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A Farewell to Arms (1932) Poster

Trivia

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Censorship problems arose from early versions of the script, which included phases of Catherine's actual childbirth and references to labor pains, gas, her groaning and hemorrhaging. After these were removed, the MPPDA approved the script, and even issued a certificate for re-release in 1938 when the censorship rules were more strictly enforced. Still, the film was rejected in British Columbia and in Australia, where Hemingway's book was also banned.
Ruth Chatterton, Claudette Colbert and Eleanor Boardman were announced to play the role of Catherine Barkley before Helen Hayes was cast. Boardman shot some scenes, which were all reshot, but some of her footage did make it into The House That Shadows Built (1931).
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To the modern discerning eye, the use of miniatures is apparent in some scenes. If one looks very closely at the first scene, ambulance trucks driving up a winding mountain road will be noted to be well crafted miniatures.
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Some references list the play by Laurence Stallings as an uncredited source for the movie. It opened on Broadway in New York City, New York, USA on 22 September 1930 and had 24 performances. The opening night cast included Glenn Anders, Joe Downing, Jack La Rue (also in the film) and Elissa Landi.
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Though in the novel the character of Catherine Barkley is described as very tall, actress Helen Hayes is a mere five feet tall.
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Remade with Rock Hudson and Jennifer Jones, A Farewell to Arms (1957) and as a TV miniseries with George Hamilton and Vanessa Redgrave, A Farewell to Arms (1966).
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Ernest Hemingway hated this interpretation of his novel, as he felt it was overly romantic. That didn't stop him, however, from becoming lifelong friends with Gary Cooper, whom he met several years later. In fact, it was Hemingway who would insist that Cooper be cast in the lead of the adaptation of his novel For Whom the Bell Tolls (1943) 11 years later. However, the two made a point of never discussing this film.
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"The Screen Guild Theater" broadcast a 30 minute radio adaptation of the movie on April 10, 1944 with Gary Cooper reprising his film role.
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"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on April 5, 1937 with Jack La Rue reprising his film role.
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Fredric March was originally set to play the lead, but when he discovered that director John Cromwell was being replaced by Frank Borzage, he refused to do the picture. The part was then given to Gary Cooper.
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The failure of the original copyright holder to renew the film's copyright resulted in it falling into public domain, meaning that virtually anyone could duplicate and sell a VHS/DVD copy of the film. Therefore, many of the versions of this film available on the market are either severely (and usually badly) edited and/or of extremely poor quality, having been duped from second- or third-generation (or more) copies of the film.
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Helen Hayes was widely considered miscast as an English nurse.
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Tom Ricketts (as Count Greffi) is supposed to be in this film but was not seen.
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This was the first Ernest Hemingway novel to be turned into a film.
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The Production Code was in place when the film was re-released in 1938. Consequently, 12 minutes of footage had to be excised for it to meet code standards. Luckily, producer David O. Selznick had acquired an original negative, as he was so keen to buy the remake rights, so the original cut has been preserved (Selznick finally acquired the rights in 1955, making his own version two years later with Rock Hudson and Jennifer Jones).
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" A Farewell To Arms " was the third most popular movie at the U.S. box office for 1932.
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The film takes place from February to November 4, 1918.
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Helen Hayes later admitted in one of her autobiographies that she had a huge crush on Gary Cooper.
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

Theater managers were offered the film with two endings, one happy and one sad. When Ernest Hemingway got wind of this tactic he was furious, so theaters in the larger cities, where the mainly pro-Hemingway critics were based, were provided only with the downbeat ending, in accordance with the way the novel ended.
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Cinematically, 1932 was a very traumatic year for Helen Hayes. Not only did she die at the end of this film but she met a similarly tragic fate in Arrowsmith (1931) as well. Both films were nominated for the Best Film Academy Award.
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Theater-owners were given the choice, as to whether to screen the film with its originally intended sad conclusion, or to show it with the alternative happy ending. Ernest Hemingway was particularly critical of this move, as it completely undermined the inherent tragic nature of his story. (European cinemas were not offered the happier alternative.)
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