Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

From Academic Kids

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Chitty on autopilot during a night flight ...

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang: The Magical Car is a children's story written by Ian Fleming for his son Caspar, with illustrations by John Burningham, and was first published in 1964 by Jonathan Cape in London and Random House in New York.

The story was made into a musical film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang in 1968 with a script by Roald Dahl, and songs by the Sherman Brothers. It starred Dick Van Dyke as Caractacus Potts and Sally Ann Howes as Truly Scrumptious. It was directed by Ken Hughes. The film was made by the same production team who made the James Bond films, which were also based on Fleming's novels. The film runs for two hours twenty-four minutes, making it much longer than most films aimed at children.

Contents

Story

Caractacus Potts is an inventor who renovates an old car which was previously three times a Grand Prix winner, but had fallen in to disrepair.

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... and after landing in Vulgaria

After repairing the car, the Potts family, along with Truly Scrumptious, head off to the beach for a picnic. There, Caractacus confabulates upon a story of pirates who are trying to steal Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, which becomes the central plot.

The pirates are headed by Baron Bomburst of Vulgaria, who captures Grandfather Potts, takes him as hostage and is chased by the Potts family.

Main cast

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A happy ending: Caractacus Potts (Van Dyke) and Truly Scrumptious (Howes)

Songs

Memorable songs include "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang", "Truly Scrumptious", "Me Old Bamboo", and "Toot Sweets"". The location for Vulgaria was Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria.

Theatrical versions

A stage musical based on the book and movie was launched at the London Palladium theatre in 2002 - "Chitty the Musical". Despite some initial problems with the mechanical flying Chitty used in the show, it has enjoyed a very successful run. A Broadway version of this show opened on April 28, 2005 at the Hilton Theatre in New York City.

Trivia

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang took its name from a pair of celebrated racing cars built and raced by Louis Zborowski and his engineer Clive Gallop, in the 1920s.

The movie was referenced by United States Senator Orrin Hatch during the June 23, 2004 discussion of the Inducing Infringement of Copyrights Act, comparing illegal file sharing on P2P networks, with stealing candy under the guise of it being free.

Barbara Windsor, most famous for the campy British Carry On films and as Peggy Mitchell in Eastenders, appears briefly as the wife of the man subjected to Potts' automatic haircut machine.


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