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HISTORY

The working title of this film was They're All Crazy . Early HR news items state that Universal producer Alex Gottlieb was not only set to produce this film, but also was going to write the screenplay based on a treatment by Robert Lees and Fred Rinaldo, which had been approved by Universal and performers Ole Olsen and Chic Johnson. It has not been determined if Gottlieb contributed in any way to the released film. According to HR , the film's finale was shot with the use of two film crews, one directed by Edward F. Cline, the other directed by associate producer Erle C. Kenton. HR also reported that actress Cass Daley was borrowed by Universal from Paramount for this film.
       HR production charts include Moroni Olsen and Bobby Brooks in the cast, but their appearance in the released film has not been confirmed. Actors Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce appear in this film as the characters "Sherlock Holmes" and "Dr. Watson," whom they had portrayed in numerous Universal pictures. According to modern sources, their scene in this film was filmed on the set of their 1944 film Sherlock Holmes and the Spider Woman (See ... More Less

The working title of this film was They're All Crazy . Early HR news items state that Universal producer Alex Gottlieb was not only set to produce this film, but also was going to write the screenplay based on a treatment by Robert Lees and Fred Rinaldo, which had been approved by Universal and performers Ole Olsen and Chic Johnson. It has not been determined if Gottlieb contributed in any way to the released film. According to HR , the film's finale was shot with the use of two film crews, one directed by Edward F. Cline, the other directed by associate producer Erle C. Kenton. HR also reported that actress Cass Daley was borrowed by Universal from Paramount for this film.
       HR production charts include Moroni Olsen and Bobby Brooks in the cast, but their appearance in the released film has not been confirmed. Actors Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce appear in this film as the characters "Sherlock Holmes" and "Dr. Watson," whom they had portrayed in numerous Universal pictures. According to modern sources, their scene in this film was filmed on the set of their 1944 film Sherlock Holmes and the Spider Woman (See Entry). More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
30 Oct 1943.
---
Daily Variety
23 Jul 1943.
---
Daily Variety
14 Oct 43
p. 3.
Down Beat
1 Jan 1944.
---
Film Daily
15 Oct 43
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Apr 42
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
29 Apr 42
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Jul 42
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Jan 43
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
10 May 43
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
27 May 43
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
2 Jun 43
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
18 Jun 43
p. 11.
Hollywood Reporter
25 Jun 43
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
9 Jul 43
p. 9.
Hollywood Reporter
14 Oct 43
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
20 Dec 43
p. 10.
Look
2 Nov 1943.
---
Los Angeles Times
20 Nov 1943.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
11 Sep 43
p. 1531.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
23 Oct 43
p. 1595.
New York Times
16 Dec 43
p. 33.
Variety
20 Oct 43
p. 12.
CAST
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
Chic Johnson
and His Orchestra
and introducing
Lon Chaney [Jr.]
Jack Barnett
Robert E. Keane
Jon Gilbreath
Tiny Newlan
William Healy
+
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
Assoc prod
WRITERS
Orig scr, Orig scr
Orig scr, Orig scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
Mus dir
Mus supv
Orch
SOUND
Dir of sd
[Sd] tech
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec photog
DANCE
Mus prod numbers devised and staged by
STAND INS
Voice double for Martha O'Driscoll
SOURCES
SONGS
"Moonlight Serenade," words by Mitchell Parish, music by Glenn Miller
"Jealous," words by Tommie Malie and Dick Finch, music by Jack Little
"Lament of a Laundry Girl," words and music by Dan Shapiro, Jerry Seelen and Lester Lee
+
SONGS
"Moonlight Serenade," words by Mitchell Parish, music by Glenn Miller
"Jealous," words by Tommie Malie and Dick Finch, music by Jack Little
"Lament of a Laundry Girl," words and music by Dan Shapiro, Jerry Seelen and Lester Lee
"I'll See You in My Dreams," words by Gus Kahn, music by Isham Jones
"The Donkey Serenade (Chanson)," words by Bob Wright and Chet Forrest, music by Rudolf Friml and Herbert Stothart
"Some Day Maybe I'll Dream Again," words and music by Irving Bibo, Al Piantadosi and Stanley Joseloff
"My Rainbow Song," words by Mitchell Parish, music by Frank Signorelli and Matt Malneck
"There Goes That Song Again," words and music by Allie Wrubel
"Tropicana" and "Get on Board, Little Children," words and music by Don Raye and Gene de Paul
"Crazy House," words by Eddie Cherkose, music by Milton Rosen
"Pocket Full o' Pennies," words and music by Eddie Cherkose and Franz Steininger
"I Oughta Dance," words and music by Sammy Cahn and Saul Chaplin, with additional lyrics by Eddie Cherkose
"Baby, Won't You Please Come Home," words and music by Charles Warfield and Clarence Williams
"Rigoletto Blues," based on the Quartet from the opera Rigoletto by Giuseppe Verdi, composers undetermined.
+
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
They're All Crazy
Release Date:
8 October 1943
Production Date:
14 June--mid August 1943
Copyright Claimant:
Universal Pictures Co., inc.
Copyright Date:
2 November 1943
Copyright Number:
LP12354
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
80
Length(in feet):
7,222
Length(in reels):
9
Country:
United States
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Vaudevillians Ole Olsen and Chic Johnson stage a parade down Hollywood and Vine to announce their return to Hollywood after three years on Broadway in Sons of Fun . At their studio, Universal, hysteria breaks out at the mere thought of their return. In spite of the studio's tight security, Ole and Chic manage to get onto the lot and into the offices of executive producer N. G. Wagstaff. Although they have a two-picture deal with Universal, Wagstaff informs Ole and Chic that the studio will not make their second picture, as most of the staff, who dread the vaudevillians's antics, has threatened to quit if they return to the lot. As they are leaving the studio, the duo run into Edmund "Mac" MacLean, an assistant director on their first film, who tells them that he, too, has been fired by the studio. Ole and Chic then decide to make their next picture independently, with Mac as the director, by stealing stars off the Universal lot and using financing from an as-yet-found "angel." They mistakenly think they have signed Cass Daley to star in their film, but instead have signed her double, Sadie Silverfish. The new filmmakers then go to the Studio Rental Corp. for film and equipment, and the owners agree to rent them everything they want, in the hopes of fleecing them. Later, at the Ambassador Hotel, Ole and Chic meet Colonel Cornelius Merriweather, who claims to be a multi-millionaire and offers to finance completely their picture, but who is actually a penniless kook. Ole and Chic then decide to cast the film with unknown performers, instead ... +


