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HISTORY

The 9 Dec 1963 DV announced the film as the first to star James Darren under his recent contract with Universal Pictures. An item in the 20 Dec 1963 LAT noted that Darren would be re-teamed with Pamela Tiffin, his costar in For Those Who Think Young (1964, see entry). Three weeks later, the 9 Jan 1964 DV reported that Darren was expected in Salt Lake City, UT, the next day to pose for publicity photographs.
       Principal photography began 20 Jan 1964, according to that day’s DV. It was one of five pictures currently in production on the Universal lot in Los Angeles, CA. The 10 Feb 1964 DV noted that teetotaler Joanie Sommers consumed 100-proof liquor, enabling her to appear inebriated in a particular scene. Sommers was known at the time as “the Pepsi Girl” for the commercial jingles she sang for Pepsi-Cola. According to the 21 Feb 1964 LAT , producer William Alland responded to the U.S. Surgeon General’s report on the health hazards of tobacco by prohibiting any references to smoking in a nightclub scene, including the presence of ash trays. A news brief in the 30 Jul 1964 LAT stated that director Jack Arnold “equipped” fifty dancers with felt booties to muffle the sound of their shoes scraping the floor during musical sequences.
       Casting announcements included Ralph Montgomery (5 Feb 1964 DV) and Jon Springer (14 Feb 1964 DV). The 6 Feb 1964 edition noted that Max Schumacher, traffic reporter for KMPC radio, auditioned for his ... More Less

The 9 Dec 1963 DV announced the film as the first to star James Darren under his recent contract with Universal Pictures. An item in the 20 Dec 1963 LAT noted that Darren would be re-teamed with Pamela Tiffin, his costar in For Those Who Think Young (1964, see entry). Three weeks later, the 9 Jan 1964 DV reported that Darren was expected in Salt Lake City, UT, the next day to pose for publicity photographs.
       Principal photography began 20 Jan 1964, according to that day’s DV. It was one of five pictures currently in production on the Universal lot in Los Angeles, CA. The 10 Feb 1964 DV noted that teetotaler Joanie Sommers consumed 100-proof liquor, enabling her to appear inebriated in a particular scene. Sommers was known at the time as “the Pepsi Girl” for the commercial jingles she sang for Pepsi-Cola. According to the 21 Feb 1964 LAT , producer William Alland responded to the U.S. Surgeon General’s report on the health hazards of tobacco by prohibiting any references to smoking in a nightclub scene, including the presence of ash trays. A news brief in the 30 Jul 1964 LAT stated that director Jack Arnold “equipped” fifty dancers with felt booties to muffle the sound of their shoes scraping the floor during musical sequences.
       Casting announcements included Ralph Montgomery (5 Feb 1964 DV) and Jon Springer (14 Feb 1964 DV). The 6 Feb 1964 edition noted that Max Schumacher, traffic reporter for KMPC radio, auditioned for his role by reading lines from the screenplay while broadcasting from a helicopter. Also appearing in the picture was a Chrysler “gas turbine experimental car” (3 Feb 1964 DV), and a $50,000 drag racer equipped with a “J-47 jet engine” (10 Apr 1964 LAT).
       The 31 Jan 1964 DV revealed that singer-actor Bobby Darin had declined the lead role but agreed to write the picture’s musical score, which included three songs to be sung by Sommers and Darren. The 18 Jun 1964 DV noted that music supervisor Joseph Gershenson was the father of Bobby Darin’s personal assistant. While filming was underway, the 17 Feb 1964 issue reported that James Darren recorded the title song for Colpix Records. Nearly six months later, however, the 5 Aug 1964 DV announced that he was recording a new version for Decca Records, with orchestration by Billy May. According to the 28 Feb 1964 edition, Darren was to be featured in the short film, A Star’s World—Meet James Darren, intended to promote The Lively Set.
       Although the 1 Apr 1964 DV claimed that production had been completed, the 27 May 1964 edition stated that a second unit, under the direction of Frank Baur, had been dispatched the previous day to Las Vegas, NV, to “film added auto racing sequences.”
       The Lively Set premiered 11 Sep 1964 at the Adams Theatre in Detroit, MI. As reported in the 14 Aug 1964 DV, sponsors included the Detroit Athletic Club and the Chrysler Corporation. Proceeds benefitted Junior Achievement of Southeastern Michigan. The 3 Sep 1964 DV noted that cast members James Darren, Joanie Sommers, Peter Mann, Marilyn Maxwell, and Carole Wells would attend. A news item in the 15 Sep 1964 edition estimated proceeds at $6,000. Openings at sixty-five MI theaters were scheduled for 16 Sep 1964.
       Los Angeles, CA, and New York City openings occurred on 14 Oct 1964. Reviews were dismissive, with the 30 Oct 1964 LAT calling the picture an “awful little time-waster,” and the 15 Oct 1964 NYT comparing it unfavorably to the “Andy Hardy” series of the 1930s and ’40s.
       The film garnered an Academy Award nomination for uncredited sound-effects man Robert L. Bratton, and the Motion Picture Sound Editors, USA, Golden Reel Award for best sound editing in a feature film.
Copyright length: 92 min. Location scenes filmed in Death Valley, for which the film acknolwegded John Aubuchon of the United States Department of the Interior. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
9 Dec 1963
p. 1.
Daily Variety
9 Jan 1964
p. 2.
Daily Variety
20 Jan 1964
p. 3.
Daily Variety
30 Jan 1964
p. 2.
Daily Variety
31 Jan 1964
p. 2.
Daily Variety
3 Feb 1964
p. 2.
Daily Variety
5 Feb 1964
p. 4.
Daily Variety
6 Feb 1964
p. 18.
Daily Variety
10 Feb 1964
p. 2.
Daily Variety
11 Feb 1964
p. 9.
Daily Variety
14 Feb 1964
p. 2.
Daily Variety
17 Feb 1964
p. 11.
Daily Variety
28 Feb 1964
p. 8
Daily Variety
1 Apr 1964
p. 4.
Daily Variety
27 May 1964
p. 4.
Daily Variety
18 Jun 1964
p. 2.
Daily Variety
5 Aug 1964
p. 10.
Daily Variety
14 Aug 1964
p. 5.
Daily Variety
18 Aug 1964
p. 3.
Daily Variety
3 Sep 1964
p. 5.
Daily Variety
15 Sep 1964
p. 4.
Los Angeles Times
20 Dec 1963
Section D, p. 9.
Los Angeles Times
21 Feb 1964
Section C, p. 17.
Los Angeles Times
10 Apr 1964
Section C, p. 15.
Los Angeles Times
30 Jul 1964
Section C, p. 8.
Los Angeles Times
14 Sep 1964
Section C, p. 18.
Los Angeles Times
16 Sep 1964
Section C, p. 11.
Los Angeles Times
25 Oct 1964
Section B, p. 10.
Los Angeles Times
30 Oct 1964
Section C, p. 16.
New York Times
11 Oct 1964
Section X, p. 8.
New York Times
15 Oct 1964
p. 54.
Variety
7 Oct 1964
p. 3.
Variety
21 Oct 1964
p. 4.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
Asst dir
PRODUCER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Cam op
Asst cam
Gaffer
Grip
Grip
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITORS
Film ed
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set coordinator
Props
COSTUMES
Cost des
MUSIC
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
MAKEUP
Makeup
Hairstyles
Hairstyles
PRODUCTION MISC
Unit prod mgr
Scr supv
Gas turbine car
Sp equipment supplied by
Dial coach
SOURCES
SONGS
"The Lively Set," words and music and sung by Bobby Darin
"If You Love Him," and "Casey Wake Up," words and music by Bobby Darin
"Look at Me," words and music by Bobby Darin and Randy Newman and "Boss Barracuda," words and music by Bobby Darin and Terry Melcher.
PERFORMER
DETAILS
Release Date:
16 September 1964
Premiere Information:
Detroit opening: 11 September 1964
New York and Los Angeles openings: 14 October 1964
Production Date:
20 January--late March 1964
second unit photography began late May 1964
Copyright Claimant:
Universal Pictures
Copyright Date:
24 October 1964
Copyright Number:
LP32603
Physical Properties:
Sound
Westrex
Color
Eastman Color
Duration(in mins):
95
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

