Behind the Screen

Updated April 17

The following features interesting trivia and stories about the productions and actors of older and current films. Titles are chosen arbitrarily. This page will be updated every other Tuesday.
Note: As always..Spoiler Alerts

  

 

Everyone Says I Love You (1996)

R (1 hr, 41 min) Director - Woody Allen

 

Everyone Says I Love You is a 1996 musical comedy film written and directed by Woody Allen, who also stars alongside Julia Roberts, Alan Alda, Edward Norton, Drew Barrymore, Gaby Hoffmann, Tim Roth, Goldie Hawn, Natasha Lyonne and Natalie Portman. Set in New York City, Venice and Paris, the film features singing by actors not usually known for their singing. Everyone Says I Love You did not do well commercially, but is among the more critically successful of Allen's later films, with Chicago Sun-Times critic Roger Ebert even ranking it as one of Allen's best.

 

poster

Basic Plot:

Holden and Skylar are in love. Skylar lives with a large extended family in Manhattan. Her parents, Bob and Steffi, have been married for many years. Joe, a friend of theirs, has a daughter, DJ, with Steffi. After yet another relationship, Joe is alone again. He flees to Venice, where he meets Von, and makes her believe that he is the man of her dreams. However, their happiness is fake all the way, and Von returns to her husband. Steffi spends her time in philanthropy, and manages to break up Skylar and Holden by introducing Skylar to ex-con Charles Ferry.

 

scene

The film was released theatrically in North America on December 8, 1996 on three screens. Its opening weekend gross was $131,678 ($43,892 per screen). It ended its North American run with $9,759,200.

The film was well received. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has a 79% "fresh" rating, based on 43 reviews. The site's consensus states: "A likable, infectious musical, Woody Allen's Everyone Says I Love You is sometimes uneven but always toe-tapping and fun." Janet Maslin wrote a strongly positive review in the New York Times, describing the film as "a delightful and witty compendium of the film maker's favorite things."

Among the film's strongest detractors was Jonathan Rosenbaum, who described it as "creepy" and claimed "this characterless world of Manhattan-Venice-Paris, where love consists only of self-validation, and political convictions of any kind are attributable to either hypocrisy or a brain condition, the me-first nihilism of Allen's frightened worldview is finally given full exposure, and it's a grisly thing to behold."

 

79%

The film was nominated for Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy at the 54th Golden Globe Awards.

 

Golden Globe awards

Woody Allen did not tell the actors that it was a musical until after they signed their contracts. Edward Norton proved to be such a good singer that Woody Allen had to ask him to sing less well.

Drew Barrymore had to wear a wig because her hair was purple at the time.

 

Drew Barrymore

Tracey Ullman and Liv Tyler filmed scenes for this film, but all were cut by director Woody Allen to reduce running time.

The first Woody Allen film since Love and Death (1975) to be shot outside of New York.

 

"Love & Death"

Bob (Alan Alda)'s guest for the dinner party, Arnold, is played by David Ogden Stiers, Alda's co-star and roommate on M*A*S*H for 6 years.

 

David Ogden Stiers

In the Harry Winston dance sequence, Edward Norton's dancing resembles that of Groucho Marx in Animal Crackers, the character celebrated later in this film, when they perform Hooray for Captain Spaulding in French.

 

Edward Norton

The narrator, D. J. (played by Natasha Lyonne), says that her real name is Djuna (after the novelist Djuna Barnes, who wrote Nightwood). Barnes was later a very minor character in Allen's 2011 movie Midnight in Paris.

One of three films where Woody Allen directed and acted alongside Alan Alda. The other two films were Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989) and Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993).

 

Crimes & M

The film cast includes four Oscar winners: Woody Allen, Goldie Hawn, Julia Roberts and Natalie Portman; and three Oscar nominees: Edward Norton, Tim Roth and Alan Alda.

 

Oscar

Referred to, in the title story of the short-story collection 'We Were Writers for Disastrous Love Affairs Magazine' by Adam Thomlison, as "that Woody Allen musical." It is to date Allen's only musical.

