Dr. Gillespie's New Assistant (1942)

86-87 mins | Drama | December 1942

Director:

Willis Goldbeck

Cinematographer:

George Folsey

Production Designer:

Cedric Gibbons

Production Company:

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Corp.
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HISTORY

This film marked the directorial debut of Willis Goldbeck, who previously had written the "Dr. Kildare" and "Dr. Gillespie" films. According to news items in HR , Edna Holland and Edith Evanson were cast in the film, but their appearances have not been confirmed. Although Selmer Jackson is listed in the CBCS as "Dr. Harrison," he was not in the released film; his character is referred to as being away in the Army. A news item in HR on 20 Aug 1942 noted that Dr. H. A. Conway was to be the technical advisor on the film, taking over from the usual series advisor, Dr. Charles Mandell, who had recently entered the Army. The extent of Mandell's participation on this film has not been determined.
       This was the first of four films in the Dr. Gillespie series in which Van Johnson portrayed "Dr. Red Adams," and Keye Luke portrayed "Dr. Lee Wong How." Johnson left the series in 1944 and Luke's final picture in the series was the last, Dark Delusion in 1947 (see above). Johnson and Luke assumed the role of Gillespie's "assistant," which had previously been occupied by Lew Ayres in films that were part of the Dr. Kildare series. Luke also portrayed Dr. How in the 1944 picture Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble (see above). For additional information on the "Dr. Kildare" and "Dr. Gillespie" series, consult the Series Index and see the entry above for Calling Dr. Gillespie , and the entry for Young Dr. Kildare in AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40 ; F3.5251.
       The film was in release Dec ... More Less

This film marked the directorial debut of Willis Goldbeck, who previously had written the "Dr. Kildare" and "Dr. Gillespie" films. According to news items in HR , Edna Holland and Edith Evanson were cast in the film, but their appearances have not been confirmed. Although Selmer Jackson is listed in the CBCS as "Dr. Harrison," he was not in the released film; his character is referred to as being away in the Army. A news item in HR on 20 Aug 1942 noted that Dr. H. A. Conway was to be the technical advisor on the film, taking over from the usual series advisor, Dr. Charles Mandell, who had recently entered the Army. The extent of Mandell's participation on this film has not been determined.
       This was the first of four films in the Dr. Gillespie series in which Van Johnson portrayed "Dr. Red Adams," and Keye Luke portrayed "Dr. Lee Wong How." Johnson left the series in 1944 and Luke's final picture in the series was the last, Dark Delusion in 1947 (see above). Johnson and Luke assumed the role of Gillespie's "assistant," which had previously been occupied by Lew Ayres in films that were part of the Dr. Kildare series. Luke also portrayed Dr. How in the 1944 picture Andy Hardy's Blonde Trouble (see above). For additional information on the "Dr. Kildare" and "Dr. Gillespie" series, consult the Series Index and see the entry above for Calling Dr. Gillespie , and the entry for Young Dr. Kildare in AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40 ; F3.5251.
       The film was in release Dec 1942-Jan 1943. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
14 Nov 1942.
---
Daily Variety
11 Nov 42
p. 3.
Film Daily
12 Nov 42
p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter
21 Jun 42
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
23 Jul 42
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
31 Jul 42
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
14 Aug 42
p. 6. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Aug 42
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
20 Aug 42
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Sep 42
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Sep 42
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Nov 42
p. 3.
Motion Picture Daily
12 Nov 1942.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
15 Nov 42
p. 1005.
Showmen's Trade Reviews
14 Nov 1942.
---
Variety
11 Nov 42
p. 8.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
WRITERS
Orig scr, Orig scr
Orig scr, Orig scr
Orig scr, Orig scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
MUSIC
SOUND
Rec dir
PRODUCTION MISC
Unit mgr
Tech adv
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on characters created by Max Brand.
AUTHOR
DETAILS
Series:
Release Date:
December 1942
Production Date:
13 August--19 September 1942
Copyright Claimant:
Loew's Inc.
Copyright Date:
13 November 1942
Copyright Number:
LP11698
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Sound System
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
86-87
Length(in feet):
7,882
Length(in reels):
9
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
8889
Passed by NBR:
Yes
SYNOPSIS

