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42nd Street (1933)

Unrated | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | 11 March 1933 (USA)
A director puts on what may be his last Broadway show and, at the last moment, a naive newcomer has to replace the star.



(screen play), (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win. See more awards »


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Complete credited cast:


Renowned Broadway producer/director Julian Marsh is hired to put together a new musical revue. It's being financed by Abner Dillon to provide a starring vehicle for his girlfriend, songstress Dorothy Brock. Marsh, who is quite ill, is a difficult task master working long hours and continually pushing the cast to do better. When Brock breaks her ankle one of the chorus girls, Peggy Sawyer, gets her big chance to be the star. She also finds romance along the way. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


OK. Say, Jones and Barry are doin' a show! - That's great. Jones and Barry are doin' a show.


Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

11 March 1933 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Forty-Second Street  »


Box Office


$439,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


After the "42nd Street" number was completed, Busby Berkeley was promoted from weekly contract status and was given a term contract by the studio. See more »


In the opening scene, the New Yorker magazine being read has a cover that wasn't used until 1939. See more »


Ann Lowell: [to chorus girl] It must have been hard on your mother, not having any children.
See more »


Featured in Harry Warren: America's Foremost Composer (1933) See more »


Young and Healthy
(1932) (uncredited)
Lyrics by Al Dubin
Music by Harry Warren
Sung by Dick Powell and chorus girls
See more »

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User Reviews

Depression-era Gem
21 December 2001 | by See all my reviews

This is one fun movie if you like singing, dancing and adore the whole atmosphere of the early 30's. A back stage story that sets the standard for all those "unknown becomes overnight star" films. The weakest part of it all is Ruby Keeler and I apologize in advance to all of her fans and there are many. She was an Irish Step Dancer, which does not come across very well in film. Step dancers concentrate on their feet only and upper body movement is not a consideration. This makes the dancer appear as heavy footed and clumsy. Plus she wasn't a very good actress and didn't sing very well either. But she was as cute as a button with those big eyes and innocent face,so all is forgiven.

Warner Baxter gives the best performance of his career as the driven director who verges on madness. Dick Powell is delightful as the juvenile; many who only know him from his later films are not aware that he had a beautiful tenor voice and made his first splash in films as a singer and light comedian. Ginger Rogers is perfect as the slightly dishonorable chorus girl with the sugar daddy and Una Merkle playing Ginger's pal is surprisingly cute. Bebe Daniels is beautiful as the star of the play and does a great rendition of "You're Getting To Be A Habit With Me"., The rest of the supporting cast is right on target...with some good support from Ned Sparks, Guy Kibbee and the ubiquitous George E. Stone.

A lot got by the censors in this film to the delight of the audience....things were tightened up the next year as the Hayes Office started cracking down. Enjoy this film...enjoy, enjoy, and enjoy!!

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