Across the Pacific (1942)

86 or 97 mins | Drama | 5 September 1942

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HISTORY

A Warner Bros. press release for this film dated Dec 1941 included in the file on the film in the AMPAS Library announced that Dennis Morgan and Ann Sheridan were to star. In her autobiography, Mary Astor notes that the original script was about a Japanese invasion of Hawaii, but after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, the location was hastily changed to Panama. The Var review points out that the title is thus a "misnomer" as none of the action takes place in the Pacific. Production began shortly before the bombing and was closed down and restarted in Mar 1942. On 3 Mar 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt authorized the internment of Japanese Americans on the West Coast. At that time, Astor reports, the film kept losing its Japanese actors as they were rounded up by the United States government and sent to relocation camps. According to information in the file on the film at the USC Cinema-Television Library, however, Chinese actors were cast as Japanese from the beginning and with the exception of technical advisor Dan Fujiwara and a few bit players, no Japanese participated in the making of the film. As evidenced by the cast credits and as noted by the New Yorker review, Chinese actors played the roles of Japanese spies. Colonel J. G. Taylor acted as technical advisor on the court-martial scenes.
       Before the picture was finished, director John Huston was summoned to report to the department of Special Services, and on 22 Apr 1942 Vincent Sherman took over as director, according to information at USC. In a modern interview, Huston relates that when ... More Less

A Warner Bros. press release for this film dated Dec 1941 included in the file on the film in the AMPAS Library announced that Dennis Morgan and Ann Sheridan were to star. In her autobiography, Mary Astor notes that the original script was about a Japanese invasion of Hawaii, but after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, the location was hastily changed to Panama. The Var review points out that the title is thus a "misnomer" as none of the action takes place in the Pacific. Production began shortly before the bombing and was closed down and restarted in Mar 1942. On 3 Mar 1942, President Franklin D. Roosevelt authorized the internment of Japanese Americans on the West Coast. At that time, Astor reports, the film kept losing its Japanese actors as they were rounded up by the United States government and sent to relocation camps. According to information in the file on the film at the USC Cinema-Television Library, however, Chinese actors were cast as Japanese from the beginning and with the exception of technical advisor Dan Fujiwara and a few bit players, no Japanese participated in the making of the film. As evidenced by the cast credits and as noted by the New Yorker review, Chinese actors played the roles of Japanese spies. Colonel J. G. Taylor acted as technical advisor on the court-martial scenes.
       Before the picture was finished, director John Huston was summoned to report to the department of Special Services, and on 22 Apr 1942 Vincent Sherman took over as director, according to information at USC. In a modern interview, Huston relates that when he knew he was leaving, he filmed a scene in which he tied Humphrey Bogart to a chair with Japanese guards at every window and door and left Sherman to figure out a way to get Bogart's character out of his dilemma. Sherman managed to figure out a solution, but the resulting ending is somewhat implausible. The production finished ten days over schedule. This film marked the reunion of stars Bogart, Greenstreet and Astor and director Huston, who worked together in Warner Bros.' hit film The Maltese Falcon (see below). More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
22 Aug 1942.
---
Daily Variety
14 Aug 42
p. 3.
Film Daily
18 Aug 42
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
2 Mar 42
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
24 Apr 42
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
1 May 42
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
14 Aug 42
p. 3.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
22 Aug 42
p. 853.
New York Times
5 Sep 42
p. 9.
Variety
19 Aug 42
p. 8.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Warner Bros.--First National Picture
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dial dir
Asst dir
2nd asst dir
Dir of retakes
PRODUCERS
Prod
Prod
WRITER
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
2nd cam
Asst cam
Stills
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
Set dresser
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATOR
Prop man
COSTUMES
MUSIC
SOUND
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec eff
Mont
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Makeup
Hair
PRODUCTION MISC
Unit mgr
Scr clerk
Tech adv
STAND INS
Stand-in for Humphrey Bogart
Stand-in for Mary Astor
Stand-in for Sydney Greenstreet
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the serial story "Aloha Means Good-by" by Robert Garson in The Saturday Evening Post (28 Jun--26 Jul 1941).
AUTHOR
DETAILS
Release Date:
5 September 1942
Premiere Information:
New York opening: 4 September 1942
Production Date:
2 March--1 May 1942
retakes 2 May 1942
Copyright Claimant:
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
5 September 1942
Copyright Number:
LP11564
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
86 or 97
Length(in feet):
8,709
Length(in reels):
10
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
Yes
SYNOPSIS

