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Saul Chaplin

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Saul Chaplin (February 19, 1912 – November 15, 1997) was a Jewish American composer and musical director.

He was born Saul Kaplan in Brooklyn, New York. He had worked on stage, screen and television since the days of Tin Pan Alley. In film, he won four Oscars for collaborating on the scores and orchestrations of An American in Paris (1951), Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954) and West Side Story (1961).

Following education at New York University's School of Commerce, Chaplin joined the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers and started out penning tunes for the theatre, vaudeville and for New York's famous songwriting district, Tin Pan Alley. While in New York, Chaplin teamed with Sammy Cahn to compose original songs for Vitaphone movie shorts, filmed in Brooklyn by Warner Brothers. During this period the team was sometimes billed only by surname ("Cahn and Chaplin"), in the manner of Rodgers and Hart or Gilbert and Sullivan.

Cahn and Chaplin relocated to Hollywood and scored two films for Universal Pictures. Chaplin then moved to Columbia Pictures to score Cover Girl and The Jolson Story. While on the latter film, Chaplin and Al Jolson penned the million-selling hit tune The Anniversary Song. In the late 1940s, Chaplin moved to MGM to work on a long string of films including On the Town (1949), Kiss Me Kate (1953), High Society (1956) and Merry Andrew (1958). For collaborating on such hits as Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen and Please Be Kind, Chaplin was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1985.

While he still continued composing, Chaplin became a movie producer in the early 1960s and was behind such major features as West Side Story (1961), Can-Can (1960), I Could Go On Singing (1963), The Sound of Music (1965), STAR! (1968), Man of La Mancha (1972) and That's Entertainment, Part 2 (1976). He won Academy Awards for Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, An American in Paris and West Side Story as well as a nomination for High Society.

He published his autobiography, The Golden Age of Movie Musicals and Me in 1994. Chaplin worked with and was friends with most of the major songwriters and performers of his era, such as Cole Porter, Ira Gershwin, Al Jolson, Leonard Bernstein, Judy Garland, Gene Kelly, Phil Silvers, Julie Andrews, Frank Sinatra and others. His memoir focused on the behind the scenes aspect of moviemaking.

Chaplin was married to Betty Levin, who worked as script supervisor on The Sound of Music. In late 1997, the 85-year-old Chaplin suffered a bad fall and on November 15 died as a result of his injuries in Cedars-Sinai Medical Center.

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This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at Saul Chaplin. The list of authors can be seen in the page history.

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