Family Honeymoon (1949)

90 mins | Comedy | March 1949

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HISTORY

The following written acknowledgment appears at the close of the film's opening credits: "We gratefully acknowledge the assistance of the National Park Service and the United States Department of the Interior whose splendid cooperation made possible all scenes actually photographed in the Grand Canyon." Cinematographer William Daniels is listed fourth in the end cast credits, but is not listed in the opening cast credits. His character, "Arch Armstrong," "Katie's" dead first husband, appears only as a painted portrait in the film. Some modern sources erroneously state that the portrait was of actor William Daniels (b. 1927, star of the popular 1980s television series St. Elsewhere ), and that he made his motion picture debut in this film.
       According to contemporary news items, Homer Croy's novel was purchased by independent producer Z. Wayne Griffin, who along with Eugene B. Rodney, was to make the film for Columbia Pictures. Byron Haskin was announced as the film's probable director, and Robert Young as the probable star. In May 1948, however, the property was rejected by Columbia after the Breen Office disapproved the script because it used "a delayed consummation of a marriage" as its main comedy device, a practice that had been prohibited for several years. When screenwriter Dane Lussier reworked the script, removing the objectionable material, Griffin entered into a new deal with Universal, with John Beck as his co-producer.
       Family Honeymoon marked the last time that Claudette Colbert and Fred MacMurray, who had starred together in five previous films, including the popular 1947 comedy The Egg and I (see above entry), appeared together in a film. Although a HR ... More Less

The following written acknowledgment appears at the close of the film's opening credits: "We gratefully acknowledge the assistance of the National Park Service and the United States Department of the Interior whose splendid cooperation made possible all scenes actually photographed in the Grand Canyon." Cinematographer William Daniels is listed fourth in the end cast credits, but is not listed in the opening cast credits. His character, "Arch Armstrong," "Katie's" dead first husband, appears only as a painted portrait in the film. Some modern sources erroneously state that the portrait was of actor William Daniels (b. 1927, star of the popular 1980s television series St. Elsewhere ), and that he made his motion picture debut in this film.
       According to contemporary news items, Homer Croy's novel was purchased by independent producer Z. Wayne Griffin, who along with Eugene B. Rodney, was to make the film for Columbia Pictures. Byron Haskin was announced as the film's probable director, and Robert Young as the probable star. In May 1948, however, the property was rejected by Columbia after the Breen Office disapproved the script because it used "a delayed consummation of a marriage" as its main comedy device, a practice that had been prohibited for several years. When screenwriter Dane Lussier reworked the script, removing the objectionable material, Griffin entered into a new deal with Universal, with John Beck as his co-producer.
       Family Honeymoon marked the last time that Claudette Colbert and Fred MacMurray, who had starred together in five previous films, including the popular 1947 comedy The Egg and I (see above entry), appeared together in a film. Although a HR news item and production chart list Charles Sherlock and The Statesmen as cast members, their appearance in the final film has not been confirmed. Just prior to the start of production, Milton Krasner was announced as the film's director of photography, but apparently was replaced by Daniels. Colbert and MacMurray peformed in two Lux Radio Theatre productions of Family Honeymoon , first on 4 Apr 1949 and then on 23 Apr 1951. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
18 Dec 1948.
---
Daily Variety
8 Dec 48
p. 4, 15
Film Daily
13 Dec 48
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
17 May 48
p. 24.
Hollywood Reporter
4 Jun 48
p. 2, 15
Hollywood Reporter
11 Jun 48
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
15 Jul 48
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
27 Jul 48
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
30 Jul 48
p. 13.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Dec 48
p. 3.
Los Angeles Times
24 Nov 1947.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
4 Dec 48
p. 4410.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
18 Dec 48
pp. 4425-26.
New York Times
16 May 1948.
---
New York Times
25 Feb 49
p. 28.
Variety
8 Dec 48
p. 11.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
2d unit dir
PRODUCERS
Prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
2d unit cam
Cam op
ART DIRECTORS
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
COSTUMES
Ward
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec photog
MAKEUP
Hairstylist
Hairstylist
Makeup
Makeup
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod mgr
Scr supv
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel Family Honeymoon by Homer Croy (New York, 1942).
AUTHOR
SONGS
"K-K-K-Katy," words and music by Geoffrey O'Hara.
COMPOSER
DETAILS
Release Date:
March 1949
Premiere Information:
New York opening: week of 24 February 1949
Los Angeles opening: 18 March 1949
Production Date:
7 June--late July 1948
Copyright Claimant:
Universal Pictures Co., inc.
Copyright Date:
6 December 1948
Copyright Number:
LP2148
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
90
Length(in feet):
8,117
Country:
United States
PCA No:
13364
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

