Porgy and Bess Overview:

Porgy and Bess (1959) was a Musical - Drama Film directed by Rouben Mamoulian and Otto Preminger and produced by Samuel Goldwyn.

Porgy and Bess was inducted into the National Film Registry in 2011.

Academy Awards 1959 --- Ceremony Number 32 (source: AMPAS)

AwardRecipientResult
Best CinematographyLeon ShamroyNominated
Best Costume DesignIrene SharaffNominated
Best Music - ScoringAndre Previn, Ken DarbyWon
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Musical Monday: Porgy and Bess (1959)

on Feb 25, 2019 From Comet Over Hollywood

It?s no secret that the Hollywood Comet loves musicals. In 2010, I revealed I had seen 400 movie musicals over the course of eight years. Now that number is over 500. To celebrate and share this musical love, here is my weekly feature about musicals. This week?s musical: Porgy and Bess (1959) ? Musi... Read full article


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Sidney Poitier had adamantly refused to take the role of Porgy when offered it by Samuel Goldwyn because he felt it perpetuated stereotypes of blacks of a bygone era. However, he was convinced to accept the project by friends and colleagues because a refusal of a Samuel Goldwyn offer would probably have ended his career in films.
Dorothy Dandridge and Pearl Bailey were also reluctant to be in the film, until they heard that Poitier and Sammy Davis, Jr. were going to be in it. Sammy Davis, Jr. was the only one of the four leads who was actually eager to play his role in the movie.
Producer Samuel Goldwyn was notorious for "playing with film" during the editing stages. Director Otto Preminger resented Goldwyn's meddling in the film editing, so he shot nearly all of it in long takes, with the camera panning in and out and the camera angles seldom changing during takes. There were also few closeups, and none of the kinds of closeups found in non-widescreen films. This effectively prevented Goldwyn from incorporating his own photography ideas into the film. Preminger's approach was precisely the opposite of Trevor Nunn, who shot his 1993 videotape television version of "Porgy and Bess" in the style of a non-widescreen film.
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Best Music - Scoring Oscar 1959











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National Film Registry

Porgy and Bess

Released 1959
Inducted 2011
(Sound)




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Also directed by Otto Preminger




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Also produced by Samuel Goldwyn




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Also released in 1959




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More "Book-Based" films



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