Thursday, April 28, 2011

My Royal Wedding Posting (Not THAT Royal Wedding)

The big day is tomorrow! Yeah, yeah, there's some kind of shindig going on at Westminster Abbey, but I'm talking about the screening of Royal Wedding at the TCM Classic Film Festival.

Royal Wedding is a little gem, often overlooked as one Fred Astaire's best movies. Directed by Stanley Donen, the 1951 film stars Fred and Jane Powell as a brother/sister dancing team going to London for the royal nuptials of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. Of course there's romance and hijinks and plenty of dancing.

One of the highlights of the film is the sequence where Fred Astaire dances on the ceiling. It is flat-out awesome and a remarkable achievement of choreography, filmmaking, and ingenuity.

See for yourself:



Once you've picked your jaw up off the floor, you may want to know how that was done. A revolving room was created and a camera mounted to follow the room. Someone on YouTube was kind enough to deconstruct the scene.



Even though Fred Astaire makes everything look easy, we know that it's not. There was an intense level of planning behind the scenes to make it look effortless. There was the director, the choreographer, the dancer, the cameraman, the crew, on down to the guy who bolted the furniture to the floor.

And that gives me so much hope. Because it all started with imagination. One person came up with a seemingly impossible idea and convinced others that it could be done. And they did it!

As writers, we have impossible ideas all the time. But I know I get discouraged sometimes, thinking that I'll never be able to convince others that they are worthwhile. The next time I feel that way, I will remember Fred dancing on the ceiling. And I will no longer think "How does he do that?" Instead, I will say, "I can dance on ceilings, too."

2 comments:

  1. Greetings Monica: I noticed that TCM was featuring this movie last night, mostly because my husband is a huge TCM fan. Me, I'm usually going back to my room to write.

    But I love this post and how the whole dancing on the ceiling scene came from one impossible idea. I know the feeling of wondering how you will convince your readers that some wild idea seems both fantastic and 'real' at the same time. Especially since my book, Guardian Cats, is seen through the eyes of the cats.

    Now I have this lovely image of Fred Astaire dancing on the ceiling to inspire me when I feel discouraged. Thanks, and thanks for stopping by my blog.

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  2. Thanks for returning the favor and stopping by my blog!

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