The Farmer's Daughter (1947)

96 mins | Comedy-drama | 26 March 1947

Director:

H. C. Potter

Cinematographer:

Milton Krasner

Editor:

Harry Marker

Production Designers:

Albert D'Agostino, Feild Gray

Production Company:

RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

The working title of this film was Katie for Congress . Actors James Arness (who appeared as James Aurness) and Keith Andes made their screen debuts in the picture. Contemporary news items provide the following information about the production: Producer David O. Selznick bought the rights to the play Juhni Tervataa written by Finnish playwright Juhani Tervapää (spelled onscreen as Juhni Tervataa) in 1944 and intended it as a vehicle for contract star Ingrid Bergman. When Bergman and Selznick's professional relationship ended in late 1945, however, the title role became open. (Modern sources note that when Bergman dropped out, Selznick struck a deal with RKO that included the rights to the play, the Americanized screenplay, and the services of his contractee, Joseph Cotten, as well as producer Dore Schary, who had not yet been named RKO production chief, in exchange for partial ownership of the property. Modern sources also note that Paramount initially bought the rights to the play in 1937). Some scenes for the film were shot in Petaluma, north of San Francisco, and other Bay Area locations. Four hundred and fifty extras were called for the political rally scene at the Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles. In addition, some filming was done at the M-G-M studios.
       Production was delayed for a week in late Jul 1946 when Loretta Young was hospitalized with the flu. Although RKO wanted the picture to be completed in time for the Nov 1946 Congressional elections, it wasn't released until Mar 1947. Once the "political" deadline had passed, RKO changed the film's title to The Farmer's Daughter . HR announced that a ... More Less

The working title of this film was Katie for Congress . Actors James Arness (who appeared as James Aurness) and Keith Andes made their screen debuts in the picture. Contemporary news items provide the following information about the production: Producer David O. Selznick bought the rights to the play Juhni Tervataa written by Finnish playwright Juhani Tervapää (spelled onscreen as Juhni Tervataa) in 1944 and intended it as a vehicle for contract star Ingrid Bergman. When Bergman and Selznick's professional relationship ended in late 1945, however, the title role became open. (Modern sources note that when Bergman dropped out, Selznick struck a deal with RKO that included the rights to the play, the Americanized screenplay, and the services of his contractee, Joseph Cotten, as well as producer Dore Schary, who had not yet been named RKO production chief, in exchange for partial ownership of the property. Modern sources also note that Paramount initially bought the rights to the play in 1937). Some scenes for the film were shot in Petaluma, north of San Francisco, and other Bay Area locations. Four hundred and fifty extras were called for the political rally scene at the Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles. In addition, some filming was done at the M-G-M studios.
       Production was delayed for a week in late Jul 1946 when Loretta Young was hospitalized with the flu. Although RKO wanted the picture to be completed in time for the Nov 1946 Congressional elections, it wasn't released until Mar 1947. Once the "political" deadline had passed, RKO changed the film's title to The Farmer's Daughter . HR announced that a Swedish folk song, "High Mountains and Deep Valleys," was to be used in the film, but no song was heard in the viewed print. Loretta Young won an Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in the picture. Charles Bickford, who returned to the screen after a two-year absence, was nominated as Best Supporting Actor. Joseph Cotten and Loretta Young reprised their roles in two different Lux Radio Theatre broadcasts, on 5 Jan 1948 and 15 Jan 1951. Tervapää's play was first adapted to film in 1937 in a Finnish production directed by Valentin Vaala and starring Irma Seikkula and Tauno Palo. On 14 Jan 1962, a televised version of Tervapää's play, starring Lee Remick and Peter Lawford and directed by Fielder Cook, was broadcast on NBC's Theater '62' . Bickford revived his role as "Clancy" for that program. Young revived her role for an episode of her NBC anthology program The Loretta Young Theater , which was broadcast between Aug 1954 and Sep 1961. Between 1963 and 1966, ABC broadcast The Farmer's Daughter , a television series starring Inger Stevens and William Windom that was also loosely based on Tervapää's play. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
22 Feb 1947.
---
Daily Variety
19 Feb 1947.
---
Film Daily
24 Feb 47
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
26 Mar 46
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
24 Apr 46
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
10 May 46
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
22 May 46
p. 14.
Hollywood Reporter
27 May 46
p. 31.
Hollywood Reporter
29 Jul 46
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Jul 46
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Aug 46
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Nov 46
p.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Feb 47
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
27 Feb 47
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
14 Mar 47
p. 9.
Life
5 May 47
pp. 67-69.
Look
18 Mar 47
pp. 92-94.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
1 Mar 47
p. 3502.
New York Times
26 Mar 47
p. 31.
Variety
29 Feb 1947
p. 6.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
James Aurness
Vic Potel
Albert Cavens
Jerome Franks Jr.
William Bailey
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Dore Schary Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
COSTUMES
Miss Loretta Young's cost des by
MUSIC
Mus dir
Orch arr
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
PRODUCTION MISC
Asst to the prod
SOURCES
LITERARY
Suggested by the play Juurakon Hulda by Juhani Tervapää (published Helsinki, 1937).
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Katie for Congress
Release Date:
26 March 1947
Premiere Information:
World premiere in New York: 25 March 1947
Production Date:
early May--early September 1946
Copyright Claimant:
RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
25 March 1947
Copyright Number:
LP995
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
96
Country:
United States
PCA No:
11735
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Swedish-American Katrin Holstrom bids farewell to her Midwestern farm family and heads for Capital City, where she plans to pursue a career in nursing. While waiting for the bus, she is picked up by barn painter Adolph, who tries to force her to spend the night in an auto court by pretending his jeep is broken. When Katie shows Adolph just how well the jeep is running, he becomes flustered and backs into a car. The trusting Katie advances Adolph the necessary repair money and is dumbstruck when she discovers the next morning that he has left her nearly penniless at the auto court. Katie eventually makes her way to Capital City, but instead of reporting to nursing school, she takes a temporary job as a maid to rebuild her savings. Although her employers--Glenn Morley, a young Congressman and son of a former U.S. Senator, and his kind but worldly mother Agatha--are impressed by her openness, Katie's supervisor, the crusty Joseph Clancy, warns her not to talk politics while serving. During a political party celebrating the victory of Glenn's fellow Congressman, Wilbur Johnson, however, Katie ignores Clancy's advice and reveals her hostile feelings about Johnson. Later, Glenn, who is attracted to Katie, asks her why she dislikes Johnson, and she tells him that she believes in the right to a minimum wage, legislation that Johnson opposes. Although Glenn is romantically connected to Virginia Thatcher, a political reporter, he and Katie grow close over the next few weeks. Later, when Katie announces that she is leaving for nursing school, Glenn, who is headed for Europe, implores her to stay. She agrees to remain until ... +