Blair General Hospital's Dr. Leonard Gillespie has been working so hard that his friends, chief administrator Dr. Walter Carew and head nurse Molly Byrd, are concerned. When the wheelchair-bound Gillespie falls asleep on a hospitalized patient, they demand that he finally select a new assistant. Gillespie agrees to make his choice by asking a very difficult question of all the new interns; the one who answers it correctly will have the position. Three doctors surprise Gillespie by answering the question correctly: Dr. Randall "Red" Adams of Kansas City, Dr. Lee Wong How of Brooklyn and Dr. Dennis Lindsay, an Australian on temporary assignment at Blair to study tropical diseases. Because he cannot decide among them, Gillespie resolves to give all three a chance. Meanwhile, Howard Allwin Young, the son of one of Gillespie's oldest friends, stop for lunch at an inn with his new bride, dress designer Claire Merton. At almost the same moment that Gillespie calls them to offer his congratulations, Claire suddenly loses all memory of who she is. Gillespie suggests that Howard bring Claire to the hospital, where he and Red try to determine what has caused her amnesia. Though she has no apparent signs of physical or emotional trauma, she can give no information about her life and is reluctant to go home with Howard. Instead, she suggests that they annul the marriage. Red takes her to her apartment and has no success in jogging her memory. When Red discusses the case with his mentor, Gillespie guides him to the only logical conclusion--Clair is faking. To find out what Clair is trying to hide, Red decides ... +


Blair General Hospital's Dr. Leonard Gillespie has been working so hard that his friends, chief administrator Dr. Walter Carew and head nurse Molly Byrd, are concerned. When the wheelchair-bound Gillespie falls asleep on a hospitalized patient, they demand that he finally select a new assistant. Gillespie agrees to make his choice by asking a very difficult question of all the new interns; the one who answers it correctly will have the position. Three doctors surprise Gillespie by answering the question correctly: Dr. Randall "Red" Adams of Kansas City, Dr. Lee Wong How of Brooklyn and Dr. Dennis Lindsay, an Australian on temporary assignment at Blair to study tropical diseases. Because he cannot decide among them, Gillespie resolves to give all three a chance. Meanwhile, Howard Allwin Young, the son of one of Gillespie's oldest friends, stop for lunch at an inn with his new bride, dress designer Claire Merton. At almost the same moment that Gillespie calls them to offer his congratulations, Claire suddenly loses all memory of who she is. Gillespie suggests that Howard bring Claire to the hospital, where he and Red try to determine what has caused her amnesia. Though she has no apparent signs of physical or emotional trauma, she can give no information about her life and is reluctant to go home with Howard. Instead, she suggests that they annul the marriage. Red takes her to her apartment and has no success in jogging her memory. When Red discusses the case with his mentor, Gillespie guides him to the only logical conclusion--Clair is faking. To find out what Clair is trying to hide, Red decides to see if he can find her personal physician. Red finally locates the doctor, who has enlisted in the Army. The doctor's receptionist, Mrs. Black, will only let Red see Claire's information card, but Red discovers that Claire had listed herself as a married woman with a two-year-old child. When Gillespie confronts Claire with the information, she collapses, but later confesses that she was married in Texas at age sixteen and was soon widowed by her criminal husband, who left her with a baby. After leaving the baby with her mother, Claire became a successful fashion designer in New York and fell in love with Howard. The reason why she feigned amnesia was that during lunch at the inn, she had tried to tell him about her earlier marriage, but Howard, thinking that she was teasing, made a cruel joke about "second-hand wives." She is convinced that Howard would never understand or accept her child, so she decides to go back to Texas and asks Gillespie and Red not to tell Howard anything. Red and Gillespie are sure that Claire is still hiding something, so Red decides to try to get more information out of Mrs. Black. The next day, after getting Mrs. Black drunk and stealing Claire's file, Red reveals to Gillespie that the file confirmed that Claire was unable to have any more children, but did not know. Gillespie then calls Howard and lectures him about bigotry and prejudice after telling him about Claire's past. After Howard says that he loves Claire and wants both her and her child, Gillespie opens the door to another office and Claire, who has been waiting, is happily reunited with Howard. While Red has been working on Claire's case, Lee and Lindsay have resolved their own and Gillespie says that he cannot fire any of them. Lindsay has been ordered back to Australia, but Lee and Red will both act as Gillespie's assistants. +

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

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