Take Me Out To the Ball Game,
released in 1949, directed by Busby Berkeley,
and starring Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra, Jules Munshin,
Esther Williams and Betty Garrett.
All was not peaches and cream on the set:
Esther said the experience was "pure misery",
with Gene cracking jokes at her expense and disallowing
a big swim number she'd been promised
(though she did get to perform a mini version
in which she sang AND swam at the same time...only in Hollywood, right?).
Judy Garland was Gene's first pic as a leading lady,
but "substance abuse" shelved her.
For Me And My Gal,
released in 1942, was also directed by Berkeley and
starred Judy Garland, Gene, and George Murphy.
It began Gene's contract with MGM,
thanks in large part to Judy's advocacy.
George provided some on-set tension, angered that he had to
play "the schnook who never gets the girl."
Busby was unhappy with Gene as the leading man;
even test audiences thought George SHOULD have gotten the girl.
But it all turned into a smashing success...
we'll hear "If You Wore A Tulip".
Ziegfeld Follies, 1946,
had SEVEN directors, a gazillion stars
(see that list on the poster below???),
and was based on the huge Broadway extravaganzas
produced by Florence...
it brought together Fred and Gene
in the first and ONLY time they sang and danced together.
"The Babbitt and the Bromide" was written by the
Gershwin boys, and of course choreographed
by two of the greatest dancers of the cinema.
Too bad they never worked together again.