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AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to James Cagney (1974)

The American Film Institute Salute to James Cagney (original title)
Actor James Cagney receives the Second Annual AFI Lifetime Achievement Award as co-workers pay tribute and clips from his films are shown.

Director:

Bill Foster
Reviews
Won 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 1 win. See more awards »

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In 1976, William Wyler became the fourth recipient of the American Film Institute's Lifetime Achievement Award, following John Ford, James Cagney and Orson Welles. The winner of three Best ... See full summary »

Stars: Eddie Albert, Henry Fonda, Greer Garson
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Cast

Credited cast:
James Cagney ... Himself - Honoree
Frank Sinatra ... Himself - Host
Mae Clarke ... Herself
Doris Day ... Herself
Kirk Douglas ... Himself
Frank Gorshin ... Himself
Charlton Heston ... Himself
Bob Hope ... Himself
Jack Lemmon ... Himself
Shirley MacLaine ... Herself
Ronald Reagan ... Himself (as Governor Reagan)
George C. Scott ... Himself
George Segal ... Himself
Cicely Tyson ... Herself
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
George Bancroft ... John Armstrong (archive footage)
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Storyline

Retired superstar actor James Cagney receives the second annual American Film Institute Lifetime Achievment Award in 1974 ceremony hosted by Frank Sinatra. Although the actor had not appeared in a film in 14 years, he appears hale and hardy as he listens to tributes from the likes of co-stars Doris Day, Jack Lemmon, Bob Hope, and Ronald Reagaan and representing the AFI, Charlton Heston, Cicely Tyson, and George Stevens Jr. Clips from his many films including "White Heat," "Yankee Doodle Dandy," and "The Public Enemy" are warmly received, and the actor recognizes the minor players like Frank McHugh, Mae Clarke, Allen Jenkins, etc., who helped contribute to his success. Written by duke1029@aol.com

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Documentary

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

18 March 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The AFI Salute to James Cagney See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

George Stevens Jr. mentions that the AFI has preserved all of Cagney's 65 films. See more »

Quotes

Frank Sinatra - Host: [aping Cagney] Ma's dead... you dirty rat!
See more »


Soundtracks

My Way
(Comme d'Habitude)
(uncredited)
Music by Claude François and Jacques Revaux
French lyrics by Gilles Thibaut
English lyrics by Paul Anka
Performed by Frank Sinatra
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User Reviews

Cagney and the "dirty rat" line....
21 December 2004 | by gigisvinSee all my reviews

After a thirteen-year absence from the screen, James Cagney proved again what a great entertainment talent he was. At the 1974 AFI Salute to him, his acceptance speech began with laughter and ended with laughter. His performance at the Salute was perfect - well-paced, witty, sardonic, heartfelt, and memorable. In spite of his fame as a movie tough guy, he preferred comedy and made some really funny films. Don't miss the gem, "Jimmy the Gent," with Bette Davis. Regarding the famous line attributed to him -- "You dirty rat," it's true that he did not say those exact words. However, in both "Blonde Crazy" and Taxi," he said variations of that line: In the final scene of "Blonde Crazy," Cagney says to Joan Blondell, "Why, the dirty, double-crossing rat, I'd like to get my hooks on him, I'd tear him to pieces." In the next to the last scene of "Taxi," Cagney finally corners his brother's killer. As he aims his gun at the closed closet door, he says, "Come out and take it, you dirty yellow-bellied rat or I'll give it to you through the door." He closed his 1974 AFI acceptance speech by saying, "And, just in passing, I never said, 'Hmmm, you dirty rat.' What I did say was, 'Judy, Judy, Judy!'" (For those who don't know, that's a reference to Cary Grant.)


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