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Impossible things are happening every day!
Rodgers and Hammerstein's musical adaptation of the fairytale. It was originally filmed for TV in 1957 starring Julie Andrews in the titular role. A rewritten TV remake was also rendered starring Brandy, along with Whitney Houston as both the co-producer and the fairy godmother. This version had a slightly more modern feel to it and featured a cast of mixed races, along with an added character named Lionel and three other Richard Rodgers songs added to the score. The stepsisters' names as well were changed from Joy and Porscha to Calliope and Minerva, and while the original is clearly an old-fashioned medieval atmosphere, the remake is more surreal and colorful and it's pretty debatable what country they're in (mostly due to the mixed races). There was also a 1965 remake, starring Lesley Ann Warren, which is generally considered the most popular with those who seen it. Most theater fans prefer the 1957 original, but the remake is also quite popular among teenagers.
A Broadway musical might come during the 2012-2013 season, including political satire, Cut Songs from other Rodgers and Hammerstein musicals, and Cinderella rescuing Prince Christopher. (None of the articles written so far say what he needs rescuing from.)
Multiple versions contain examples of:
- Aerith and Bob: See Overly Long Name.
- Character Title
- Crowd Song: "The Prince is Giving a Ball"
- Disappeared Dad: It's made pretty clear that Cinderella's father is dead. But we never learn where her mother went.
- Probably dead too.
- Domestic Abuse: The stepmother. She gets better in the 1957 version.
- Double Entendre: The 1957 and 1965 versions include a scene of Cinderella imagining acting "coy and flirtatious" towards Prince Christopher, and reminding him not to "say such things."
- Everything's Better with Spinning: Lesley Ann Warren and Brandy spin during their respective dress transformation scenes.
Fairy Godmother ('97): Turn around, don't let me do all the work!
- Julie Andrews did not spin because the 1957 version was broadcast live, and her transformation uses effects one might use in a stage production.
- The Girl Who Fits This Slipper
- "I Am" Song / "I Want" Song: "In My Own Little Corner" and its reprise, respectively.
- The Ingenue: Guess who?
- Love At First Sight: Discussed when Cinderella and Prince Christopher sing about how they met and fell in love "Ten Minutes Ago". (Although, in the 1965 and 1997 versions, the ball marks the second time they met.
- Meaningful Echo: In the 1965 and 1997 versions, Christopher and Cinderella quote some lines from the scene where they first met before she tries on the slipper.
- Meaningful Name: Pointed out in the 1965 and 1997 versions. Cinderella explains that she got her name from sitting in the cinders.
Prince Christopher ('97): "Ohh. Cinderella."
- The Musical: Another musical retelling.
- No Name Given: The fairy godmother and the stepmother.
- Overly Long Name: Prince Christopher Rupert Windemere Vladimir Carl Alexander Francois Reginald Lancelot Herman (Herman?) Herman. Gregory James, son of Her Majesty Queen Constantina Charlotte Ermintrude Guinevere Maisie (Maisie?) Maisie! Marguerite Ann and His Majesty King Maximillian Godfrey Ladislaus Leopold Sydney (Sydney?) SYDNEY! Frederick John.
- Pimped-Out Dress: Both Cinderella and the Fairy Godmother.
- She Cleans Up Nicely
- Triumphant Reprise: "Impossible" has a pessimistic and cynical first half, but also a part meant to create a glimmer of hope for Cinderella's dreams. After the Fairy Godmother grants Cinderella's wish to go to the ball, the two of them sing "It's Possible," which boasts more optimistic lyrics. It sounds especially triumphant in the 1997 version.
- When the Clock Strikes Twelve
The original musical contains examples of:
- Adipose Rex: "I want the wine of my country! The wine of my country is beer!"
- All Women Are Lustful: Stepsister Joy. She's even seen flirting with someone during Cinderella's wedding.
- Beta Couple: The king and queen..
- Covers Always Lie: Some publicity stills show Cinderella wearing a dress with a much bigger skirt than in the actual musical. Julie Andrews apparently found it hard to move around in this dress.
- Earn Your Happy Ending: The day after the ball, Cinderella decides to go visit Prince Christopher herself instead of wait for him to return.
- First-Name Basis: Prince Christopher asks Cinderella to call him "Chris" as opposed to "your majesty" or his Overly Long Name.
