Lucy and Desi Make Movie Magic

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Desi Arnaz tried to purchase the rights to Clinton Twiss’ nonfiction book, The Long, Long Trailer, but was beat by MGM.

Thankfully, nine days after completing shooting for their season of I Love Lucy, Lucy and Desi still got the chance to play the pair.

“I'm happy that I have brought laughter because I have been shown by many the value of it in so many lives, in so many ways,” Ball said.

1. It could have been in 3-D.

MGM worried that audiences might not come to see the film since they could see the leads on television. "[The studio] subscribed to the theory that the audience wouldn't pay to see actors they could get at home for free. But I insisted these were different parts, and Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz could make the picture hilarious,” Producer Pandro S. Berman said. “If the picture was funny enough, I had no worries that enough people wouldn't pay to see it.” The studio contemplated shooting the film in 3-D.

2. Lucy sang!

Lucy and Desi sing a duet in the film called “Breezin' Along With the Breeze” as they drive. According to Ball’s daughter, Lucy’s voice wasn’t dubbed, though she was often dubbed in her other musical films. This song has also been recorded with Bing Crosby, Eddie Fisher, Nat King Cole, and Perry Como.

3. There were two Minnellis.

The film was directed by Vincente Minnelli and his daughter, Liza, appeared in a couple scenes. However, her appearance was cut. Interestingly, Liza and Desi Arnaz Jr. (Lucy’s son) dated for a period of time in 1971.Ball said, “I’ve known Liza since she was a child. They’re very good for each other. I couldn’t be happier.”

4. The house was shared.

The film uses a house called the Bluett House built on St. Louis Street. This home along with others was built for Meet Me in St. Louis for a cost of approximately 250 thousand dollars. The construction caused a conflict between director Vincente Minnelli and production designer Cedric Gibbons, who took offense to the project that wasn’t under his department. But the neighborhood proved to be extremely helpful for the studio who used it for Cass Timberlane, Song of the Thin Man, The Father’s Daughter, and In the Good Old Summertime.