This may be the only Hollywood musical that bears no music credits. Musical director Ray Heindorf had his name removed because of a new ruling that the term "musical director" was to be replaced with the credit "Music supervised and conducted by..."
While making this film, Frank Sinatra took an almost immediate dislike to Doris Day's husband, Martin Melcher, thought that Melcher was "using" her to get ahead in the movie business and tried to convince Day of that fact. When Day refused to listen to Sinatra's advice, he had Melcher banned from the set. After Melcher's death in 1968, it was discovered that he had squandered all the money Day had earned during her 20-year film career.
Ethel Barrymore was very old and feeble during the filming and spent most of her time between takes in a wheelchair. She was not crippled but was getting frail and had to conserve her energy for her onscreen performance. Frank Sinatra threw a surprise birthday party for her on the set, a gesture that clearly moved and touched her.
Doris Day wrote that Frank Sinatra disliked Day's husband/manager Martin Melcher so much that he threatened to walk off this film unless Melcher was banned from the Warner Brothers lot during production. Jack L. Warner issued this order to all studio security guards so that production would not be shut down.
There was no soundtrack album because Doris Day and Frank Sinatra were under contract to different record labels in 1954. Columbia issued a 10-inch LP featuring six new recordings by Miss Day and reissues of two Sinatra cuts from the previous decade: "Someone to Watch Over Me" (music by George Gershwin, lyrics by Ira Gershwin), recorded in 1945, and "One for My Baby (And One More for the Road)" (music by Harold Arlen, lyrics by Johnny Mercer), recorded in 1947. The Columbia compilation found its way to number 15 on the "Billboard" pop albums chart. On a Capitol 45 extended-play release, Mr. Sinatra sang renditions of four songs from this movie. Mr. Sinatra's single of the title tune (music by Johnny Richards, lyrics by Carolyn Leigh) already had been a second-place finisher in "Billboard" by the time of the picture's opening, and this Sinatra trademark song became a million seller.
Doris Day wrote that this film started with Charles Lang as Director of Photography. Frank Sinatra did not like to rehearse and was accustomed to doing scenes in one take, and he complained that the meticulous Lang was taking far too long to set up camera shots and wanted to do repeated takes. Sinatra walked off the film and threatened to quit unless Lang was fired. Lang was replaced by Ted D. McCord.
At some point in their careers, four members of this cast won an Oscar for best supporting performance: Ethel Barrymore ("None But the Lonely Heart" 1944); Frank Sinatra ("From Here to Eternity" 1953); Dorothy Malone ("Written on the Wind" 1957); Gig Young ("They Shoot Horses Don't They?" 1969).
This was the last film Doris Day made as an exclusive contract player at Warner Brothers. It was co-produced by Warner Brothers and Arwin Productions, the company formed by Day and her manager/husband Martin Melcher. This was the first film for Arwin Productions.
The trivia item below may give away important plot points.
This film is a remake of Four Daughters (1938) in which the character played by John Garfield dies. Frank Sinatra plays the character in this film, but Sinatra refused to accept the role unless the film was rewritten so that the character lives. Doris Day wrote that Sinatra put it on a take-me-or-leave-me basis. After many hectic conferences, the producers caved in and changed the ending to satisfy Sinatra.