7.6/10
9,459
117 user 71 critic

42nd Street (1933)

Passed | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | 11 March 1933 (USA)
Trailer
2:18 | Trailer

On TV

Airs Sun. Feb. 24, 5:30 AM on TCM

ON DISC
A director puts on what may be his last Broadway show and, at the last moment, a naive newcomer has to replace the star.

Director:

Lloyd Bacon

Writers:

Rian James (screen play), James Seymour (screen play) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 win. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A wealthy composer rescues unemployed Broadway performers with a new play.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Stars: Warren William, Joan Blondell, Aline MacMahon
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Chester Kent struggles against time, romance, and a rival's spy to produce spectacular live "prologues" for movie houses.

Director: Lloyd Bacon
Stars: James Cagney, Joan Blondell, Ruby Keeler
Top Hat (1935)
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An American dancer comes to Britain and falls for a model whom he initially annoyed, but she mistakes him for his goofy producer.

Director: Mark Sandrich
Stars: Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Edward Everett Horton
Dames (1934)
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A multimillionaire decides to boycott "filthy" forms of entertainment such as Broadway shows.

Directors: Ray Enright, Busby Berkeley
Stars: Joan Blondell, Dick Powell, Ruby Keeler
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An American woman travels to England to seek a divorce from her absentee husband, where she meets - and falls for - a dashing performer.

Director: Mark Sandrich
Stars: Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Alice Brady
Swing Time (1936)
Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A performer and gambler travels to New York City to raise the $25,000 he needs to marry his fiancée, only to become entangled with a beautiful aspiring dancer.

Director: George Stevens
Stars: Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers, Victor Moore
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A Parisian tailor finds himself posing as a baron in order to collect a sizeable bill from an aristocrat, only to fall in love with an aloof young princess.

Director: Rouben Mamoulian
Stars: Maurice Chevalier, Jeanette MacDonald, Charles Ruggles
Certificate: Passed Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

Wrongly convicted James Allen serves in the intolerable conditions of a southern chain gang, which later comes back to haunt him.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy
Stars: Paul Muni, Glenda Farrell, Helen Vinson
Adventure | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A loose woman rediscovers a former lover during a dangerous train ride to Shanghai.

Director: Josef von Sternberg
Stars: Marlene Dietrich, Clive Brook, Anna May Wong
Comedy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Romantic antics abound among the guests at a luxury hotel, including a stage director, an eccentric millionaire, and the daughter of a financial backer.

Director: Busby Berkeley
Stars: Dick Powell, Adolphe Menjou, Gloria Stuart
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A pretentiously artistic director is hired for a new Broadway musical and changes it beyond recognition.

Director: Vincente Minnelli
Stars: Fred Astaire, Cyd Charisse, Oscar Levant
Certificate: Passed Comedy | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In the Gay Nineties, a seductive nightclub singer contends with several suitors, including a jealous escaped convict and a handsome temperance league member.

Director: Lowell Sherman
Stars: Mae West, Cary Grant, Owen Moore
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Warner Baxter ... Julian Marsh
Bebe Daniels ... Dorothy Brock
George Brent ... Pat Denning
Ruby Keeler ... Peggy Sawyer
Guy Kibbee ... Abner Dillon
Una Merkel ... Lorraine Fleming
Ginger Rogers ... Ann Lowell
Ned Sparks ... Thomas Barry
Dick Powell ... Billy Lawler
Allen Jenkins ... Mac Elroy
Edward J. Nugent ... Terry
Robert McWade ... Jones
George E. Stone ... Andy Lee
Edit

Storyline

Renowned Broadway producer/director Julian Marsh is hired to put together a new musical revue. It's being financed by Abner Dillon to provide a starring vehicle for his girlfriend, songstress Dorothy Brock. Marsh, who is quite ill, is a difficult task master working long hours and continually pushing the cast to do better. When Brock breaks her ankle one of the chorus girls, Peggy Sawyer, gets her big chance to be the star. She also finds romance along the way. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

OK. Say, Jones and Barry are doin' a show! - That's great. Jones and Barry are doin' a show.


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

11 March 1933 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Forty-Second Street See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$439,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$2,300,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

An article about this film's place in film history, "Movie Musicals Turn a Corner at '42nd Street'" by J. B. Kaufman appeared in the May 1994 issue of "American Cinematographer." See more »

Goofs

The "42nd Street" finale features full size cars as well as buildings. In order to present this the stage would have had to be at least 60 feet deep and over 100 feet wide. This would be impossible in a real theater. See more »

Quotes

Julian Marsh: All right, now, everybody... quiet, and listen to me. Tomorrow morning, we're gonna start a show. We're gonna rehearse for five weeks, and we're gonna open on scheduled time, and I MEAN scheduled time. You're gonna work and sweat, and work some more. You're gonna work days, and you're gonna work nights, and you're gonna work BETWEEN time when I think you need it. You're gonna dance until your feet fall off, till you're not able to stand up any longer, BUT five weeks from now, we're going to ...
See more »

Alternate Versions

A digitally restored and colorized version was recently released. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Movie Movie (1978) See more »

Soundtracks

Shuffle Off to Buffalo
(1932) (uncredited)
Lyrics by Al Dubin
Music by Harry Warren
Sung and Danced by Ruby Keeler and Clarence Nordstrom
Also sung by Ginger Rogers, Una Merkel, and Chorus
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

A snappy classic
28 February 1999 | by otterSee all my reviews

One of the best of the backstage musicals, it's very realistic for a Hollywood musical, in a gritty, fast-paced kind of way. Ruby Keeler is an utterly appealing ingenue, so fresh-faced and adorable that you don't care if she can't sing, dance, or act.

It's been so often imitated that a synopsis might seem like a collection of cliches, but since they were fresh ideas when the film was made they seem as original as they were at the time. It's all sincere and lively, and a lot of fun to watch. Fabulous musical numbers, too, classic Busby Berkeley (but my favorite is the rehearsal punctuated by mistakes and "You've got the busiest hands" from the chorus).


3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 117 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

IMDb Freedive: Watch Movies and TV Series for Free

Watch Hollywood hits and TV favorites for free with IMDb Freedive. Start streaming on IMDb and Fire TV devices today!

Start watching



Recently Viewed