Gildersleeve's Ghost (1944)

63 mins | Comedy | 1944

Director:

Gordon Douglas

Writer:

Robert E. Kent

Producer:

Herman Schlom

Cinematographer:

Jack MacKenzie

Editor:

Les Millbrook

Production Designers:

Albert D'Agostino, Carroll Clark

Production Company:

RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

The working title of this film was Gildersleeve, Detective. Makeup man Mel Berns's surname was misspelled as "Burns" in the onscreen credits. Margie Stewart replaced Margaret Landry as Gildersleeve's niece, "Margie Forrester" in this picture, which was also the last in the "Gildersleeve" series. For additional information on the series, please consult the Series Index and see the entry below for The Great Gildersleeve. ...

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The working title of this film was Gildersleeve, Detective. Makeup man Mel Berns's surname was misspelled as "Burns" in the onscreen credits. Margie Stewart replaced Margaret Landry as Gildersleeve's niece, "Margie Forrester" in this picture, which was also the last in the "Gildersleeve" series. For additional information on the series, please consult the Series Index and see the entry below for The Great Gildersleeve.

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SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
24 Jun 1944
---
Daily Variety
20 Jun 1944
p. 3
Film Daily
6 Sep 1944
p. 12
Hollywood Reporter
2 Nov 1943
p. 8
Hollywood Reporter
12 Nov 1943
p. 8
Hollywood Reporter
20 Jun 1944
p. 3
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
4 Mar 1944
p. 1786
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
24 Jun 1944
pp. 1557-58
Variety
21 Jun 1944
p. 12
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
WRITER
Story and scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Albert S. D'Agostino
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
COSTUMES
Renié
Gowns
MUSIC
C. Bakaleinikoff
Mus dir
SOUND
Francis Sarver
Rec
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Gildersleeve, Detective
Release Date:
1944
Production Date:
2 Nov--mid Nov 1943
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
26 May 1944
LP12792
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
63
Length(in feet):
5,704
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
9766
SYNOPSIS

Arising from their graves in the Summerfield cemetery, the ghosts of Jonathan Q. Gildersleeve and Randolph Q. Gildersleeve spot a present-day newspaper headline announcing the candidacy of their relative, Throckmorton P. Gildersleeve, for the post of police commissioner. The two apparitions decide to boost their relative's campaign by having him expose the diabolical experiments being conducted by Dr. John Wells and his assistant, Henry Lennox. To lead Gildy to the deserted house in which Wells is conducting his experiments, the ghosts free the scientist's gorilla and take him to Gildy's house. In addition to his long-departed relatives, Gildy's campaign is also supported by love-sick newspaper columnist Harriet Morgan and Leroy Forrester, Gildy's nephew, who plans to woo the animal-lover vote by dressing up as a gorilla. After Gildy vetoes his nephew's scheme, the escaped gorilla enters the Gildersleeve kitchen and begins to feast, and Gildy thinks that the animal is his hungry nephew until he encounters the boy in the hallway. When Gildy returns to the kitchen with Leroy, his niece, Margie Forrester, his housekeeper, Birdie and his friend, pharmacist J. W. Peavy, the beast has gone. Gildy insists on notifying the police about his uninvited visitor, but his story is discounted as a publicity stunt by Haley, the police commissioner and Gildy's opponent. Determined to prove the animal's existence, Gildy convinces Peavy to act as a decoy by dressing in Leroy's gorilla costume. The two men follow the animal's tracks to the deserted house, and as Peavy enters the building to lure the gorilla, Gildy hides behind a post. When Gildy is approached by the real animal, he thinks ...

