Richard M. Sherman


Composer, Lyricist

About

Also Known As
Richard Morton Sherman, Dick Sherman, Richard Sherman
Birth Place
New York City, New York, USA
Born
June 12, 1928

Biography

Together with his older brother, Robert, songwriter Richard M. Sherman was credited with penning some of the most beloved family-friendly tunes of all time, including the most played song ever, "It's a Small World (After All)." Born Richard Morton Sherman on June 12, 1928 in New York City, he was the son of Russian-Jewish immigrants Rosa and Al Sherman, a successful Tin Pan Alley songwri...

Family & Companions

Ursula Gluck
Wife
Married on July 6, 1957.

Notes

Sherman and his brother also wrote "It's a Small World", the theme song of Disneyland and Walt Disney World.

Biography

Together with his older brother, Robert, songwriter Richard M. Sherman was credited with penning some of the most beloved family-friendly tunes of all time, including the most played song ever, "It's a Small World (After All)." Born Richard Morton Sherman on June 12, 1928 in New York City, he was the son of Russian-Jewish immigrants Rosa and Al Sherman, a successful Tin Pan Alley songwriter. The family eventually relocated to Los Angeles, where Richard later performed with future composer André Previn at his high school graduation. After completing his college studies, Sherman and his older brother, who had just returned from serving in World War II, began what would be a long and fruitful career as a songwriting team. This was interrupted, however, when the younger Sherman was drafted into the military during the Korean War in 1953. The brothers resumed the partnership upon his return and soon after wrote the song "Tall Paul," which became a hit record for Annette Funicello in 1958. Shortly thereafter, the Sherman brothers began their more than 10-year association with Walt Disney, creating memorable scores for dozens of the company's films. While their first efforts were included in such family features as "The Absent-Minded Professor" (1961) and "The Parent Trap" (1961), the brothers did not truly come into their own until "The Sword and the Stone" (1963), an animated telling of the Arthurian legend. The following year, they enjoyed their greatest success with the lively and infectious score to "Mary Poppins" (1964), for which they shared Oscars for Best Score and Best Song ("Chim Chim Cheree"). Drawing on English music hall traditions, the Shermans composed several hummable melodies, among them, the tongue-twisting classic, "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious."

The Shermans remained at Disney for the remainder of the decade, contributing songs to "That Darn Cat!" (1965), "The Jungle Book" (1967) and "The Aristocats" (1970). A rare non-Disney song, the title tune for United Artists' "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" (1968) earned them an Academy Award nomination. By the time, "Bedknobs and Broomsticks" (1971) was released, the siblings had severed their ties to Disney, though the film did earn them Oscar nominations for Best Song Score and Best Song ("The Age of Not Believing"). They renewed their affiliation with United Artists, scripting and scoring adaptations of "Tom Sawyer" (1973) and "Huckleberry Finn" (1974). Also in 1974, the Sherman brothers debuted as Broadway composers with an Andrews Sisters musical called "Over Here!" They were again nominated for Academy Awards for the lilting score and the title song from "The Slipper and the Rose" (1976). Two years later, Sherman and his brother were again among the nominees for "When You're Loved" from "The Magic of Lassie" (1978). In the years that followed, Sherman and his sibling also collaborated on songs for such animated projects as "Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland" (1990) and "The Tigger Movie" (2000). Even after the older Sherman moved to the U.K. in 2002, the irrepressible brothers continued to collaborate. When "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" became a musical on Broadway in 2005, Richard and Robert contributed a handful of new songs. In 2008, the Sherman brothers were awarded the National Medal of Arts by President George W. Bush. The following year, they were the subject of the documentary "The Boys: The Sherman Brothers Story" (2009), a fond remembrance of their remarkable careers. It was a partnership that would endure right up until the passing of older brother Robert in March 2012.

