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Irwin Winkler, producer-director of the new musical "De-Lovely," based on Cole Porter's life, remembers his first experience in the MGM commissary in 1966, when he was producing the Elvis Presley tuner "Double Trouble."
A fresh-faced young man from New York, he was seated at the producer's table with three legendary figures from the heyday of Hollywood musicals: Arthur Freed ("Singin' in the Rain"), Joe Pasternak ("Anchors Aweigh") and Pandro Berman ("Top Hat").
"They didn't ask me much because they were pretty wily old guys," recalls Winkler. "They saw this young kid coming in and they knew that was the future."
These days, Winkler is preparing to launch MGM's entry into the new, post-"Moulin Rouge" and-"Chicago" world of film musicals with the story of the complex personal life of songwriter Porter (played …