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AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Fred Astaire (1981)

The American Film Institute Salute to Fred Astaire (original title)
A Lifetime Achievement Award is presented to dancer Fred Astaire by the AFI featuring highlights from his films and reminiscences from his co-workers.


Marty Pasetta
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Fred Astaire ... Self - Honoree
David Niven ... Self - Host
Mikhail Baryshnikov ... Self
James Cagney ... Self
Cyd Charisse ... Self
Barrie Chase ... Self
Bob Fosse ... Self
Audrey Hepburn ... Self
Charlton Heston ... Self
Gene Kelly ... Self
Hermes Pan ... Self
Eleanor Powell ... Self
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Hart Bochner ... Self - Audience Member (uncredit)
Dick Cavett ... Self - Audience Member (uncredit)
Petula Clark ... Self - Audience Member (uncredit)


Dancer Fred Astaire in honored with the 9th Annual Lifetime Achievement Award by the American Film Institute at Hollywood banquet. Film clips from his best work with partner Ginger Rogers and others along with reminiscences from such dancing partners as Eleanor Powell, Barrie Chase, Cyd Charisse, and Audrey Hepburn are featured as well as highlights of Fred singing Gershwin and Porter songs. Written by duke1029

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Documentary | Music


Did You Know?


Emcee David Niven's voice seems slightly slurred. Although he excuses it with a joke to the audience at the beginning, he doesn't offer an explanation, describing it as "parrot-like." Niven was secretly suffering from ASL, a debilitating disease which would take his life two years later. See more »


Cyd Charisse: [Paraphrasing a speech from "The Band Wagon"] Fred, the whole company got together... we all chipped in and we bought you... nothing. So, we have nothing to give you but our gratitude,our appreciation, and our love. The show's a hit, but we all agreed that no matter what happened to it, it was wonderful working with you. The show's gonna run a long time, and as far as I'm concerned, Fred, it's going to be forever.
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A Foggy Day
Music by George Gershwin and lyrics by Ira Gershwin
Song by Fred Astaire in film clip
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User Reviews

The Golden Feet!
29 February 2020 | by girvsjointSee all my reviews

Just re watched my old Laser Disc of this show, a brilliant tribute to the King of dance,Fred Astaire was to dance what Bing Crosby was to song in the movies, the Tops in other words. The sad part of watching this show now is to realise so many of the famous faces there, are now gone, but fortunately, if the films are preserved, they'll live forever in a sense! Charlton Heston says at the start that we will be dazzled, and how true that is, but as the great Eleanor Parker pointed out, so much work went into those routines to make them look easy and spontaneous! One things for sure, we'll never see the likes of Fred Astaire, or that era again, and the world will be the poorer for it! If you can find this show, grab it!

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Release Date:

18 April 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The AFI Salute to Fred Astaire See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Pasetta Productions See more »
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