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It Happened on Fifth Avenue (1947)

Approved | | Comedy, Music, Romance | 19 April 1947 (USA)
A homeless New Yorker moves into a mansion and along the way he gathers friends to live in the house with him. Before he knows it, he is living with the actual home owners.

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(screen play), (additional dialogue) | 3 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview:
Don DeFore ...
Jim Bullock
Ann Harding ...
Mary O'Connor
...
Michael J. 'Mike' O'Connor
Victor Moore ...
Aloysius T. McKeever
...
Trudy O'Connor
...
Farrow
Edward Brophy ...
Gates Patrolman Cecil Felton
...
Whitey Temple
Dorothea Kent ...
Margie Temple
Edward Ryan ...
Hank (as Edward Ryan Jr.)
Cathy Carter ...
Alice
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Storyline

A homeless New Yorker moves into a mansion and along the way he gathers friends to live in the house with him. Before he knows it, he is living with the actual home owners.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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It's 1947's Rarest Romance! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Music | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

19 April 1947 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sucedió en la Quinta Avenida  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,700,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

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 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 1910, Victor Moore starred in George M. Cohan's "Forty Five Minutes From Broadway" in which the song "Mary Is A Grand Old Name" made it's debut. This song is used several times in the movie. See more »

Goofs

Don Defore (Jim) calls Gale Storm "Margie" in one scene instead of "cookie". She was the lead in the "My Little Margie" sit-com in the early 1950's. See more »

Quotes

Michael J. 'Mike' O'Connor: [Last Lines] Mary.
Mary O'Connor: Yes, Mike?
Michael J. 'Mike' O'Connor: Remind me to nail up the board in the back fence. He's coming through the front door next winter.
See more »

Connections

Remade as Lux Video Theatre: It Happened on Fifth Avenue (1957) See more »

Soundtracks

Auld Lang Syne
(uncredited)
Traditional
[Sung by wordless chorus as the characters are saying goodbye at the end]
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Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Sweet and enjoyable...
20 October 2009 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

In some ways, IT HAPPENED ON FIFTH AVENUE is like a reworking of the marvelous 1941 film, THE DEVIL AND MISS JONES. Both films consist of an old rich crank (in THE DEVIL it was Charles Coburn, here it is Charlie Ruggles) assuming the identity of a poor man--and finding friendships and love among the working poor. However, the set up for this film is truly bizarre and clever. It seems that hobo Victor Moore has made a career out of breaking into mansions while the owners are away and living like a king. But, in an odd twist, his solo act starts to include others--others who are homeless due to the housing shortage following WWII. Soon, there are eight living in the mansion of the second richest man in the world (Ruggles) and soon Ruggles himself pretends to be in need of a home--at the insistence of his lovely young daughter (who has fallen for one of the squatters, Don Defore). There's a heck of a lot more to the film's plot than this but I don't want to spoil the film by discussing the plot further.

If you think too much, the movie really is quite silly and hard to believe. However, it works very well--mostly because of the marvelous direction. While the film could have been played for wacky laughs (and there are many opportunities for this), the director instead chose to emphasize the humanity of the characters as well as a fundamental sweetness to them. In many cases, the laughs take a back seat to allowing this goodness to slowly come out through the course of the film. In doing this, it avoided overt laughs but instead is a very sentimental and nice film--but never cloying. Of course, the acting sure helped as well. Victor Moore was a joy to behold and this is one of his best roles (for his best, I suggest you see MAKE WAY FOR TOMORROW). Likewise, Ruggles is excellent as the rather befuddled but ultimately likable mega-millionaire. As for the rest of the cast, they were very good as well and it was nice to see Ann Harding (who had virtually retired from films since being a star in the 1930s), Don Defore ('Mr. B' from "Hazel") and Alan Hale, Jr. (in a non-goofy role that is light-years from "Gilligan's Island").


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