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King for a Day (1934)

 -  Short | Comedy | Musical  -  30 June 1934 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 25 users  
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A talented tap dancer who can't get an audition uses his prowess at playing craps to gain ownership of a musical show, making himself the star.



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Title: King for a Day (1934)

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Complete credited cast:
Bill Green
Ernest Whitman ...
Mr. Brown
Dusty Fletcher ...
Babe Matthews ...
Muriel Rahn ...
Hattie Noel ...
The Bride - Wedding Number


Mr. Brown refuses to allow tap dancer Bill Green to audition for his vaudeville show, "Brown's Black Orchids." Green knows that Brown has a weakness for crap games and challenges him. Green and Brown keep rolling the dice until the only thing Brown has left to offer is his show. After one last roll of the dice, the show is renamed "Green's Black Orchids", with Green as a featured performer. Other black singers and dancers also perform. Written by David Glagovsky <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Short | Comedy | Musical






Release Date:

30 June 1934 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Broadway Brevities (1933-1934 season) #28: King for a Day  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Vitaphone reels #1687-1688 See more »


Down by the Old Bayou
Composer undetermined
Sung off-screen during the rehearsal at the beginning
See more »

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User Reviews

See it for Robinson and the tap dancing
4 September 2014 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Admittedly to me the story was somewhat disposable and took too long to get going and the Minstrel Man song and routine are a little uninspired and one of the least memorable parts of King for a Day. King for a Day is shot in beautiful black and white however, the music puts you in a good mood due to its infectiousness- particularly Smiles and Old Folks at Home-, and the choreography is witty and elegant. Some of the rehearsal stuff is amusing and the performances are solid enough, but Bill "Bojangles" Robinson and his tap dancing are what make King for a Day. Robinson has a really charming presence which makes him a likable performer and his character easy to root for, even better than when he was partnered with Shirley Temple. And his tap dancing is incredible, always precise yet with a simple elegance and with not a flat or heavy foot move. It's not "athletic" as such nor did it really need to be. Overall, a very nice short film that is worth seeing primarily for Robinson and the tap dancing because while not everything is entirely smooth sailing they work tremendously. 8/10 Bethany Cox

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