Swedish-American Katrin Holstrom bids farewell to her Midwestern farm family and heads for Capital City, where she plans to pursue a career in nursing. While waiting for the bus, she is picked up by barn painter Adolph, who tries to force her to spend the night in an auto court by pretending his jeep is broken. When Katie shows Adolph just how well the jeep is running, he becomes flustered and backs into a car. The trusting Katie advances Adolph the necessary repair money and is dumbstruck when she discovers the next morning that he has left her nearly penniless at the auto court. Katie eventually makes her way to Capital City, but instead of reporting to nursing school, she takes a temporary job as a maid to rebuild her savings. Although her employers--Glenn Morley, a young Congressman and son of a former U.S. Senator, and his kind but worldly mother Agatha--are impressed by her openness, Katie's supervisor, the crusty Joseph Clancy, warns her not to talk politics while serving. During a political party celebrating the victory of Glenn's fellow Congressman, Wilbur Johnson, however, Katie ignores Clancy's advice and reveals her hostile feelings about Johnson. Later, Glenn, who is attracted to Katie, asks her why she dislikes Johnson, and she tells him that she believes in the right to a minimum wage, legislation that Johnson opposes. Although Glenn is romantically connected to Virginia Thatcher, a political reporter, he and Katie grow close over the next few weeks. Later, when Katie announces that she is leaving for nursing school, Glenn, who is headed for Europe, implores her to stay. She agrees to remain until he returns from Europe, and he suggests that during his absence, she take some night classes. Soon Katie is studying economics and politics and is helped by Clancy and Agatha. Glenn's homecoming coincides with Johnson's sudden death, and Katie finds herself at odds with Glenn's party's choice for his replacement--Anders J. Finley. During a rally for Finley, Katie stands up and begins questioning his dubious voting record. Her protests stir up the partisan crowd, and reports about her behavior attract the attention of the opposition party. To Katie's surprise, the opposition party leader invites her to run against Finley, and even though Agatha swears to fight her, Katie accepts. Although saddened by Katie's disaffection, Glenn helps her to improve her oratorical skills and wishes her well in the race. As the election nears, Finley's lead over Katie grows narrower and narrower. Then, just two days before the election, Adolph approaches Agatha and Finley and infers that, during their trip to Capital City, he and Katie slept together. Although Agatha at first orders Finley not to repeat Adolph's story, she finally agrees with her cronies that using Adolph's lie is the only way to win. Glenn, however, announces he will quit the party if Adolph's story is printed, and when it does appear the next day, he drives to the Holstrom farm, where Katie has gone. Katie accepts Glenn's proposal, but is admonished by her father not to quit the race, but to fight for the truth. Moved by Mr. Holstrom's words, Katie and Glenn return to Capital City and are joined by a repentant Agatha, who gets Finley drunk enough to admit that he is a white supremacist. Finley also tells Agatha that he paid Adolph to lie about Katie and reveals where his fascist cohorts are hiding him. Katie and Glenn track Adolph to a remote lake and, after a fierce fight with Finley's men, are able to force Adolph to issue a public retraction. Katie then wins the election by a landslide and is carried by Glenn over the threshold at the House of Representatives. +

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.