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The Jolson Story (1946)

Approved | | Biography, Drama, Music | 10 October 1946 (USA)
This movie shows the idealized career of the singer Al Jolson, a little Jewish boy who goes against the will of his father in order to be in showbiz. He becomes a star, falls in love with a... See full summary »



(adaptation), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »

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Won 2 Oscars. Another 1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Steve Martin
Tom Baron
Tamara Shayne ...
Ann Murray
Lew Dockstader
Father McGee
The Robert Mitchell Boy Choir ...
Church Choir (as Mitchell 'Boychoir')
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Henry, Orchestra Leader (as Bob Stevens)


This movie shows the idealized career of the singer Al Jolson, a little Jewish boy who goes against the will of his father in order to be in showbiz. He becomes a star, falls in love with a non-Jewish dancer, and marries her. In the end he chooses success on the stage. Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Biography | Drama | Music


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

10 October 1946 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Al Jolson  »


Box Office


$2,800,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs


| (re-release)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Interestingly, the cover picture of "The Jolson Story" soundtrack album, consisted of a drawing of two hands with white gloves, with no reference to his, at times controversial, "black face" makeup. See more »


When Jolie and his family are at the premiere of The Jazz Singer He hums along with "There's a Rainbow Round My Shoulder" this song is never sung in the Jazz Singer. See more »


Al Jolson: ...trying to make songs out of music I picked up. Music nobody ever heard of before, but the only kind I want to sing.
See more »


Referenced in The Goddess (1958) See more »


The Gold Diggers' Song (We're in the Money)
Music by Harry Warren
Played during Julie's second Hollywood montage
See more »

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User Reviews

The Greatest.
5 December 1999 | by See all my reviews

"Let me sing a funny song, with crazy words that roll along, and if my song can make you happy, I'm happy.....I'm happy....." Al Jolson sang those words of the song, ' Let me sing and I'm happy,' in the opening of The Jolson Story, words that epitomized the passion and energy in his music. The Jolson Story does a magnificent job in giving us a taste of Jolson's magic that spellbound America in the twenties and early thirties, most of his songs are in the show, April Showers, Swanee, Mammy, California Here I Come and , the incomparable, The Anniversary Song, sang as only Jolson can. And, due to some enterprising technology at the time we also hear more of his voice in the Movie that perhaps his fans did in those days with Film Studio microphones capturing and accentuating a deep resonance that is solely Jolson's. The Film doesn't attempt to factually explore his life, although we do get a chance to see some truths of the relationship with his real life wife, Ruby Keeler, who in the Movie was known as Julie Benson, played by Evelyn Keys. Interesting to note was the fact that Columbia Pictures, who released the Movie failed to give Warner Bros.the Film company responsible for giving Jolson the role in The Jazz Singer, any recognition whatsoever, presenting further evidence of the Producer's and Jolson's desire to give us some entertainment, as opposed to a lesson in history. And, entertained we are, as Larry Parks, with his unbelievable miming to Jolson's songs......apart from a cameo from Jolson singing Swanee....takes us from Vaudeville days in the twenties with all Jolson's great songs and routines, to his semi retirement in the thirties. The Jolson Story is a wonderful experience, full of songs we still sing today more than fifty years after they were released, and sung by the man most of us remember as the greatest entertainer of them all......Al Jolson.

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