Hollywood Singing and Dancing: A Musical History – The 1940s

Over 550 movie musicals were produced during the 1940s, quite an accomplishment for a country caught in the turmoil of World War II. Through revealing interviews and dozens of clips, these two episodes rediscover a golden age of the movies. MGM emerged as the leader in musical entertainment with producers like Arthur Freed and directors like Vincente Minnelli and Stanley Donen putting a unique stamp of distinction upon their works. Highlights of this 2-part program include: A young Frank Sinatra creates a furor among bobbysoxers, pin-up girls like Betty Grable, Rita Hayworth, Betty Hutton and June Haver remind the boys overseas what they were fighting for, musical acts like The Andrews Sisters and The Jivin’ Jacks & Jills boost morale with their jam sessions and jitterbugging, Bing Crosby and Bob Hope hit the road with a series of musical-comedy confections and Hollywood experiments with bringing black performers like Lena Horne to main screen fare in such films as Stormy Weather and Cabin in the Sky.