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Music in the Air (1934) More at IMDbPro »

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Release Date:
13 December 1934 (USA) See more »
Song hits to keep you singing gaily for a year! (original poster) See more »
Constantly quarreling couple decide to try the jealousy angle when a naive young couple comes along. | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
(4 articles)
Theater Review: At Encores!, It’s a Bird … It’s a Plane … It’s Superman
 (From Vulture. 21 March 2013, 2:05 PM, PDT)

Frank Thornton obituary
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Frank Thornton obituary
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User Reviews:
Swanson Puts the Music in the Air See more (6 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Gloria Swanson ... Frieda Hotzfelt
John Boles ... Bruno Mahler
Douglass Montgomery ... Karl Roder
June Lang ... Sieglinde Lessing
Al Shean ... Dr. Walter Lessing

Reginald Owen ... Ernst Weber
Joseph Cawthorn ... Hans Uppman
Hobart Bosworth ... Cornelius
Sara Haden ... Martha
Marjorie Main ... Anna
Roger Imhof ... Burgomaster
Jed Prouty ... Kirschner
Christian Rub ... Zipfelhuber
Fuzzy Knight ... Nick
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Frank Austin ... Peasant (uncredited)
Peanuts Banks ... Dancer (uncredited)
Lynn Bari ... Chorus Girl (uncredited)
Kathryn Barnes ... Dancer (uncredited)
Harry Blake ... Dancer (uncredited)
Bill Brande ... Dancer (uncredited)
Marie Burton ... Dancer (uncredited)
Bud Carpenter ... Dancer (uncredited)
George Chandler ... Assistant Stage Manager (uncredited)
Bob Crosby ... Dancer (uncredited)
Jimmie Cushman ... Dancer (uncredited)
Patsy Daly ... Dancer (uncredited)
Carlos De Valdez ... Munich Policeman (uncredited)
Dixie Dean ... Dancer (uncredited)
Ted Doner ... Dancer (uncredited)
Adolph Dorr ... Bearded Peasant (uncredited)
George Ernest ... Boy (uncredited)
Emily Fitzpatrick ... Dancer (uncredited)
Margaret Fitzpatrick ... Dancer (uncredited)
Otto Fries ... Butcher (uncredited)
Betty Jane Graham ... Marguerita (uncredited)
Henry Hanna ... Boy (uncredited)
Otis Harlan ... Baker (uncredited)
Grace Hayle ... Innkeeper's Wife (uncredited)
Betty Heistand ... Sieglinde (singing voice) (uncredited)
Herbert Heywood ... Fire Captain (uncredited)
Anne Howard ... Elsa (uncredited)
Jack Irwin ... Dancer (uncredited)
Perry Ivins ... Radio Engineer (uncredited)
Lee Kohlmar ... Priest (uncredited)
Perry Mansfield ... Dancer (uncredited)
Allen Mathews ... Dancer (uncredited)
Torben Meyer ... Pharmacist (uncredited)
Ferdinand Munier ... Innkeeper (uncredited)
James Notaro ... Dancer (uncredited)
Billy O'Brien ... Boy (uncredited)
Dave O'Brien ... Karl Roder (singing voice) (uncredited)
Joyce Oliver ... Girl (uncredited)
Jean Olmes ... Typist (uncredited)
Mollie Peck ... Dancer (uncredited)
Claire Rochelle ... Dancer (uncredited)
Wilma Roelof ... Dancer (uncredited)
Beverly Royde ... Dancer (uncredited)
Jean Seal ... Dancer (uncredited)
Katharine Snell ... Dancer (uncredited)
Rose Terrell ... Dancer (uncredited)
Loie Tilton Gaither ... Dancer (uncredited)
Frederick Vogeding ... Munich Policeman (uncredited)

Directed by
Joe May 
Writing credits
Jerome Kern (play) &
Oscar Hammerstein II (play)

Howard Irving Young (adaptation and screenplay) (as Howard Young) and
Billy Wilder (adaptation and screenplay)

William M. Conselman  contributor to dialogue (uncredited)
Joe Cunningham  contributor to dialogue (uncredited)
Robert Liebmann  uncredited
Joe May  contributor to treatment and dialogue (uncredited)
Erich Pommer  contributor to treatment and dialogue (uncredited)

Produced by
Erich Pommer .... producer
Cinematography by
Ernest Palmer 
Art Direction by
William S. Darling 
Costume Design by
René Hubert 
Sound Department
Arthur von Kirbach .... sound
Camera and Electrical Department
Don Anderson .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Otto Dyar .... still photographer (uncredited)
Bobbie Mack .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Eugene Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
Music Department
Louis De Francesco .... musical director
Hugo Friedhofer .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Franz Waxman .... music adaptor (uncredited)
Other crew
Jack Donohue .... choreographer

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
85 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
USA:Approved | USA:Passed (National Board of Review)

Did You Know?

The Broadway musical "Music in the Air" opened at the Alvin Theatre (New York City) on November 8, 1932 and ran for 342 performances.See more »
Frieda Hotzfelt:[Frieda and Bruno enter, bickering; Frieda is cradling a Pekinese dog] ... Yes it is! It's all your fault.
Bruno Mahler:What do you mean it's my fault? He started it. Pogo just bit me.
Frieda Hotzfelt:Well what if he did? You made faces at him.
Bruno Mahler:No, he made faces at me first
Frieda Hotzfelt:[petting the dog] Little precious. Did naughty Bruno frighten you? My little Pogo... my sweet darling.
Frieda Hotzfelt:[they see Karl holding an office assistant up by the ankles so she can reach the top of a cupboard] Did you see that?
Bruno Mahler:Probably raised on goats' milk!
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16 out of 18 people found the following review useful.
Swanson Puts the Music in the Air, 26 July 2005
Author: drednm from United States

Pleasant musical comedy from the stage given a big boost by terrific performances by Gloria Swanson and John Boles. They play a bickering couple who get involved with a naive younger couple from an alpine village. And all the bickering revolves around a new operetta and who will play what parts. Familiar plot and OK music. The real attraction is the funny and charming performance by Swanson in the last starring film of her 20-year reign in Hollywood. Like Indiscreet and Tonight or Never, this should have been a hit but Hollywood legend tells us that after The Trespasser, Swanson's next five talkies flopped. Why? Her films were well made and her voice was superb. She had a singing voice reminiscent of Irene Dunne's. Music in the Air was a hit on Broadway, but who knows what was cut for the film version. The stars are joined by a solid supporting cast: Douglass Montgomery (better than usual), June Lang, Al Shean, Jed Prouty, Joseph Cawthorne, Reginald Owen, Marjorie Main, Sara Haden.

Swanson and Boles (usually so stiff) have so much fun as they throw themselves into their roles it's hard to resist. The two had starred in the 1927 silent film, The Love of Sunya. Hard to understand today why Swanson's career crashed. She made one other film between this one and her great success in Sunset Boulevard in 1950.

This may be the Hollywood debuts for German director Joe May and writer Billy Wilder! So although Music in the Air was a flop in 1934, in 1949 when Wilder was searching for the perfect Norma Desmond, Swanson's name was at the top of the list. Legend has it Mae West was the first choice for the role, but Swanson got and turned in the film performance of the century.

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