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Arising from their graves in the Summerfield cemetery, the ghosts of Jonathan Q. Gildersleeve and Randolph Q. Gildersleeve spot a present-day newspaper headline announcing the candidacy of their relative, Throckmorton P. Gildersleeve, for the post of police commissioner. The two apparitions decide to boost their relative's campaign by having him expose the diabolical experiments being conducted by Dr. John Wells and his assistant, Henry Lennox. To lead Gildy to the deserted house in which Wells is conducting his experiments, the ghosts free the scientist's gorilla and take him to Gildy's house. In addition to his long-departed relatives, Gildy's campaign is also supported by love-sick newspaper columnist Harriet Morgan and Leroy Forrester, Gildy's nephew, who plans to woo the animal-lover vote by dressing up as a gorilla. After Gildy vetoes his nephew's scheme, the escaped gorilla enters the Gildersleeve kitchen and begins to feast, and Gildy thinks that the animal is his hungry nephew until he encounters the boy in the hallway. When Gildy returns to the kitchen with Leroy, his niece, Margie Forrester, his housekeeper, Birdie and his friend, pharmacist J. W. Peavy, the beast has gone. Gildy insists on notifying the police about his uninvited visitor, but his story is discounted as a publicity stunt by Haley, the police commissioner and Gildy's opponent. Determined to prove the animal's existence, Gildy convinces Peavy to act as a decoy by dressing in Leroy's gorilla costume. The two men follow the animal's tracks to the deserted house, and as Peavy enters the building to lure the gorilla, Gildy hides behind a post. When Gildy is approached by the real animal, he thinks it is Peavy, and consequently, when Peavy reappears, he mistakes him for the gorilla and knocks him unconscious. Alerted by the commotion outside, Wells and Lennox come out of the house and scoff at Gildy's tale of a stray gorilla. To prove his point, the doctor pulls the mask from Peavy's head, and Gildy then insists that the scientist examine his injured friend. Wells reluctantly invites them into the house, and as he examines Peavy, Marie, the maid, warns Gildy of evil doings. To discredit Gildy and thus keep his experiments secret, Wells confides to Peavy that he thinks his friend is demented. While waiting for Peavy, Gildy sees the gorilla and takes refuge in the bathroom. The beast follows him, but disappears through a secret panel. As Gildy hides in the shower, former chorus girl Terry Vance, the subject of Wells's invisibility experiments, enters the bathroom and disappears. Becoming visible once again, Terry demands a kiss from Gildy, and when he refuses, she chases him under the bed. Gildy's calls for help bring Peavy running to the bedroom, but before he enters, Terry becomes invisible. When Gildy raves about an invisible woman assaulting him, Peavy starts to believe the doctor's diagnosis. Soon after, Harriet, Leroy, Margie, Birdie, Haley and Haley's chauffeur, Chauncey, arrive at the house in search of Gildy. When a violent rainstorm forces them to spend the night, Wells assigns Terry the task of making Gildy look insane. As the others sleep, Gildy, accompanied by Chauncey, searches for the secret panel. The panel opens into a passageway, where they encounter the gorilla. After locking the animal in a cell, Gildy tells Chancey to stand guard while he goes for help. After Gildy leaves, Terry, pretending to be a ghost, threatens to haunt Chauncey unless he denies seeing the gorilla. She then frees the beast, and when Gildy returns with the others, he finds the cell empty, causing Haley to demand that he withdraw from the election. Later, Leroy visits his uncle and suggests that he don the ape costume to lure the real gorilla. Gildy follows his nephew's advice, and after Chauncey alerts Haley about Gildy's disguise, the real gorilla enters Haley's room and is mistaken for Gildy. When the beast becomes agitated, Haley handcuffs him to Chauncey and tells him to wait in the car. After Chauncey tries to take the head off Gildy's "costume", however, he realizes that he is handcuffed to the real beast, which then snaps off the handcuffs and kidnaps Terry. To rescue her, Gildy, still wearing his costume, chases the gorilla into the woods and offers it a bunch of bananas. Back at the house, Marie confesses all, sending the others into the woods in search of Gildy. When they find the gorilla embracing Gildy, they all realize that he has been telling the truth.

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

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