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It Should Happen to You (1954)

Approved | | Comedy, Romance | March 1954 (USA)
Gladys Glover has just lost her modelling job when she meets filmmaker Pete Sheppard shooting a documentary in Central Park. For Pete it's love at first sight, but Gladys has her mind on ... See full summary »



(story and screen play)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Evan Adams III
Brod Clinton
Connie Gilchrist ...
Mrs. Riker
Walter Klavun ...
Bert Piazza
Robert Grau
Guest Panelist
Ilka Chase ...
Guest Panelist
Guest Panelist
Guest Panelist


Gladys Glover has just lost her modelling job when she meets filmmaker Pete Sheppard shooting a documentary in Central Park. For Pete it's love at first sight, but Gladys has her mind on other things -- like making a name for herself. Through a fluke of advertising she winds up with her name plastered over 10 billboards throughout city. Suddenly all of New York is clamoring for Gladys Glover without knowing why and playboy Evan Adams III is making a play for Gladys that even Pete knows will be hard to beat. Written by A.L.Beneteau <albl@inforamp.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


In 'Born Yesterday' I got two mink coats - this time I get everything!


Comedy | Romance


Approved | See all certifications »




Release Date:

March 1954 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Name for Herself  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


A perfect example of George Cukor's approach to acting was demonstrated to Jack Lemmon during a restaurant scene where Pete and Gladys argue. Cukor recalled, "They rehearsed it and did it very well, but I said, "I don't believe it, I don't believe one damn thing. Jack, what do you do when you get angry?" He said, "I get chills and cramps, I get sick to my stomach, but can't use that." "Oh," I said, "do that!" So in the height of fury he suddenly clutches his stomach, and it makes all the difference." See more »


Around ten minutes into the movie, Pete asks Gladys her home address. He writes it on a card. She says something like, "1065 West 145th St., Apt. 9", but Pete puts pencil to card and then starts putting it away before she finishes telling him the address. See more »


Gladys Glover: Well... I think... if they're big enough, they're old enough.
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Crazy Credits

Introducing 'Jack Lemmon' See more »


Referenced in The Best Years: It Should Happen to You (2007) See more »


Let's Fall in Love
(1933) (uncredited)
Words by Ted Koehler
Music by Harold Arlen
Performed by Judy Holliday and Jack Lemmon
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The Immortalization of Gladys Glover...and introducing Jack Lemmon
12 January 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Judy Holliday was very lucky that she and Garson Kanin worked together so frequently. He had written the Broadway play BORN YESTERDAY that made her a stage star. He wrote the screenplay for her first major film, ADAM'S RIB, with his wife Ruth Gordon. Aided immeasurably by the directing of George Cukor, their success record continued in 1954 with IT SHOULD HAPPEN TO YOU. While BORN YESTERDAY dealt with political corruption, and ADAM'S RIB with the equality of the sexes in the law (in the extreme case of the use of the so-called "unwritten law"), IT SHOULD HAPPEN TO YOU is about the nature of fame and notoriety in modern society.

Gladys Glover (Judy) gets the idea of renting a large billboard near New York City's Columbus Circle, and having her photograph put on it. She's not afraid of doing such a nutty idea - she is a professional model. But her billboard would be advertising just her - not a product or company. The billboard has traditionally been used as the central ad-board for a soap corporation, owned by aristocratic and handsome Peter Lawford. He proceeds to try to romance Judy to get her to give up her lease of the board (which will end in a few months). But the huge degree of notice the board brings to Judy turns her life around. Although she has no message for the public, the public embraces her.

The one active critic she meets is a good looking young documentary maker, who can't see what she is gaining by this. It is not that Judy needs fame - she seems quite level headed. Moreover, the young man is growing jealous at the attentions showed by Lawford to her. He's a really nice young fellow (who would appear in another film with Judy shortly afterward). His name was Jack Lemmon. Usually people thinking of Lemmon's long career recall MR. ROBERTS as his first role. His performance as Ensign Pulver did win an Oscar, but he had made about three movies before that film, and his first role is here.

Michael Shea is also in the film, as a critic who first dismisses Judy as a fiction, like "Kilroy", but subsequently becomes an evil genius to her - becoming her overly forceful agent. And Judy does have to go through some real soul searching here as she determines whether notoriety and fame is worth the trouble it brings.

The film is funnier than this description may suggest. It ranks behind THE SOLID GOLD CADILLAC and BORN YESTERDAY as her best comic performance, completing an interesting trilogy commentary on society in the U.S. at mid-century.

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