanaugh and Al Viola in their later years and Page told me they recorded three slightly different versions of this song with Doris. The director Michael Curtiz came into the studio to listen to them and said they were all wrong...he wanted it to be angrier. The recording engineer said he had one more take which confused Doris and the trio. Then he just replayed the first take but turned up the volume loud and Curtiz said PERFECT!!!"
Like Irene Dunne done.

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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Jas1 »

That's interesting Howard, I love this song - and the 2 distinct versions as in the released film. The hipper [first] one and the more romantic second outing.

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Johnny
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Johnny »

It is a new year and it seems fitting to comment on Doris' first film, Romance On The High Seas.

I discovered some hidden gems in this information on Wikipedia about Romance On The High Seas:

"Director Michael Curtiz requirements were that the actress had to be beautiful, that she had to sing, and dance, and above all she must have a "sparkle". After dozens of young women failed to meet Curtiz's specifications, Doris Day was finally introduced to him. He immediately perked up and exclaimed, "This is it. This is the most everything came I have ever seen".

......In later years, Village Voice critic, Molly Haskell, asserted that "whenever I remember Doris Day roles..it is as one of the few movie heroines who had to work for a living". In Romance On The High Seas, Day's first film character, Georgia Garrett, is indeed a poor, working class chanteuse whose favourite pastime is dreaming of ocean voyages she thinks she'll never enjoy.

....
In his laudatory review of a live singing performance by Doris Day at the Gregory Gym in Austin, Texas in the winter of 1949, entertainment critic Steve Perkins of the Austin American- Statesman reminded his readers of the race review of Romance On The High Seas he had written the previous summer through the following excerpt: "A new leading lady has popped up out of nowhere and it will probably
be a long time before she pops down again. Doris Day who already achieved a small measure off fame with dance bands and on records, is a vocalist who can act, sing sweet and look pretty all at the same time".

I find it interesting reading original Doris Day film reviews. It is clear in the 1948 reviews that most critics found Doris Day's charasmatic personality and singing style major strengths that would help her climb to stardom. Twelve years later Doris was the number one box-office star in the world.
Johnny

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jmichael
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by jmichael »

Still one of the most sparkling film debuts ever.

Michael
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Peter Flapper
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Peter Flapper »

Hi all,

Always a film that can cheer me up. What a great start for a movie career. Doris was amazing.


P

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Jas1
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Re: Romance on the High Seas

Unread post by Jas1 »

I love all about this film, the script (albeit silly) but so enjoyable and funny. Of course the music was top notch and Doris looked great - love her early WB clothes, not so much those from 1949-52 - but then all clothes / styles at this time were not the best (in my opinion) - oh and I will refrain from mentioning Gertrude Wheeler's hair do on D! 8)

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