Billy Crudup is included in the cast along with Julia Roberts and Natalie Portman whom he doesn't share any scenes. Years later, he would star opposite Roberts in Eat, Pray, Love and Portman in Jackie.

No opening credits save the title.

 

title card

The film takes classic songs and fits them into an updated scenario, and in some cases with unexpected dance routines. The choreography is lively and the actors and actresses do not look like professional dancers, which makes the music and dance more natural.

01. "Just You, Just Me" (Jesse Greer, Raymond Klages) - Edward Norton
02. "My Baby Just Cares For Me" (Walter Donaldson, Gus Kahn) - Edward Norton/Natasha Lyonne
03. "Recurrence/I'm a Dreamer, Aren't We All" (Ray Henderson, Lew Brown, B.G. DeSylva) - Dick Hyman/Olivia Hayman
04. "Makin' Whoopee" (Donaldson, Kahn) - Tim Jerome
05. "Venetian Scenes/I'm Through With Love" (Kahn, Matt Malneck, Fud Livingston) - Dick Hyman/Woody Allen
06. "All My Life" (Sam Stept, Sidney Mitchell) - Julia Roberts
07. "Just You, Just Me" (Salsa Version) (Greer, Klages) - Dick Hyman and the New York Studio Players
08. "Cuddle Up a Little Closer" (Karl Hoschna, Otto Harbach) - Billy Crudup/Sanjeev Ramabhadran
09. "Looking at You" (Cole Porter) - Alan Alda
10. "Recurrence/If I Had You" (Ted Shapiro, Jimmy Campbell, Reg Connelly) - Dick Hyman/Tim Roth
11. "Enjoy Yourself (It's Later than You Think)" (Carl Sigman, Herb Magidson) - Patrick Crenshaw
12. "Chiquita Banana" (Leonard McKenzie, Garth Montgomery, William Wirges) - Christy Carlson Romano
13. "Hooray for Captain Spaulding/Vive Le Capitaine Spaulding" (Bert Kalmar, Harry Ruby, Philippe Videcoq) - The Helen Miles Singers
14. "I'm Through with Love" (Kahn, Malneck, Livingston) - Goldie Hawn/Edward Norton
15. "Everyone Says I Love You" (Kalmar, Ruby) - The Helen Miles Singers

Most of the performers sing in their own voices, with two exceptions: Goldie Hawn, who was told by Allen to intentionally sing worse because she sang too well to be believable as a normal person just breaking into song, and Drew Barrymore, who convinced Woody Allen that her singing was too awful even for the "realistic singing voice" concept he was going for. Her voice was dubbed by Allen regular Olivia Hayman.

The title song was written by Bert Kalmar and Harry Ruby, and was used as a recurring theme song in the Marx Brothers movie Horse Feathers (1932). Allen is a well-known Groucho Marx fan. Marx's theme song from Animal Crackers (1930) "Hooray for Captain Spaulding" is featured, sung in French by a chorus of Groucho Marx's.

 

Soundtrack

Cast:

Alan Alda as Bob Dandridge
Woody Allen as Joe Berlin
Drew Barrymore as Skylar Dandridge
Lukas Haas as Scott Dandridge
Goldie Hawn as Steffi Dandridge
Gaby Hoffmann as Lane Dandridge
Natasha Lyonne as Djuna 'D.J.' Berlin
Edward Norton as Holden Spence
Natalie Portman as Laura Dandridge
Julia Roberts as Von Sidell
Tim Roth as Charles Ferry
David Ogden Stiers as Arnold Spence
Itzhak Perlman as himself
Edward Hibbert as Harry Winston Salesman
John Griffin as Jeffrey Vandermost
Patrick Cranshaw as Grandpa
Billy Crudup as Ken Risley
Robert Knepper as Greg
Scotty Bloch as Lynn Spence
Isiah Whitlock as Cop
Kevin Hagan as Doorman
Navah Perlman as Pianist
Waltrudis Buck as Psychiatrist
Christy Carlson Romano as Trick or Treat Child
Frank Pietri as Ghost Dancer
Andrea Piedimonte as Alberto

 

 

 

 

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