IMDb > The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle (1939)
The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle
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The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle (1939) More at IMDbPro »

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Popularity: ?
Down 8% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Richard Sherman (screen play)
Oscar Hammerstein II (adaptation) ...
View company contact information for The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
29 March 1939 (USA) See more »
This is the film version of Vernon and Irene Castle, sensational ballroom dancers prior to World War I. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
1 nomination See more »
Astaire Dances Everywhere Today on TCM
 (From Alt Film Guide. 5 August 2015, 12:13 PM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Lesser Astaire and Rogers, which means still pretty good See more (32 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Fred Astaire ... Vernon Castle

Ginger Rogers ... Irene Castle

Edna May Oliver ... Maggie Sutton

Walter Brennan ... Walter
Lew Fields ... Lew Fields
Etienne Girardot ... Papa Aubel
Janet Beecher ... Mrs. Foote
Rolfe Sedan ... Emile Aubel

Leonid Kinskey ... Artist
Robert Strange ... Dr. Foote
Douglas Walton ... Student Pilot
Clarence Derwent ... Papa Louis
Sonny Lamont ... Charlie
Frances Mercer ... Claire Ford
Victor Varconi ... Grand Duke
Donald MacBride ... Hotel Manager
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Buzz Barton ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Max Barwyn ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Brooks Benedict ... Stockbroker (uncredited)
Joe Bordeaux ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Eugene Borden ... Frenchman (uncredited)
Lynton Brent ... Mechanic (uncredited)
Mary Brodel ... Irene's Girlfriend (uncredited)
Don Brodie ... Stage Manager at Benefit (uncredited)
Neal Burns ... Bit Part (uncredited)

Marge Champion ... Irene's Girlfriend (uncredited)
Tom Chatterton ... Announcer at Benefit (uncredited)
Willis Clare ... Bit Part (uncredited)

Frank Coghlan Jr. ... Boy in Montage (uncredited)
James Conaty ... Man in Montage (uncredited)
Armand Cortes ... Wardrobe Man at Benefit (uncredited)
Adrienne D'Ambricourt ... French Landlady (uncredited)

Roy D'Arcy ... Actor in 'Patria' (uncredited)
Hal K. Dawson ... Man in Balcony in Fields Audience (uncredited)
Dick Dennis ... Singer (uncredited)
Elspeth Dudgeon ... Lady Bolton (uncredited)
Dick Elliott ... Train Conductor (uncredited)

Frank Faylen ... Adjutant (uncredited)
Billy Franey ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Jack Gargan ... Soldier in Nightclub (uncredited)
Dorothy George ... Small Role (uncredited)
Jack George ... Orchestra Conductor - Paris (uncredited)
Wesley Giraud ... Newsboy at Train Station (uncredited)
Eleanor Hansen ... Irene's Girlfriend (uncredited)

Neal Hart ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Ethel Haworth ... Irene's Girlfriend (uncredited)
Russell Hicks ... Colonel (uncredited)
Leyland Hodgson ... British Sergeant (uncredited)

George Irving ... Colonel's Aide (uncredited)
Ida May Johnson ... Small Role (uncredited)
Tiny Jones ... Lady in Revolving Door (uncredited)
Jacques Lory ... French Cab Driver (uncredited)

Dorothy Lovett ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Max Lucke ... Frenchman in Hotel (uncredited)

Hugh McArthur ... Bit Part (uncredited)
David Mcdonald ... Army Pilot (uncredited)
Louis Mercier ... French Singer (uncredited)
John Meredith ... Army Pilot (uncredited)

Frank Mills ... Frank - Stage Manager at Benefit (uncredited)
Bruce Mitchell ... Movie Director (uncredited)
Edmund Mortimer ... Nightclub Extra (uncredited)
Leonard Mudie ... British Officer (uncredited)

Esther Muir ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Emmett O'Brien ... Drag Dancer at Benefit (uncredited)
Frank O'Connor ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Milton Owen ... Recruiter (uncredited)
Bill Patton ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Steve Pendleton ... Adjutant (uncredited)
Jack Perrin ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Joe Polosci ... Newsboy at Train Station (uncredited)
Fred Reinhold ... Small Role (uncredited)
Jack Richardson ... Old Man in Montage (uncredited)
Jean Sablon ... Piano Specialty (French Version of 'The Darktown Strutters ' Ball' (uncredited)
Jean Stevens ... Small Role (uncredited)
Kay Sutton ... Girl with Stockbrokers (uncredited)
Fred Sweeney ... Streetcar Conductor (uncredited)
D.H. Turner ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Ellinor Vanderveer ... Guest with the Grand Duke (uncredited)

