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Ginger Rogers

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In 1940, Ginger's dreams of being recognized as more than a dancer came true. She won a Best Actress Oscar for her role as the title character in Sam Wood's adaptation of the Christopher Morley novel KITTY FOYLE. It's not a happy story, as Ginger plays a lower-middle class, white-collar working girl from Philadelphia who falls in love with a rich socialite and hasn't a chance. As a result, it's certainly not as fun as some of her other pictures. KITTY FOYLE is a nice romance however, and definitely an acting achievement on Ginger's part.

Also winning his only career acting Oscar that year was Ginger's friend Jimmy Stewart (above right), who won for THE PHILADELPHIA STORY.

Back to comedy, and a very popular one at that, in Garson Kanin's TOM, DICK AND HARRY (1941) Ginger plays a telephone operator who must choses between three suitors: a millionaire (Alan Marshall), a car salesman (George Murphy) and a mechanic (Burgess Meredith). 

Though things get a little ditzy at times, there are a few good laughs, and the film was even nominated for an Oscar in the Best Writing (Original Screenplay) category.

Another successful comedy of Ginger's was Billy Wilder's THE MAJOR AND THE MINOR (1942). Ginger plays another working girl, only this time she doesn't have enough money to get home to Stevenson, Iowa and pretends to be a child so she can ride the train for half-fare. Romance, when you're pretending to be a little kid, can be complicated however, and the addition of Ray Milland and a military school to the situation just adds to the humor. The love story is a little lacking in this one, but the comedy is a lot of fun, and the film showcases Ginger's talent for playing younger characters (also witnessed in the early scenes of KITTY FOYLE).

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Last updated: March 10, 2011.
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