Living in a Big Way (1947)

102 mins | Romance | June 1947

Director:

Gregory La Cava

Producer:

Pandro S. Berman

Cinematographer:

Harold Rosson

Editor:

Ferris Webster

Production Designers:

Cedric Gibbons, William Ferrari

Production Company:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
Full page view
HISTORY

Working titles for this film were Life's for the Loving and To Kiss and To Keep . The film marked Gene Kelly's first film since returning from his two-year stint in the Army. It was also the last film made by Gregory La Cava, who died in 1952. HR production charts include Robert Rose and Bunny Gaines in the cast, but their appearance in the released film has not been confirmed. Although Randall Duell is listed as the film's art director in the first HR production chart, the extent of his contribution to the released film has not been determined. Some contemporary sources erroneously spell actress Marie McDonald's last name "MacDonald."
       According to modern sources, only one dance number, the "It Had to Be You" sequence, was written into the original script. The additional dance numbers were invented by Gene Kelly and were added to the film after the initial shooting was completed. The construction site dance number is often used in documentaries on film dancing and on Kelly. A biography of Kelly notes that the performer disliked the script and hated working with McDonald. It also notes that production on the film dragged on for nine months because of a union stike. Kelly, who was on the Screenwriters' Guild board of directors at the time, served as one of the arbitrators in the dispute and reportedly helped bring about the end of the ... More Less

Working titles for this film were Life's for the Loving and To Kiss and To Keep . The film marked Gene Kelly's first film since returning from his two-year stint in the Army. It was also the last film made by Gregory La Cava, who died in 1952. HR production charts include Robert Rose and Bunny Gaines in the cast, but their appearance in the released film has not been confirmed. Although Randall Duell is listed as the film's art director in the first HR production chart, the extent of his contribution to the released film has not been determined. Some contemporary sources erroneously spell actress Marie McDonald's last name "MacDonald."
       According to modern sources, only one dance number, the "It Had to Be You" sequence, was written into the original script. The additional dance numbers were invented by Gene Kelly and were added to the film after the initial shooting was completed. The construction site dance number is often used in documentaries on film dancing and on Kelly. A biography of Kelly notes that the performer disliked the script and hated working with McDonald. It also notes that production on the film dragged on for nine months because of a union stike. Kelly, who was on the Screenwriters' Guild board of directors at the time, served as one of the arbitrators in the dispute and reportedly helped bring about the end of the strike. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
7 Jun 1947.
---
Daily Variety
29 May 1947.
---
Film Daily
12 Jun 47
p. 12.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Jul 46
p. 22.
Hollywood Reporter
2 Aug 46
p. 18.
Hollywood Reporter
13 Sep 46
p. 16.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Oct 46
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
8 Nov 46
p. 20.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Jan 47
p. 18.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Jan 47
p. 18.
Hollywood Reporter
29 May 47
p. 10.
Los Angeles Times
10 Jun 1947.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
31 May 1947.
---
New York Times
10 Oct 47
p. 31.
Variety
4 Jun 47
p. 16.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
Bert Moorehouse
Sam McDaniels
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Gregory La Cava Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
WRITERS
Orig story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Assoc set dec
COSTUMES
Cost supv
Assoc cost supv
MUSIC
Mus dir
SOUND
Rec dir
DANCE
Dance seq created and dir by
Dance seq created and dir by
MAKEUP
Makeup created by
SOURCES
SONGS
"Fido and Me," music and lyrics by Louis Alter and Edward Heyman
"It Had to Be You," music by Isham Jones, lyrics by Gus Kahn.
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Life's for the Loving
To Kiss and To Keep
Release Date:
June 1947
Premiere Information:
Los Angeles opening: 10 June 1947
Production Date:
mid July 1946--late January 1947
Copyright Claimant:
Loew's Inc.
Copyright Date:
7 June 1947
Copyright Number:
LP1063
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
102
Length(in feet):
9,305
Length(in reels):
11
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
12195
SYNOPSIS