After her longtime rival, Minna Fenster, almost spoils her engagement party, widow Katie Armstrong is distressed to learn that Minna has crashed her fiancé Grant Jordan's bachelor party. Grant, a college botany professor, has proposed the construction of a new botany building on campus, and because Minna, who was once involved with Grant, is the daughter of his influential superior Richard, Grant cannot easily dismiss her. Nevertheless, Grant reassures Katie that he has no interest in the manipulative Minna, while Katie assures him that he will be a good father to her three young children, Abner, Charlie and Zoe. Just before their home wedding, Katie's older sister, Jo Stevens, who is to take care of Katie's children during her honeymoon, trips over Zoe's teddy bear and falls down two flights of stairs. At Jo's insistence, the wedding proceeds, but afterward, she is rushed to the hospital with a broken leg. Unable to find anyone to take care of the children, the newlyweds are compelled to take them on their Grand Canyon honeymoon. During the first night of the hectic train trip, Katie discovers that Abner and Charlie are not on board, having snuck off at Porterville, the last stop. The porter assures the panicked Katie that he will wire the station master at Porterville about the children, and once she, Grant and Zoe arrive at the next stop, Junction City, they can take a cab back. When they get to Porterville, however, they learn that the children took off for Junction City with a traveling salesman. Halfway to Junction City, the cab stops at a gas station, and there Katie finds the salesman, but no ... +


After her longtime rival, Minna Fenster, almost spoils her engagement party, widow Katie Armstrong is distressed to learn that Minna has crashed her fiancé Grant Jordan's bachelor party. Grant, a college botany professor, has proposed the construction of a new botany building on campus, and because Minna, who was once involved with Grant, is the daughter of his influential superior Richard, Grant cannot easily dismiss her. Nevertheless, Grant reassures Katie that he has no interest in the manipulative Minna, while Katie assures him that he will be a good father to her three young children, Abner, Charlie and Zoe. Just before their home wedding, Katie's older sister, Jo Stevens, who is to take care of Katie's children during her honeymoon, trips over Zoe's teddy bear and falls down two flights of stairs. At Jo's insistence, the wedding proceeds, but afterward, she is rushed to the hospital with a broken leg. Unable to find anyone to take care of the children, the newlyweds are compelled to take them on their Grand Canyon honeymoon. During the first night of the hectic train trip, Katie discovers that Abner and Charlie are not on board, having snuck off at Porterville, the last stop. The porter assures the panicked Katie that he will wire the station master at Porterville about the children, and once she, Grant and Zoe arrive at the next stop, Junction City, they can take a cab back. When they get to Porterville, however, they learn that the children took off for Junction City with a traveling salesman. Halfway to Junction City, the cab stops at a gas station, and there Katie finds the salesman, but no children. The salesman explains that after his car broke down, Abner and Charlie hitched a ride with Webb, a local farmer. At the Webb farm, Katie and Grant are finally reunited with Abner and Charlie and spend an uncomfortable night with the family. The next morning, they board the only train available to the Grand Canyon, a day coach. After two more sleepness nights, the Jordans arrive at their Grand Canyon lodge, only to discover that Minna and her father are also there. Just as Grant and Katie are about to embark with the children on a day-long horseback ride, Minna insists that Grant show her father sketches of his botany building, as they are planning to leave for an important college board meeting in California that afternoon. While on the trail, however, Katie bumps into Richard, who tells her that he and Minna are spending the night at the Canyon. By the time Katie and the children return from their excursion, Katie is exhausted, disheveled and furious when Minna coyly extends a dinner invitation. Determined not to appear intimidated by Minna, however, Katie accepts the invitation, then entrusts Grant to watch the children while she has her hair done. Grant, who is soon joined by Minna, struggles to control the rambunctious children and ends up giving the boys a spanking. Katie returns during the punishment and is upset not only by the spanking, but by Grant's admission that Minna was with him. After the newlyweds hurl accusations at each other, Grant storms away in a cab, much to Minna's delight. Grant soon changes his mind, but by the time he returns to the lodge, Katie has checked out. Katie then wires Jo about her imminent arrival, and when she and children arrive home in a cab, a welcoming party is in full swing. Embarrassed, Katie sends the children off in the cab, while she sneaks into her house and tries to talk to Jo alone. Minna and her father then show up, having flown in from the Grand Canyon, and Minna deduces that Katie is hiding. Just as a defeated Katie is about to announce to the guests that she and Grant have separated, Grant appears with the children, who found him at the train station. To Minna's chagrin, Katie and Grant embrace, and the reunited newlyweds finally are able to spend their first night alone together. +

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.