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State Fair

State Fair(1945)

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The film's title card reads, "Twentieth Century-Fox presents Rodgers and Hammerstein's State Fair." According to Hollywood Reporter news items, Mischa Auer was set for a "featured part," but he does not appear in the completed film. Other Hollywood Reporter news items noted that Maureen O'Hara and Kathryn Grayson were considered for the picture, and that Janet Blair was tested for the part of "Emily," which was originally "inked" for Alice Faye. Although other Hollywood Reporter news items include Marguerite Belle and Harvey Karels in the cast, their appearance in the completed film has not been confirmed. In November 1943, Hollywood Reporter announced that Twentieth Century-Fox was contemplating hiring Agnes DeMille as the film's dance director. According to information in the Twentieth Century-Fox Records of the Legal Department, located at the UCLA Arts-Special Collections Library, some sequences were shot on location at Russell Ranch, King Farm and Sherwood Forest, CA.
       According to information in the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library, the Breen Office rejected two scripts, dated May 8, 1944 and November 16, 1944, due to "the inescapable suggestion of an illicit sex affair between Emily and Wayne." During a conference between producer William Perlberg and PCA officials, it was agreed that "there would be no suggestion of any sex affair between Emily and Wayne from the reactions of either of these or from the father." The legal records reveal that the studio received written permission from Ronald Colman, Charles Boyer and Bing Crosby to include impersonations of their voices in the song "It Might as Well Be Spring." Modern sources state that Lou Ann Hogan was the singing voice double for Jeanne Crain. The picture received an Academy Award nomination for Best Scoring of a Musical Picture, and Rodgers and Hammerstein were awarded an Oscar for Best Song for "It Might as Well Be Spring."
       Twentieth Century-Fox previously filmed a non-musical version of Phil Stong's novel in 1933, directed by Henry King and starring Will Rogers, Janet Gaynor and Lew Ayres. In 1962, the studio again remade State Fair as a musical featuring the original Rodgers and Hammerstein's songs, as well as additional songs by Rodgers. The 1962 film was directed by Jos Ferrer and starred Pat Boone, Ann-Margret and Alice Faye (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40; F3.4304 and AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1961-70; F6.4688). On June 24, 1946, Dick Haymes, Jeanne Crain and Vivian Blaine reprised their roles for a Lux Radio Theatre broadcast of the story. The Hallmark Playhouse broadcast a radio presentation of the story on August 26, 1948. The 1945 film was broadcast on television under the title It Happened One Summer, and in 1976, CBS aired a one-hour pilot for a proposed series, based on Stong's novel and co-produced by Frankovich-Self Productions and Twentieth Century-Fox Television. The pilot was not picked up, however, and the series was not produced. Rodgers and Hammerstein's musical version of the story, which was the only score that they wrote directly for the screen, opened on Broadway on March 27, 1996.