During the second world war, and just before he is to take up his overseas assignment, Army flier Leo Gogarty spends one last hour dancing with his wife, Margaud "Maggie" Morgan, a model whom he met only nine days earlier. Three years pass, and with the end of the war, Leo and his Army buddies are back in America, resettling into civilian life. Accompanied by his pal Schultz, Leo surprises Maggie at a fashionable pool party, but, after fainting when she first sees Leo, she gives him the brush off and tells him that she has become "selfish and spoiled" in his absence. Despite Maggie's indifference, Leo is determined to win her over and rekindle their romance. He befriends Maggie's kindhearted grandmother, Abigail, and then pressures Maggie into disclosing their secret marriage to her family. After breaking the news to her "high-strung" family, Maggie accuses Leo of having taken advantage of her generosity by rushing her into a hasty marriage. Leo all but ignores Maggie's demand for a divorce, claiming he does not believe in it, and refuses to leave her home. With Abigail on his side, Leo uses his old-fashioned charms to get Maggie's attention, and even serenades her and dances for her. In time, Maggie succumbs to Leo's romantic ploys, while Abigail donates her old house to Leo and his war buddies. While turning the house into a "G.I. housing project," Leo catches the eye of war widow Peggy Randall, who moves in with her young son. One day, while visiting the house to present Leo with divorce papers, Maggie is moved by the community construction effort and ... +


During the second world war, and just before he is to take up his overseas assignment, Army flier Leo Gogarty spends one last hour dancing with his wife, Margaud "Maggie" Morgan, a model whom he met only nine days earlier. Three years pass, and with the end of the war, Leo and his Army buddies are back in America, resettling into civilian life. Accompanied by his pal Schultz, Leo surprises Maggie at a fashionable pool party, but, after fainting when she first sees Leo, she gives him the brush off and tells him that she has become "selfish and spoiled" in his absence. Despite Maggie's indifference, Leo is determined to win her over and rekindle their romance. He befriends Maggie's kindhearted grandmother, Abigail, and then pressures Maggie into disclosing their secret marriage to her family. After breaking the news to her "high-strung" family, Maggie accuses Leo of having taken advantage of her generosity by rushing her into a hasty marriage. Leo all but ignores Maggie's demand for a divorce, claiming he does not believe in it, and refuses to leave her home. With Abigail on his side, Leo uses his old-fashioned charms to get Maggie's attention, and even serenades her and dances for her. In time, Maggie succumbs to Leo's romantic ploys, while Abigail donates her old house to Leo and his war buddies. While turning the house into a "G.I. housing project," Leo catches the eye of war widow Peggy Randall, who moves in with her young son. One day, while visiting the house to present Leo with divorce papers, Maggie is moved by the community construction effort and promises to help by donating bathtubs. Leo and Peggy soon become good friends, which stirs Maggie's jealousy and causes her to change her mind about Leo. Realizing that she is truly in love with Leo and that their marriage means more than just a patriotic gesture on her part, Maggie drops her divorce suit and decides to take back her husband. In the meantime, however, Leo has abandoned hope for a resumption of their nuptials, and offers Maggie the divorce she sought earlier. Leo and Maggie nearly separate for good until Abigail and Leo's pals step in to bring the two together. The couple then begin living as husband and wife for the first time in an apartment in Abigail's refurbished house. +

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

TOP SEARCHES

CASABLANCA

During World War II, Casablanca, Morocco is a waiting point for throngs of desperate refugees fleeing Nazi-occupied Europe. Exit visas, which are necessary to leave the country, are at ... >>

CITIZEN KANE

Seventy-year-old newspaper tycoon Charles Foster Kane dies in his palatial Florida home, Xanadu, after uttering the single word “Rosebud.” While watching a newsreel summarizing the years during which Kane ... >>

REAR WINDOW

Laid up with a broken leg during the height of summer, renowned New York magazine photographer L. B. “Jeff” Jeffries enters his last week of home confinement, bored and ... >>

RAGING BULL

In 1941, at a boxing match in Cleveland, Ohio, pandemonium breaks out when Jake La Motta, an up-and-coming young boxer, loses a decision to Jimmy Reeves, suffering his first ... >>

CITY LIGHTS

At an outdoor dedication ceremony, a tramp is discovered sleeping in the arms of a statue as it is being unveiled before a crowd. He is chased into ... >>

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.