The Bachelor and the Bobby Soxer (1947)

93 or 95 mins | Romantic comedy | 1 September 1947

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HISTORY

The working title of this film was Suddenly It's Spring . In addition to Shirley Temple, RKO borrowed Johnny Sands, producer Dore Schary and writer Sidney Sheldon for the film from David O. Selznick's Vanguard Pictures. The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer was Schary's last personal producing assignment before becoming vice-president in charge of production at RKO. According to a HR news item, art director Carroll Clark scouted locations for the picture in Lake Arrowhead, CA. It is not known, however, if any scenes were actually shot there. Exterior shots of Beverly Hills High School were included in the picture. According to a pre-release MPH article, a representative of the Woman's Christian Temperence Union in Chicago became upset after reading that Temple was to take her first screen drink in the film and asked RKO executives to eliminate the scene. In the viewed film, Temple does not take any alcoholic drink. Sheldon's script won an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. Modern sources add the following information about the production: In addition to "Suddenly It's Spring," Sheldon's screen story was also titled "Too Good to Be True." Schary objected to the title The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer because he felt it suggested a distasteful sexual relationship, but was overruled by the more commercially minded Selznick. Director Irving Reis collapsed a week after filming had started and was replaced temporarily by Schary. When he returned to the production, Reis concentrated on the technical aspects of the film, while Schary focused on the actors. Modern sources also add that the film earned $5,550,000 at the ... More Less

The working title of this film was Suddenly It's Spring . In addition to Shirley Temple, RKO borrowed Johnny Sands, producer Dore Schary and writer Sidney Sheldon for the film from David O. Selznick's Vanguard Pictures. The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer was Schary's last personal producing assignment before becoming vice-president in charge of production at RKO. According to a HR news item, art director Carroll Clark scouted locations for the picture in Lake Arrowhead, CA. It is not known, however, if any scenes were actually shot there. Exterior shots of Beverly Hills High School were included in the picture. According to a pre-release MPH article, a representative of the Woman's Christian Temperence Union in Chicago became upset after reading that Temple was to take her first screen drink in the film and asked RKO executives to eliminate the scene. In the viewed film, Temple does not take any alcoholic drink. Sheldon's script won an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. Modern sources add the following information about the production: In addition to "Suddenly It's Spring," Sheldon's screen story was also titled "Too Good to Be True." Schary objected to the title The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer because he felt it suggested a distasteful sexual relationship, but was overruled by the more commercially minded Selznick. Director Irving Reis collapsed a week after filming had started and was replaced temporarily by Schary. When he returned to the production, Reis concentrated on the technical aspects of the film, while Schary focused on the actors. Modern sources also add that the film earned $5,550,000 at the box office. Cary Grant starred with Shirley Temple in a 13 Jun 1949 Lux Radio Theatre broadcast of the story. Johnny Sands also reprised his role for the broadcast. More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
7 Jun 1947.
---
Daily Variety
3 Jun 1947.
---
Film Daily
4 Jun 47
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
15 May 46
p. 13.
Hollywood Reporter
1 Jul 46
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Jul 46
p. 22.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Oct 46
p. 11.
Hollywood Reporter
3 Jun 47
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald
31 Aug 1946.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
7 Jun 47
p. 3665.
New York Times
25 Jul 47
p. 12.
Variety
4 Jun 47
p. 16.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Dore Schary Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
WRITER
Orig story and scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
COSTUMES
MUSIC
Mus dir
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
PRODUCTION MISC
Asst to the prod
Unit mgr
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
Suddenly It's Spring
Release Date:
1 September 1947
Premiere Information:
New York opening: 24 July 1947
Production Date:
mid July--mid October 1946
Copyright Claimant:
RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
24 July 1947
Copyright Number:
LP1178
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
93 or 95
Length(in feet):
8,537
Country:
United States
PCA No:
11849
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

