The original musical comedy opened on Broadway, New York City, New York, USA on 3 March 1930 and closed 3 January 1931 after 355 performances. The opening night cast included Bert Lahr, who originated his movie role in the play, and Kate Smith. George White, who produced the play, received credit in the film by virtue of his contract with MGM.
There was considerable pressure from the Hays Office to remove the examination scene from the movie, but MGM held firm, claiming they paid $100,000 for the rights to the play just for that particular scene. Eventually some aspects of that scene was removed when some exhibitors rejected the film. The TCM print contains the scene, but it may be the abbreviated version.
Some sources list "Happy Landing" of the original play as the song used in the first production number, but it was the new song "I'll Make a Happy Landing" which was used. None of the original songs in the Broadway play was used in the film.
When Kate Smith played the female lead in the original Broadway production, her character's name was Pansy Sparks. When Charlotte Greenwood took over the role in the film, the character became Pansy Potts.