Sunday, May 19, 2013

Auntie Mame

1958 American Feature

Cast: Rosalind Russell, Jan Handzlik, Coral Browne, Peggy Cass, Forrest Tucker, Roger Smith, Joanna Barnes and Yuki Shimoda
Director: Morton DaCosta
Writers: Betty Comden and Adolph Green, based on the novel Auntie Mame: An Irreverent Escapade by Patrick Dennis and the play by Jerome Lawrence and Robert Edwin Lee

An orphan goes to live with his aunt, a flamboyant, exuberant Manhattanite with a unique zest for life.


  • Internet Movie Database: 7.7/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes - Critics: 92% / Audience: 91% 
  • OMG rating: 9/10

  • DVD: Available
  • Soundtrack: Available
  • Books: Available


  • Academy Award nominations for Best Picture, Actress (Russell), Supporting Actress (Cass), Color Cinematography, Color Art Direction and Film Editing.
  • BAFTA Award nomination for Best Foreign Actress (Russell).
  • Golden Globe Awards for Best Motion Picture - Comedy and Actress - Comedy/Musical (Russell); also nominated for Supporting Actress (Cass).

  • Patrick Dennis's original semi-autobiographical novel Auntie Mame: An Irreverent Escapade was first published in 1955. It was a runaway best seller, setting records on the New York Times bestseller list, with more than two million copies in print during its initial publication. In 1958, Dennis wrote a sequel titled Around the World with Auntie Mame.
  • The stage adaptation of Auntie Mame opened on Broadway in 1956 and was nominated for four Tony Awards, with Peggy Cass winning for Best Featured Actress. Along with Cass, Rosalind Russell, Jan Handzlik and Yuki Shimoda recreated their Broadway roles for the film version.
  • The highest grossing American film of 1959.
  • A stage musical version of the novel, titled Mame, opened on Broadway in 1966. The book was by Jerome Lawrence and Robert Edwin Lee (who also wrote the stage play adaptation) with music and lyrics by Jerry Herman. Angela Lansbury and Bea Arthur starred and won two of the show's eight Tony Award nominations. Lansbury returned to the role in 1983 for a short-lived Broadway revival.
  • The musical Mame was also adapted for the screen, in 1974. Lucille Ball starred (her final film role), with Bea Arthur and Jane Connell recreating their stage roles.
  • In 2000, Auntie Mame was ranked #94 on the American Film Institute's "100 Years, 100 Laughs" list.
  • In 2005, "Life is a banquet, and most poor suckers are starving to death!" was ranked #93 on the American Film Institute's "100 Years, 100 Movie Quotes" list.

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