BootLeg Betty

This Day In History: BETTE MIDLER HEADLINES TV’S ‘GYPSY’ (December 12)

On this day in 1993, CBS presented a telefilm version of the Broadway musical, Gypsy, starring Cynthia Gibb in the title role, and Bette Midler as her domineering mother, Mama Rose.

The telefilm faithfully recreated the original Jule Styne/Stephen Sondheim musical about an overbearing stage mother (famously portrayed by Ethel Merman) and the awkward daughter who blossoms into one of burlesque’s most famous entertainers, Gypsy Rose Lee.

The cast also included Peter Riegert, Edward Asner, Michael Jeter, Andrea Martin, Christine Ebersole, Tony Shalhoub and Lacey Chabert. Jerome Robbins, who directed and choreographed the original Broadway production, also choreographed the telefilm, which was released in theaters outside the U.S.

Gypsy was also adapted into a 1962 feature film starring Rosalind Russell, Karl Malden and Natalie Wood.

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