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Damn Yankees Details

FULL SYNOPSIS

is a frothy, faithful adaptation of the 1956 Broadway hit. In an amusing slant on the "Faust" legend, aging baseball fan Joe Boyd (Robert Schafer) is given an opportunity to lead his beloved Washington Senators to victory by a devilish gent named Applegate (Ray Walston). Boyd is transformed into handsome young "Shoeless" Joe Hardy from Hannibal, Mo. (and in the process, the part is taken over by Tab Hunter, who's better than everyone said he was back in 1958). Joe becomes the Senators' star player, but at the price of his immortal soul; he isn't terribly worried, however, since he's built an escape clause into his contract with Applegate. To see that Joe doesn't get a chance to exercise that clause, Applegate sends his luscious assistant Lola (Gwen Verdon) to seduce the ballplayer. This effort doesn't work, but Applegate still manages to cause Joe to lose his chance at salvation. But there is still a ray of hope--if Hardy can win the deciding pennant game, he'll be able to foil Applegate's master plan of causing the Senators to lose. With Lola's aid, Joe gives the devil more than his due. The principal selling angle of , beyond the presence of Gwen Verdon and Ray Walston delightfully recreating their stage roles, are the wonderful Richard Adler/Jerry Ross songs, including "You've Gotta Have Heart" and "What Lola Wants, Lola Gets." Based on the novel Jerry Ross the film (like the play before it) unfortunately throws away Wallop's wryly ironic climax; as a result, the last scenes appear rushed and haphazard. But why quibble? is and always was a rock-solid piece of entertainment, as proven by its recent S.R.O. Broadway revival. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

  • Release date:September 26, 1958

Awards

Awarded by
Nominee
Category
Year
Status
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Ray Heindorf Best Musical Score 1958 Nominee
Directors Guild of America Stanley Donen Best Director 1958 Nominee
Directors Guild of America George Abbott Best Director 1958 Nominee

Cast

Tab Hunter
as Joe Hardy
Gwen Verdon
as Lola
Ray Walston
as Applegate
Russ Brown
as Van Buren
Shannon Bolin
as Meg
Nathaniel Frey
as Smokey
Jimmy Komack
as Rocky
Robert Shafer
as Joe Boyd
Jean Stapleton
as Sister
Albert Linville
as Vernon
Bob Fosse
as Mambo Dancer
Rae Allen
as Gloria
Bob Fosse
as Mambo Dancer

Crew

Stanley Donen
Director
George Abbott
Director
George Abbott
Producer
Stanley Donen
Producer
Douglas Wallop
Play Author
George Abbott
Play Author
George Abbott
Screenwriter
George Abbott
Book Author
Harold Lipstein
Cinematographer
Jean Eckart
Production Designer
William Eckart
Production Designer
Stanley Fleischer
Art Director
Jean Eckart
Costume Designer
William Eckart
Costume Designer
Pat Ferrier
Choreography
Bob Fosse
Choreography
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