IMDb > Stage Door Canteen (1943)
Stage Door Canteen
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Stage Door Canteen (1943) More at IMDbPro »

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Overview

User Rating:
6.7/10   1,029 votes »
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Director:
Writer:
Delmer Daves (original screenplay)
Contact:
View company contact information for Stage Door Canteen on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
22 January 1944 (Mexico) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
"Dakota," a young soldier on a pass in New York City, visits the famed Stage Door Canteen, where famous... See more » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more »
User Reviews:
Big stars, small cameos, good film... See more (31 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Judith Anderson ... Judith Anderson
Kenny Baker ... Kenny Baker

Tallulah Bankhead ... Tallulah Bankhead

Ralph Bellamy ... Ralph Bellamy
Edgar Bergen ... Edgar Berger
Charlie McCarthy ... Charlie McCarthy

Ray Bolger ... Ray Bolger

Ina Claire ... Ina Claire
Katharine Cornell ... Katherine Cornell
Gracie Fields ... Gracie Fields
Lynn Fontanne ... Lynn Fontaine

Helen Hayes ... Helen Hayes

Katharine Hepburn ... Katharine Hepburn

Hugh Herbert ... Hugh Herbert

Jean Hersholt ... Jean Hersholt
George Jessel ... George Jessel

Gypsy Rose Lee ... Gypsy Rose Lee
Alfred Lunt ... Alfred Lunt

Harpo Marx ... Harpo Marx
Elsa Maxwell ... Elsa Maxwell
Yehudi Menuhin ... Yehudi Menuhin

Ethel Merman ... Ethel Merman

Paul Muni ... Paul Muni

Merle Oberon ... Merle Oberon

George Raft ... George Raft
Lanny Ross ... Lanny Ross

Martha Scott ... Martha Scott

Ethel Waters ... Ethel Waters

Johnny Weissmuller ... Johnny Weissmuller

Ed Wynn ... Ed Wynn
Henry Armetta ... Henry Armetta
Benny Baker ... Beny Baker
Helen Broderick ... Helen Broderick
Lloyd Corrigan ... Lloyd Corrigan

Jane Darwell ... Jane Darwell

William Demarest ... William Demarest
Virginia Field ... Virginia Field
Vinton Freedley ... Vinton
Ann Gillis ... Ann Gillis
Lucile Gleason ... Lucille Gleason (as Lucille Gleason)
Vera Gordon ... Vera Gordon
Virginia Grey ... Virginia Grey

Sam Jaffe ... Sam Jaffe

Allen Jenkins ... Allen Jenkins

Roscoe Karns ... Roscoe Karns
Tom Kennedy ... Tom Kennedy

Otto Kruger ... Otto Kruger
June Lang ... June Lang
Betty Lawford ... Betty Lawford
Bert Lytell ... Canteen Master of Ceremonies
Aline MacMahon ... Aline MacMahon
Horace McMahon ... Horace MacMahon (as Horace MacMahon)
Helen Menken ... Helen Minken
Peggy Moran ... Peggy Moran

Ralph Morgan ... Ralph Morgan

Alan Mowbray ... Alan Mowbray
Elliott Nugent ... Elliott Nugent
Patrick O'Moore ... Australian
Franklin Pangborn ... Franklin Pangborn
Helen Parrish ... Helen Parrish
Brock Pemberton ... Brock Pemberton
Selena Royle ... Selena Royle
Marion Shockley ... Lillian
Cornelia Otis Skinner ... Cornelia Otis Skinner
Ned Sparks ... Ned Sparks
Bill Stern ... Bill Stern
Arleen Whelan ... Arleen Whelan

Dame May Whitty ... May Whitty
Count Basie ... Conductor of the Count Basie Orchestra
Xavier Cugat ... Conductor of the Xavier Cugat Orchestra