After Margaret Turner, an attractive, single judge, hears a case involving Dickie Nugent, a playboy artist on trial with three acquaintances for brawling in a Los Angeles nightclub, she issues a warning and dismisses the defendants. Later that day, Dickie delivers a lecture on art at a local high school, and Margaret's teenage sister and ward Susan, who is in attendance, becomes infatuated with him. Inspired by a vision she has of Dickie as a knight in shining armor, Susan insists on interviewing him for the school paper. To satisfy Susan's over-eager curiosity, Dickie invents a lurid past for himself and agrees offhandedly to use her as a model for one of his "Americana" paintings. That night, Susan reveals her infatuation to a disapproving Margaret and, after sneaking away from home, wangles her way into Dickie's empty apartment. Susan falls asleep while waiting for Dickie, causing Margaret and her boyfriend, Assistant District Attorney Tommy Chamberlain, to panic with worry. Just as Margaret deduces where Susan has gone, Dickie returns home and finds the teenager half-asleep on his couch. Margaret and Tommy burst in on the couple, and by the next morning, Dickie is in jail, having been arrested for, among other things, slugging Tommy. While in his cell, Dickie is visited by court psychiatrist Dr. Matt Beemish, who is also Margaret and Susan's uncle. Sensing Dickie's innocence, Matt convinces Margaret, Tommy and the judge who is hearing Dickie's case to drop all charges on condition that Dickie agree to "date" Susan as a way of curing her of her infatuation. As mandated, Dickie escorts Susan to a high school basketball game, where ... +


After Margaret Turner, an attractive, single judge, hears a case involving Dickie Nugent, a playboy artist on trial with three acquaintances for brawling in a Los Angeles nightclub, she issues a warning and dismisses the defendants. Later that day, Dickie delivers a lecture on art at a local high school, and Margaret's teenage sister and ward Susan, who is in attendance, becomes infatuated with him. Inspired by a vision she has of Dickie as a knight in shining armor, Susan insists on interviewing him for the school paper. To satisfy Susan's over-eager curiosity, Dickie invents a lurid past for himself and agrees offhandedly to use her as a model for one of his "Americana" paintings. That night, Susan reveals her infatuation to a disapproving Margaret and, after sneaking away from home, wangles her way into Dickie's empty apartment. Susan falls asleep while waiting for Dickie, causing Margaret and her boyfriend, Assistant District Attorney Tommy Chamberlain, to panic with worry. Just as Margaret deduces where Susan has gone, Dickie returns home and finds the teenager half-asleep on his couch. Margaret and Tommy burst in on the couple, and by the next morning, Dickie is in jail, having been arrested for, among other things, slugging Tommy. While in his cell, Dickie is visited by court psychiatrist Dr. Matt Beemish, who is also Margaret and Susan's uncle. Sensing Dickie's innocence, Matt convinces Margaret, Tommy and the judge who is hearing Dickie's case to drop all charges on condition that Dickie agree to "date" Susan as a way of curing her of her infatuation. As mandated, Dickie escorts Susan to a high school basketball game, where her boyfriend, player Jerry White, becomes distracted with jealousy. Although Dickie tries to push Jerry back into Susan's arms by inviting them for a post-game soda, Jerry declares that he is resigned to losing Susan and offers to be her friend. After a frustrated Dickie says goodnight to Susan, he attempts a sincere flirtation with the serious-minded Margaret, but is awkwardly rebuffed by her. That weekend, Dickie accompanies Susan, Margaret, Tommy, Matt and Susan's other uncle, Judge Thaddeus Turner, on a neighborhood picnic. At Susan's urging, Dickie participates in several races, but loses them all in humiliating fashion to the smug Tommy. Desperate to prove his manhood, Dickie enters the big obstacle race, and because Jerry and Susan have bribed their teenage friends to perform badly and sabotage other entrants in the competition, Dickie beats Tommy and wins. As Dickie accepts his trophy, the now smitten Margaret envisions him as a knight in shining armor, just as her sister had before, and calls him that night for a date. Though exhausted, Dickie eagerly agrees to meet her at the Tick Tock Club, then to confuse Tommy, who has come to confront him, "confesses" that he is madly in love with Susan. Margaret and Dickie's romantic evening at the Tick Tock is shortlived, however, as Susan, Tommy, Jerry and Joey and Agnes Prescott, two of the co-defendants from Dickie's court appearance, join them at their table. While Susan denounces Margaret for "stealing" Dickie, Jerry becomes angry at Susan for not caring about his recent draft notification. A jealous Tommy then accuses Dickie of immoral conduct, and as the rest of group argues noisily, Agnes screams that Dickie has ruined her birthday. After Susan and Margaret storm home, Matt uses his psychological skills to convince the younger sister that she is not in love with Dickie. Susan apologizes to Margaret, who then is persuaded by Matt to fly away for a short vacation to "forget" Dickie. Unknown to Margaret, however, Matt has spoken to an equally depressed Dickie and knows that he is planning to fly out the next day. At the airport, Matt tricks the police into preventing Tommy from arresting Dickie by telling them that Tommy is a mental patient who believes he is the district attorney, and brings the reluctant lovers together at last. +

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.