The stage play on which the film was based, "Outside Looking In", was much admired by Charles Chaplin, who saw it several times. On one such occasion his guest was Louise Brooks, who many years later would play the main role in the film version.
Thanks to a few lines of dialog being added to the music/special effects track (similar to Warners' The Jazz Singer (1927)), this was Paramount's first feature with spoken words. The studio's first all-talking feature, Interference (1928), would be released at the end of 1928. Wallace Beery's bawdy song as he walks down the street was shot post-production and became Paramount's first-ever dialogue. Neither director William A. Wellman nor producer David O. Selznick liked the idea.