Role: Freddy Eynsford-Hill
Ascot race (Eliza meets Freddy)
Video: Show Me
Video: Premiere raw footage
Video: Premiere raw footage
Brett, who celebrated his birthday during filming, was very surprised
to learn that all of his singing was to be dubbed by a 42-year-old
American named Bill Shirley, especially since his own singing
voice at that time was remarkably good. From:imdb.com
Making of My Fair Lady
included on two-disc special edition DVD
Video: On YouTube
highlights of Jeremy in the "Making of..." featurette)
Jeremy hosts and narrates portions of the
featurette, which provides an overview of the film's production and
restoration. Among the subjects covered, of course, was the dubbing
of Audrey Hepburn's singing voice by Marni Nixon. Jeremy also
laments that his songs were dubbed as well, by a singer named Bill
Shirley: "When I arrived on the set, I found to my horror that
someone else had sung my song."
The featurette offers some scenes with Hepburn
singing, but alas, there is no footage of Jeremy's real voice.
Roger Ebert review of My Fair
The story is well-known. Eliza Doolittle
(Audrey Hepburn) is first insulted for her accent by the famous
linguist Henry Higgins (Rex Harrison), and then offers him a
shilling a lesson to teach her to speak like a lady. Higgins and
his friend Col. Pickering (Wilfred Hyde-White) make a bet on the
outcome, and Higgins transforms Eliza in six months. The supporting
characters ... include Eliza's father (Stanley Holloway) and
Henry's mother (Gladys Cooper). Only poor lovestruck Freddy (Jeremy
Brett) doesn't have a brain in his head: Shaw, impatient with
romantic plotting, sticks him in when he needs him and then drops
him without another word.
The film's origins go back to George Bernard
Shaw's Pygmalion (1912), which was subsequently
adapted into a Broadway musical by the incomparable team of Alan
Jay Lerner and Frederick Lowe (Gigi, Camelot). The play debuted in
1956. It took seven years before the Warner Brothers-produced
motion picture adaptation, with George Cukor at the helm, began
filming. There was controversy even before the first frame was
committed to celluloid. While both Rex Harrison and Stanley
Holloway were brought on board to re-create the roles they had
essayed on the stage, the part of Eliza Doolittle, played in the
Broadway production by a then little-known Julie Andrews, was given
to Audrey Hepburn. In a richly ironic twist, Andrews won the Best
Actress Award that year for Mary Poppins, while Hepburn was snubbed
by the Academy.
site has an
extremely detailed plot description, including this note: The
originalPygmalion had an ambiguous ending.
Higgins' last line was, "Nonsense - she's going to marry Freddie.
Ha ha ha!" An additional prose ending added by George Bernard Shaw
left no doubt that Eliza did indeed marry Freddie.
Empire, among many great anecdotes, says that Jeremy
reportedly beat out 40 other "shiny young Englishmen" for the role
A real behind-the-scenes
tragedy, recounted in the book, Audrey
"We were filming the part where Eliza returns
to Covent Garden with Freddy," recalled Jeremy Brett, when someone
rushed up to their carriage with word that President John F.
Kennedy had been murdered. "We sat in the car with the blinds down,
holding each other and crying on stage seven at Warner
Another making-of moment was reported in the
New York Times: The collision between Freddy and Eliza in the
opening scene -- when he bumps into her in Covent Garden in the
rain and scatters her flowers -- had to be repeated for more than
two hours before director Cukor felt it was right.
For the gala "repremiere" of the movie, held
in New York on Sept. 19, 1994, Jeremy Brett was one of the very few
surviving costars in attendance.
IMDb page // Wikipedia
New York Times review from 1964 // Restoration
of My Fair
Amazon U.S //