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Woman of the Year (1942)

Passed | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 19 January 1942 (USA)
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Rival reporters Sam and Tess fall in love and get married, only to find their relationship strained when Sam comes to resent Tess' hectic lifestyle.

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Writers:

(original screen play), (original screen play)
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Director: Elia Kazan
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Fay Bainter ...
Ellen Whitcomb
...
Minor Watson ...
...
Gladys Blake ...
Flo Peters
Dan Tobin ...
...
William Tannen ...
Ludwig Stössel ...
Dr. Lubbeck (as Ludwig Stossel)
Sara Haden ...
Matron
Edith Evanson ...
George Kezas ...
Chris
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Storyline

Tess and Sam work on the same newspaper and don't like each other very much. At least the first time, because they eventually fall in love and get married. But Tess is a very active woman and one of the most famous feminists in the country; she is even elected as "the woman of the year." Being busy all the time, she forgets how to really be a woman and Sam begins to feel neglected. Written by Chris Makrozahopoulos <makzax@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The picture of the year!

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance | Sport

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

| | | | |

Release Date:

19 January 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

La mujer del año  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One benefit of Katharine Hepburn's relationship with Spencer Tracy was that he got her to change her manner of dealing with the press. During her first years in Hollywood, she had developed a reputation for looking down upon the press and not cooperating with interviewers. In fact, MGM publicity head Howard Strickling had to call in personal favors simply to get reporters to meet with her on the set of Woman of the Year. She repaid him by meeting with reporters on time and submitting to their questions with a minimum of fuss. See more »

Goofs

In the first scene in the bar, in which all are listening to the NBC Radio program "Information, Please", the dial of the AM radio on the shelf behind the bar changes location between long shots and close-ups. It is correct in close-up, at 660kHz, one of the broadcast frequencies NBC used in New York City in the 1940s, and at 880kHz in long shots, the frequency of the New York City CBS affiliate. See more »

Quotes

Sam Craig: [on his and Tess's very short wedding ceremony] No one will ever believe we were married sober.
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Connections

Referenced in Letter from an Unknown Woman (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Anchors Aweigh
(1906) (uncredited)
Music by Charles A. Zimmerman
In the score near the end
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User Reviews

 
Seminal Tracy-Hepburn Vehicle Teeters Precariously Between Comedy and Melodrama
30 October 2006 | by (San Francisco, CA, USA) – See all my reviews

Katharine Hepburn already established the headstrong aspect of her screen persona in 1938's "Holiday" and 1940's "The Philadelphia Story", but she adds a worldly intellect and a beguiling sexual ardor that prove most fetching in her portrayal of multilingual political journalist Tess Harding in this 1942 film classic. In her first teaming with lifelong off-screen partner Spencer Tracy, she sets off palpable sparks with the normally taciturn actor, who plays sportswriter Sam Craig working at the same newspaper. Written by Ring Lardner Jr. and Michael Kanin, the plot is about the characters' whirlwind courtship from an immediate sexual attraction to an impulsive marriage, all the while struggling with each other's priorities. Needless to say, given that it's a product of its era, it becomes a matter of time before Tess bends to Sam's will but not until some intriguing observations are made about sex roles in a basically fractious relationship.

However, rather than the comic fireworks generated by their later collaboration, 1949's "Adam's Rib", this film treads in unexpectedly sentimental melodrama, especially in the episodes where Tess has to let go of a Greek orphan she wants to adopt and in the climactic scene when she tearfully recognizes her wifely responsibilities as her aunt Ellen marries her father. Still, the pair's familiar bantering occurs when Sam explains the rules of baseball to Tess and in the final feminist reversal as she fails miserably in her attempt at domesticity. George Stevens directed the film, and he displays his sure hand with actors and an acute sense of craftsmanship throughout. Intriguingly, for a Tracy-Hepburn vehicle, it feels much more like her movie than his, and consequently their rapport is not quite up to their normal standard here. The supporting characters also feel more incidental here, even though Fay Bainter shines briefly as Ellen. It's not my favorite of their films together, but it is certainly required viewing for their fans. There are no extras with the 2000 DVD.


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