Ezio Pinza


  1. Claude Rains, Notorious, 1945.    Some Enchanted Movie…!    Surprisingly, Alfred Hitchcock, thought of New York’s Metropolitan  Opera  Italian star Ezio Pinza –  a future Broadway ikon in  South Pacific –  to play the Nazi masterspy bejng investigated by US agent Cary Grant and their – yes, their – lover, a nymphoish Ingrid Bergman.   George Sanders and Clifton Webb were also in the frame.
  2. Howard Keel, Kismet, 1955.       For the much-filmed 1911 Edward Knoblock play – Aladdin meets MGMusicals! – Pinza was beaten by Keel as wandering poet and self-styled King of the Beggars, vowing that his daughter will become Queen of Bagdad. Two years earlier, Keel had been Alfred Drake’s understudy as the poet on Broadway.
  3. Rossano Brazzi, South Pacific, 1957.      Stage-screen director Joshua Logan  seriously wanted  the Broadway Tony-winning star to repeat his role of Emile De Becque – but he died at age 64.  Whereas Logan dropped Broadway’s original Nellie Forbush because Mary Martin was  too old.  At a mere 45.   Oh, Hollywood!  Josh then checked Charles Boyer Vittoria De Sica, Howard Keel and Fernando Lamas for  Emile de Becque.


 Birth year: 1892Death year: 1957Other name: Casting Calls:  3