Funny Girl is a 1968 musical film based on the stage musical of the same name. The semi-biographical plot is based on the life and career of Broadway and film star and comedienne Fanny Brice and her stormy relationship with entrepreneur and gambler Nicky Arnstein.
Its original title was My Man. The screen adaptation, directed by William Wyler, paired Barbra Streisand with Omar Sharif in the role of Nick Arnstein, while Kay Medford repeated her stage role, and Walter Pidgeon was cast as Flo Ziegfeld.
The film was a commercial and critical success, gaining Streisand an Academy Award for Best Actress. It became the top grossing film of 1968, and received seven Academy Award nominations
FUNNY GIRL was the very first Barbra Streisand film that I saw in a theater in 1968. It was an amazing experience to watch Barbra sing for the first time. From the moment Ms Streisand comes into view the theater audience was mesmerized. We sat engulfed for the entire length of the movie. Applause burst at the conclusion by a happy audience. Even the soldiers applauded what was soon to become one of the top chick flicks of all time.
Even more mesmerizing was the appearance of Omar Sharif onscreen. Omar was so handsome in that film... It was easy to identify with poor Fanny Brice falling in love with the gorgeous gambler.
The music from the film was addictive. I have had 4 copies of the albums and played them till the grooves were shot. Now I have the soundtrack on cd and on my Ipod too.
Funny Girl had a completely different feel to it compared to other Hollywood films. Barbra Streisand didn't fit the bill of the average movie star of the time. She had imperfections. Her face, her body type, and her voice were totally different. All the more reason that I identified with her character. The sheer force of her talent and unique style drove this film.
If you have never seen this film watch the clip and then run to the video store and buy/rent Funny Girl. My favorite scene and song is My Man