Indianapolis Speedway (1939)

80-82 or 85 mins | Drama | 5 August 1939

Full page view
HISTORY

Working titles for this film were The Roaring Road and The Devil on Wheels . Frank McHugh reprised his role from the 1932 film in this picture. The file for the film in the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library indicates that, in Dec 1938, the PCA demanded that Warner Bros. eliminate from the script "the suggestion that Joe and Lee have been living without the benefit of clergy." The PCA also noted that the script contained "too much drinking," and urged the studio to make certain that there was no suggestion that "Frankie" was nude under the covers of her bed. In addition, the studio was told that "Frankie's" costume should not be, as the script called for, "as brief as the law allows." According to a Dec 1938 LAEx article, actor Ronald Reagan was originally slated for the co-starring role opposite Pat O'Brien. The LAEx article also notes that technical advisor Arthur Klein, a race car driver, broke all Indianapolis Speedway racing records during his stint there, and that the car he raced was to be used in the film. A HR pre-production news item noted that John Payne replaced Wayne Morris in the part of "Eddie" so that Morris could go on his honeymoon. According to the MPAA/PCA file, the scene showing "Spud" dying in the car wreck and his screams were deleted from the film by censors in England and New Zealand. Indianapolis Speedway was a remake of the 1932 Warner Bros. film The Crowd Roars (see ... More Less

Working titles for this film were The Roaring Road and The Devil on Wheels . Frank McHugh reprised his role from the 1932 film in this picture. The file for the film in the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library indicates that, in Dec 1938, the PCA demanded that Warner Bros. eliminate from the script "the suggestion that Joe and Lee have been living without the benefit of clergy." The PCA also noted that the script contained "too much drinking," and urged the studio to make certain that there was no suggestion that "Frankie" was nude under the covers of her bed. In addition, the studio was told that "Frankie's" costume should not be, as the script called for, "as brief as the law allows." According to a Dec 1938 LAEx article, actor Ronald Reagan was originally slated for the co-starring role opposite Pat O'Brien. The LAEx article also notes that technical advisor Arthur Klein, a race car driver, broke all Indianapolis Speedway racing records during his stint there, and that the car he raced was to be used in the film. A HR pre-production news item noted that John Payne replaced Wayne Morris in the part of "Eddie" so that Morris could go on his honeymoon. According to the MPAA/PCA file, the scene showing "Spud" dying in the car wreck and his screams were deleted from the film by censors in England and New Zealand. Indianapolis Speedway was a remake of the 1932 Warner Bros. film The Crowd Roars (see above). More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Daily Variety
9 Oct 39
p. 3.
Film Daily
26 Jul 39
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
6 Jan 39
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
17 Jan 39
p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter
11 Feb 39
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
3 Apr 39
p. 7.
Hollywood Reporter
19 Oct 39
p. 3.
Los Angeles Examiner
30-Jan-38
---
Motion Picture Daily
18 Jul 39
p. 6.
Motion Picture Herald
4 Mar 39
p. 53.
Motion Picture Herald
22 Jul 39
pp. 52-53.
New York Times
15 Jul 39
p. 8.
Variety
19 Jul 39
p. 12.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
PRODUCTION COMPANY
PRODUCTION TEXT
A First National Picture
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Dial dir
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
Exec prod
Assoc prod
WRITERS
Story
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
PRODUCTION MISC
Tech adv
Tech adv
DETAILS
Alternate Titles:
The Devil on Wheels
The Roaring Road
Release Date:
5 August 1939
Production Date:
16 January--mid February 1939
Copyright Claimant:
Warner Bros. Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
5 August 1939
Copyright Number:
LP9013
Physical Properties:
Sound
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
80-82 or 85
Length(in reels):
10
Country:
United States
PCA No:
5083
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

World champion race car driver Joe Greer is determined to see his kid brother Eddie finish college, but Eddie wants to follow in his brother's footsteps and join the racing circuit. Eddie finally wins his brother's consent to take to the race track if he promises to study at night, but problems between the two erupt when Eddie becomes enamoured with Frankie Merrick. Convinced that Frankie is a gold digger, Joe tries to break up Eddie's romance, and on the night before the big race, the brothers argue about her. As a result, Eddie signs up to drive a rival car in the race. Angered, Joe decides to teach his brother a lesson by driving him off the track. During the competition, Joe's best friend, Spud Connors, tries to separate the brothers' cars but dies when his car crashes and bursts into flames. Guilt-stricken, Joe gives Spud's wife all his savings, leaves town and sinks into oblivion, terrified of ever returning to the track. Meanwhile, Eddie marries Frankie, ascends to the championship by winning race after race, and works on new inventions for racing car manufacturer Duncan Martin. Having reached his nadir, Joe hitchhikes to the racetrack to watch his brother compete in the Indianapolis classic. While in the lead, Eddie is injured. Joe immediately springs from the stands, hops into his brother's car and drives it to victory, thus conquering his fear of racing. At the finish line, the brothers reconcile, and Joe proposes to his sweetheart, Lee Mason, and accepts a job at Martin's car ... +


World champion race car driver Joe Greer is determined to see his kid brother Eddie finish college, but Eddie wants to follow in his brother's footsteps and join the racing circuit. Eddie finally wins his brother's consent to take to the race track if he promises to study at night, but problems between the two erupt when Eddie becomes enamoured with Frankie Merrick. Convinced that Frankie is a gold digger, Joe tries to break up Eddie's romance, and on the night before the big race, the brothers argue about her. As a result, Eddie signs up to drive a rival car in the race. Angered, Joe decides to teach his brother a lesson by driving him off the track. During the competition, Joe's best friend, Spud Connors, tries to separate the brothers' cars but dies when his car crashes and bursts into flames. Guilt-stricken, Joe gives Spud's wife all his savings, leaves town and sinks into oblivion, terrified of ever returning to the track. Meanwhile, Eddie marries Frankie, ascends to the championship by winning race after race, and works on new inventions for racing car manufacturer Duncan Martin. Having reached his nadir, Joe hitchhikes to the racetrack to watch his brother compete in the Indianapolis classic. While in the lead, Eddie is injured. Joe immediately springs from the stands, hops into his brother's car and drives it to victory, thus conquering his fear of racing. At the finish line, the brothers reconcile, and Joe proposes to his sweetheart, Lee Mason, and accepts a job at Martin's car company. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

TOP SEARCHES

CASABLANCA

During World War II, Casablanca, Morocco is a waiting point for throngs of desperate refugees fleeing Nazi-occupied Europe. Exit visas, which are necessary to leave the country, are at ... >>

CITIZEN KANE

Seventy-year-old newspaper tycoon Charles Foster Kane dies in his palatial Florida home, Xanadu, after uttering the single word “Rosebud.” While watching a newsreel summarizing the years during which Kane ... >>

REAR WINDOW

Laid up with a broken leg during the height of summer, renowned New York magazine photographer L. B. “Jeff” Jeffries enters his last week of home confinement, bored and ... >>

RAGING BULL

In 1941, at a boxing match in Cleveland, Ohio, pandemonium breaks out when Jake La Motta, an up-and-coming young boxer, loses a decision to Jimmy Reeves, suffering his first ... >>

CITY LIGHTS

At an outdoor dedication ceremony, a tramp is discovered sleeping in the arms of a statue as it is being unveiled before a crowd. He is chased into ... >>

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.