Vaudevillians Ole Olsen and Chic Johnson stage a parade down Hollywood and Vine to announce their return to Hollywood after three years on Broadway in Sons of Fun . At their studio, Universal, hysteria breaks out at the mere thought of their return. In spite of the studio's tight security, Ole and Chic manage to get onto the lot and into the offices of executive producer N. G. Wagstaff. Although they have a two-picture deal with Universal, Wagstaff informs Ole and Chic that the studio will not make their second picture, as most of the staff, who dread the vaudevillians's antics, has threatened to quit if they return to the lot. As they are leaving the studio, the duo run into Edmund "Mac" MacLean, an assistant director on their first film, who tells them that he, too, has been fired by the studio. Ole and Chic then decide to make their next picture independently, with Mac as the director, by stealing stars off the Universal lot and using financing from an as-yet-found "angel." They mistakenly think they have signed Cass Daley to star in their film, but instead have signed her double, Sadie Silverfish. The new filmmakers then go to the Studio Rental Corp. for film and equipment, and the owners agree to rent them everything they want, in the hopes of fleecing them. Later, at the Ambassador Hotel, Ole and Chic meet Colonel Cornelius Merriweather, who claims to be a multi-millionaire and offers to finance completely their picture, but who is actually a penniless kook. Ole and Chic then decide to cast the film with unknown performers, instead of expensive stars. They discover a waitress named Margie Nelson and decide to cast her in the female lead, but when they have her perform on a radio show, the show's star, Johnny, offers her a radio contract. With a $750,000 promissory note from Merriweather, however, they are able to sign Margie, as well as singers, dancers and a band. As filming begins, Sadie shows up on the set with her lawyer, who insists that the stand-in has a valid contract and must be used in the film. The filmmakers then decide to torture Sadie with inhuman rehearsals until she quits. Their plan succeeds, but when the real Cass Daley arrives on the set in support of her cousin, they mistakenly torture the star. In the midst of filming, Hanley and the other owners of Studio Rental come to Ole and Chic, demanding their money, at which time the two vaudevillians discover the truth about Merriweather. Hanley, however, allows them to finish the film, as he plans to assume ownership on the picture upon its completion. After fifty-four days of shooting, the film is completed, and Hanley arrives with his lawyers and legally attaches the film. The filmmakers are then forced to go to court, where Ole, Chic and Mac argue that they can sell the film for $1,000,000. The judge agrees to give them one week in which to come up with Hanley's money, so the three plan a special preview of the film for various studio executives. On the night of the preview, however, only the first reel arrives, as the film has been held up in processing by Hanley. Ole, Chic and the other performers then put on an old-fashioned vaudeville show, while Mac acquires the remainder of the film. After the movie is over, Ole and Chic trick Wagstaff into buying the film, and Hanley and his partners are defeated. When Mac and Margie attempt to reconcile, Chic opens fire with a machine gun, stating that this is "one movie without a happy ending." +

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.