By Bryce Coleman

Filmography

 

Cast (Feature Film)

The Boys: The Sherman Brothers' Story (2009)
Himself

Writer (Feature Film)

The Magic Of Lassie (1978)
Screenwriter
The Magic Of Lassie (1978)
From Story
The Slipper and the Rose (1976)
Screenwriter
Huckleberry Finn (1974)
Screenplay
Tom Sawyer (1973)
Screenplay

Music (Feature Film)

Mary Poppins Returns (2018)
Music Coordinator
Mary Poppins Returns (2018)
Song
The Jungle Book (2016)
Song
Ant-Man (2015)
Song
Aloha (2015)
Song
Tomorrowland (2015)
Song
Saving Mr. Banks (2013)
Music
Saving Mr. Banks (2013)
Song
Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters (2013)
Song
Gnomeo & Juliet (2011)
Song
Winnie the Pooh (2011)
Song
Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
Song
Iron Man 2 (2010)
Song
The Boys: The Sherman Brothers' Story (2009)
Music
Bewitched (2005)
Song
Pooh's Heffalump Movie (2005)
Song
War of the Worlds (2005)
Song
Around the World in 80 Days (2004)
Song
The Jungle Book 2 (2003)
Song
Piglet's Big Movie (2003)
Song
The Tigger Movie (2000)
Song
The Mighty Kong (1998)
Song
PARENT TRAP, THE (1998)
Song
Sick: The Life and Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist (1997)
Song
The Lion King (1994)
Song
Beverly Hills Cop III (1994)
Song
Life with Mikey (1993)
Song
Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland (1992)
Songs
Radio Flyer (1992)
Song
Troop Beverly Hills (1989)
Song
The Fabulous Baker Boys (1989)
Song
Gung Ho (1986)
Song
The Magic Of Lassie (1978)
Music
The Magic Of Lassie (1978)
Songs ("A Rose Is Not A Rose" "That Hometown Feeling" "Thanksgiving Prayer" "When You'Re Loved" "There'Ll Be Other Friday Nights" "Brass Rings And Daydreams" "Travellin' Music" "Nobody'S Property" "I Can'T Say Goodbye" "Banjo Song")
The Slipper and the Rose (1976)
Songs ("Why Can'T I Be Two People?" "What Has Love Got To Do With Getting Married?" "Once I Was Loved" "What A Comforting Thing To Know" "Protocoligorically Correct" "A Bride Finding Ball" "Suddenly It Happens" "Secret Kingdom" "He Danced With Me" "She Danced With Me" "Position And Positioning" "Tell Him Anything (But Not That I Love Him)" "I Can'T Forget The Melody")
The Slipper and the Rose (1976)
Music
Huckleberry Finn (1974)
Music
Huckleberry Finn (1974)
Theme Lyrics
Charlotte's Web (1973)
Song
Tom Sawyer (1973)
Music
Tom Sawyer (1973)
Theme Lyrics
Snoopy, Come Home (1972)
Lyrics
Snoopy, Come Home (1972)
Music
Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971)
Composer
The Aristocats (1970)
Composer
Venus in Furs (1969)
Composer
The One and Only, Genuine, Original Family Band (1968)
Composer
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968)
Composer
The Adventures of Bullwhip Griffin (1967)
Composer
The Jungle Book (1967)
Composer
Monkeys, Go Home! (1967)
Composer
The Gnome-Mobile (1967)
Composer
The Happiest Millionaire (1967)
Composer
Follow Me, Boys! (1966)
Title song
The Monkey's Uncle (1965)
Composer
Those Calloways (1965)
Composer
That Darn Cat (1965)
Composer
The Misadventures of Merlin Jones (1964)
Composer
Mary Poppins (1964)
Composer
The Sword in the Stone (1963)
Composer
Miracle of the White Stallions (1963)
Composer
Summer Magic (1963)
Composer
Big Red (1962)
Composer
Bon Voyage! (1962)
Composer
In Search of the Castaways (1962)
Composer
The Legend of Lobo (1962)
Composer
Moon Pilot (1962)
Composer
The Parent Trap (1961)
Composer
The Absent-Minded Professor (1961)
Composer

Misc. Crew (Feature Film)

The Boys: The Sherman Brothers' Story (2009)
Other

Cast (Special)

Dick Van Dyke: Put on a Happy Face (2000)

Music (Special)

The Sound of Julie Andrews (1995)
Song

Music (TV Mini-Series)

Snoopy Come Home (1972)
Composer

Life Events

1953

Served in the US Army in Korea

1958

Co-wrote hit song "Tall Paul" for Annette Funicello

1960

Began association with Walt Disney Studios

1961

First screen credit as songwriter for "The Absent-Minded Professor"; co-written with his brother

1964

Had biggest screen success with "Mary Poppins"; won two Academy Awards for Best Score and Best Song

1968

Scored a rare non-Disney film, "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang"; garnered Oscar nomination for title song

1971

Earned Academy Award nominations for Best Song and Best Scoring for "Bedknobs and Broomsticks"; last film collaboration with Walt Disney Company