After 2 years in the Army, Casey Owens, who builds and drives racing cars, enrolls in college. There he meets Chuck Manning, another young man enthusiastic about cars. Casey falls in love with Eadie, Chuck's sister, and quits college to go to work in his father's garage and continue work on a gas turbine engine. He competes in races and soon becomes something of a celebrity in racing circles. Young millionaire racing enthusiast Stanford Rogers hires Casey to build two cars for him. Scorning scientific advice, Casey refuses to conduct wind tunnel tests on the cars and, as a result, wrecks one of them when he tries to attain high speed. Rogers fires Casey; and Casey's parents, with the help of Chuck and Eadie's parents, raise enough money to buy the engine from Rogers. Heeding advice this time, Casey builds a new car around the engine, enters and wins the Tri-State Endurance Race, and with his winnings pays back the money invested in his engine. Casey marries Eadie and reenrolls in ... +


After 2 years in the Army, Casey Owens, who builds and drives racing cars, enrolls in college. There he meets Chuck Manning, another young man enthusiastic about cars. Casey falls in love with Eadie, Chuck's sister, and quits college to go to work in his father's garage and continue work on a gas turbine engine. He competes in races and soon becomes something of a celebrity in racing circles. Young millionaire racing enthusiast Stanford Rogers hires Casey to build two cars for him. Scorning scientific advice, Casey refuses to conduct wind tunnel tests on the cars and, as a result, wrecks one of them when he tries to attain high speed. Rogers fires Casey; and Casey's parents, with the help of Chuck and Eadie's parents, raise enough money to buy the engine from Rogers. Heeding advice this time, Casey builds a new car around the engine, enters and wins the Tri-State Endurance Race, and with his winnings pays back the money invested in his engine. Casey marries Eadie and reenrolls in college. +

GENRE
Genre:
Sub-genre:
with songs


Subject

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.