Local Boy Makes Good (1931)

67-69 mins | Comedy | 28 November 1931

Director:

Mervyn LeRoy

Cinematographer:

Sol Polito

Editor:

Jack Killifer

Production Designer:

Jack Okey

Production Company:

First National Pictures, Inc.
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HISTORY

The working title of the film was The Poor Nut . According to a Jun 1931 news item in FD , Walter De Leon worked on the screenplay for the film. The exact nature of his contribution is not known. Some scenes were filmed on location in Lincoln, NE. A French-language version of the film entitled L'athlète incomplet was made in the United States in 1932. In 1927, Richard Wallace directed Jack Mulhall and Jean Arthur in a First National production of the Nugents' play, entitled The Poor Nut (See ... More Less

The working title of the film was The Poor Nut . According to a Jun 1931 news item in FD , Walter De Leon worked on the screenplay for the film. The exact nature of his contribution is not known. Some scenes were filmed on location in Lincoln, NE. A French-language version of the film entitled L'athlète incomplet was made in the United States in 1932. In 1927, Richard Wallace directed Jack Mulhall and Jean Arthur in a First National production of the Nugents' play, entitled The Poor Nut (See Entry). More Less

GEOGRAPHIC LOCATIONS
SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Film Daily
7 Jun 31
p. 4.
Film Daily
17 Jul 31
p. 4.
Film Daily
20 Nov 31
p. 4.
Film Daily
29 Nov 31
p. 22.
Film Daily
10 Feb 32
p. 8.
Hollywood Reporter
22 Sep 31
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
4 Feb 32
p. 5.
International Photographer
1 Jan 32
p. 35.
Motion Picture Herald
3 Oct 31
p. 32.
New York Times
27 Nov 31
p. 29.
Variety
1 Dec 31
p. 26.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTOR
WRITERS
PHOTOGRAPHY
Photog
2d cam
2d cam
Asst cam
Asst cam
ART DIRECTOR
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
Film ed
COSTUMES
Gowns
MUSIC
Vitaphone Orch cond
SOUND
PRODUCTION MISC
Still photog
SOURCES
LITERARY
Suggested by the play The Poor Nut by J.C. Nugent and Elliott Nugent (New York, 27 Apr 1925).
DETAILS
Alternate Title:
The Poor Nut
Release Date:
28 November 1931
Copyright Claimant:
First National Pictures, Inc.
Copyright Date:
27 October 1931
Copyright Number:
LP2594
Physical Properties:
Sound
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
67-69
Length(in reels):
7
Country:
United States
Language:
English
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

Ohio university student John Miller is too involved with his botanical experiments to participate in college life. He is not too busy, however, to develop a crush on Julia Winters, a beautiful student at a rival college. He writes her love letters in which he pretends to be a great athlete and top fraternity man, but has no intention of sending them. By accident, the chambermaid picks up one of them and drops it in the mail. Meanwhile, student librarian Marjorie Blake starts work at the same bookstore where John is employed. As they are both shy, they strike up a friendship. When John receives a letter from Julia announcing her imminent arrival on campus, he begs Marjorie for advice. Even though she is in love with John, she counsels him to try and become what he has pretended to be. To this end, John shows up at the track to practice javelin. He is terrible and one of his wild throws almost hits a runner, who chases him off the track. To everyone's surprise, John outruns the fastest runner on the team as he escapes. The coach tries to call John back to the track, but thinking he will be punished, John does not turn back. Later, he contemplates suicide. When Julia arrives at the bookstore looking for John, Marjorie, who is an old school friend, pretends that John is someone else. Soon Julia, who is a psychology student, learns the truth. As she is scolding him, the coach appears and asks John to run in the track meet. When he refuses, Julia decides ... +


Ohio university student John Miller is too involved with his botanical experiments to participate in college life. He is not too busy, however, to develop a crush on Julia Winters, a beautiful student at a rival college. He writes her love letters in which he pretends to be a great athlete and top fraternity man, but has no intention of sending them. By accident, the chambermaid picks up one of them and drops it in the mail. Meanwhile, student librarian Marjorie Blake starts work at the same bookstore where John is employed. As they are both shy, they strike up a friendship. When John receives a letter from Julia announcing her imminent arrival on campus, he begs Marjorie for advice. Even though she is in love with John, she counsels him to try and become what he has pretended to be. To this end, John shows up at the track to practice javelin. He is terrible and one of his wild throws almost hits a runner, who chases him off the track. To everyone's surprise, John outruns the fastest runner on the team as he escapes. The coach tries to call John back to the track, but thinking he will be punished, John does not turn back. Later, he contemplates suicide. When Julia arrives at the bookstore looking for John, Marjorie, who is an old school friend, pretends that John is someone else. Soon Julia, who is a psychology student, learns the truth. As she is scolding him, the coach appears and asks John to run in the track meet. When he refuses, Julia decides he has an inferiority complex and offers to psychoanalyze him. She finally convinces him to run in the same two races as her boyfriend, Spike Hoyt. Spike's threats frighten John so much that he loses the first race. He refuses to run in the relay until Marjorie fills him full of grain alcohol and gives him a kiss. He wins the race and by the next day, has undergone a complete personality change. Emboldened by his success, he asks Marjorie to marry him. +

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.