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Born to Dance (1936)

Passed  -  Musical | Comedy  -  27 November 1936 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 695 users  
Reviews: 26 user | 11 critic

Sailor Ted meets at the Lonely Hearts Club of his friend Gunny's wife, Jenny, a girl, Nora Paige, and falls in love. Nora wants to become a dancer on Broadway. Ted rescues the Pekinese of ... See full summary »



(screen play), (screen play), 3 more credits »
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Title: Born to Dance (1936)

Born to Dance (1936) on IMDb 6.8/10

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »


Cast overview, first billed only:
Nora Paige
Ted Barker
Lucy James
Una Merkel ...
Jenny Saks
Sid Silvers ...
'Gunny' Saks
'Peppy' Turner
Raymond Walburn ...
Captain Dingby
Alan Dinehart ...
'Mush' Tracy
Juanita Quigley ...
Sally Saks
Georges ...
Jalna ...
Reginald Gardiner ...
Barnett Parker ...
J. Marshall Smith ...
Member of The Foursome


Sailor Ted meets at the Lonely Hearts Club of his friend Gunny's wife, Jenny, a girl, Nora Paige, and falls in love. Nora wants to become a dancer on Broadway. Ted rescues the Pekinese of Lucy James, a Broadway star during a public relations campaign on his submarine. Lucy falls in love with Ted, and Ted is ordered by his Captain to meet her in a night club, in spite of the fact that he has a date with Nora. Nora, who lives with Jenny and her and Gunny's daughter, doesn't want to hear anything from Ted, after she spotted a picture of Ted and Lucy in the morning paper. Lucy convinces her manager Dinehart to stop the press campaign and tells him that she would leave the production, if another photo or article of her and Ted is published. Nora has become her understudy, and she begins to think her behaviour to Ted over. Suddenly she is fired after Dinehart told her to dance a number Lucy James called undanceable. But when Ted is told the whole story, he knows what to do. Written by Stephan Eichenberg <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

sailor | dance | submarine | rescue | dancer | See more »


M*G*M's successor to "THE GREAT ZIEGFELD" See more »


Musical | Comedy


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

27 November 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Born to Dance  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


According to the biography "Beyond the Rainbow", this film was at one point to have included a role for Judy Garland. See more »


Mush Tracy and Peppy Turner swap sides as Mush sings his final few phrases at the Lonely Hearts Club (just before Peppy slaps him behind the curtain). See more »


Jenny Saks: Can we visit the brig? There's a man I'd like to see in it. Uh, I mean, I want to see a man who's in it.
See more »


Rolling Home
(1936) (uncredited)
Music and Lyrics by Cole Porter
Sung by The Foursome, Sid Silvers, Buddy Ebsen, James Stewart and chorus
See more »

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User Reviews

A rollicking good time Depression Era movie
6 January 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

From the rollicking opening of the camaraderie of a returning U.S. submarine crew to the booming "Great Guns" of the movie's finale, it's easy to understand why this movie was an antidote to the Depression Era. I personally discovered Eleanor Powell for the first time in this movie. She sure knows how to dance! Jimmy Stewart, who plays a clean cut sailor in this film, shows his talent, not just as an actor but as a singer and dancer as well. A little known Sid Silvers, who plays "Gunny Saks"in this movie is a short, stocky energetic dynamo who probably deserves more recognition, also is credited for the screenplay of the movie. Another actress I discovered for the first time when I saw this movie was Virginia Bruce and she is captivating in the musical number aboard the submarine with her Pekingese companion, "Cheeky". I had recognized the name but another actress who I had little knowledge of was Frances Langford and she is natural to dance with the young boot scooting Buddy Ebson. All of the other character actors in this film are a joy to see. The no-expense-spared musical number at the end of this movie is inspiring. Out of all the movies, I own, I watch this one over and over again, especially when I'm in a good mood.

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