World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Lillian Russell (film)

Article Id: WHEBN0014202380
Reproduction Date:

Title: Lillian Russell (film)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Academy Award for Best Production Design, 1940 in music, Don Ameche, Nigel Bruce, Alice Faye, Eddie Foy, Sr., Lillian Russell, Una O'Connor (actress), Edward Arnold (actor), Lew Fields
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Lillian Russell (film)

Lillian Russell
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Irving Cummings
Produced by Darryl F. Zanuck
Written by William Anthony McGuire
Starring Alice Faye
Don Ameche
Henry Fonda
Edward Arnold
Release date(s) May 24, 1940 (1940-05-24)
Running time 127 minutes
Country United States
Language English

Lillian Russell is a 1940 biographical film of the life of the singer and actress. The screenplay was by William Anthony McGuire. The film was directed by Irving Cummings and produced by Darryl F. Zanuck. It starred Alice Faye in the title role, Don Ameche, Henry Fonda and Edward Arnold as Diamond Jim Brady.

Richard Day and Joseph C. Wright were nominated for an Academy Award for Best Art Direction, Black-and-White. [1]


Helen Leonard (Faye) has a beautiful voice. As she grows up, she trains to become an opera singer. Her instructor, however, informs her that her voice is pleasing, but not suitable for grand opera. Returning home one day, she and her grandmother (Westley) are saved by a handsome young man, newspaperman Alexander Moore (Fonda). Meanwhile, Helen's mother, Cynthia (Peterson), has political aspirations, but only receives a handful of votes for mayor.

While singing one evening, Helen is overheard by vaudeville impresario Tony Pastor (Carrillo), who hires her to sing at his theater. She is given a new name, Lillian Russell, and quickly rises to fame as the toast of New York. As the years pass, Lillian becomes one of the most revered stars in America. She has many suitors, including financier Diamond Jim Brady (Arnold), Jesse Lewisohn (William), and composer Edward Solomon (Ameche). She eventually marries Edward and they move to London, where Gilbert and Sullivan are writing an operetta especially for her.

Alexander Moore returns and makes a contract with Lillian to write stories about her rise to fame. But tragedy soon strikes when Edward dies one evening while composing a song for her. Lillian cancels the interviews and makes an appearance in the show, singing the song her husband composed for her, "Blue Lovebird."

Lillian returns to America and is, by this time, the greatest stage attraction of the century. Alexander comes to see Lillian after a new show and the two are happily reunited.



Many pre-1900s songs were used for the film, including "Ma Blushin' Rosie", "Come Down Ma Evenin' Star", and "After the Ball". Several new songs were also written for the film, including "Adored One" and most notably, "Blue Lovebird", composed by Gus Kahn and Bronislau Kaper.

See also

  • Diamond Jim, a 1935 film starring Edward Arnold, again as Jim Brady


External links

  • TCM Movie Database
  • Internet Movie Database

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from School eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.