1965 Motion Picture
In 1965 the 20th Century Fox motion picture version of The Sound of Music was released in theatres. Directed by Robert Wise, with a screenplay by Ernest Lehman, it boasted a dream cast: Julie Andrews as Maria, Christopher Plummer as the Captain, Eleanor Parker as Elsa and Peggy Wood as the Mother Abbess. The film made Hollywood history; after the premiere at the Rivoli Theatre in New York, the run of engagements in movie theaters lasted a stunning four-and-a-half years internationally, playing its final showing December 8, 1969. Winner of five Academy Awards, including Best Picture, The Sound of Music has since become the most popular movie musical ever made.
The Motion Picture Soundtrack of The Sound of Music was released on RCA Records the same day as its New York premiere: March 2, 1965. It was made in four different formats: long-play phonograph record, audio cassette, 8-track cartridge and on 1/4″ reel-to-reel. The record went Gold on April 10, 1965, selling more than 250,000 albums. In November 1965, the record hit the #1 position on the Billboard charts in its 35th week and stayed in the top ten until mid-January 1968. With 20 million records sold worldwide, it is one of the best-selling soundtrack albums of all time. The album was issued on CD in the early 1980s, and has since seen anniversary editions, upgraded technically each time and with extra material added.