Theodore von Eltz ... Bit Part (uncredited)
Allen Wood ... Flower Delivery Boy on Bus (uncredited)
William Worthington ... Man Reading Newspaper (uncredited)
Lillian Yarbo ... Mary - Claire's Maid (uncredited)

Directed by
H.C. Potter 
Writing credits
Richard Sherman (screen play)

Oscar Hammerstein II (adaptation) and
Dorothy Yost (adaptation)

Irene Castle (based on stories: "My Husband" and "My Memories of Vernon Castle" by)

Produced by
George Haight .... producer
Original Music by
Robert Russell Bennett (uncredited)
Cinematography by
Robert De Grasse (photographed by) (as Robert de Grasse)
Film Editing by
William Hamilton (edited by)
Art Direction by
Van Nest Polglase 
Set Decoration by
Darrell Silvera (set decorations)
Costume Design by
Edward Stevenson (uncredited)
Makeup Department
Mel Berns .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Production Management
Pandro S. Berman .... in charge of production
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Argyle Nelson .... assistant director
Art Department
Perry Ferguson .... associate art director
Sound Department
Richard Van Hessen .... recordist
Special Effects by
Vernon L. Walker .... special effects
Camera and Electrical Department
John Miehle .... still photographer (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Irene Castle .... designer: costumes worn by Miss Ginger Rogers
Walter Plunkett .... wardrobe and ensembles
Eugene Joseff .... costume jeweller (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Douglas Travers .... montage
Robert Wise .... assistant editor (uncredited)
Music Department
Victor Baravalle .... musical director
Robert Russell Bennett .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Hugo Friedhofer .... music arranger (uncredited)
Edward B. Powell .... music arranger (uncredited)
Leonid Raab .... music arranger (uncredited)
David Raksin .... music arranger (uncredited)
Roy Webb .... music arranger (uncredited)
Other crew
Irene Castle .... technical advisor
Hermes Pan .... dance director
Lawrence Grant .... flight technical advisor (uncredited)
Leigh Jason .... director: additional scenes (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
93 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Victor System)
Finland:S | Spain:7 | UK:U (passed with cuts) | USA:Approved (PCA #4853)

Did You Know?

The real Irene Castle, hired as a technical consultant on the film, wanted to have a scene in which Rogers is supposed to be coming from a horseback ride re-shot because she wasn't wearing a hat.See more »
Factual errors: Walter, the Foote's and later the Castle's servant/ factotum, was in reality a black man.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in Visions of Light (1992)See more »
Hello, Frisco, HelloSee more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
6 out of 8 people found the following review useful.
Lesser Astaire and Rogers, which means still pretty good, 16 November 2000
Author: SGriffin-6 ( from Dallas, Texas

This was the last of the Astaire and Rogers films at RKO (they would reunite at MGM for "The Barkeleys of Broadway" [1949]), and represents the studio attempting to find a new way to make the duo popular. It's hard to believe, since the pair have become legends in Hollywood musical history, but by the end of the 1930s audience interest in Astaire and Rogers seemed to be ebbing. Consequently, this film feels *very* different than the rest of their films.

This is not a story of boy meets girl/boy dances with girl/boy loses girl/boy chases and chases girl/boy gets girl and dances with her again. There aren't a ton of the whimsical oddball comic supporting players. And--steady yourself--there are very few full-out major musical numbers. There is no stunning score of songs by Irving Berlin or the Gershwins.

This is because this is a musical biography about the Astaire and Rogers of the previous generation. Hence, the duo are asked not to dance in the manner that made them popular but in the manner that made *the Castles* popular, and to music that *that* couple danced to. Often, when the two dance, we are interrupted by various plot points (ie., cutting to other characters talking instead of keeping the camera on the dancers). One of the few moments where we are able to enjoy them completely is a montage sequence showing the Castles becoming the toast of the nation (with Astaire and Rogers literally dancing across a giant map of the U.S.)

The other major musical number is a solo: Ginger Rogers singing "The Yama Yama Man." Astaire was about to end his contract at RKO, but Rogers still was under contract--so the studio is plainly more interested in trying to build up Rogers for a solo career, and the film indicates this (Rogers' solo, the emphasis on her clothes and hair, etc.) Meanwhile, the film also indicates a growing awareness of the coming war, by dealing with Vernon Castle's enlistment during World War I--one of the first times Astaire had donned a uniform for the cameras (something he would do a *lot* in musicals for the next 5 years).

All in all, it's not what one usually expects from an Astaire and Rogers film, and thus suffers in comparison to "Top Hat" or "Shall We Dance," but still retains a charm and personality nonetheless.

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