Annie (1999 film)

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DVD cover
Directed by Rob Marshall
Produced by Craig Zadan
Neil Meron
Written by Irene Mecchi
Thomas Meehan
Charles Strouse
Martin Charnin
Starring Victor Garber
Alicia Morton
Audra McDonald
Alan Cumming
Kathy Bates
Kristin Chenoweth
Music by Danny Troob
Charles Strouse (music)
Martin Charnin (lyrics)
Cinematography Ralf Bode
Editing by Scott Vickrey
Production company Walt Disney Television
Columbia TriStar Television
Country United States
Language English
Original channel ABC
Release date November 7, 1999 (1999-11-07)
Running time 90 minutes

Annie is a 1999 American made-for-television musical-comedy-drama film from The Wonderful World of Disney. It is an adaptation of the 1977 Broadway musical, which in turn was based on the 1924 Little Orphan Annie comic strip by Harold Gray. It is sometimes referred to as a remake of the 1982 film of the same name, although this is technically not true since both were adaptations of the musical, with the 1982 film varying greatly in plot and content. In this version, the material more closely matches the original Broadway production. Many critics and fans consider this to be the best version of the film adaptation of 1977 Broadway musical.

The film, starring Kathy Bates, Victor Garber, Alan Cumming, Audra McDonald, Kristin Chenoweth, and introducing Alicia Morton as Annie, aired on ABC on November 7, 1999 and was released on VHS and DVD that same year. This version earned two Emmy Awards and a 1999 George Foster Peabody Award.


Eleven-year-old orphan Annie was left at a girls' orphanage when she was an infant with half a locket shaped like a heart with a key hole and a note from her parents saying they'll come back for her. The orphanage is run by the tyrannical Miss Hannigan, who starves the orphans and makes them suffer. Tired of waiting for her parents, Annie tries to escape to find them, but is caught by Miss Hannigan. When Miss Hannigan gets distracted, Annie hides in the dirty laundry bin and she finally succeeds in running away. While out on her own, Annie befriends a dog, whom she names Sandy. But a policeman catches her and returns her to the orphanage. When billionaire Oliver Warbucks decides to take in an orphan for Christmas, his secretary, Grace Farrell, chooses Annie. She is brought to his wealthy estate and bathes in a grand life.

Although at first uncomfortable with Annie, Warbucks is soon charmed by her. He wants to adopt Annie, but Annie still wants to find her real parents, so she announces on the radio a $50,000 reward for anybody who can prove they're her parents. The orphans accidentally tell Miss Hannigan, and her ex-con brother Rooster, and his dimwitted girlfriend Lily St. Regis cook up a scheme to get the reward by posing as Ralph and Shirley Mudge (Annie's "so called" parents).[1] When Lily proves to be too risky for the scheme, Miss Hannigan takes over as "Annie's mother".

Lily is left with the orphans after Miss Hannigan and Rooster leave, but Lily accidentally tells the secret. The orphans make her tell them what is going on, and she realizes that Rooster could leave her hanging as he has done before. She and the orphans come to Warbucks' mansion where Lily demands her part in the cut while the orphans quote "WE LOVE YOU MISS HANNIGAN" as Miss Hannigan tries to run by Lily. While fleeing from the orphans, Miss Hannigan and Rooster are intercepted upon the arrival of President Franklin D. Roosevelt arrives with his Secret Service as the President reads the papers that identity Miss Hannigan, Rooster, and Lily while also mentioning the aliases of the latter two. Rooster and Lily are arrested by the Secret Service as Rooster tells Lily that she loused up. Miss Hannigan tries to convince Annie to vouch for her to avoid being arrested, but Annie says she would and states that Miss Hannigan taught her to "never tell a lie". Miss Hannigan then goes insane and is carted off to an asylum as Rooster and Lily are also escorted out of the mansion.

President Roosevelt then present the evidence that Annie's parents are really David and Margaret Bennett and had in fact died several years earlier which was why they never returned for her. Although Annie is saddened that her real parents are dead, she is cheered up when Warbucks officially takes her in as one of his own. The President ensures a happy ending for all as he promises that each orphan will be adopted by a stable and happy family. Warbucks and Grace become engaged, and Annie lives happily with her new parents.


  • Victor Garber as Oliver "Daddy" Warbucks, a billionaire businessman who opens his heart to Annie and becomes her adoptive father.
  • Alicia Morton as Annie, an 11-year-old orphan searching for her biological parents.
  • Audra McDonald as Grace Farrell, Personal Secretary to Oliver Warbucks.
  • Alan Cumming as Daniel "Rooster" Hannigan/Danny the Dip, Agatha's brother and con-artist.
  • Kathy Bates as Miss Agatha Hannigan, the cruel owner of the orphanage where Annie lived.
  • Kristin Chenoweth as Lily St. Regis/Sadie Algonquin/Phyllis the Filcher, Rooster's girlfriend.
  • Erin Adams as Tessie
  • Sarah Hyland as Molly
  • Lalaine as Kate
  • Nanea Miyata as July
  • Marissa Rago as Pepper
  • Danielle Wilson as Duffy
  • Andrea McArdle as Star-To-Be
  • Dennis Howard as Franklin D. Roosevelt, the President of the United States.
  • Douglas Fisher as Drake
  • Kurt Knudson as Justice Brandeis
  • Ernie Sabella as Mr. Bundles
  • Chester and Chip, as Sandy, a stray dog (later Annie's pet)

Musical numbers[edit]

The film's soundtrack was released on November 2, 1999 by Sony.

