Naughty but Nice (1939)

90 mins | Comedy | 1 July 1939

Director:

Ray Enright

Cinematographer:

Arthur L. Todd

Editor:

Thomas Richards

Production Designer:

Max Parker

Production Company:

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

The working titles of this picture were Professor Steps Out and Always Leave Them Laughing . According to the Var review, it was the last picture that Dick Powell made under his Warner Bros. ... More Less

The working titles of this picture were Professor Steps Out and Always Leave Them Laughing . According to the Var review, it was the last picture that Dick Powell made under his Warner Bros. contract. More Less

BIBLIOGRAPHIC SOURCES
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
13 Jul 39
p. 3.
Film Daily
29 Jun 39
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
29 Oct 38
pp. 6-7.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Dec 38
pp. 6-7.
Hollywood Reporter
13 Jul 39
p. 7.
Motion Picture Herald
7 Jun 39
p. 25.
Motion Picture Herald
1 Jul 39
p. 45.
New York Times
23 Jun 39
p. 14.
Variety
28 Jun 39
p. 14.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
Jack L. Warner in charge of prod
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dial dir
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
Assoc prod
WRITERS
Orig scr, Orig scr
Orig scr, Orig scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
SOURCES
MUSIC
Based on themes by Richard Wagner, Franz Liszt, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Johann Sebastian Bach.
SONGS
"In a Moment of Weakness," "Hurray for Spinach," "I'm Happy About the Whole Thing," "I Don't Believe in Signs" and "Corn Pickin," words and music by Harry Warren and Johnny Mercer.
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Professor Steps Out
Always Leave Them Laughing
Release Date:
1 July 1939
Premiere Information:
New York opening: week of 23 June 1939
Production Date:
late October--mid December 1938
Copyright Claimant:
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
1 July 1939
Copyright Number:
LP8937
Physical Properties:
Sound
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
90
Country:
United States
PCA No:
4839
SYNOPSIS

Professor Donald Hardwick, a solemn young music teacher, comes to New York to have his symphony published and to visit his wayward aunt Martha, who disgraced the family by falling in love with a saxophone player. At his aunt's house, he meets Linda McKay, a lyric writer, who senses the commercial possibilities in the professor's music. Teaming up with music publisher Ed Clark, Linda converts Donald's compositions to swing, and the duo swing their way up the Hit Parade, scandalizing Donald's classically trained aunts Annabella, Henrietta and Penelope, as well as the college music department and Donald himself. Their success attracts the attentions of Sam Hudson, a rival music publisher who wants the team for his firm. Also interested in their songs is Zelda Manion, a torch singer who wants to exploit the professor's musical talents for her own benefit. Zelda achieves her goal by feeding the professor a potent rum drink, which she identifies as lemonade. Thus ensnared by the power of alcohol, the songsmith earns a reputation as a wild and crazy guy, which brings his three aunts to New York to save him. After Hudson tricks a drunken Donald into signing a contract, Donald's new collaborator, Joe Dirk, exploits the professor's acclaim by plagiarizing a classical piece and signing Donald's name to it. For this act, Donald is brought to trial on charges of music pinching, but he is saved by his aunts, who argue that all composers have borrowed from each other, thus convincing the judge, who writes music himself, to throw the case out of court. Freed from both Hudson and Zelda, Donald returns to Linda, who has ... +


Professor Donald Hardwick, a solemn young music teacher, comes to New York to have his symphony published and to visit his wayward aunt Martha, who disgraced the family by falling in love with a saxophone player. At his aunt's house, he meets Linda McKay, a lyric writer, who senses the commercial possibilities in the professor's music. Teaming up with music publisher Ed Clark, Linda converts Donald's compositions to swing, and the duo swing their way up the Hit Parade, scandalizing Donald's classically trained aunts Annabella, Henrietta and Penelope, as well as the college music department and Donald himself. Their success attracts the attentions of Sam Hudson, a rival music publisher who wants the team for his firm. Also interested in their songs is Zelda Manion, a torch singer who wants to exploit the professor's musical talents for her own benefit. Zelda achieves her goal by feeding the professor a potent rum drink, which she identifies as lemonade. Thus ensnared by the power of alcohol, the songsmith earns a reputation as a wild and crazy guy, which brings his three aunts to New York to save him. After Hudson tricks a drunken Donald into signing a contract, Donald's new collaborator, Joe Dirk, exploits the professor's acclaim by plagiarizing a classical piece and signing Donald's name to it. For this act, Donald is brought to trial on charges of music pinching, but he is saved by his aunts, who argue that all composers have borrowed from each other, thus convincing the judge, who writes music himself, to throw the case out of court. Freed from both Hudson and Zelda, Donald returns to Linda, who has stood by him through his notoriety. +

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.