Design for Scandal (1941)

82 or 84-85 mins | Comedy | December 1941

Director:

Norman Taurog

Cinematographers:

William Daniels, Leonard Smith

Editor:

Elmo Veron

Production Designer:

Cedric Gibbons

Production Company:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
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HISTORY

Working titles of the film were Miss Achilles' Heel, Achilles and Her Honor. Actress Barbara Jo Allen is billed as "Barbara Jo Allen (Vera Vague)" in the opening credits, but only as Barbara Jo Allen in the end credits. "Vera Vague" was the name of the popular radio character she portrayed on Bob Hope's program The Pepsident Hour. HR news items note that Sam Taylor was originally set to direct the picture, which was to star Clark Gable. Other news items noted that although actress Rosalind Russell was supposed to leave M-G-M after having bought out her contract, she agreed to stay on for this film, and that actor Charie Ruggles was wanted for a role in the film if he completed work on Columbia's Go West, Young Lady (see below). According to HR production charts, Claire Trevor was in the cast, but she was not in the released film. According to HR news items, some location shooting was done near Santa Monica, CA and at actor Jack Oakie's Venijay Ranch in Southern California. ...

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Working titles of the film were Miss Achilles' Heel, Achilles and Her Honor. Actress Barbara Jo Allen is billed as "Barbara Jo Allen (Vera Vague)" in the opening credits, but only as Barbara Jo Allen in the end credits. "Vera Vague" was the name of the popular radio character she portrayed on Bob Hope's program The Pepsident Hour. HR news items note that Sam Taylor was originally set to direct the picture, which was to star Clark Gable. Other news items noted that although actress Rosalind Russell was supposed to leave M-G-M after having bought out her contract, she agreed to stay on for this film, and that actor Charie Ruggles was wanted for a role in the film if he completed work on Columbia's Go West, Young Lady (see below). According to HR production charts, Claire Trevor was in the cast, but she was not in the released film. According to HR news items, some location shooting was done near Santa Monica, CA and at actor Jack Oakie's Venijay Ranch in Southern California.

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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
15 Nov 1941
---
Daily Variety
10-Nov-41
---
Film Daily
11 Nov 1941
p. 6
Hollywood Reporter
8 Jul 1941
p. 3
Hollywood Reporter
11 Jul 1941
p. 8
Hollywood Reporter
24 Jul 1941
p. 4
Hollywood Reporter
15 Aug 1941
p. 8
Hollywood Reporter
18 Aug 1941
p. 5
Hollywood Reporter
26 Sep 1941
p. 16
Hollywood Reporter
11 Nov 1941
p. 3
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
15 Nov 1941
pp. 361-62
New York Times
6 Feb 1942
p. 23
Variety
12 Nov 1941
p. 9
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
WRITER
Orig story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Assoc
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATOR
Set dec
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
Mus score
SOUND
Rec dir
MAKEUP
Hair styles for Miss Russell by
SOURCES
SONGS
"Daisy Bell," music and lyrics by Harry Dacre.
SONGWRITER/COMPOSER
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
Achilles
Miss Achilles' Heel
Release Date:
December 1941
Production Date:
18 Aug--late Sep 1941
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Loew's Inc.
14 November 1941
LP10866
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
82 or 84-85
Length(in feet):
7,617
Length(in reels):
9
Country:
United States
PCA No:
7805
Passed by NBR:
Yes
SYNOPSIS

Newspaper tycoon Judson M. Blair has had enough of his wife Adele's extravagances, so when the former chorine refuses to return an expensive ring she has just bought, he sues for divorce. Unfortunately for Blair, the hearing judge, Cornelia Porter, refuses to listen to his remarks about Adele and grants her alimony of $4,000 a month, unless she remarries. Because Cornelia will not even consider changing her mind, Blair decides that the only way he can better his situation is if a scandal causes the upstanding judge to leave the bench. Ace reporter Jeff Sherman, whom Blair has repeatedly fired, offers to help out, but only if Blair will rehire him, raise his salary and move him to the Washington beat. Jeff then goes to his manicurist friend Dotty, and offers her money to take out a marriage license with him, then sue Cornelia for alienation of affection after Jeff has had a chance to romance her. Jeff soon follows Cornelia to Cape Cod, where she plans to spend a two-month vacation with her sister Jane and nephew Freddie, and do some amateur sculpting. Jeff's plans to meet Cornelia on the train go awry when Freddie will not cooperate, so on Cape Cod, Jeff manages to take over the studio of Raoul, a local sculptor, by having Blair hire him away to work on his New York office building. Several attempts to get close to Cornelia fail, until Jeff is invited to dinner by Jane after he pretends to save Freddie from drowning. Cornelia is suspicious of Jeff, as is her longtime suitor, Walter Caldwell, but when she sees "his" sculptures, and they have fun ...

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Newspaper tycoon Judson M. Blair has had enough of his wife Adele's extravagances, so when the former chorine refuses to return an expensive ring she has just bought, he sues for divorce. Unfortunately for Blair, the hearing judge, Cornelia Porter, refuses to listen to his remarks about Adele and grants her alimony of $4,000 a month, unless she remarries. Because Cornelia will not even consider changing her mind, Blair decides that the only way he can better his situation is if a scandal causes the upstanding judge to leave the bench. Ace reporter Jeff Sherman, whom Blair has repeatedly fired, offers to help out, but only if Blair will rehire him, raise his salary and move him to the Washington beat. Jeff then goes to his manicurist friend Dotty, and offers her money to take out a marriage license with him, then sue Cornelia for alienation of affection after Jeff has had a chance to romance her. Jeff soon follows Cornelia to Cape Cod, where she plans to spend a two-month vacation with her sister Jane and nephew Freddie, and do some amateur sculpting. Jeff's plans to meet Cornelia on the train go awry when Freddie will not cooperate, so on Cape Cod, Jeff manages to take over the studio of Raoul, a local sculptor, by having Blair hire him away to work on his New York office building. Several attempts to get close to Cornelia fail, until Jeff is invited to dinner by Jane after he pretends to save Freddie from drowning. Cornelia is suspicious of Jeff, as is her longtime suitor, Walter Caldwell, but when she sees "his" sculptures, and they have fun singing together on a moonlight tandem bicycle ride, she changes her opinion. After spending more time together, Jeff invites Cornelia to his studio, but while she is there, Dotty calls to say that she is in town. Jeff makes an excuse to Cornelia, then gets Dotty drunk and promises to marry her if she will go back to New York and return the next Saturday. While Jeff starts to fall in love with Cornelia, Dotty is on a spending spree in New York and confronts Blair about giving her more money. When Saturday arrives, Jeff decides that he cannot go through with his plan and returns to New York to tell Blair. While he is gone, Cornelia goes to the studio and finds Raoul, who unwittingly reveals that Jeff is working for Blair. In New York, just as Jeff is telling Blair that Cornelia is too fine a lady to be tricked, they are both arrested. In court, Cornelia acts as the prosecuting attorney, while her friend and mentor, Judge Graham, presides. Jeff acts as his own attorney and when he presents his case, he calls Cornelia to the witness stand. Although she is hostile, he proposes and she eventually admits that she loves him, then rushes out of the courtroom in tears. Graham finds Jeff and Blair guilty but only sentences them to one day in jail. Outside the courthouse, after Jeff sees a newspaper headline announcing Adele's marriage to an old millionaire, he falls down because Blair had just given her a big settlement to stop the monthly alimony payments. Although he is not hurt, Cornelia thinks he is and rushes to him. Sometime later, Cornelia and Jeff are happily singing "Daisy Bell" on Cape Cod as they once again ride a bicycle built for two.

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

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