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Second Wife (1930)

Passed | | Drama | 9 February 1930 (USA)
A man's pregnant second wife gets upset when he decides to go overseas to his young son, who may be dying of typhoid fever.


Russell Mack


Hugh Herbert (screen play), Bert Glennon (screen play) | 1 more credit »


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Complete credited cast:
Conrad Nagel ... Walter Fairchild
Lila Lee ... Florence Wendell Fairchild
Mary Carr ... Mrs. Rhodes - Housekeeper
Hugh Huntley Hugh Huntley ... Gilbert Gaylord
Freddie Burke Frederick Freddie Burke Frederick ... Walter Fairchild Junior


Florence Wendell decides to marry Walter Fairchild despite warnings from her friend, Gilbert Gaylord, that the spectre of his dead first wife will constantly interfere with their married life. Florence loves Walter, but insists upon moving to a new apartment and refurnishing it to minimize that interference. They marry and live happily, especially when Walter sends his 7-year-old son, Junior, to a school in Switzerland so they can start their marriage by being alone. But some time later Walter gets a cablegram telling him that Junior is deathly ill from typhoid fever, and asking him to come quickly. He decides to do so without consulting Florence, who is now pregnant and expecting her baby any moment. She tells him she won't have him when he comes back, because he did not consider her feelings. The boy survives, and he and Walter return, but Florence considers her marriage over and decides to leave with Gilbert even though she doesn't love him. Gilbert, however, doesn't want her new ... Written by Arthur Hausner <genart@volcano.net>

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Radio Pictures Frank Answer to the Age-old Problem of Second Love. (Print Ad- Syracuse Journal, ((Syracuse NY)) 15 March 1930) See more »




Passed | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Junior is sent off to school in Vevey, Switzerland. See more »


Version of Second Wife (1936) See more »


Wiegenlied (Brahms' Lullaby), Op. 49, No. 4
(1868) (uncredited)
Music and Lyrics by Johannes Brahms
Sung in German and English by Lila Lee
Played as background music
See more »

User Reviews

Very enjoyable for what it is.
31 July 2019 | by gcube1942See all my reviews

First, I agree with the review by Art-22 in all respects. In addition, this is exactly what I prefer in an early Talkie, that is lots of talking. This film, and so many of its contemporaries, is essentially a stage play enacted for the cameras. As such it is a valuable record of Broadway at that time. Absent a time machine, this is our only way to experience something very wonderful, that is the American stage in the 1920s and 1930s. And let us give credit to Miss Lee and Mr. Nagel, both of whom were medium sized stars of the Silent Cinema. Here they are making the transition to a whole new world with bravery and sheer talent. This is not one of those films where the camera was nailed to the floor. Some actual camera movement and notice that some of the shots show a simulated ceiling above the set. Radio Pictures put some money into this production, especially the Art Moderne second apartment. Well worth watching if you like that era, otherwise deathly boring and silly!

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Release Date:

9 February 1930 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Photophone System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
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