Okay, first thing I have to do is discuss the poll results: Fred Astaire's hat rack won the contest on better inanimate dance partner with 9 votes (69%). Gene Kelly's mop had 4 votes (30%) (which doesn't seem to add up - I don't understand). Thank you everyone for voting!!
So, you know how in January I said I wanted to make a list every month of various things? Well, I was preparing a post of my 15 favorite male dancers to make that my focus for March. Then, as I was making this list, I realized that I should have videos linked to each one - after all, it's all fine and good to say, "He's such a wonderful dancer" and it's another thing entirely to show what a good dancer he is. So, then I linked videos and then I thought, "People may not want to watch 15+ videos of various dancers." So, then I realized that I should just do a post for each dancer, embed the video and maybe talk a bit about each one. So, that's my plan. In which case, I may end up doing a post a day for a little while. Would that be all right? My later lists won't all be like this, with the exception of a couple more. I kind of like the normal list format. Anyway, I'll do this the proper way, unlike my 100 movies list, and start from the end of the list.
15. Bert May
I have to explain this one a bit. Here's the deal. When I was in high school and watching Guys and Dolls, I noticed a particularly good-looking dancer in the background. Then, I noticed him in The Band Wagon too. Then I saw that he made appearances in Music Man, Hello Dolly!, Summer Stock, and Mary Poppins. It became a real Where's Waldo search for this guy! He's a really good dancer and often gets little bit solos. But it wasn't until a friend showed me The Merry Andrew that I finally discovered his name: Bert May. His filmography on IMDb is very limited. It's a very sad predicament from the Hollywood era. Those background dancers really did not get the credit they deserve. And they really made a huge difference to the musical productions. Just imagine Busby Berkeley's crazy kaleidoscopes without the background dancers. Or Singin' in the Rain without the girls in the colorful flapper dresses. Or, well, any musical. They just wouldn't exist without these talented dancers. And the sad thing is these dancers never got screen credit. They may have been just as good as the leads, or almost as good, but no one knows who they are.
All this to say, Bert May is on the list because I think he is one of many who should have had his name in the credits. #15 is for him, in particular, and for all the dancers like him.
Favorite dance: "Get Happy" from Summer Stock. He's the guy who does the crazy cool leg thing next to Judy at 1:59.
If you want to join me in the "Where's Waldo" search, here are a few of his other scenes. See if you can find him!
"New York Folks"
"Girl Hunt Ballet" (part of it)
"Marian the Librarian"
"Step in Time."
Oh, and because I'm a nerd, I made a video of him. Just to prove how much he pops up in movies! I'm not posting it now because I think that might be information overload, which would totally defeat the purpose of separating the list this way. However, if you're interested, let me know, and I'll post it up later.