Thursday, August 19, 2021

On This Day...The Talk of the Town (1942)

 Cary Grant's 41st film was The Talk of the Town, released on today's date back in 1942. 


Cary Grant is Leopold Dilg, who was jailed for arson and murder after a man died when a mill burned down. He escapes custody and hides out in the home of Nora Shelley, his childhood sweetheart, played by Jean Arthur….but Nora has just rented her home out to unsuspecting law professor Michael Lightcap (Ronald Colman)…could he be of any help to Leopold’s case? 


Cary Grant...Leopold Dilg
Jean Arthur...Nora Shelley
Ronald Colman...Professor Michael Lightcap
Edgar Buchanan...Sam Yates
Glenda Farrell....Regina Bush
Charles Dingle...Andrew Holmes
Emma Dunn...Mrs. Shelley
Rex Ingram...Tilney
Leonid Kinskey...Jan Pulaski
Tom Tyler...Clyde Bracken
Don Beddoe...Police Chief

Did You Know?

This was the first time since the silent era that Ronald Colman was billed below another male lead.

When the professor is unconscious on the floor, Tilney (Rex Ingram) asks Sam is he is a doctor. Ironically, Rex Ingram was himself a doctor in real life - a trained physician.

Cary Grant and Ronald Colman were both paid at least $100,000 for their work in the film. Jean Arthur, who was in Harry Cohn's dog house and just coming off suspension, was only paid $50,000.

Nora tells the professor that he is, "as whiskered as the Smith Brothers." This refers to a brand of cough drops with an illustration of the Smith Brothers on the front, both of whom have a beard. First introduced in 1852, they remained the most popular brand for a century.

The AMC television showing of this film omits the actual moment, shown in the complete version, in which 'Ronald Colman' is actually informed of his Supreme Court appointment.


Leopold Dilg: With these indoor habits of yours, you've got the complexion of a gravel pit.
Michael Lightcap: You know, Joseph, you're no oil painting yourself.

Leopold Dilg: Stop saying "Leopold" like that, tenderly. It sounds funny. You can't do it with a name like Leopold.

Sam Yates: He's the only honest man I've come across in this town in 20 years. Naturally, they want to hang him.

Leopold Dilg: What is the law? It's a gun pointed at somebody's head. All depends upon which end of the gun you stand, whether the law is just or not.

Nora Shelley: Listen, I can't hang around here even if I wanted to. Lightcap's ordered me out 50 times since last night. I'm here now only by the grace of being in his pajamas. One minute I'm out of these and I'm out on my ear!

Michael Lightcap: Miss Shelly, judging from the past 12 hours, how quiet do you think it could be in this house, with you in it?

Lobby Cards:

Directed by George Stevens.
Produced and distributed by Columbia.
Running time: 118 minutes.

Artwork by Rebekah Hawley at Studio36.

Tuesday, August 17, 2021

On This Day...In Name Only (1939)

 On today's date back in 1939, Cary Grant's 34th full length feature film, In Name Only, was released. 


Life starts to get complicated wealthy Alec Walker (Cary Grant), who falls for widow, Julie Eden (Carole Lombard)….but doesn’t tell her he is already trapped in a loveless marriage to gold digger, Maida (Kay Francis). The two women meet by coincidence but their reactions to each other are very different.


Carole Lombard...Julie Eden
Cary Grant...Alec Walker
Kay Francis...Maida Walker
Charles Coburn...Mr. Walker
Helen Vinson...Suzanne Duross
Katharine Alexander...Laura
Jonathan Hale...Dr. Gateson
Nella Walker...Mrs. Walker
Alan Baxter...Charley
Maurice Moscovitch....Dr. Muller (as Maurice Moscovich)
Peggy Ann Garner...Ellen
Spencer Charters...Gardener

Did You Know?

