Sing You Sinners (1938)

85 or 88 mins | Comedy-drama | 2 September 1938

Director:

Wesley Ruggles

Writer:

Claude Binyon

Producer:

Wesley Ruggles

Cinematographer:

Karl Struss

Editor:

Alma Macrorie

Production Designers:

Hans Dreier, Ernst Fegté

Production Company:

Paramount Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

The working title of this film was The Unholy Beebes. According to a HR news item, Don Ameche and Mickey Rooney were initially cast in the film, however, Ameche was replaced by Fred MacMurray, and Rooney was replaced by Donald O'Connor. Contemporary and modern reviewers alike note the film's importance in Bing Crosby's career as his dramatic role was a departure from earlier roles and demonstrated a broader acting range. The film was previewed at Del Mar racetrack, where Crosby often raced his own horses. According to the pressbook, Crosby's horse "Ligaroti" appears in the film as the winning horse in the sweepstakes. The pressbook also notes that the racetrack scenes were shot on location at Santa Anita racetrack in Arcadia, CA. Sing You Sinners was considered one of the best English-language films of 1938 by the National Board of Review Awards. Paramount remade Sing You Sinners in 1944 as And the Angels Sing, directed by George Marshall and starring Dorothy Lamour and Fred MacMurray (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1941-50.) Although Sing You Sinners is a film about three singing brothers and their mother, And the Angels Sing features three singing sisters and their father. ...

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The working title of this film was The Unholy Beebes. According to a HR news item, Don Ameche and Mickey Rooney were initially cast in the film, however, Ameche was replaced by Fred MacMurray, and Rooney was replaced by Donald O'Connor. Contemporary and modern reviewers alike note the film's importance in Bing Crosby's career as his dramatic role was a departure from earlier roles and demonstrated a broader acting range. The film was previewed at Del Mar racetrack, where Crosby often raced his own horses. According to the pressbook, Crosby's horse "Ligaroti" appears in the film as the winning horse in the sweepstakes. The pressbook also notes that the racetrack scenes were shot on location at Santa Anita racetrack in Arcadia, CA. Sing You Sinners was considered one of the best English-language films of 1938 by the National Board of Review Awards. Paramount remade Sing You Sinners in 1944 as And the Angels Sing, directed by George Marshall and starring Dorothy Lamour and Fred MacMurray (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1941-50.) Although Sing You Sinners is a film about three singing brothers and their mother, And the Angels Sing features three singing sisters and their father.

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GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
PERSONAL & COMPANY INDEX CREDITS
HISTORY CREDITS
CREDIT TYPE
CREDIT
General (mod):
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
9 Aug 1938
p. 7
Hollywood Reporter
14 Mar 1938
p. 3
Hollywood Reporter
4 Apr 1938
pp. 20-21
Hollywood Reporter
16 May 1938
pp. 12-13
Hollywood Reporter
6 Aug 1938
p. 3
Life
5 Sep 1938
pp. 52-55
Motion Picture Daily
9 Aug 1938
p. 6
Motion Picture Herald
13 Aug 1938
p. 59
New York Times
18 Aug 1938
p. 23
Variety
17 Aug 1938
p. 22
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Wesley Ruggles Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
WRITER
Story and scr
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITORS
Alma Ruth Macrorie
Ed
SET DECORATOR
Int dec
MUSIC
Mus dir
Vocal arr
SOUND
Sd rec
Sd rec
SOURCES
SONGS
"Don't Let That Moon Get Away," "I've Got a Pocketful of Dreams," "Laugh and Call It Love" and "Where Is Central Park?" words and music by John Burke and James V. Monaco; "Small Fry," words and music by Frank Loesser and Hoagy Carmichael.
SONGWRITERS/COMPOSERS
+
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
The Unholy Beebes
Release Date:
2 September 1938
Production Date:
late Mar--mid May 1938
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Paramount Pictures, Inc.
2 September 1938
LP8265
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
85 or 88
Length(in feet):
8,102
Length(in reels):
9
Country:
United States
PCA No:
4256
Passed by NBR:
Yes
SYNOPSIS

David Beebe repeatedly postpones his marriage to Martha Randall because his brother Joe is unemployed and cannot support the rest of the Beebe family--Mother Beebe and their little brother Mike. After Joe loses his new job at the local gas station for trading gas for rummage articles, he travels to California, wins money at the racetrack, uses the money to purchase a swap shop, and then trades the store for racehorse "Uncle Gus." Joe sends news of his success back home, and Mother and Mike travel out to stay with him. David and Martha later travel to California only to discover the rest of their family living on the brink of poverty because of Joe's laziness. David again puts off his wedding and sends Martha back home. Mother forces her sons to use their musical training and work as a singing trio at a nightclub to earn their keep. Young Mike, meanwhile, is scheduled to ride a big race as the jockey for Uncle Gus, and is bribed into losing the race by competitor Harry Ringmer. When Mike tells Joe about his arrangement with Ringmer, Joe reassures him and advises him to race to win. Mike wins the race, and Ringmer beats up both him and Joe. David and Mother come to their rescue, and the fight continues until Ringmer and his thug give up. Now with enough money to pay their debts, David announces he is quitting singing, but Mother insists that they all keep steady jobs or she will leave the family. Her sons agree to her demand, and David sends Martha a telegram asking her back to "marry ...

More Less

David Beebe repeatedly postpones his marriage to Martha Randall because his brother Joe is unemployed and cannot support the rest of the Beebe family--Mother Beebe and their little brother Mike. After Joe loses his new job at the local gas station for trading gas for rummage articles, he travels to California, wins money at the racetrack, uses the money to purchase a swap shop, and then trades the store for racehorse "Uncle Gus." Joe sends news of his success back home, and Mother and Mike travel out to stay with him. David and Martha later travel to California only to discover the rest of their family living on the brink of poverty because of Joe's laziness. David again puts off his wedding and sends Martha back home. Mother forces her sons to use their musical training and work as a singing trio at a nightclub to earn their keep. Young Mike, meanwhile, is scheduled to ride a big race as the jockey for Uncle Gus, and is bribed into losing the race by competitor Harry Ringmer. When Mike tells Joe about his arrangement with Ringmer, Joe reassures him and advises him to race to win. Mike wins the race, and Ringmer beats up both him and Joe. David and Mother come to their rescue, and the fight continues until Ringmer and his thug give up. Now with enough money to pay their debts, David announces he is quitting singing, but Mother insists that they all keep steady jobs or she will leave the family. Her sons agree to her demand, and David sends Martha a telegram asking her back to "marry the four of them." In the end, Martha and Mother watch as the boys perform.

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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.