Never Say Die (1939)

80 mins | Comedy | 14 April 1939

Director:

Elliott Nugent

Producer:

Paul Jones

Cinematographer:

Leo Tover

Editor:

James Smith

Production Designers:

Hans Dreier, Ernst Fegte

Production Company:

Paramount Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

According to a 1937 news item in HR, Jack Benny and Franciska Gaal were originally to have appeared in this film with Arthur Hornblow, Jr. producing and Raoul Walsh directing. Douglas MacLean productions filmed the Post-Collie play in 1924 with Douglas MacLean and Lillian Rich in the starring roles and directed by George J. Crone (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30; F2.3803). ...

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According to a 1937 news item in HR, Jack Benny and Franciska Gaal were originally to have appeared in this film with Arthur Hornblow, Jr. producing and Raoul Walsh directing. Douglas MacLean productions filmed the Post-Collie play in 1924 with Douglas MacLean and Lillian Rich in the starring roles and directed by George J. Crone (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30; F2.3803).

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SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
1 Mar 1939
p. 3
Film Daily
7 Mar 1939
p. 13
Hollywood Reporter
6 Dec 1937
p. 5
Hollywood Reporter
22 Oct 1938
pp. 6-7
Hollywood Reporter
3 Dec 1938
pp. 4-5
Hollywood Reporter
2 Mar 1939
p. 3
Motion Picture Daily
6 Mar 1939
p. 10
Motion Picture Herald
31 Dec 1938
p. 41
Motion Picture Herald
11 Mar 1939
p. 40
New York Times
9 Mar 1939
p. 18
Variety
8 Mar 1939
p. 18
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Prod
Exec prod
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATOR
Int dec
COSTUMES
Cost
MUSIC
Mus dir
SOUND
Phil G. Wisdom
Sd rec
Sd rec
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec photog eff
SOURCES
LITERARY
Based on the play Never Say Die by W. H. Post and William Collier, Sr. (New York, 12 Nov 1912).
LITERARY SOURCE AUTHORS
SONGS
"The Tra La La and the Oom Pah Pah," words and music by Ralph Rainger and Leo Robin.
SONGWRITER/COMPOSER
DETAILS
Release Date:
14 April 1939
Premiere Information:
New York opening: week of 9 Mar 1939
Production Date:
early Oct--early Dec 1938
Copyright Info
Claimant
Date
Copyright Number
Paramount Pictures, Inc.
14 April 1939
LP8805
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
80
Length(in feet):
7,354
Length(in reels):
9
Country:
United States
PCA No:
4826
Passed by NBR:
Yes
SYNOPSIS

John Kidley, a multi-millionaire hypochondriac, spends what he believes are his dying days at the health spa at Bad Gaswasser, slowly digesting himself to death because a chemist has gotten his stomach acidity report mixed up with that of a dog. Kidley barely escapes marriage to the murderous adventuress Juno Markoff when he meets Mickey Hawkins, a Texas heiress whose father has promised her hand to the fortune hunting Prince Smirnow. When Kidley learns that Mickey is eating her heart out over Henry Munch, a bus driver from back home, he suggests that the answer to both their problems is to marry each other. Complications arise when Henry appears to accompany the newlyweds on their honeymoon, and Juno and Smirnow, blaming Kidley for cheating them out of their fortunes, set out to claim their rightful due. After Kidley eliminates Smirnow in a duel, Henry shows up engaged to Juno, and Kidley begins a new, healthy life with ...

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John Kidley, a multi-millionaire hypochondriac, spends what he believes are his dying days at the health spa at Bad Gaswasser, slowly digesting himself to death because a chemist has gotten his stomach acidity report mixed up with that of a dog. Kidley barely escapes marriage to the murderous adventuress Juno Markoff when he meets Mickey Hawkins, a Texas heiress whose father has promised her hand to the fortune hunting Prince Smirnow. When Kidley learns that Mickey is eating her heart out over Henry Munch, a bus driver from back home, he suggests that the answer to both their problems is to marry each other. Complications arise when Henry appears to accompany the newlyweds on their honeymoon, and Juno and Smirnow, blaming Kidley for cheating them out of their fortunes, set out to claim their rightful due. After Kidley eliminates Smirnow in a duel, Henry shows up engaged to Juno, and Kidley begins a new, healthy life with Mickey.

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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.