Calamity Jane

Movie Details

Year1953
DirectorDavid Butler
Key CastDoris Day, Howard Keel, Allyn Ann McLerie
MPAA RatingApproved
Film TypeColor
Genre(s)Western, Comedy, Musical
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Doris Day Stars as Calamity Jane in this Rousing, Musical Western

 
In a musical Western that catapulted her career to new heights, Doris Day stars as Calamity Jane in this 1953 Warner Brothers movie.
 
The rising starlet brought legendary Old West figure, Martha “Calamity Jane” Burke, to life, and recorded her most successful song “Secret Love” for this western.
 
“Calamity Jane” is a rugged, brave Old West scout with a knack for charity, and no luck in love. The western opens with one of the legend’s favorite Deadwood haunts, The Golden Garter, on the chopping block. In order to save the saloon, Calamity Jane vows to bring real entertainment back to Deadwood, and sets off for Chicago.
 
In Chicago, Calamity Jane is determined to get famed performer, Adelaide Adams to come back to Deadwood with her. She approaches Katie Brown (Allyn McLerie), who is the maid and understudy of the real Adelaide Adams, with the offer and she accepts it. Unfortunately, unsophisticated Jane doesn’t know that Katie is the understudy and when they reach Deadwood, the crowd is outraged by the mistake. Jane begs for the chance for Katie to perform, and the people of Deadwood wind up won over by her performance.
 
While Jane and Katie become fast friends, things change quickly when both Wild Bill Hickock (Howard Keel), and Lt. Danny Gillmartin (Philip Carey) take a liking to the young songstress. Having pined unsuccessfully for Gillmartin, a jealous and betrayed Calamity Jane tries to run Katie out of Deadwood. Friends of the women keep the worst from happening, and Jane eventually finds herself in love with another Wild West legend.
 
“Calamity Jane” shows the old scout at her best. Fiercely loyal, generous and brave to a fault, she made a name for herself as a champion of the downtrodden.
 
Doris Day plays Calamity Jane with a spunk and verve that drew much acclaim for the young actress, thus becoming a launching point for her long and celebrated career. Doris Day’s song, “Secret Love,” won an Academy Award and was the biggest musical hit of her career.
 

 
• Doris Day’s recording of the song, “Secret Love” became one of the biggest hits of her career, a number-one million selling record and Academy Award winning song. “Secret Love” was also one of the top song hits of 1953.
 
• In this movie version of “Calamity Jane”, like many Western tales, Jane and Wild Bill are already fast friends. In reality, the two crossed paths but there was no evidence of any relationships between them. Upon her death, the penniless Calamity Jane was buried next to Wild Bill, but this was largely for the sake of local tourism. Rumors of a secret marriage and child surfaced after Wild Bill died, but have long been disproven.
 
 
• “Calamity Jane” won the Best Music, Original Song Academy Award in 1954 for “Secret Love.” The western was also nominated for two additional Academy Awards: Best Music Scoring of a Musical Picture and Best Sound Recording.
 

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Calamity Jane
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Doris Day stars in this musical western as “Calamity Jane,” a role that catapulted her career to new heights and made her a star.

In this movie version, Calamity Jane is is a rugged, brave Old West scout with a knack for charity, and no luck in love.

Howard Keel co-stars.

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