5,000 Fingers of Dr. T (1953): Roy Rowland’s Oscar Nominee, Based on Dr. Seuss Story

Ted Geisel (Dr. Seuss) wrote 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T, an eccentric fantasy about a young boy named Bart (Tommy Rettig), who doesn’t enjoy his piano lessons with the mean Dr. Terwilliker (Hans Conried).

Instead, he prefers to play baseball with his friends or helping his grown-up buddy-plumber Arthur Zabladowski (Peter Lind Hayes).

One night, while asleep, Bart has a dream in which he’s trapped in the kingdom of the fearsome Dr. T, who has enslaved many little boys, forcing them to practice on the world’s largest piano. Bart plans a revolt that will destroy Dr. T’s evil empire.

The movie features songs for which Geisel contributed lyrics.

Oscar Nominations: 1

Scoring Musical: Frederick Hollander and Morris Stoloff

Oscar Context

The winner was Alfred Newman for Call Me Madam.


Running time: 88 minutes.

Directed by Roy Rowland

DVD: April 24, 2001