This movie was intended to be a reunion for Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn, but following the failure of Bringing Up Baby (1938) at the box office from the previous year, Hepburn left RKO being after deemed "Box Office Poison". Carole Lombard was subsequently brought in as her replacement.  This film was a success at the box office, earning RKO a profit of $155,000 ($2.78M in 2019) according to studio records.

The front of the Walkers' home, used in the scene where Lombard's character arrives at the wife's garden party, is actually the front portico of the old Selznick Studio in Culver City, where Gone With the Wind was being filmed at the same time this was made.

According to contemporary articles in The Hollywood Reporter, Douglas Fairbanks Jr. was to play the role of Alex Walker.

"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on December 11, 1939 with Carole Lombard, Cary Grant and Kay Francis reprising their film roles.


Suzanne: I told you I had to see you.
Alec Walker: Now that you've found me, what about it?
Suzanne: Honestly, Alec, you're so direct!
Alec Walker: You're not exactly oblique yourself.

Suzanne: Merely because I happen to think you're attractive, you want me to throw my whole life away. What kind of a person do you think I am anyway?
Alec Walker: An Easter bunny.

Alec Walker: You call that love, huh?
Suzanne: Who are you to be so high and mighty about love? You and that thing you've got with Maida! Of all the shams I've ever seen, that's the worst. You didn't think you could make a fool out of me, did you?
Alec Walker: I tried.

Manager - Tony's Cafe: Glad to see you come in so regular, Mr. Walker. You know, I like to have your kind of folks. You might drop the word to your friends.
Alec Walker: Tony, when my friends start coming here, I stop.

Maida Walker: Go on back. There's no reason for a goodbye scene, is there?
Alec Walker: Oh, I just want to thank you again. I do thank you, you know.
Maida Walker: It's all so sporting. The way it is in books.
Alec Walker: Or prizefights.

Julie Eden: Darling, I'm so hungry, I could eat a horse.
Alec Walker: Well, I doubt if they serve them; however, we'll try.

Posters and Lobby Cards:

Directed by John Cromwell
Produced and distributed by RKO Radio.
Running time: 94 minutes.

Artwork by Rebekah Hawley at Studio36.

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

On This Day...Devil and the Deep (1932)

 Released today back in 1932, Devil and the Deep was Cary Grant's 4th full length feature film.


Where Cary Grant’s Naval officer is transferred due to the suspicions of jealous Naval Commander Charles Sturm (Charles Laughton).  Miserable through her husband’s obsessive behaviour, Charles’ wife Diana (Tallulah Bankhead), falls into the arms of a handsome lieutenant (Gary Cooper)….But when her husband finds out about the affair, he plots revenge.


Tallulah Bankhead...Diana Sturm
Gary Cooper...Lt. Sempter
Charles Laughton...Cmdr. Charles Sturm
Cary Grant...Lt. Jaeckel
Paul Porcasi...Hassan
Juliette Compton...Mrs. Planet
Henry Kolker...Hutton
Dorothy Christy...Mrs. Crimp
Arthur Hoyt...Mr. Planet
Gordon Westcott...Lt. Toll
James Dugan...Condover (as Jimmie Dugan)

Did You Know?

Cary Grant was originally set to play Lt. Sempter.

At no point is the navy that Charles Laughton, Cary Grant and Gary Cooper belong to named. That the officers are English and others American would not make sense in the British or U.S. navy, but no flags or emblems are seen, and their uniforms belong to no known country on earth.

This is the only film featuring both Gary Cooper and Cary Grant as the movie's leading men but they never appear together onscreen. However, in Alice in Wonderland (1933), Grant played the Mock Turtle and Cooper played the White Knight, having their only movie scene together (of sorts) as the entire cast appears in the tea party scene.


Twenty men sent to the bottom of the sea-for one woman's sin! 
(Print Ad-Toledo News-Bee, ((Toledo, Ohio)) 1 September 1932)

Posters and Lobby Cards:

Directed by Marion Gering
Produced and distributed by Paramount Publix
Running time: 70 minutes.

