Stanley Donen Overview:

Legendary director, Stanley Donen, was born on Apr 13, 1924 in Columbia, SC. His best known films include Singin' in the Rain (Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds), Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (Jane Powell, Howard Keel), It's Always Fair Weather (Gene Kelly, Cyd Charisse), Funny Face (Fred Astaire, Audrey Hepburn), and The Pajama Game (Doris Day, John Raitt), Royal Wedding (Fred Astaire, Jane Powell), Indiscreet (Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman), Charade (Cary Grant, Audrey Hepburn), and Arabesque (Gregory Peck, Sophia Loren). Donen died at the age of 94 on Feb 21, 2019 in New York, New York from heart failure .


Stanley Donen began his career as a dancer on Broadway at the age of 16, but already had ambitions to become a choreographer. Joining MGM in 1943, he moved from assistant choreographer to choreographer the following year, working with Gene Kelly for the first time in films in Cover Girl in 1944 (although they had appeared together on stage in Pal Joey and Best Foot Forward).

Five years later, Donen and Kelly co-directed a film together for the first time (On the Town), and it was clear that exhilaration was the keystone of Donen's credo. The musical numbers in On the Town were brought to sustained musical perfection, and the performances are overwhelmingly winning, especially from Kelly, Ann Miller and Vera-Ellen.

For the next ten years, Donen was king of Hollywood musicals. The brightest and best of them are Singin' in the Rain, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, It's Always Fair Weather, Funny Face, and The Pajama Game. These films contain some of the most brilliantly staged musical numbers of all time.

(Source: available at Amazon Quinlan's Film Directors).



Donen was never nominated for an Academy Award. However he won one Honorary Award in 1997 in appreciation of a body of work marked by grace, elegance, wit and visual innovation .

BlogHub Articles:

Indiscreet (1958): In Honor of

By 4 Star Film Fan on Jul 20, 2020 From 4 Star Films

Note: This post was written soon after the passing of . Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman on adjacent title cards is all you should need to watch the movie. Although I came for an entirely different name because this past spring we lost — the last remnant of Hollywood... Read full article

Fashion vs. Empathicalism: Audrey Hepburn in ‘Funny Face’ (, 1957)

By Virginie Pronovost on May 4, 2019 From The Wonderful World of Cinema

My article on Funny Face written for the Salute to Audrey Hepburn Blogathon! Published on my blog Three Enchanting Ladies Three Enchanting Ladies The following statement is a fact: Audrey Hepburn was one of the most iconic, lovely and stylish actresses to have ever graced the screen. It?s not surpr... Read full article

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954, )

By Andrew Wickliffe on Nov 26, 2015 From The Stop Button

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers is a lot of fun. The songs are always pretty good, with some standouts and the dance numbers are fantastic (ditto the choreographed fight sequences–director Donen and cinematographer George J. Folsey shoot it all beautifully), and the cast is likable. But there&... Read full article

The Best Films of

By 4 Star Film Fan on Mar 18, 2015 From 4 Star Films

1. Singin’ in the Rain 2. Charade 3. On the Town 4. Seven Brides for Seven Brothers 5. Two for the Road 6. Funny Face 7. Royal Wedding 8. Indiscreet 9. Bedazzled 10. It’s Always Fair Weather... Read full article

The Best Films of

By 4 Star Film Fan on Mar 18, 2015 From 4 Star Films

“I think of myself as a meat-and-potatoes kind of director.” Well-known Collaborations: Gene Kelly and Fred Astaire in musicals... Read full article

See all articles

Stanley Donen Quotes:

No Quote for this person.

Share this page:
Visit the Classic Movie Hub Blog CMH
Also an Aries

See All Aries >>
Honorary Award Oscar 1997

See more Academy Awards>>
Stanley Donen Facts
Was dubbed "The King of the Hollywood Musical" by David Quinlan.

Directed the video for Lionel Ritchie's song Dancing on the Ceiling cause of his experience directing Fred Astaire's dancing on the ceiling routine from the movie Royal Wedding.

Father of Peter Donen, Joshua Donen and Mark Donen.

See All Related Facts >>