- Follow the Leader: CBS hired Rodgers and Hammerstein to help them compete against NBC's televised presentations of the Peter Pan musical by writing a work in which Julie Andrews would go from Rags to Riches in a manner similar to her most popular role at the time.
- Letting Her Hair Down: Averted. Cinderella starts out with a loose ponytail and goes to the ball with a Prim and Proper Bun.
- Love At First Sight: Played absolutely straight. Jon Cypher looks like the floor's just dropped out from underneath him. In true musical fashion, the two leads proceed to sing about it in "Ten Minutes Ago."
Ten minutes ago I saw you, I looked up when you came through the door - my head started reeling, you gave me the feeling the room had no ceiling or floor! Ten minutes ago I met you, and we murmured our 'how do you do's' - I wanted to ring out the bells and fling out my arms and to sing out the news!
- Magical Nanny: Sort of. In this version the fairy godmother really is Cinderella's godmother. She just hasn't told her she's a fairy yet.
- Missing Episode: People living on the East Coast saw the musical live in color, while those in the west saw a black-and-white kinescope. The DVD only contains the latter version.
- Overly Long Gag: Count how many times Cinderella is told to close the window. In the same scene.
- Prim and Proper Bun: Cinderella after the transformation.
- Production Posse: This isn't the last time Julie Andrews would star in a Rodgers and Hammerstein musical. Also, King Maximilian's actor, Howard Lindsay, would co-write the libretto for the original Broadway version of that musical.
- Really 700 Years Old: Rodgers had 30 year-old Edie Adams portray the centuries-old Fairy Godmother.
The 1965 remake contains examples of:
- Abusive Parent: The stepmother is physically abusive towards Cinderella, though everything is done off screen, and is also verbally abusive towards our heroine.
- Book Ends: The musical begins with a gate opening and ends with it closing.
- The Cast Showoff: The melancholy portion of "A Lovely Night" got replaced with an upbeat instrumental, allowing Lesley Ann Warren to demonstrate her ballet talents.
- Disneyfication: The film was intended to be more of a straightforward fairy tale than the original, which was more of an Affectionate Parody.
- Cinderella even rides a carriage that looks like the one Disney's Cinderella rode.
- "I Want" Song: Prince Christopher's "Loneliness of Evening", originally a Cut Song from South Pacific.
- Karmic Jackpot: In this version, Cinderella's kindness is emphasized when she gives a stranger some water; the stranger turns out to be the prince. This bit may have been taken from the stage versions, where she initially meets the prince disguised as a chimney-sweep.
- Leitmotif: The fairy godmother has one.
- Offscreen Moment of Awesome: Prince Christopher had apparently returned from fighting dragons and rescuing princesses.
The 1997 remake contains examples of:
- Adaptation Distillation / Adaptation Expansion
- Adaptational Attractiveness: Beauty Equals Goodness is averted since the villain is played by Bernadette Peters.
- All-Star Cast: This version stars Brandy, Jason Alexander, Whoopi Goldberg, Bernadette Peters, Victor Garber, and Whitney Houston.
- Beauty Equals Goodness: Really, this trope is completely discarded. In addition to the afforementioned Adaptational Attractiveness of the stepmother, it isn't ugliness that the stepsisters use to contrast with Cinderella. In this version, instead, they're clumsy, improper, stupid (even the stepmother shows signs she can't stand this; see Surrounded by Idiots below), and have some strange bad habits.
- Beta Couple: The king and queen.
- Billing Displacement: Brandy's name is last in the credits (among the leads). Whitney Houston, Jason Alexander, and Bernadette Peters come first.
- Although the opening credits start with Brandy's name and go through the rest in alphabetical order.
- Bowdlerise: The Double Entendre mentioned above became reduced to, "Oh, your highness!"
- Broken Aesop: The fairy godmother encourages Cinderella to stop sitting around and dreaming and just get out there and make it happen. After which she proceeds to magically give Cinderella everything she wishes for.
- But only after Cinderella has resolved to fix her dress and hitchhike to the ball if that's what it takes to make her dream come true. If she hadn't waited for her to learn that lesson, then Cinderella may not have stood up to her stepmother in the end.
- Butt Monkey: Lionel. In spades.
- Dawson Casting: Averted when producers asked Whitney Houston if she wanted to play Cinderella, but she deemed herself too old for the part.