Artwork by Rebekah Hawley at Studio36.

Monday, August 9, 2021

On This Day...Ladies Should Listen (1934)

 Released today back in 1934, Ladies Should Listen was Cary Grant's 17th full length feature film.


Businessman Julian De Lussac (Cary Grant) lives in an apartment building where, although she only knows him through the telephone, the building’s switchboard operator, Anna (Frances Drake), falls for him.  Anna discovers that De Lussac’s girlfriend, Marguerite (Rosita Moreno), is part of a group wanting to swindle him, so Anna decides to save him and expose the con artists.


Cary Grant...Julian De Lussac
Frances Drake...Anna Mirelle
Edward Everett Horton...Paul Vernet
Nydia Westman...Susie Flamberg
Rafael Corio...Ramon Cintos (as Rafael Corio)
Rosita Moreno...Marguerite Cintos
George Barbier...Joseph Flamberg
Charles Ray...Henri - House Porter
Charles Arnt...Alber - Valet
Ann Sheridan...Adele (as Clara Lou Sheridan)
Henrietta Burnside...Telephone Operator
Joseph North...Butler (as Joe North)


Julian De Lussac: Wait a minute. How will I know when you get to 10?
Ramon Cintos: You'll be dead.

Julian De Lussac: Your approach was wrong. You treated her with respect.
Paul Vernet: Why, of course!
Julian De Lussac: Yes, that's the trouble. You treat respectable women one way and the other kind another. Reverse your procedure and see what happens. Your popularity will surprise you.
Paul Vernet: Even with a girl like Susie?
Julian De Lussac: Please! You're speaking of my future wife.

Paul Vernet: Well, she sent me up here to ask you to join the party.
Julian De Lussac: Wellll!
Paul Vernet: May I tell her you can't come?
Julian De Lussac: Certainly.


He Talked Fast and Stayed Single Until a Girl Slowed Him Down to a Simple "I Do"! 
(Original Print Ad - Lubbock Morning Avalanche - Lubbock, Texas - August 24, 1934)

The hilarious affairs of a besieged bachelor who lost his head and his freedom at the same time! 
(Print Ad- Niagara Falls Gazette, ((Niagara Falls, NY)) 6 September 1934)

"I'll Kill Myself If You Don't See Me-"..He Lied! 
(Print Ad- Evening Star, ((Washington DC)) 23 August 1934)

She Got In His Hair at first...but later he found her in his heart! 
(Print Ad-Troy Times, ((Troy NY)) 20 October 1934)

GIRLS! Get an earful of this! LISTEN...but don't believe a word he tells you...because it'll sound too good to be true! 
(Print Ad-Lawrence Daily Journal-World, ((Lawrence, Kans.)) 5 October 1934)

Lobby Cards:

Directed by Frank Tuttle
Distributed by Paramount Publix
Running time: 62 minutes

Artwork by Rebekah Hawley at Studio36.

Wednesday, August 4, 2021

On This Day...To Catch A Thief (1955)

 On this day in 1955, To Catch a Thief, Cary Grant's 60th full length feature film, was released.


With the help of a prospective victim's daughter, a retired jewel thief sets out to prove his innocence after being suspected of returning to his former occupation in light of a new wave of thefts.


Cary Grant...John Robie
Grace Kelly...Frances Stevens
Jessie Royce Landis...Jessie Stevens
John Williams ...H.H. Hughson
Charles Vanel...Bertani
Brigitte Auber...Danielle Foussard
Jean Martinelli...Foussard
Georgette Anys...Germaine

Did You Know?

Cary Grant had announced his retirement from acting in February 1953, stating that, since the rise of Method actors like Marlon Brando, most people were no longer interested in seeing him. He was also angry at the way Charles Chaplin had been treated by the HUAC. He was lured out of his retirement to make this movie, and thereafter continued acting for a further eleven years.

