7.8/10
8,652
84 user 42 critic

Ball of Fire (1941)

Passed | | Comedy, Romance | 9 January 1942 (USA)
A group of professors working on a new encyclopedia encounter a mouthy nightclub singer who is wanted by the police to help bring down her mob boss lover.

Director:

Writers:

(screen play), (screen play) | 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 4 Oscars. Another 1 win. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Prof. Gurkakoff (as Oscar Homolka)
...
...
Prof. Magenbruch
...
Prof. Robinson
...
Prof. Quintana
...
Prof. Oddly
...
Prof. Peagram
...
Garbage Man
...
Joe Lilac
...
Duke Pastrami
...
Asthma Anderson
...
Miss Bragg
Mary Field ...
Miss Totten
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Storyline

Sexy, wisecracking nightclub singer Sugarpuss O'Shea is a hot tomato who needs to be kept on ice: mobster boyfriend Joe Lilac is suspected of murder and Sugarpuss' testimony could put him away. Naive Professor Bertram Potts meets Miss O'Shea while researching an article on slang and in true romantic comedy fashion the two worlds collide. When Miss O'Shea hides out with Potts and his fellow professors, everyone learns something new: the professors how to cha-cha and Potts the meaning of "yum-yum"! Written by A.L.Beneteau <albl@inforamp.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

"I LOVE HIM because he doesn't know how to kiss -- THE JERK!" See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 January 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Professor and the Burlesque Queen  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kathleen Howard was left with a fractured jaw when the punch that Barbara Stanwyck threw accidentally made contact. Stanwyck was reportedly mortified by the incident. See more »

Goofs

When the gangsters visit the professors' house, they beckon to Sugarpuss to come out by the front door. After speaking to them, she is seen from inside the house returning via the front door. But when the camera moves outside, instead of seeing her on the steps that lead to the door of the brownstone, we see her emerging into a narrow alley, and the door has changed from the large, elaborate front door to a much smaller and plainer one. See more »

Quotes

Sugarpuss O'Shea: [needing help with a stubborn zipper] You know, I had this happen one night in the middle of my act. I couldn't get a thing off. Was I embarrassed!
See more »

Connections

References A Family Affair (1937) See more »

Soundtracks

Sweet Genevieve
(1869) (uncredited)
Music by Henry Tucker
Lyrics by George Cooper
Performed a cappella by the professors
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
.....ONCE AGAIN, THE ORIGINAL RULES... ..... ...... THE RE-MAKE DOESN'T DO IT
29 September 1999 | by (NEW JERSEY, USA) – See all my reviews

A silly farce of a story that works. The elderly academians are stereotypically perfect. Gary Cooper does his "aww, shucks", naive, signature performance in a worthy role. Barbara Stanwyck is (always) "one hot mama". Great chemistry between the street smart Stanwyck character and the shy, bashful Cooper.

A later version with Danny Kaye falls flat. Instead of slang, they are researching music. Great musical cameo's, but the four star (rated 10) version is the original. I always thought Kaye's brand of humor more suited to children.

The original is funny and cute, the re-make seems like leftover pieces squeezed together to fit a pre-established mold. It lacks charm, stick with the real thing...THIS ONE!!!


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