Bye Bye Birdie
Bye Bye Birdie is a 1963 musical comedy film from Columbia Pictures. It is a film adaptation of the stage production of the same name. The screenplay was written by Michael Stewart and Irving Brecher, with music by Charles Strouse and lyrics by Lee Adams.
Directed by George Sidney, the film version starred Dick Van Dyke, reprising his Broadway role as Albert Peterson, along with Maureen Stapleton as Mae Peterson, Janet Leigh as Rosie DeLeon, Paul Lynde reprising his Broadway role as Harry MacAfee, Bobby Rydell as Hugo Peabody, and Ann-Margret as Kim MacAfee.
The story was inspired by the phenomenon of popular singer Elvis Presley and his being drafted into the United States Army in 1957. Jesse Pearson plays the role of teen idol Conrad Birdie, whose character name is a word play on another pop singer of the era, Conway Twitty. Presley himself was the first choice for the role of Birdie, but his manager, Colonel Tom Parker, rejected the idea as he did not want Presley in any roles that were parodies of himself. Ed Sullivan appears as himself, host of the popular, long-running CBS TV variety show.
The film is credited with making Ann-Margret a superstar during the mid-1960s, leading to her appearing with the real Elvis in Viva Las Vegas (1964). Bye Bye Birdie opens with Ann-Margret singing a title song written especially for the movie. The soundtrack was released by RCA Victor in 1964.
In 2006, the film was ranked number 38 on Entertainment Weekly's list of the 50 Best High School Movies.