So Big (1932)

80 or 82-83 mins | Drama | 30 April 1932

Director:

William A. Wellman

Cinematographer:

Sid Hickox

Editor:

William Holmes

Production Designer:

Jack Okey

Production Company:

Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

Edna Ferber's novel won the Pulitzer Prize. According to FD , Joseph Jackson wrote the adaptation with J. Grubb Alexander. The exact nature of his contribution to the final film has not been determined. Ferber's story was first filmed in 1924 by First National with star Colleen Moore, (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30 ; F2.5201). Warner Bros. remade the novel in 1953 with Jane Wyman as Selina. That version was directed by Robert ... More Less

Edna Ferber's novel won the Pulitzer Prize. According to FD , Joseph Jackson wrote the adaptation with J. Grubb Alexander. The exact nature of his contribution to the final film has not been determined. Ferber's story was first filmed in 1924 by First National with star Colleen Moore, (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30 ; F2.5201). Warner Bros. remade the novel in 1953 with Jane Wyman as Selina. That version was directed by Robert Wise. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
1 May 32
p. 11.
Hollywood Reporter
3 Mar 32
p. 2.
International Photographer
1 May 32
p. 32.
Motion Picture Herald
19 Mar 32
p. 42.
New York Times
30 Apr 32
p. 19.
Variety
3 May 32
p. 14.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
Asst cam
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
Vitaphone Orch cond
SOUND
PRODUCTION MISC
Still photog
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the novel So Big by Edna Ferber (Garden City, NY, 1924).
AUTHOR
DETAILS
Release Date:
30 April 1932
Production Date:
mid January--mid February 1932
Copyright Claimant:
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
29 March 1932
Copyright Number:
LP2944
Physical Properties:
Sound
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
80 or 82-83
Length(in reels):
8
Country:
United States
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

After her mother dies, Selina Peake's father takes her to Chicago, where she attends a finishing school. When her father is killed, leaving her penniless, Selina's friends learn that he was a gambler and drop her. Only Julie Hemple helps her, persuading her father, August Hemple, to get Selina a job as a schoolteacher in a small Dutch community near Chicago. There, Selina lives with a farm family, helping their adoring son Roelf with his lessons. Eventually, she marries farmer Pervus De Jong and gives birth to a son, Dirk, who becomes the center of all her hopes and dreams. As he grows, she measures him daily and nicknames him "So Big." Pervus dies, leaving Selina the struggling farm. Determined, she makes the farm pay, which enables Dirk to go away to school and eventually establish himself as an architect. Over the years, everyone comes to love the hardworking, idealistic Selina. Dirk, however, does not have his mother's strength. He falls in love with a married woman who persuades her husband to give him a job as a bond salesman in his office. He is embarrassed by his mother's farm, even though her excellent asparagus paid for his education. When he falls in love with Dallas O'Mara, a talented artist, she refuses to marry him because he is unwilling to work at something worth while. Meanwhile, Roelf has become a great sculptor. He meets Dirk, and learning that he is Selina's son, asks to see her again. At the meeting, Selina compares Roelf and Dirk, acknowledging her son's faults, while at the same time, rejoicing in Roelf's ... +


After her mother dies, Selina Peake's father takes her to Chicago, where she attends a finishing school. When her father is killed, leaving her penniless, Selina's friends learn that he was a gambler and drop her. Only Julie Hemple helps her, persuading her father, August Hemple, to get Selina a job as a schoolteacher in a small Dutch community near Chicago. There, Selina lives with a farm family, helping their adoring son Roelf with his lessons. Eventually, she marries farmer Pervus De Jong and gives birth to a son, Dirk, who becomes the center of all her hopes and dreams. As he grows, she measures him daily and nicknames him "So Big." Pervus dies, leaving Selina the struggling farm. Determined, she makes the farm pay, which enables Dirk to go away to school and eventually establish himself as an architect. Over the years, everyone comes to love the hardworking, idealistic Selina. Dirk, however, does not have his mother's strength. He falls in love with a married woman who persuades her husband to give him a job as a bond salesman in his office. He is embarrassed by his mother's farm, even though her excellent asparagus paid for his education. When he falls in love with Dallas O'Mara, a talented artist, she refuses to marry him because he is unwilling to work at something worth while. Meanwhile, Roelf has become a great sculptor. He meets Dirk, and learning that he is Selina's son, asks to see her again. At the meeting, Selina compares Roelf and Dirk, acknowledging her son's faults, while at the same time, rejoicing in Roelf's talent and good character. +

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.