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Steamboats in the Movies
Show Boat 1951 - MGM Studios


showboat1951


Show Boat (1951) MGM
1 hour 48 minutes
This is the third version of Show Boat, 1951, MGM's technicolor version. The Big Cotton Blossom replica boat is in Culver City.

Plot: The daughter of a showboat owner falls in love with a charming gambler, but their fairytale romance is threatened when his luck turns sour.

Director: George Sidney
Writers: John Lee Mahin (screen play)
(Based on the immortal musical play "Show Boat" by JEROME KERN)
Starring: Kathryn Grayson, Ava Gardner, Howard Keel


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Cotton Blossom MGM 1951 Show Boat Gaylord Ravenal Boys

Master shot high angle looking down from an elevation on the COTTON BLOSSOM during filming of MGM's 1951 "Show Boat. " Gaylord Ravenal and children in the foreground.


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Stars Ava Gardner and Kathryn Grayson.


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The COTTON BLOSSOM with chorus girls on the Natchez wharf from MGM's SHOW BOAT

From MGM's 1951 SHOW BOAT with the Cotton Blossom in the background and chorus girls in the foreground on the wharf at Natchez warming up the crowd to lure them into attending a performance on the showboat that night.


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SHOW BOAT 1951 CREDITS MGM

UNUSUAL 'BEHIND THE SCENES' PUBLICITY STILL FROM MGM'S 1951 MOTION PICTURE 'SHOW BOAT.'

Instead of being taken on the full scale COTTON BLOSSOM boat this photo may have been taken on a soundstage set of the exterior of the 'texas' cabin that was underneath the pilot house. The sign on the bulkhead upper left looks like it might have been based on an actual item that may have been posted outside dressing rooms on showboats: 'NO LADY OF THE COMPANY ALLOWED ON DECK IN A WRAPPER'

Eight members of the cast of SHOW BOAT are seated around a table where what may have been a birthday party for the little girl in the foreground center was being celebrated. Kathryn Grayson's daughter, whose nickname was 'Patty Kate' was born in 1948 and would have been about three years old in 1951. In photos of 'Patty Kate' she appeared to have been a blonde as a very young child but the girl in this photo is a brunette.


Counter clockwise from lower left to lower right are 4 actresses and 4 actors are identified below with the names of the characters that they portrayed:
Kathryn Grayson - Magnolia Hawks
Joe E. Brown - Cap'n Andy Hawks
Agnes Moorehead - Parthy Hawks
Frances E. Williams - Queenie
William Warfield - Joe
Owen McGiveney - Windy McClain (pilot of the COTTON BLOSSOM)
Gower Champion - Frank Schultz
Marge Champion - Ellie May Shipley


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All captions provided by Dave Thomson, Steamboats.com primary contributor and historian.

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