Iconic Golden Age dance partners: Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers

Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers were iconic dance partners who made motion pictures together from 1933–1949. They made 10 movies together. The golden age of the Hollywood musical is maybe long gone, but their talent and beauty, have been preserved forever – capturing the glamour of golden years of Hollywood.

By 1936 Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers were top box office names

That year they made another 2 movies together: Follow the Fleet and Swing Time which were both hits. Swing Time spawned the Oscar winning song The Way You Look Tonight, written by Jerome Kern with lyrics by Dorothy Fields, which Fred sang to Ginger.  The dance sequences for “Swing Time”  took 47 takes to perfect, during which the dancer had to ascend stairs, spinning, until they perfected it. By the end of the shoot, Rogers’ feet were bleeding. 


1937 for Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers featured only one movie Shall We Dance.


After an unusually long period apart for the duo, Fred and Ginger only made one movie together in 1938, the 80 minute, Carefree.


In 1939, Fred and Ginger only made one movie, The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle which ended their partnership for 10 years, until they reunited for The Barkleys of Broadway.

Solo years

Rogers had long been keen to pursue more dramatic roles, which she successfully managed after her split from Astaire. At the 1941 Academy Awards ceremony, Ginger won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in Kitty Foyle and by the mid-1940s, she was the highest paid actress in Hollywood.

Astaire continued to make musicals. He also partnered with numerous other dancers, including Rita HayworthCyd Charisse and Judy Garland.

 Due to their success as a partnership, Garland and Astaire were due to reunite for The Barkleys of Broadway.


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