'Around the World' Award Movie Opens in Salt Lake
Vernal Express, 1 August 1957, page 3
The Idaho-Nevada-Wyoming premiere of the Academy Award film "Around the World in 80 Days" will take place at Salt Lake City's Villa Theatre on Thursday, August 1st. For its exclusive and special engagement the Villa is installing a new seamless screen, 54 feet by 24 feet, the largest in Utah, and special lenses will be installed on the Villa's projectors.
"Around the World in 80 Days" is the first film to be produced by Broadway showman Michael Todd. The film, his first try, received five academy Awards including that as the "best picture of the year," an honor previously bestowed on the movie by the New Your Film Critics, Associated Press, National Film Board, Hedda Hopper and the Hollywood Foreign Press.
"Around the World in 80 Days" is a $6,000,000 film version of Jules Verne's adventure classic. David Niven stars as Verne's hero Phileas Fogg who make a 20,000 pound wager that he can circle the globe in 80 days, quite a feat for 1872. The film makes the English language debut of Mexico's famous comic, Cantinflas, who plays Niven's faithful valet. Shirley Maclaine is seen as the Hindu princess. To support these stars Todd has managed to line up the most brilliant array of internationally known "bit" players ever seen in one film. They include Marlene Dietrich, Frank Sinatra, Buster Keaton, Peter Lorre, Charles Boyer and Noel Coward.
During the 127 days of filming the cameras and crew traveled to some 10 countries to record the adventures of Phileas Fogg which included a flight of a balloon over the French Alps, the rescue of an exotic Hindu princess from being burned alive, a sail in a royal Brumese barge, an attack by American Indians while traveling by rail across the early West and an exciting bull fight sequence. A total of 140 sets were required to record the interior sequences.