Grand Slam (1933)

65 or 67 mins | Comedy | 18 March 1933

Director:

William Dieterle

Cinematographer:

Sid Hickox

Editor:

Jack Killifer

Production Designer:

Jack Okey

Production Company:

First National Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

Onscreen director and cast credits appear on individual playing cards. FD notes that Alfred E. Green was originally announced as the director. Although screen credits list the name as "Philip," Frank McHugh's character is called "Speed" throughout the film. Contemporary sources note that the playoff between Peter and Van Dorn is a spoof of a match played between bridge experts Cuthbertson and Sidney S. Lenz. According to Warner Bros. production reports included in the file on the film in the AMPAS library, the film was shot over twenty-two days for a total cost of ... More Less

Onscreen director and cast credits appear on individual playing cards. FD notes that Alfred E. Green was originally announced as the director. Although screen credits list the name as "Philip," Frank McHugh's character is called "Speed" throughout the film. Contemporary sources note that the playoff between Peter and Van Dorn is a spoof of a match played between bridge experts Cuthbertson and Sidney S. Lenz. According to Warner Bros. production reports included in the file on the film in the AMPAS library, the film was shot over twenty-two days for a total cost of $164,000. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
23 Feb 33
p. 7.
Film Daily
20 Oct 33
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
5 Jan 33
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald
14 Jan 33
p. 30.
New York Times
22 Feb 33
p. 25.
Variety
28 Feb 33
p. 15.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
Vitaphone Orch cond
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Grand Slam: The Rise and Fall of a Bridge Wizard by Benjamin Russell Herts (New York, 1932).
DETAILS
Release Date:
18 March 1933
Copyright Claimant:
First National Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
24 February 1933
Copyright Number:
LP3675
Physical Properties:
Sound
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
65 or 67
Length(in reels):
7
Country:
United States
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Peter Stanislavsky works as a waiter in a Russian restaurant to support himself and his wife Marcia while he writes a serious novel. Although he thinks the game of bridge is supremely silly, Marcia forces him to learn the game. One evening, while he is catering a party of bridge players, the hostess, Lola Starr, drafts the attractive Peter to form a fourth at her table with bridge expert Van Dorn. Peter refuses to bid according to the Van Dorn system and to everyone's surprise wins the match. The next day, Philip, a ghost writer known as Speed, offers to write a book under Peter's name deliniating the Stanislavsky method. To promote the book, Peter and Marcia play in a variety of tournaments. They claim that because there are no rules in the Stanislavsky method, husbands and wives have no reason to fight with each other. In reality, Peter's criticisms of Marcia's bids cause quarrels between the two. Then when Lola asks Peter for private lessons, Marcia is convinced there is something between them, and she leaves Peter. Because he is in love with Marcia, Speed reveals that he wrote the book under Peter's name. Peter's waiter friends are angry because now they will lose the money they invested in the book. In order to pay them back, Peter approaches Van Dorn to propose a contest between the two of them. At the beginning of the contest, Peter is losing badly. Other players refuse to partner with Peter and it looks as though he will have to default until Marcia appears and offers to be his partner. An ... +


Peter Stanislavsky works as a waiter in a Russian restaurant to support himself and his wife Marcia while he writes a serious novel. Although he thinks the game of bridge is supremely silly, Marcia forces him to learn the game. One evening, while he is catering a party of bridge players, the hostess, Lola Starr, drafts the attractive Peter to form a fourth at her table with bridge expert Van Dorn. Peter refuses to bid according to the Van Dorn system and to everyone's surprise wins the match. The next day, Philip, a ghost writer known as Speed, offers to write a book under Peter's name deliniating the Stanislavsky method. To promote the book, Peter and Marcia play in a variety of tournaments. They claim that because there are no rules in the Stanislavsky method, husbands and wives have no reason to fight with each other. In reality, Peter's criticisms of Marcia's bids cause quarrels between the two. Then when Lola asks Peter for private lessons, Marcia is convinced there is something between them, and she leaves Peter. Because he is in love with Marcia, Speed reveals that he wrote the book under Peter's name. Peter's waiter friends are angry because now they will lose the money they invested in the book. In order to pay them back, Peter approaches Van Dorn to propose a contest between the two of them. At the beginning of the contest, Peter is losing badly. Other players refuse to partner with Peter and it looks as though he will have to default until Marcia appears and offers to be his partner. An unbeatable team, they win the match and repair their marriage. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.