Benny Goodman ... Conductor of the Benny Goodman Orchestra
Kay Kyser ... Conductor of the Kay Kyser Band
Guy Lombardo ... Conductor of the Guy Lombardo Orchestra
Freddy Martin ... Conductor of the Freddy Martin Orchestra
Cheryl Walker ... Eileen Burke
William Terry ... Dakota Smith
Marjorie Riordan ... Jean
Lon McCallister ... California Jack Gilman
Margaret Early ... Ella Sue
Sunset Carson ... Tex (as Michael Harrison)
Dorothea Kent ... Mamie - Jersey's Girl
Frederick Brady ... Jersey Wallace (as Fred Brady)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Kay Kyser Band ... Kay Kyser Band
Count Basie and His Orchestra ... Count Basie Orchestra
Benny Goodman Orchestra ... Benny Goodman Orchestra
Guy Lombardo Orchestra ... Guy Lombardo Orchestra
Freddy Martin Orchestra ... Freddy Martin Orchestra
Xavier Cugat and His Orchestra ... Xavier Cugat Orchestra
Harry Babbitt ... Kay Kyser Band Singer (uncredited)
Dave Barbour ... Musician (uncredited)
Julie Conway ... Kay Kyser Band Singer (uncredited)
Jane Cowl ... Jane Cowl (uncredited)
Helen Dumas ... Helen (uncredited)
Trudy Erwin ... Kay Kyser Band Singer (uncredited)
Dorothy Fields ... Dorothy Fields (uncredited)

Pat Flaherty ... Dubious Army Sergeant (uncredited)

Arlene Francis ... Arlene Francis (uncredited)

Mack Gray ... Waiter (uncredited)
George E. Green ... Freddy Martin Orchestra Member (uncredited)

Eddie Hall ... Soldier on Train (uncredited)
Louis Jean Heydt ... Captain Robinson (uncredited)
John James ... Don Brandt - Marine with Virginia Grey (uncredited)
Virginia Kaye ... Virgina Kaye (uncredited)
Kenner G. Kemp ... Marine (uncredited)
Jack Lambert ... Sailor Cutting In with Ina Claire (uncredited)

Gertrude Lawrence ... Gertrude Lawrence (uncredited)

Peggy Lee ... Benny Goodman Orchestra Singer (uncredited)
Jack Martin ... Kay Kyser Band Singer (uncredited)
Sully Mason ... Kay Kyser Band Singer (uncredited)
George Mathews ... Marine Sergeant with Ray Bolger (uncredited)
Marian Moore ... Marian Moore (uncredited)
Elizabeth Morgan ... Elizabeth (uncredited)
Caleb Peterson ... Johnny Jones (uncredited)
Francis Pierlot ... Minister at Jersey's Wedding (uncredited)

Ruth Roman ... Girl (uncredited)
Lina Romay ... Xavier Cugat Orchestra Singer (uncredited)
Johnny Roventini ... Johnny - Bellhop 'Living Tradmark' for Philip Morris Cigarettes (uncredited)
Mortimer Snerd ... Wooden Dummy (uncredited)
Anne G. Sterling ... Attractive Woman (uncredited)
Arthur Walsh ... Jitterbugging Soldier (uncredited)
Jesse White ... Jesse White (uncredited)
Max Williams ... Kay Kyser Band Singer (uncredited)
Matt Willis ... Sergeant on Train (uncredited)

Directed by
Frank Borzage 
 
Writing credits
Delmer Daves (original screenplay)

Produced by
Frank Borzage .... producer
Barney Briskin .... associate producer
Sol Lesser .... producer
 
Original Music by
Freddie Rich 
 
Cinematography by
Harry J. Wild (director of photography) (as Harry Wild)
 
Production Design by
Harry Horner 
 
Art Direction by
Hans Peters 
 
Set Decoration by
Clem Beauchamp (uncredited)
 
Makeup Department
Irving Berns .... makeup artist
Mel Berns .... makeup artist (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Lew Borzage .... assistant director
Virgil Hart .... assistant director
 
Art Department
Victor A. Gangelin .... interiors (as Victor Gangelin)
 
Sound Department
Hugh McDowell Jr. .... sound technician (as Hugh McDowell)
 
Casting Department
Leonard Harper .... casting (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Albert Deano .... wardrobe
 
Editorial Department
Hal C. Kern .... supervising editor (as Hal Kern)
 
