White Christmas Trivia

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List of facts about White Christmas.

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Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye and Rosemary Clooney all died at the same age: 74. (imdb.com)

This was 1954's most successful film. The second most successful was The Caine Mutiny, which featured Rosemary Clooney's husband, José Ferrer. (imdb.com)

Cast members Bing Crosby and Rosemary Clooney both have descendants in the Star Trek series. Bing's granddaughter, Denise Crosby appeared in Star Trek: The Next Generation, while Clooney's son, Miguel Ferrer appeared in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock. (imdb.com)

Tne musical stage adaptation premiered in San Francisco in 2004 followed by productions in Boston, Buffalo, Los Angeles, Detroit, Louisville and the United Kingdom. The Broadway production opened on November 23, 2008 at the Marquis Theater and ran for 53 performances earning two Tony Award nominations. The musical was revived at the Marquis Theater for the 2009 Christmas season. (imdb.com)

Premiered at the famed Radio City Music Hall in New York City. (imdb.com)

The "Ed Harrison TV Show" that Bing Crosby appears on is a reference to the "Ed Sullivan Show" that featured known stars, new talent and vaudeville acts. Ed Harrison was played by Johnny Grant who did not have a long acting career in the movies, but was the honorary Mayor of Hollywood, California who officiated over the unveiling's of Stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame from the early 1960's until his death in 2008. (imdb.com)

Third of three films to feature Bing Crosby singing "White Christmas". (imdb.com)

Danny Kaye was a last-minute replacement for the originally cast Donald O`Connor.

The first film produced in Paramount`s wide screen process "VistaVision".

# # The TV camera in the Ed Harrison Show scene is a real one (a classic RCA monochrome; the cameraman is hiding the telltale logo with his hand), but the call sign atop it was real as well - it was that of Channel 4, NBC`s (and thus RCA`s) flagship station in New York, which changed its call sign to WRCA-TV the year of the film`s release. (They adopted their current WNBC-TV calls in 1960.)

The original idea was to reunite Fred Astaire and Bing Crosby, as they had been successful in Holiday Inn (1942). Astaire refused, as he had "retired" at the time, so the part was reworked for Donald O`Connor. O`Connor pulled out, and the part was reworked for Danny Kaye.

# # The photo that Vera-Ellen shows to Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye of her brother, Bennie, is actually a photo of Carl `Alfalfa` Switzer.

An myth persists that all of Vera-Ellen`s costumes, down to her robe and sleepwear, were designed to cover her neck, which had been damaged by anorexia. This is untrue. Seeing her in the premiere footage for _A Star Is Born (1954)_, she is wearing a low cut gown and her neck is clearly visible.

The Vermont inn is the remodeled Connecticut inn set of Holiday Inn (1942).

# # The song "Snow" was written by Irving Berlin a while before the film was made but with a different lyric and title and indeed subject (it had nothing to do whatsoever with snow): it was called "Free" and it was recorded by the composer.

# # The "Sisters" comedy act that Bing Crosbyand Danny Kaye perform was not originally in the script. They were clowning around on the set and the director thought it was so funny that it was written in.

Even though Betty was the elder of the Haynes sisters, Rosemary Clooney was actually seven years younger than Vera-Ellen in real life.

Vera-Ellen did not actually sing any of the songs for the movie. Trudy Stevens sang all her songs (with the exception of the song "Sisters", on which Rosemary Clooney sang both parts). Vera`s own voice is heard singing only in the "arrival in Pine Tree" scene at the railroad station where the quartet reprises the opening lines of "Snow".

# # For The song "Gee, I Wish I Was Back In The Army" there is a small section which say`s "Jolson, Hope And Benny all for free" This is a reference to three wartime entertainers; Al Jolson, Bob Hope and Jack Benny. The original words were "Crosby, Hope and Jolson all for free", with Bing Crosby in the film it would seem rather weird and it would most likely break the mood.

Released in 1954, it became the top grossing film of that year.

Rosemary Clooney was not allowed to record her voice for the soundtrack album because it was being released by a record company (Decca) other than hers (Columbia). She was replaced on the soundtrack album by Peggy Lee.

# # The song, "What Can You Do with a General?", which Leonard Maltin calls Berlin`s least memorable tune, was originally written for an unproduced project called Stars on My Shoulders.

According to Rosemary Clooney, the "midnight snack" scene in which Bob Wallace expounds on his theory of what foods cause what dreams was almost entirely improvised.

Many of Bob Wallace`s more unusual turns of phrase were lifted straight from Bing Crosby`s own speech patterns.

The train scene had to be shot at Fox, the only studio to house a standing train set.

Although this movie musical has been a beloved favorite for decades -- especially at Christmastime -- there has never been an official "original soundtrack" album released in any form. Decca controlled the soundtrack rights, but Rosemary Clooney was under exclusive contract to Columbia, who would not allow her to appear on a competing label. As a result, Decca and Columbia each released their own White Christmas albums in 1954, although neither is an official soundtrack. Decca`s album featured the movie cast minus Rosemary Clooney, with Peggy Lee taking over Clooney`s part. Columbia`s album had Rosemary Clooney singing 8 songs from the film. Both albums have been issued on CD in recent years.

Though Rosemary Clooney couldn`t be on the original album due to contractual conflicts, she recorded the song "Sisters" with her real-life sister, Betty Clooney. On the official album, Peggy Lee recorded the song and sang both parts via overdubbing, a new technology in 1954.

# # When Bob Wallace (Bing Crosby) appears on the Ed Harrison TV show, he is briefly shown - as if the audience is watching him at home - on a 1950s television set. The brand of the television is DuMont, one of the first manufacturers of TVs in America and the name of TV network from the 1950s. `Jackie Gleason`, Morey Amsterdam and Bishop Fulton J. Sheen were some of the notables that began on the DuMont Network, which ceased operations in 1956.


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