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Trivia / Top Hat

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  • Actor Allusion: The song "Let's Face the Music and Dance" was added to the stage production. It had previously served as a dance number between Astaire and Rogers in Follow the Fleet, another film with music by Berlin.
  • AFI's Greatest Movie Musicals: #15
  • Banned in China: Erik Rhodes' Italian characterization so offended the Italian government—and dictator Benito Mussolini in particular—that the film was banned in Italy. The same fate befell The Gay Divorcee the year before.
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  • Cut Song: Early drafts of the script called for Irving Berlin songs "Wild About You," "Get Thee Behind Me Satan" (to be sung by Ginger Rogers) and "You're the Cause," but they were not used in the final version.
  • Fake American: Jerry is played by Tom Chambers (British) in the stage production.
  • Fake Nationality:
    • Alberto Beddini (Italian) was played by American actor, Erik Rhodes, in the film.
    • In the stage production, Alberto was played by Ricardo Afonso, who is Portuguese.
  • Those Two Actors: Astaire and Rogers.
  • Wag the Director: Significant changes were made to the original script to beef up Fred Astaire's character. Astaire complained that his part was juvenile, cocky, and arrogant, without charm or sympathy or humor. He observed that once he went to the Lido, he "dissolved into practically nothing." Scenes were added to further feature Astaire and his character was given greater depth, but the actor still found his character rather unlikable and frequently remarked that the film had no real story or plot. He also strongly objected to two moments in the script where Ginger Rogers was called upon to slap him in the face.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • In the first draft of the script, the "Top Hat" number was to take place in Venice, but was moved up to blend with a story point.
    • A sidewalk dance between Fred Astaire and a black youth, which was included in the script, was never shot.


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