My Wife's Best Friend (1952)

87 mins | Comedy | October 1952

Director:

Richard B. Sale

Writer:

Isobel Lennart

Producer:

Robert Bassler

Cinematographer:

Leo Tover

Editor:

Robert Simpson

Production Designers:

Lyle Wheeler, Mark-Lee Kirk

Production Company:

Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
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HISTORY

According to a 26 Jun 1951 LAT news item, Dale Robertson, Anne Francis and Gene Tierney were originally set to star in this film. The news item also reported that writers John Briard Harding and Isobel Lennart were ... More Less

According to a 26 Jun 1951 LAT news item, Dale Robertson, Anne Francis and Gene Tierney were originally set to star in this film. The news item also reported that writers John Briard Harding and Isobel Lennart were married. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
11 Oct 1952.
---
Daily Variety
6 Oct 52
p. 3.
Film Daily
6 Oct 52
p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter
7 Apr 52
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
2 May 52
p. 10.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Oct 52
p. 3.
Los Angeles Times
26 Jun 1951.
---
Los Angeles Times
30 Oct 1952.
---
Motion Picture Daily
6 Oct 1952.
---
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
11 Oct 52
p. 1558.
New York Times
11 Oct 52
p. 17.
The Exhibitor
8 Oct 1952.
---
Variety
8 Oct 52
p. 6.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCER
WRITERS
Based on a story by
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
Set dec
COSTUMES
Ward dir
MUSIC
Mus dir
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec photog eff
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
DETAILS
Release Date:
October 1952
Premiere Information:
New York opening: 10 October 1952
Los Angeles opening: 29 October 1952
Production Date:
7 April--early May 1952
Copyright Claimant:
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Copyright Date:
18 September 1952
Copyright Number:
LP2060
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
87
Length(in feet):
7,864
Length(in reels):
10
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
15883
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

When Virginia and George Mason leave their home in Mellford, Illinois for a second honeymoon in Hawaii, they are seen off at the airport by Ginny's family and her best friend, interior decorator Jane Richards. During the flight, the plane develops engine trouble, and the frightened Ginny begs George's forgiveness for her nagging and selfishness. George, who loves his wife despite her over-bearing manner, tries to assuage her guilt by stating that he is not perfect either. George then confesses that three years earlier, he engaged in a brief romance, although he insists that it meant nothing. When Ginny demands to know who the woman was, George reveals that it was Jane. Afraid that they are about to die, Ginny forgives George, but is cold and distant when the plane lands safely back at Mellford. George tries to finish telling Ginny that nothing serious happened with Jane, but she refuses to listen and snubs Jane when she rushes to the Masons' home to check on them. Ginny then disappears, and George goes to see her father, the Reverend Thomas Chamberlain, who listens sympathetically and suggests that Ginny has gone to see her lawyer. Ginny is indeed at the apartment of Pete Bentham, the Masons' lawyer and friend, who advises Ginny not to file for divorce and instead honor her promise to forgive George. Later, Ginny's family come to the house, and the reverend advises Ginny to rise above her pain and be as forgiving as Joan of Arc was. After imagining herself as the saint, nobly forgiving George, Ginny decides to enact her fantasy and soon drives George crazy with her annoying, insistent piety. ... +


When Virginia and George Mason leave their home in Mellford, Illinois for a second honeymoon in Hawaii, they are seen off at the airport by Ginny's family and her best friend, interior decorator Jane Richards. During the flight, the plane develops engine trouble, and the frightened Ginny begs George's forgiveness for her nagging and selfishness. George, who loves his wife despite her over-bearing manner, tries to assuage her guilt by stating that he is not perfect either. George then confesses that three years earlier, he engaged in a brief romance, although he insists that it meant nothing. When Ginny demands to know who the woman was, George reveals that it was Jane. Afraid that they are about to die, Ginny forgives George, but is cold and distant when the plane lands safely back at Mellford. George tries to finish telling Ginny that nothing serious happened with Jane, but she refuses to listen and snubs Jane when she rushes to the Masons' home to check on them. Ginny then disappears, and George goes to see her father, the Reverend Thomas Chamberlain, who listens sympathetically and suggests that Ginny has gone to see her lawyer. Ginny is indeed at the apartment of Pete Bentham, the Masons' lawyer and friend, who advises Ginny not to file for divorce and instead honor her promise to forgive George. Later, Ginny's family come to the house, and the reverend advises Ginny to rise above her pain and be as forgiving as Joan of Arc was. After imagining herself as the saint, nobly forgiving George, Ginny decides to enact her fantasy and soon drives George crazy with her annoying, insistent piety. Jane, who does not know about George's confession, is baffled by the change in Ginny's behavior, especially when Ginny "accidentally" spills hot coffee on her. Fed up, George tells Ginny that he wants a plain, ordinary wife, not a "superwoman," and Ginny fantasizes that she is a slave catering to the whims of her master, George. Later, George is at his office when Pete informs him that wealthy businessman Nicholas Reed may be willing to sell George a valuable piece of land. George wants to close the deal but does not have enough ready cash, so Pete advises him that if he exhibits a sophisticated, suave demeanor, Reed will be likely to accept his promissary note. George invites Reed and Pete home for dinner, but when the men arrive, they are shocked to find Ginny scurrying around like an overworked skivvy. Ginny's timidity around George convinces Reed that he beats his wife, and after the guests leave, George chastises Ginny for endangering the important transaction. Ginny regrets her actions but the repercussions continue the next morning, when George is questioned by banker Roger Walters about rumors concerning the solidity of his marriage. George is infuriated by the insinuations, and quarrels with Reed when he arrives to talk to Walters about George's financial status. George storms home, and while he is showering, Jane arrives and goes upstairs to borrow a pair of Ginny's stockings. A horrified George tries to rush the still-dressing Jane out of the bedroom, but Ginny arrives suddenly and accuses George of "bringing it into the home." When her accusation is explained to Jane, Jane tries to tell Ginny that nothing happened between her and George, but Ginny will not listen. Assuming that Ginny will not attend her birthday party, which is to be held that evening, Jane sarcastically comments that a number of men will miss her seductive Cleopatra-like behavior. Ginny then imagines herself as Cleopatra, walking on George's back, and declares that she will be at the party. That evening, George is bemused to see the glamorously dressed Ginny flirt outrageously with Reed, and tells Pete and Jane that it is her way of getting back at him. George worries, however, when Ginny and Reed become inseparable over the next few days, and even Ginny's father warns George that everyone in town is gossiping about her behavior. The reverend, who is henpecked by Ginny's mother, tells George that he will be "hiding out" for a while, then leaves. That night, Ginny informs George that she is going to Chicago with Reed for the weekend, and he tells her that he will not be there when she returns home. Ginny leaves anyway, but upon reaching the airport, realizes that she cannot go through with her planned affair. When she returns home, Ginny finds a farewell note from George, and terrified that he is about to commit suicide, rushes to Jane's house. Jane's caustic remarks about Ginny's careless treatment of George make Ginny realize that she really does love her husband, and she goes to McCarran's Health Farm to ask her father if he knows where George is. The reverend sneaks Ginny into the men only establishment, and there she finds George. After Ginny reveals that nothing happened between her and Reed, George tells her that on the night of his supposed affair with Jane, he got so drunk on martinis that he passed out before any romance could be consumated. Although George still worries that the thought is as bad as the deed, Ginny laughingly forgives him, and the couple seal their reconciliation with a kiss. +

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.