A few years ago in Paris I saw a wonderful film called
_Etoile sans lumiere_ starring Piaf (as well as a very
young, ripe Yves Montand).
It's very _Singing in the Rain_: Piaf is a maid whose
mistress is a silent star whose career will soon vanish
because the onset of sound demands musical performers, and
the mistress is tone deaf.
Naturally, Piaf has to end up providing her voice. There
are some rather fun shots of Piaf looking at a microphone as
if its from Mars.
Of course, when she hears her own voice, she's dumbstruck
and can't believe it's herself. (I.e., she's 'natural' and
'unselfconscious' and the technology spoils this.)
NB: I believe this film is from 1946, and I'm not sure if
anyone's ever noticed that _Signin' in the Rain_ is not
exactly original in using this plot.
I've never seen the film on video, but it's worth a trip to
Edward R. O'Neill
General Education Program
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