John Robie mentions that, as a youth, he was in a trapeze group that traveled around Europe. In reality, Cary Grant was in an acrobatic troupe that toured around Europe--and eventually brought him to America--when he was young.

Cary Grant has only one line for the whole beginning of the movie. He doesn't speak his second line until fourteen minutes in. Grace Kelly doesn't speak until nearly 32 minutes in.

For the scene between Robie and the insurance agent, when they talk about the cook's sensitive hands, the German version of the movie differs completely from the original; In English, Robie notes she once strangled a German general without a sound; while in German, he says she once caught an escaped lion from a circus with her bare hands.

The insurance invoice listing the types of jewelry and their values showed the sum amount of $280,000. Adjusted for inflation, the valuation is $2,688,723.60 as of April 2020.

When Cary Grant reads the insurance valuation on the beach, the valuer's address is Para House, Wardour Street, London W1. This was the address of Paramount Pictures' London office.

French actor Charles Vanel (as Bertani) could not speak a word of English. All of his lines were dubbed.

Filming on the French Riviera plays a pivotal role in Wu Ming's novel "54." The action takes place in the springtime of 1954, and nearly all of the characters in the novel (including Cary Grant, an Italian-American mafioso nicknamed "Steve Cement," and two Parisian gangsters from Rififi (1955)) cross each other's paths in Cannes and Nice.

The movie was filmed in the summer of 1954 but its release was delayed because the producers felt the age difference between Cary Grant and Grace Kelly was too great for their romance to be believable. Ironically, when released in 1955, the film immediately became one of the biggest hits of the decade.

The sports car Grace Kelly drives with Cary Grant as her passenger is a 1954 Sunbeam Alpine.

While working on this film in the French Riviera, Grace Kelly met Prince Rainier of Monaco. It wasn't love at first sight for Kelly, but the prince initiated a long correspondence, which led to their marriage in 1956. Afterward, she became Princess Grace of Monaco, and retired from acting.


John Robie: Danielle, you are just a girl. She is a woman.
Danielle Foussard: Why do you want to buy an old car if you can get a new one cheaper? It will run better and last longer.

Frances Stevens: Even in this light, I can tell where your eyes are looking.
Frances Stevens: Look, John. Hold them. Diamonds... The only thing in the world you can't resist. Then tell me you don't know what I'm talking about.
Frances Stevens: Ever had a better offer in your whole life? One with everything?
John Robie: I've never had a crazier one.
Frances Stevens: Just as long as you're satisfied!
John Robie: You know as well as I do: this necklace is imitation.
Frances Stevens: Well, I'm not.

John Robie: [to Frances] Not only did I enjoy that kiss last night, I was awed by its efficiency.

Frances Stevens: Doesn't it make you nervous to be in the same room with thousands of dollars worth of diamonds, and unable to touch them?
John Robie: No.
Frances Stevens: Like an alcoholic outside of a bar on Election Day?
John Robie: Wouldn't know the feeling.

H. H. Hughson: The pastries are light as air.
John Robie: Germaine has very sensitive hands and an exceedingly light touch. She strangled a German general - without a sound.

John Robie: I only regret one thing.
Danielle Foussard: That you never asked me to marry you?
John Robie: No. That I ever took the time to teach you English.
Danielle Foussard: You only taught me the nouns. I learned the adjectives myself.

Jessie Stevens: Sorry I ever sent her to finishing school. I think they finished her there.

Frances Stevens: Are you sure you were talking about water skis? From where I sat it looked as though you were conjugating some irregular verbs.

Frances Stevens: I've never caught a jewel thief before. It's stimulating. It's like... It's like...
John Robie: Like sitting in a hot tub?

Lobby Cards and Posters:

Directed and Produced by Alfred Hitchcock.
Distributed by Paramount Pictures.
Running Time: 103 minutes.

Artwork by Rebekah Hawley at Studio36.