1973

Screenwriting debut, co-wrote Tom Sawyer"; also scored; song score nominated for an Oscar

1974

Broadway debut as songwriter, "Over Here!", a musical starring Patty and Maxine Andrews

1976

Co-scripted and scored "The Slipper and the Rose", a retelling of the Cinderella story released by Universal; nominated for Best Scoring and Best Song Academy Awards

1978

Earned another Oscar nomination for the song "When You're Loved" from "The Magic of Lassie"

1990

Wrote songs for the animated "Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland"

2000

Wrote the song score for "The Tigger Movie"

Videos

Movie Clip

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968) - Baron Bomburst, Title Song Inventor dad Potts (Dick Van Dyke) with sweetheart Truly (Scrumptious! Sally Ann Potts) on a beach picnic has just confabulated the evil Baron Bomburst (Gert Fröbe, a.k.a. Goldfinger) for the kids (Heather Ripley, Adrian Hill), cueing another Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman original and one of the first big tech sequences, in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, 1968, from James Bond producer Albert R. Broccoli.
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1968) - Toot Sweets Joining nutty inventor Potts (Dick Van Dyke) making a pitch to candy kingpin Lord Scrumptious (James Robertson Justice), cajoled by daughter Truly (Sally Ann Howes) and his own kids (Heather Ripley, Adrian Hill), the first big production number, and another Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman original, in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, 1968.
Legend Of Lobo, The (1962) - The Wolf Known As Lobo Opening with elaborate appreciation of the landscape around Sedona, ensuing narration by Arizona’s own Rex Allen, and loosely based on “Lobo the King of Currumpaw,” the factual short-story by Ernest Thompson Seton, from Walt Disney’s widely-seen The Legend Of Lobo, 1962.
One And Only Original Genuine Family Band, The (1968) - Happiest Girl Alive Lesley-Ann Warren as Disney ingenue, eldest daughter Alice of the Bower clan of Ohio, song by the brothers Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman, singing of her beau (John Davidson, also her love interest in Disney’s The Happiest Millionaire, 1967), in The One And Only, Genuine, Original Family Band, 1968.
One And Only Original Genuine Family Band, The (1968) - Let's Put It Over With Grover The big number composed by Grandpa (Walter Brennan) for the 1888 re-nomination of President Grover Cleveland, performed by Buddy Ebsen, Janet Blair, Lesley-Ann Warren, Kurt Russell et al, composed by Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman, in Disney’s The One And Only, Genuine, Original Family Band, 1968.
Slipper And The Rose, The (1976) - Secret Kingdom The prince (Richard Chamberlain) and Cinderella (Gemma Craven) have just met at the ball, thus their first song, from screenwriters and composers Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman, Bryan Forbes directing, in The Slipper And The Rose, 1976.
Slipper And The Rose, The (1976) - Why Can't I Be Two People? From Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman of Mary Poppins fame, the first song in their 1976 original version of Cinderella, Richard Chamberlain as the prince attended by friend Christopher Gable and Kenneth More as the Lord High Chamberlain, in The Slipper And The Rose, 1976.
Tom Sawyer (1973) - Gratifaction The tune is called "Gratifaction" and the scene is Mark Twain's recollection of Missouri, the bit about white-washing a fence, Johnny Whitaker as the title character in the Sherman Brothers' musical production of Tom Sawyer 1973.
Tom Sawyer (1973) - Rebecca Thatcher Young Johnny Whitaker (title character) can be forgiven for being charmed by Miss Rebecca Thatcher (Jodie Foster), making her first appearance in the Richard M. and Robert B. Sherman musical version of Tom Sawyer, 1973.
Venus in Furs (1970) - Rio, Rita Jimmy (James Darren) narrates his way to Rio where we meet Rita (Barbara McNair) singing "Let's Get Together" by Robert B. and Richard M. Sherman from an unlikely position in Jess Franco's Venus in Furs, 1970.

Trailer

Family

Al Sherman
Father
Composer.
Rosa Sherman
Mother
Robert B Sherman
Brother
Songwriter. Older, born on December 19, 1925; collaborator with his brother.
Linda Sue Sherman
Daughter
Gregory Francis Sherman
Son
Victoria Lynn Sherman
Daughter

Companions

Ursula Gluck
Wife
Married on July 6, 1957.

Bibliography

Notes

Sherman and his brother also wrote "It's a Small World", the theme song of Disneyland and Walt Disney World.