7.8/10
8,543
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:
...
...
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Prof. Gurkakoff (as Oscar Homolka)
...
...
Prof. Magenbruch
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Prof. Robinson
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Prof. Quintana
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Prof. Oddly
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Prof. Peagram
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Garbage Man
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Joe Lilac
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Duke Pastrami
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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:

The New Year's red-hot comedy! 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

The portrait of Miss Totten's father is the same portrait shown in the Barbara Stanwyck-Fred MacMurray Christmas film Remember the Night (1940). 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

Joe Lilac: Having some trouble, Mr. D.A.?
District Attorney: Oh, don't worry, Joe. And don't underestimate this office or the State of New York. I've got some boys that can find a needle in a haystack.
Joe Lilac: Oh, that's a cinch. All you have to do is get a horse to eat the hey and then x-ray the horse.
See more »

Connections

Remade as A Song Is Born (1948) See more »

Soundtracks

Drum Boogie
(1941) (uncredited)
(Published as "Drumboogie")
Music and Lyrics by Roy Eldridge and Gene Krupa
Performed by Gene Krupa and His Orchestra
Sung by Barbara Stanwyck (dubbed by Martha Tilton)
Reprised by her and audience members
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
One of Barbara Stanwyck's best performances in a very funny film and role
24 January 2001 | by (Tucson AZ) – See all my reviews

This film (remade in 1948 as a musical with Danny Kaye and Virginia Mayo with the title, "A Song Is Born") is a hilarious vehicle for Barbara Stanwyck, who was nominated for Best Actress for her performance here. Anyone who has only seen Ms. Stanwyck in film noir such as "Double Indemnity" or in television's Big Valley should watch this or "Christmas In Connecticut" to see a fine comedic talent at work. She blows Gary Cooper off the screen! Most Recommended.


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