The songs in this version reflect those of the original 1977 production, but does not include "We'd Like to Thank You, Herbert Hoover", "Tomorrow (Cabinet Reprise)", "Annie", or "New Deal for Christmas". However, it does include a reprise of "N.Y.C." and of "Little Girls" that takes place at the end of the film, rather than after the song itself.

  1. "Overture"
  2. "Maybe" - Annie
  3. "It's the Hard Knock Life" - Annie and Orphans
  4. "It's the Hard Knock Life" (Reprise) - Orphans
  5. "Tomorrow" - Annie
  6. "Little Girls" - Miss Hannigan
  7. "I Think I'm Gonna Like It Here" - Grace, Annie, and Warbucks' Staff
  8. "N.Y.C." - Warbucks, Grace, Annie, and Star-to-Be
  9. "N.Y.C." (Reprise) - Warbucks
  10. "Lullaby" - Warbucks
  11. "Easy Street" - Rooster, Miss Hannigan, and Lily
  12. "Maybe" (Reprise 1) - Annie
  13. "You're Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile" - Bert Healy and the Boylan Sisters
  14. "You're Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile" (Reprise) - Orphans
  15. "Something Was Missing" - Warbucks
  16. "I Don't Need Anything But You" - Warbucks and Annie
  17. "Maybe" (Reprise 2) - Grace
  18. "Tomorrow" (Reprise) - Grace
  19. "Little Girls" (Reprise) - Miss Hannigan
  20. "Finale: I Don't Need Anything But You" (Reprise) - Warbucks, Grace, and Annie

Comparison to 1977 musical and 1982 film[edit]

  • This version does not include a subplot involving Sandy, who goes missing in the 1977 version, but had the subplot in the 1982 film. However, Sandy does get more screen time in this version than he does in the play.
  • Miss Hannigan poses as Annie's mother instead of Lily St. Regis, out of worry that Lily would have ruined the plan (which is proven correct in the film's climax).
  • The White House "Tomorrow" reprise was replaced by a scene involving Grace Farrell and Annie where Grace comforts Annie after the Mudges visits the mansion. In the 1982 version, it is only mentioned by Miss Hannigan (before the "Easy Street" number) that Annie's real parents were killed in a fire; their last name was never mentioned. Rooster is also shown to be forging a document when the orphans make their first escape attempt to warn Annie in the 1982 version.
  • In this version, Miss Hannigan is not a drunk, and it is readily admitted by the orphans that she never beats them. This is in stark contrast to the previous versions, where Hannigan is a terrible drunk who beats the kids.
  • In this version, Miss Hannigan is taken to a psychiatric hospital at the end. This does not occur in the 1977 or 1982 versions.
  • The 1982 version presents moral complexities that are simplified in this version, such as Miss Hannigan being a somewhat sympathetic villain in the 1982 version but instead being an entirely unscrupulous villain in this one.
  • Annie's hair is straight and auburn rather than curly and carrot red. However, when she is wearing a red dress with white lace, her hair is shown to be curly.
  • The character "Punjab" does not appear in this version (since he wasn't in the play).
  • At the climax of the 1982 version, Miss Hannigan tries to save Annie from Rooster but he beats her down in order to catch Annie. She is later shown as a showgirl at Annie's party dating Punjab (originally played by Geoffrey Holder).
  • In this version, Warbucks asks Grace to marry him at the end. In the 1982 version, they only kiss which implies that they are dating. She is wearing a sparkling ring on her left hand which could also suggest they are engaged. The play includes very little romance between them.
  • In this version, the 1982 film's original songs "Dumb Dog", "Sandy", "Sign", "We Got Annie", and "Let's Go to the Movies" were not used as they were previously.
  • In this version, instead of taking Annie to the movies (as in the 1982 version), Grace and Warbucks take her on a tour of New York City, and later attend a Broadway show—all while singing "N.Y.C." (like in the play).
  • Unlike the 1982 version, Miss Hannigan and Rooster's Irish family lineage is referenced strongly during their performance of "Easy Street".
  • The song "Hooverville" is left out.
  • While the 1999 version is set at Christmastime (like the play), the 1982 version is set during the 4th of July.


This was Walt Disney and Columbia Pictures' first film collaboration.

The dancers' costumes and the stage set of the Broadway section of "N.Y.C." are taken directly from the "Broadway Melody" ballet in Singin' in the Rain.

After its premiere on ABC, Annie has aired on cable channels such as ABC Family, Starz, and the Hallmark Channel.

Awards and nominations[edit]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Michael Scheinfeld. ""Annie" (1999) review". Common Sense Media. Retrieved 2007-11-02. ...the conniving Hannigan and her unscrupulous brother pose as Annie's parents... 
  2. ^ 59th Annual Peabody Awards, May 2000.

External links[edit]