- Dirty Old Man: When the king and queen are discussing Cinderella, the king is a little too impressed with how beautiful she is.
King Maximillian: "Why, if I were a young man I'd-"
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: The stepmother, who is rich and domineering, is white. Cinderella, who works for her as a mistreated household servant, is black.
- Although it is relieving that one of the stepsisters and the queen are both black, so this was most likely unintentional.
- Foot Focus: The stepmother's entrance. And of course, the montage of Foot Focuses when everyone is trying on the slipper. Actually, this movie does this a lot.
- The members of Cinderella's stepfamily are the only characters who don't get a real Foot Focus when they're trying on the slipper. Except possibly Minerva.
- Funny Background Event: There's a very short clip at the ball that involves the stepmother dancing with a woman.
- The Girl Who Fits This Slipper: Played hilariously straight when Christopher allows a few white girls to try on the slipper, despite Cinderella having been African-American, and then subverted when it fits Cinderella's stepmother and Christopher refuses to believe she is the girl he danced with.
- Go Mad From the Revelation: After the shoe fails to fit either of the stepsisters, Cinderella's stepmother becomes so desperate she'll do anything for the prince's money. She locks Cinderella in the kitchen, offers herself to the prince by trying on the shoe, helplessly begs him to marry one of her daughters, and then when all else fails, she gives a Big No and then passes out.
- Grandma, What Massive Hotness You Have!: The only reason we know Bernadette Peters is in her middle ages in this movie is because the dialogue tells us so.
- Hypocritical Humor: Not in-universe, and probably not intentional, but at one point the stepmother tells Cinderella not to "cling to the past" because "it's not very attractive." This is said by Bernadette Peters, who hasn't aged for thirty years.
- I Just Want to Be Free: Cinderella.
- Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: The stepsisters. Then again, this is how they're usually played.
- "I Want" Song: Cinderella's and Prince Christopher's "The Sweetest Sounds", originally written by Rodgers for No Strings.
- Large Ham: Basically everyone except the two leads has moments in this area, notably Whoopi Goldberg, Bernadette Peters, and Jason Alexander. Although Whoopi's portion of it consists of mostly squeaking.
- Love At First Sight: Played straight between Prince Christopher and Cinderella at the ball, but averted earlier when they just become friends.
- Meet Cute: When Cinderella first meets Christopher, who's disguised as a commoner. They bring back a few lines from that scene at the end; see Meaningful Echo above.
- Mythology Gag: "Who dances in glass shoes?"
- No Indoor Voice: I WANT A CHANCE AT HIM!
- As well as the stepmother in her last few minutes onscreen.
- Of Corset Hurts: Beauty knows no pain, girls!
- This may be a nod to the girl in the first film who also fell victim to this trope.
- Oh Crap: During "A Lovely Night," Cinderella is already being stupid enough to describe what she "supposes" the ball was like, in a detailed and accurate fashion, but she tops it off with the exact same curtsey she used at the ball. Upon recognizing this, this trope is written all over the stepmother's face.
- Pimped-Out Dress: Cinderella's stepfamily wears these 24/7. Then, of course, there's Cinderella herself after her transformation.
- Plucky Comic Relief: Lionel seems to serve no real purpose other than to be this.
- Rule of Three: In-universe, three members of Cinderella's family try the slipper on before she does, "The Prince Is Giving A Ball" goes through three Overly Long Names, and both "Impossible" and the added song "The Sweetest Sounds" are sung three times. Outside of that, three of the leads are African-American, and three different shoe sizes were used for the slipper (only one model was actually made of glass), and three songs were added to the score.
- Sassy Black Woman: The fairy godmother and the queen. Especially since they're played respectively by Whitney Houston and Whoopi Goldberg.
- Show Some Leg: The stepmother trying to get on Lionel's good side. It doesn't work.
Lionel: You know, I honestly wish there were something between us.
- Squee: After the stepmother tries on the shoe and it fits, she can't stop squealing. Until the shoe cuts her circulation off.
- Surrounded by Idiots: The stepmother appears to feel this way with regards to her daughters.
- Villain Song: Well, Bernadette Peters had to sing something. The song, "Falling in Love with Love," is more of a statement of her opinion, and it's not done in a villainous manner. That may just be because it was originally written for a different show, The Boys From Syracuse, by Rodgers and Hart.