Happy Go Lovely (1951)

87-88 mins | Musical, Romantic comedy | 8 July 1951

Writer:

Val Guest

Producer:

Marcel Hellman

Cinematographer:

Erwin Hillier

Editor:

Bert Bates

Production Designer:

John Howell
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HISTORY

The film opens with a brief voice-over narration, describing the city of Edinburgh. The end credits note that the picture was "distributed throughout the Eastern Hemisphere of the World by Associated British-Pathé Ltd." N. Peter Rathvon, whose company co-produced this film with Associated British Picture Corp., was a former president of RKO Radio Pictures. Rathvon also controlled Motion Picture Capital Corp., the copyright claimant. According to contemporary sources, Rathvon "set up" the film in Hollywood with British producer Marcel Hellman.
       Happy Go Lovely marked the first time that prominent Scottish character actor Gordon Jackson appeared in a U.S. co-production. The LAT reported in Dec 1949 that Hellman first considered Celeste Holm for the role of "Janet Jones." Principal photography was completed at Elstree Studios in Elstree, England, but as noted in the DV review, some location shooting took place in Edinburgh. The cost of production was approximately $840,000, according to the HCN review. The film's running time in Great Britain was ten minutes longer than the U.S. time. Modern sources note that singer Eve Boswell dubbed Vera-Ellen's singing voice for the ... More Less

The film opens with a brief voice-over narration, describing the city of Edinburgh. The end credits note that the picture was "distributed throughout the Eastern Hemisphere of the World by Associated British-Pathé Ltd." N. Peter Rathvon, whose company co-produced this film with Associated British Picture Corp., was a former president of RKO Radio Pictures. Rathvon also controlled Motion Picture Capital Corp., the copyright claimant. According to contemporary sources, Rathvon "set up" the film in Hollywood with British producer Marcel Hellman.
       Happy Go Lovely marked the first time that prominent Scottish character actor Gordon Jackson appeared in a U.S. co-production. The LAT reported in Dec 1949 that Hellman first considered Celeste Holm for the role of "Janet Jones." Principal photography was completed at Elstree Studios in Elstree, England, but as noted in the DV review, some location shooting took place in Edinburgh. The cost of production was approximately $840,000, according to the HCN review. The film's running time in Great Britain was ten minutes longer than the U.S. time. Modern sources note that singer Eve Boswell dubbed Vera-Ellen's singing voice for the picture. More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
16 Jun 1951.
---
Daily Variety
11 Jun 1951.
---
Film Daily
14 Jun 1951.
---
Hollywood Citizen-News
16 Oct 1951.
---
Hollywood Reporter
8 Jun 50
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Jun 1951.
---
Los Angeles Examiner
3 Dec 1949.
---
Los Angeles Times
8 Dec 1949.
---
Motion Picture Herald
16 Jun 1951.
---
New York Times
26 Jul 51
p. 17.
Variety
7 Mar 51
p. 18.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A Marcel Hellman Production
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dial dir
PRODUCER
WRITERS
Scr
Based on a film story by
Based on a film story by
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
COSTUMES
Cost
MUSIC
Orch under the dir of
DANCE
Ballet seq
Dance seq
MAKEUP
Makeup artist
Hair styles
PRODUCTION MISC
Prod mgr
COLOR PERSONNEL
Technicolor col consultant
SOURCES
SONGS
"MacIntosh's Wedding," music by Mischa Spoliansky, lyrics by Barbara Gordon
"One-Two-Three," music and lyrics by Mischa Spoliansky
"Would You--Could You?" music by Mischa Spoliansky, lyrics by Jack Fishman.
DETAILS
Release Date:
8 July 1951
Premiere Information:
London opening: 7 June 1951
Production Date:
at Elstree Studios, Elstree, England
Copyright Claimant:
Motion Picture Capital Corp.
Copyright Date:
24 July 1951
Copyright Number:
LP1200
Physical Properties:
Sound
RCA Sound System
Color
Technicolor
Duration(in mins):
87-88
Length(in feet):
7,861
Countries:
United Kingdom, United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
14659
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

