Show Boat 1936
Credited as the Broadway musical that shifted the form away from frivolous comedies to dramatic plays, Show Boat is based on Edna Ferber’s popular multi-generational novel about the fortunes of a river-going entertainment troupe.

Covering a time period from about the 1890s to the 1920s, the story follows the life of Magnolia Hawks-Ravenal (Irene Dunne), the daughter of a Show Boat captain. (A Show Boat was a paddle-wheeler that traveled the Mississippi River, putting on stage shows and advertising in each town with a parade like those of old-time circuses.) Her mother has always forbidden her from acting in the stage shows; but when the leading couple are forced out of the troupe by a local sheriff because the lady is a mixed-race person posing as white, Magnolia’s father lets her play the female lead and gives the male lead to an attractive riverboat gambler. Against mother's dictates, the new pair falls deeply in love...

Director: James Whale
Cast: Irene Dunne, Allan Jones, Charles Winninger, Paul Robeson
Country: USA
Genre: Comedy, Drama, Musical, Romance

BD50, DVD9 | 1080p AVC, NTSC | 01:53:54 | 45.6 Gb + 7.29 Gb + 3% rec
Language: English
Subtitles: English

• Audio commentary from 1989 featuring American-musical historian Miles Kreuger
• New interview with James Whale biographer James Curtis (20:11)
• Recognizing Race in “Show Boat,” a new interview program featuring professor and author Shana L. Redmond (26:36)
• Paul Robeson: Tribute to an Artist (1979), an Academy Award–winning short documentary by Saul J. Turell, newly restored (29:27)
• Four performances from the sound prologue of the 1929 film version of Show Boat, including songs from original Broadway cast members Helen Morgan, Jules Bledsoe, and Tess Gardella (16:12), plus twenty minutes of silent excerpts from the film, with audio commentary by Kreuger (20:12)
• Two radio adaptations of Show Boat, featuring stage and screen cast members Morgan, Allan Jones, and Charles Winninger; producer Orson Welles; and novelist Edna Ferber(58:39 / 59:07)