What is this?

One night I was talking to Dave Leigh & others in Artifiction. The topic of a top 10 "hottie" list came up, and we discussed who would be on our lists. I had a good idea of who would probably make my list, but had never actually typed one up. As I sat down to make a rough draft, names kept popping into my head, and I quickly ran out of places on my list. After I narrowed it down to 10, I decided that I might as well post the others I listed. Every now & then I'll add a few more to the list. I don't really expect anyone to keep up with this or to make this a regular project. Posting only 10 seems too...incomplete...and it would bug me to have it unfinished.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

#5 Cyd Charisse

2 of the best female dancers from the golden age of musicals are back to back on my list. Cyd Charisse is just plain sexy all the time. There is no girl next girl or Tom boy in this lady, and the dances she did on film normally left men with their tongues hanging down to their chest. It's a shame that a lot of her more well know routines aren't available on YouTube for embed. For instance both of her numbers from "Singin' In The Rain" show off her legs more so than any other off the top of my head. (clip 1 & clip 2)

My favorite Cyd film is probably "Silk Stockings". Greta Garbo was even put to shame with the amount of sex she brought to that role. If I was to make a list of my top 5 musicals of all time...Cyd would be in at least 3 of them. Aside from "Singin' In The Rain" & "Silk Stockings", she was also in the Fred Astaire classic "The Band Wagon". If you take Cyd out of these films they would still be good movies, but I don't think any of them would be GREAT.

Watch It:
The Ziegfeld Follies (1945)
The Harvey Girls (1946)
Singin' In The Rain (1952)
The Band Wagon (1953)
Silk Stockings (1957)
It's Always Fair Weather (1955)
Meet Me In Las Vegas (1956)
Something's Got To Give (1962) - never completed
The Silencers (1966)

More Info: (Source)
- Born Tula Ellice Finklea.
- Took her name Cyd from a nickname originated from her brother. Initially he could not say sister and called her Sid.
- Her second husband was singer Tony Martin, and they became a popular song-and-dance couple on TV & in nightclubs/cabaret shows after their heyday in film.
- Was "the other woman" in Marilyn Monroe's last and unfinished film, Something's Got To Give (1962).
- In 1952 she had a $5-million insurance policy accepted on her legs.
- Lost out on two of MGM's biggest movie musical roles. She fell and injured her knee during a dance leap on a film which forced her out of the role of Nadina Hale in Easter Parade (1948). Ann Miller replaced her. She also had to relinquish the lead femme role in An American in Paris (1951) due to pregnancy. Leslie Caron took over the part and became a star.
- Was offered the lead role of Jo Stockton in Funny Face (1957) but declined. The role was eventually played by Audrey Hepburn.
- Said her husband could tell who she had been dancing with that day on an MGM set. If she came home covered with bruises on her, it was the very physically-demanding Gene Kelly, if not it was the smooth and agile Fred Astaire.
- Fred Astaire, in his 1959 memoir "Steps In Time," referred to Cyd as "beautiful dynamite".

The Girl Hunt (from "The Band Wagon")
"I can watch Astaire anytime. I don't think he ever made a wrong move. He was a perfectionist. He would work on a few bars for hours until it was just the way he wanted it. Gene was the same way. They both wanted perfection, even though they were completely different personalities." - Cyd

Dancing In The Dark (from "The Band Wagon")
If the embed stops working, here's another link to the video.

Frankie And Johnny (from "Meet Me In Las Vegas")

Dance #1
I don't know the name of this number, but it's from the 1958 film "Party Girl".

The Red Blues (from "Silk Stockings")
Really wish I could find some other routines from this film on YouTube.

Feel free to post your own top 10 babes in the comments...or just complain about my picks.

1 comment:

  1. I know you don't like Brigadoon, but I quite liked her in that as well. Though she was hot enough to melt lead, Cyd never came across as trashy. She was 100% pure, undiluted lady.

    I don't care who you are, she's out of your league.