Doris Day finds the elephant in the room in... Billy Rose's Jumbo (1962)
a little song about bringing the circus back to the audience. He then exits,
"Why Can't I?". Martha Raye could certainly be a robust and comical singer, but she had a really good voice, one that sounds great on ballads. Part of why I like this film is because it kind of reins Raye in. She could be the craziest, most over-the-top performer, but here, she is able to be funny without aggravating the hell out of me.
"This Can't Be Love." (Again, it isn't Day 100% of the time, but you can pretend it is.)
here, though, as sung by James Joyce, the man who dubbed Boyd.
"My Romance" as they cling to each other. It's pretty sweet, I gotta say.
here.) This loveliness, however, is ruined when the tent starts to be torn apart. Kitty, Pop, and Lu go outside to find John Noble and his crew snatching up everything. He breaks the news that he has $30,000 in bills signed over to him for collection and he is repossessing the whole circus, including the employees. He then asks where Sam is and casually reveals that Sam is his son before taking off.
"Stardust, Spangles, and Dreams," a tune all about the joys of the circus. When Sam reveals he brought them Jumbo, all is forgiven. For the rest of the song, we're given a lengthy montage of the new Wonder Circus gaining momentum. Sam and Kitty are back together and all becomes well again. Originally, the film wasn't going to end like this. I'm not sure what they had planned, but when Chuck Walters thought about the number "Stardust, Spangles, and Dreams," written by Roger Edens, he realized that it was the perfect way to end the story.
There were two major things that Chuck Walters had to fight for when it came to Jumbo: the casting of Martha Raye and the talents of Busby Berkeley. As I wrote about in my posts on Walters and one of his films with Esther Williams, Easy to Love, Chuck wasn't a director who exactly relished doing the large spectacles that Berkeley was an expert at. He didn't quite know how to organize everything, so he would call in Berkeley to help. On Jumbo, the studio resisted, arguing that Buzz was too old, he was a drunk and he would cost them too much money. Even Day was reluctant to have him onboard. Chuck had to promise her that "Buzz would do all the pre-shooting work, like getting the wagons in place, but when the cameras rolled, it was all mine." Jumbo would turn out to be Berkeley's last film. He died at the age of 80 in 1976.
This is my entry for the At the Circus Blogathon. You can read the other contributions here.