Music Department
C. Bakaleinikoff .... musical director
Fletcher Henderson .... music arranger (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Radie Harris .... talent coordinator
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
132 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound System)
Certification:
Portugal:M/6 | Sweden:Btl | USA:Passed (National Board of Review) | USA:Approved (PCA #9216)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
According to the book 'The Films of World War II' by Joe Morella, Edward Z. Epstein & John Griggs, this movie " . . . was a superstar-studded tribute to the American Theater Wing, which had founded and operated the Stage Door Canteen for the purpose of entertaining servicemen in New York City. The canteen received a percentage of the film's profits so 'Stage Door Canteen' was in reality a big benefit . . . a lot of money was raised for the actual Stage Door Canteen." Moreover, in a review, Bosley Crowther at the time wrote in 'The New York Times' that "90 per cent of the profits [from this film] are to go to the support and advancement of the American Theatre Wing."See more »
Soundtrack:
Rumba RumbaSee more »

FAQ

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
24 out of 24 people found the following review useful.
Big stars, small cameos, good film..., 17 October 2002
Author: gaityr from United Kingdom

STAGE DOOR CANTEEN, of course, is set during WWII, and its main locale is the canteen of the film's title that is run and staffed by stars of the cinema and stage. The New York version of the Hollywood Canteen set up on the West Coast by Bette Davis and others, the Stage Door Canteen welcomes the boys in uniform when they're on leave, giving them a little comfort, a little entertainment, a little taste of home. Although STAGE DOOR CANTEEN really is about the big-name entertainment involved (with cameos by top-billed stars like Katharine Hepburn, Harpo Marx and Ray Bolger among others), it tries also to tell a heartwarming tale of the bravery of the boys who must fight, if necessary to the death, so that the rest of their country might live in peace. The loyal and brave Dakota (William Terry) stumbles into love with the initially selfish, haughty Eileen (Cheryl Walker); young California (Lon McAllister) keeps missing out on his first kiss with Jean (Marjorie Riordan) and Tex (Sunset Carson) wants to go back west with Ella Sue (Margaret Early) when the fighting's done. It all revolves around the idea of the boys having something--someone--to fight for overseas, someone to write home to, someone to come home to.

In that sense, the film succeeds; I was actually rather moved by the final words each boy left for his girl at the end of the film. That doesn't mean the film isn't a little saccharine though; it *has* to be--it was meant to be a morale booster during the 1940s (including, as it does, songs about shooting down Japanese planes and marching into Berlin). It rides on the strong wave of American patriotism at the time, reflecting and hoping to add to it, and even hints at an internationalism unheard of these days (the crowd cheers for Russian soldiers and carries Chinese pilots on their shoulders in tribute to their bravery). If you strip it of these time-bound scenes, however, the message and the courage remains, which is what makes STAGE DOOR CANTEEN still a film that one can enjoyably sit through not just for the glamorous star cameos. It's sweet when California keeps trying to kiss Jean and missing out (including an incredibly frustrating final attempt when someone cuts in on them when they're dancing!), and you feel just as dejected as Eileen must when she realises that Dakota *isn't* coming back this time. (Let us, for now, leave aside the fact that I can't seem to find a redeeming quality in Eileen beyond the fact that she's willing to break the canteen rules to make it up to Dakota for being mean to him at first.)

The big-name entertainment in STAGE DOOR CANTEEN really can't be faulted: there are appearances by the orchestras of Benny Goodman, Xavier Cugat and Count Basie (to name just a few!); cameos by Merle Oberon, Katharine Cornell and Alan Mowbray; and a pretty literal striptease that ends way too soon for the boys' liking by Gypsy Rose Lee. My favourite numbers would be 'We Mustn't Say Goodbye' and 'Don't Worry Island', alongside Yehudi Menuhin's beautiful rendition of 'Ave Maria' (unfortunately given under some quite terrible lighting) and the very funny opening act with Edgar Bergen and Charlie. As, essentially, the final act, Hepburn gives her few words great weight and is as striking as ever with her five minutes (tops!) of screen time.

All in all, STAGE DOOR CANTEEN is great fun to watch. It'd be even better fun if one knew all of the people making cameos in it--I could only half-guess at most of them, and I'm sure I missed many many others. A sweet, patriotic film made with a very definite purpose, and if you make allowances for that purpose, it's easy to accept the overdoing of the message, and appreciate the film for what it is... good, clean entertainment!

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