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Monkey Business (1931) Poster

Trivia

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According to Robert Osborne, during the first day of shooting, it's reported that The Marx Brothers showed up in each other's clothing and impersonated each other.
Early in the movie, The Marx Brothers - playing stowaways concealed in barrels - harmonize unseen while performing the popular song 'Sweet Adeline,' which is traditionally performed with four singers. It is debated whether Harpo Marx' singing voice was used in the soundtrack. There is also an unconfirmed rumor that he provided the puppet master's voice in the Punch and Judy show.
The first The Marx Brothers film written especially for the screen rather than the stage.
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In the movie, Groucho Marx tells Thelma Todd, "You're a woman who's been getting nothing but dirty breaks. Well, we can clean and tighten your brakes, but you'll have to stay in the garage all night." Four years after making this movie, Thelma Todd died under mysterious circumstances. She was found dead in her car inside her backyard garage with the engine running. It is not known if her death from carbon monoxide poisoning was accidental, a murder, or suicide.
'The Marx Brothers' characters have no names in this movie. They are referred to only as "the stowaways". In the credits, only their acting names appear.
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The first The Marx Brothers film to be produced in Hollywood.
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Groucho Marx' line "Gary Cooper is much taller than me." becomes "Charlton Heston is much taller than me." in the Spanish dubbed version. Heston was only 7 years old when "Monkey Business" was released.
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One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since.
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The Irish government banned the film thinking it might encourage "anarchic tendencies". The ban was only lifted in 2000.
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According to TCM's Robert Osborne, a sequel was planned for this film that would continue the mafia theme. During the development of that film, aviator Charles Lindbergh's son was kidnapped and killed by what was believed to be gang members. The writers quickly shifted gears and based the Brothers' next film very loosely on The Marx Brothers' earlier stage show Fun in Hi Skule, which would evolve into Horse Feathers (1932).
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The first The Marx Brothers film not to feature Margaret Dumont. It was felt she was not "sexy" enough for the part.
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The film is listed as not having a Production Code certificate because when it was originally released, during the so-called "pre-Code" era, it didn't need one. But the DVD in the Universal Home Video "The Marx Brothers' Silver Screen Collection" contains a Code certificate number 2720 R, indicating that their source for the film was a "post-Code" reissue.
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Al Shean (true name: Schoenberg), listed above as "contributing writer (uncredited)," was The Marx Brothers' maternal uncle. He was also a star in his own right, having participated in vaudeville and on Broadway as half of the comedy team Gallagher and Shean.
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Subtitles incorrectly refer to a tune Groucho dances to as the "Popeye Theme". Popeye did not make the move from comic strip to film till 1933. The music is a generic sailors hornpipe.
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According to Robert Osborne, a sequel was planned for this film that would continue the mafia theme. During the development of that film, aviator Charles Lindbergh's son was kidnapped and killed by what was believed to be gang members. The writers quickly shifted gears and based the Brothers' next film very loosely on The Marx Brothers' earlier stage show Fun in Hi Skule, which would evolve into Horse Feathers (1932).
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Cameo 

Sam Marx: The Marx Brothers' father is sitting on the crates behind them after they're carried off the ship.

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Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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