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Desk Set (1957)

Approved | | Comedy, Romance | 2 August 1957 (West Germany)
Two extremely strong personalities clash over the computerization of a television network's research department.

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Writers:

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

Complete credited cast:
...
...
...
Mike Cutler
...
...
Sylvia Blair
...
Ruthie Saylor
Neva Patterson ...
Miss Warriner
...
Smithers
Nicholas Joy ...
Mr. Azae
...
Alice
...
Cathy
Ida Moore ...
Old Lady
Rachel Stephens ...
Receptionist
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Storyline

The mysterious man hanging about at the research department of a big TV network proves to be engineer Richard Sumner, who's been ordered to keep his real purpose secret: computerizing the office. Department head Bunny Watson, who knows everything, needs no computer to unmask Richard. The resulting battle of wits and witty dialogue pits Bunny's fear of losing her job against her dawning attraction to Richard. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Make the office a wonderful place to love in!

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

2 August 1957 (West Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Cosas de mujeres  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The sound effects created for EMARAC were re-used in numerous movies and TV series, notably Fantastic Voyage (1966). See more »

Goofs

Early in the film, Joan Blondell says that Ty Cobb played his entire career with the Detroit Tigers. In fact, his last two years were with the Philadelphia Athletics. See more »

Quotes

Bunny Watson: Just for kicks. You don't have to answer it if you don't want to. I mean, don't dwell on the question, but I warn you there's a trick in it: If six Chinamen get off a train at Las Vegas, and two of them are found floating face down in a goldfish bowl, and the only thing they can find to identify them are two telephone numbers - one, Plaza Oh-Oh-Oh-Oh-Oh, and the other, Columbus Oh-1492 - what time did the train get to Palm Springs?
Richard Sumner: Nine o'clock.
Bunny Watson: Now, would you mind telling me how you happened ...
[...]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits: "The filmmakers gratefully acknowledge the cooperation and assistance of the International Business Machines Corporation." See more »

Connections

Featured in Speechless: R-A-Y-C-- RAY-CATION (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
(uncredited)
Music by Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy
Lyrics by Charles Wesley
Sung by a chorus during the shot of the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree
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User Reviews

 
Trivial Pursuit with Emirac
1 May 2005 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Desk Set was the next to last teaming of Tracy and Hepburn and the first one away from MGM. It does have a different look to the product they did at MGM. Still good, but different. Probably because this was done in Cinemascope and Technicolor.

Hard to believe that Cinemascope would be used on a film essentially set indoors and on one set, the set being Hepburn's office. But that was to show the immense size of Emirac the giant computer being installed there which Katharine and her staff think is going to replace them.

Desk Set had been on Broadway two year ago and had a respectable run. It starred Shirley Booth in Katharine Hepburn's part and the rest of the cast were not names by any means. I'm sure Spencer Tracy's role had to be built up from the stage version.

Even so, the film is essentially Hepburn's. As usual in their films she has a rival to Tracy. In the past that part was played by such people as Melvyn Douglas, David Wayne, William Ching, and now Gig Young. It seemed like every movie comedy in the late 50s and early 60s had either Young or Tony Randall as the defeated rival role. Young gives his patented performance here.

A running gag throughout the film are the calls handled by Hepburn's staff at the broadcast network for inane information. Like someone up in the corporate headquarters is playing trivial pursuit.

Also look for good performances by Joan Blondell, Sue Randall, and Dina Merrill as Hepburn's staff and Neva Patterson as Emirac's installer and keeper.

A good addition to the Tracy-Hepburn pantheon.


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