The Merry Widow. 1952. USA. Directed by. 105 min.
Screenplay by Sonya Levien, William Ludwig. Music by Franz Lehar. New lyrics by Paul Francis Webster. Dances by Jack Cole. With Lana Turner, Fernando Lamas, Gwen Verdon. With a respectful nod to Albertina Rasch's celebrated choreography for Ernst Lubitsch's 1934 adaptation of the Franz Lehar operetta, Cole fuses two non-dancing MGM stars, Turner and Lamas, in an epic waltz number. The director, Curtis Bernhardt, appears to have allowed Cole’s cake-frosting color design for the climactic waltz number to dominate the entire film, while Gwen Verdon (still unbilled!) generously compensates for the non-dancing stars with a raucous and authentic can-can.