In Edinburgh, Scotland, beleaguered American theatrical producer Jack Frost convinces his creditors to give him two more days in which to come up with some money to pay for his latest show, Frolics to You . Because of Jack's financial woes, the show's star then quits in disgust. The next morning, broke chorus girl Janet Jones hitchhikes to the theater and is picked up by a friendly chauffeur named Bates. Racing to get Janet to her rehearsal on time, Bates is stopped by the police, and Janet arrives late. Jack argues with Janet and fires her. Unknown to Janet, Bates works for greeting card magnate B. G. Bruno, the richest man in Scotland, and when Bates returns to the theater with her forgotten purse, rumors begin to circulate that Janet is Bruno's fiancée. Seeing an opportunity, Jack rehires the stunned Janet and gives her the starring role. Later at her boardinghouse, Janet is further surprised when French dressmaker Madame Amanda, who previously had been hounding her to pay an outstanding bill, presents her with some expensive clothes. Janet's roommate and fellow chorine, Mae Thompson, then berates her for not telling her about Bruno, and Janet finally deduces Jack's mistake. Sure that Bruno will never find out, Mae convinces Janet to continue the ruse until the show opens. The next day, however, Bruno, a conservative bachelor, receives Madame Amanda's bill and determines to investigate the matter himself. At the theater, Janet mistakes Bruno for Paul Tracy, a reporter who is scheduled to interview her but has not yet arrived, and bemused by the charming American, Bruno does not correct her. When Bruno questions ... +


In Edinburgh, Scotland, beleaguered American theatrical producer Jack Frost convinces his creditors to give him two more days in which to come up with some money to pay for his latest show, Frolics to You . Because of Jack's financial woes, the show's star then quits in disgust. The next morning, broke chorus girl Janet Jones hitchhikes to the theater and is picked up by a friendly chauffeur named Bates. Racing to get Janet to her rehearsal on time, Bates is stopped by the police, and Janet arrives late. Jack argues with Janet and fires her. Unknown to Janet, Bates works for greeting card magnate B. G. Bruno, the richest man in Scotland, and when Bates returns to the theater with her forgotten purse, rumors begin to circulate that Janet is Bruno's fiancée. Seeing an opportunity, Jack rehires the stunned Janet and gives her the starring role. Later at her boardinghouse, Janet is further surprised when French dressmaker Madame Amanda, who previously had been hounding her to pay an outstanding bill, presents her with some expensive clothes. Janet's roommate and fellow chorine, Mae Thompson, then berates her for not telling her about Bruno, and Janet finally deduces Jack's mistake. Sure that Bruno will never find out, Mae convinces Janet to continue the ruse until the show opens. The next day, however, Bruno, a conservative bachelor, receives Madame Amanda's bill and determines to investigate the matter himself. At the theater, Janet mistakes Bruno for Paul Tracy, a reporter who is scheduled to interview her but has not yet arrived, and bemused by the charming American, Bruno does not correct her. When Bruno questions Janet about "B. G.," she concocts some innocuous tales about her friendship with the millionaire. Attracted to Bruno, Janet agrees to meet him for lunch the next day, but asks him not to print anything about her relationship with B. G. Jack, meanwhile, bombards the real Paul with his own outrageous stories about B. G. and Janet, and Paul hints broadly about the "romance" in his next column. During lunch, Janet angrily confronts Bruno about the column, but he convinces her that someone else wrote the offending passage. Janet then notices Bates's limousine outside the theater and says a hasty goodbye. Back at his office, Bruno drills Bates about his visit to the theater, and when Bates reveals how he came to meet Janet, Bruno becomes convinced that Janet is not a gold digger. Later, Mae and Janet, who has promised Jack she will bring B. G. to dinner the next night, pore over actors' photographs, hoping to find someone to impersonate B. G. When Bruno appears with flowers for Janet, the women conclude that he would make a perfect B. G., and persuade him to play the part. Filled with Janet and Mae's tips on how to act like a proper millionaire, Bruno accompanies Janet to the fancy restaurant where Jack's creditors are anxiously waiting to meet B. G. Despite his simple ways, Bruno convinces Jack and his creditors that he is B. G. and is considering investing in the show. After dinner, Janet reveals her love to Bruno and admits that she does not know B. G. The next morning, an ecstatic Bruno writes Jack a check for 10,000 pounds. Janet sees Bruno at the theater and, deducing his mission, confesses her ruse to Jack and informs him that Bruno's check is phony. Jack demands Bruno's arrest, and when an unsuspecting Bruno appears for opening night, he is chased by the police. While Janet hides him, Bruno tries to convince her that he really is B. G., but she refuses to believe him. After Bruno finally is caught, however, one of the officers identifies him as B. G. Much relieved, Jack retrieves Bruno's check, while Bruno and Janet enjoy a long 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.