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Darling Lili

 

"Blake never intended it to be as much of a musical as it became"

Julie Andrews on Darling Lili

Darling LiliSet in Paris during WWI. Lili Smith is a German spy. Her latest mission is to get secrets from an allied major, William Larrabee. However, she soon discovers that she has fallen in love with him.


Darling Lili

Directed By

Blake Edwards
Screenplay By
Blake Edwards, William Peter Blatty
Music By
Henry Mancini
Release Date/Runtime
24 June 1970 - US
136 Minutes
Character
Lili Smith (Schmidt)
Cast
  Julie Andrews, Rock Hudson, Jeremy Kemp, Lance Percival, Michael Witney

 

Darling Lili Curiosities
 
This was the very first movie of the seven that Julie and Blake Edwards did together.
 
Because of the students' rebellion and strike that paralyzed Paris in May 1968, the movie producers moved to Brussels to film the major scenes (June-July 68). For example, it was possible to use the Superior Court building and transform the ground floor into a Paris railroad station with fake trains and a waiting room and all the other accessories.
 
Darling Lili was originally titled "Where Were You on the Night You Said You Shot Down Baron von Richtofen?"
In Darling Lili Julie sings some old british popular songs like "Keep the Home Fires Burning", "It's a Long Way to Tipperary", "There's a Long, Long Trail A-Winding", and she also sings the French National anthem "La Marseillaise". 7 new song were composed by Henri Mancini, the lyrics were written by Johnny Mercer.
 
Julie said during filming "I'm trying to be very still in this one, Lili isn't a lady who is bouncy. She's somebody who's cool and in perfect control, and then gets all gibberish".
 
Initially the movie was budgeted at $14 million but Darling Lili went over budget in production, and cost its studio millions more than had been projected. More overage was paid in interest to investors and taxes because of the delayed release and for the marketing of the movie, such as it was. In the end the movie altogether cost $24 millions. This profligacy contributed to the deaths of movie musicals, the old studio system, and the declining of the film career of both Julie and Blake.
 
The day they shot the shower scene, the director and the star were having a great time, and so was the rest of the crew. The scene had been shot three times, and Blake was satisfied with the third take, when Julie, soaking wet, asked "Darling, would you like to do another take?" Would you?" answered Blake. " Not if you're happy." "You know what you need is to find a fellow, settle down, and marry him" said Blake. " 'ood 'ave me?" she asked lapsing into Cockney. " Some damn fool director." was his answer.
 
Blake and Julie decided living together during the filming of Darling Lili because, in Blake's word, " It seemed dumb not to admit we were in love." Julie, typically less sure of herself in the situation, "kept telling him it wasn't going to work," she recalled.
 
When the shoot in Ireland ended, and the company left, the crew serenaded Julie with "For She's a Jolly Good Fellow" and "Come back to Erin".
 
After failing in the box office the movie was recut and edited.
 

 

 

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