Rick Leland, a captain in the United States Coast Auxiliary Army, is found guilty of stealing regimental funds and is dishonorably discharged from the service. He subsequently tries to enlist in the Canadian artillery but is turned down because of his record. Disillusioned, Rick buys passage on the Japanese freighter, the Genoa Maru , intending to offer his services to the Chinese. Traveling on the same ship is Alberta Marlow, who is heading for Panama, and Dr. Lorenz and his Japanese servant, T. Oki. Lorenz is a student of Japanese culture and is interested to learn that if war broke out in the Pacific, Rick would not participate. Over drinks, Lorenz quizzes Rick about his experience in the artillery in Panama. Rick also spends some time flirting with Alberta, who returns his interest. When the ship docks in New York City, Rick visits a man who turns out to be his undercover contact. Rick, whose dishonorable discharge was faked to cover his investigation of Lorenz, asks his contact to inquire into Alberta's background, as well. When Rick rejoins the ship, another passenger, Joe Totsuiko, a Nisei, joins the company. On board, Rick prevents a Filipino man from shooting Lorenz, who explains that some Filipinos resent his ties with the Japanese. Alberta later calls Rick's attention to the fact that Lorenz has a new servant who is using the same name as his former servant. Eventually Lorenz offers Rick money to disclose military information and Rick agrees. In Panama, the passengers learn that the ship will not be allowed to travel through the canal. After disembarking, they all ... +


Rick Leland, a captain in the United States Coast Auxiliary Army, is found guilty of stealing regimental funds and is dishonorably discharged from the service. He subsequently tries to enlist in the Canadian artillery but is turned down because of his record. Disillusioned, Rick buys passage on the Japanese freighter, the Genoa Maru , intending to offer his services to the Chinese. Traveling on the same ship is Alberta Marlow, who is heading for Panama, and Dr. Lorenz and his Japanese servant, T. Oki. Lorenz is a student of Japanese culture and is interested to learn that if war broke out in the Pacific, Rick would not participate. Over drinks, Lorenz quizzes Rick about his experience in the artillery in Panama. Rick also spends some time flirting with Alberta, who returns his interest. When the ship docks in New York City, Rick visits a man who turns out to be his undercover contact. Rick, whose dishonorable discharge was faked to cover his investigation of Lorenz, asks his contact to inquire into Alberta's background, as well. When Rick rejoins the ship, another passenger, Joe Totsuiko, a Nisei, joins the company. On board, Rick prevents a Filipino man from shooting Lorenz, who explains that some Filipinos resent his ties with the Japanese. Alberta later calls Rick's attention to the fact that Lorenz has a new servant who is using the same name as his former servant. Eventually Lorenz offers Rick money to disclose military information and Rick agrees. In Panama, the passengers learn that the ship will not be allowed to travel through the canal. After disembarking, they all check into a hotel. Lorenz demands that Rick find out the schedule of airplanes flying over the area in return for the money he paid him earlier. Rick also learns that Alberta is not who she is pretending to be and confronts her, but just as she is about to explain, she is called to the telephone. Rick then searches her room, where he finds that Lorenz has earlier done the same. Lorenz warns Rick about Alberta before knocking him unconscious. When Rick comes to, he alerts his contact about Lorenz' plans, but the man is killed before he can act on the warning. Sam, the hotel keeper and an old friend of Rick's, puts him in touch with a man who advises him to travel quickly to a nearby plantation. There, workers are loading a bomber under cover of darkness. Rick is captured and taken inside, where he discovers Alberta and Joe. The owner of the plantation is Alberta's father, who has been forced to provide a cover for the Japanese. Lorenz's servant turns out to be a bomber pilot. Now the Japanese, supported by Joe and Lorenz, plan to bomb the canal's locks. Hearing the plane start its engines, Rick initiates a fight, during which Alberta's father is killed. Rick escapes and shoots down the plane, killing the Japanese pilot. His plan a failure, Lorenz tries to kill himself, but cannot go through with it. Rick captures him and takes him in for questioning. Alberta, who has been loyal all along, accompanies Rick. +

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.