State Fair

State Fair

Wally Cox's first film.

Barbara Eden and Andy Williams tested for roles.

Director José Ferrer son Gabriel later married Pat Boone's daughter Debbie.

In 1960, comic Dick Shawn was announced for the role eventually played by Bobby Darin.

One of the Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II songs from the 1945 movie score could not be used in this picture - "All I Owe Ioway," since, of course, the state fair had been transplanted from Iowa to Texas. In the 1962 film, Richard Rodgers provided both music and lyrics for an equivalent number, "The Little Things in Texas," sung by Alice Faye, Tom Ewell and a children's chorus.

Returning to Twentieth Century-Fox after nearly 17 years, Alice Faye had hoped to reunite with two friends from her Fox heyday - Don Ameche (in the role of Abel Frake) and director Henry King.

The film was to be shot in Todd-AO, a 65mm negative process where 70mm prints are struck for theatrical presentation. The extra 5 millimeters carried the magnetic six-track stereophonic soundtrack. Some test footage as well as a few exterior shots were filmed in 65mm, but for some reason, possibly budgetary, the process was switched over at the last minute to 35mm Cinemascope. The 65mm material still exists and is listed in the Fox stock film library.

The race scene takes place in Oklahoma City at the Oklahoma State Fair Raceway. You can almost make out the Great Plains Coca-Cola Bottling facility on May Ave that stands to this day. The grandstands were torn down in August of 2010.

The stage version of "State Fair" opened at the Music Box Theater on March 27, 1996 and ran for 110 performances.

This was Ann-Margret's very first feature film; it was shot before Pocketful of Miracles. The latter is now considered her first film because it was released before State Fair.