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Frank

Maybe it was Kate Hepburn who said about Astaire and Rogers, "He gives her class and she gives him sex." Oddly enough, I always thought Astaire could be seduced, but not Kelly, so I had a crush on him. Fred never let his neck show, always had a tie, or as ragamuffin Finian, a kind of elegant rag ascot.

In "Finian's Rainbow" he does a solo step routine on an open railroad car, climbing crates of freight and the chorus (townspeople) are so much in adoration watching him perform. "Rainbow" got a bad rap when it opened in wide release. It was shot in regular Panavision and Warner Bros thought it tested so well, they roadshowed it 70MM. (Roadshows had advance tickets in advance for musicals with intermissions like "Star", "Funny Girl" and "My Fair Lady." Unfortunately, they didn't leave room for the 5.1 stereo track, so they chopped off part of the frame for the sound which meant the lower part of the frame got chopped off in order to keep the Wide-Screen proportions. All the critics said, "Here's a dancing musical but they don't show feet!" When Judith Crist wrote, "Fred Astaire should hang up his dancing shoes" he took it so seriously he never danced again on film except for a little dance number with Kelly in "That's Entertainment." The DVD corrects the missing bottom of the frame. The director is Francis Ford Coppola and he did a damned good job.

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