45 user 17 critic

Morning Glory (1933)

Passed | | Drama, Romance | 18 August 1933 (USA)
When a naively innocent, aspiring actress arrives on the Broadway scene, she is taken under the wing of several theater veterans who mentor her to ultimate success.


Lowell Sherman


Howard J. Green (screen play), Zoe Akins (from the play by)
Won 1 Oscar. See more awards »




Complete credited cast:
Katharine Hepburn ... Eva Lovelace
Douglas Fairbanks Jr. ... Joseph Sheridan
Adolphe Menjou ... Louis Easton
Mary Duncan ... Rita Vernon
C. Aubrey Smith ... Robert Harley Hedges
Don Alvarado ... Pepi Velez
Fred Santley Fred Santley ... Will Seymour (as Fredric Santly)
Richard Carle ... Henry Lawrence
Tyler Brooke ... Charles Van Duesen
Geneva Mitchell ... Gwendolyn Hall
Helen Ware ... Nellie Navarre


Eva Lovelace, would-be actress trying to crash the New York stage, is a wildly optimistic chatterbox full of theatrical mannerisms. Her looks, more than her talent, attract the interest of a paternal actor, a philandering producer, and an earnest playwright. Is she destined for stardom or the "casting couch"? Will she fade after the brief blooming of a "morning glory"? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Katherine HEPBURN Douglas FAIRBANKS Jr. Adolphe MENJOU in the story of a small town girl who fought hunger and despair in the drifts of Broadway, and learned the ugly word for love! (Print Ad- Albany Evening News, ((Albany NY)) 25 August 1933) See more »


Drama | Romance


Passed | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Katharine Hepburn and Douglas Fairbanks Jr. performed the balcony scene from "Romeo and Juliet" in costume, but it was not used in the picture. See more »


When a newspaper clipping is shown on screen, the Broadway impresario's name in the article is Lewis Easton. In the end credits, the character's name is Louis Easton. See more »


[first lines]
Ticket Taker: [on the telephone with an inquiring person as Eva Lovelace walks past the ticket window on her way upstairs to an acting agency] There's nothin' in front of the 14th row, madame.
Elevator Operator: [to others in an upstairs hallway as Eva and Robert Harley Hedges exit the elevator] Going down.
Will Seymour: [Eva and Robert enter Lewis Easton Productions' acting agency] Oh hello Robert, how are you?
Robert Harley Hedges: Ah, hello.
Will Seymour: A tough season isn't it?
Robert Harley Hedges: Pretty tough, yes. But I'm afraid nowadays they're all tough seasons.
Will Seymour: Yes, I guess you're ...
See more »


Version of Stage Struck (1958) See more »

User Reviews

MORNING GLORY (Lowell Sherman, 1933) ***
9 February 2014 | by Bunuel1976See all my reviews

When Katharine Hepburn first appeared on cinema screens, she was deemed a great new star, even winning an Oscar – for the film under review – almost instantly; however, before long, audiences had grown tired of her particular brand of histrionics and the actress was quickly declared "box-office poison"! She then wisely changed pace to screwball comedy with Howard Hawks' BRINGING UP BABY (1938), was subsequently handed a once-in-a-lifetime part on a silver platter (by playwright and personal friend Philip Barry, no less!) with "The Philadelphia Story" (superbly filmed by George Cukor in 1940), eventually became an institution when she teamed up (for 9 films and in real life) with Spencer Tracy, and ultimately grew into the "First Lady of Acting" – going on to win 3 more golden statuettes, a record, several years after her first! But, for what it is worth, it all started here...

Truth be told, I have never been much of a fan of Hepburn's – though I concede that she has appeared in many a fine film throughout her lengthy career. Anyway, the role she plays here fits her like a glove i.e. that of an ambitious young actress rising to the top out of pure chance and sacrificing stardom for love (indeed, the title is a trade phrase for such meteoric members of the profession). Actually, the narrative is not quite as maudlin as it appears from this plot line – and, yet, the brief 74-minute running-time does not give it much of a chance either: we are told that Hepburn seeks acting lessons from aged luminary C. Aubrey Smith (but we never see them at it) and, crucially, her crowning achievement on the stage is only represented by the enthusiastic applause of the audience and the bows she takes at the curtain call!! That said, her thespian skills are displayed in a drunken party sequence at the home of her producer (Adolphe Menjou, with whom Hepburn would be reunited for another classic about the artistic vocation i.e. STAGE DOOR {1937}), where she dutifully quotes a couple of Shakespearean perennials ("Hamlet", "Romeo And Juliet")! For the record, director Sherman had himself been a prominent actor (his most notable appearance perhaps being that of the washed-up film director in Cukor's WHAT PRICE Hollywood? {1932}) who briefly made the switch behind the camera before his untimely death in 1934.

The afore-mentioned STAGE DOOR was characterized by the bitchiness among the myriad female performers, here represented by the original temperamental (and blackmailing!) star of the production which ultimately gives understudy Hepburn her one shot at glory. The heroine (which, at a low ebb in her striving to make it on her own, is reduced to appearing in vaudeville!) is infatuated with the much older Menjou (who quashes her romantic illusions by stating that she now belongs to no man but to Broadway alone, a line which has since become a cliché in this type of film!); consequently, she overlooks the attentions of love-struck young author Douglas Fairbanks Jr. (playing a character named Joseph Sheridan!). In the film's closing moments, after finally confessing his feelings to her but ready to back down so as not to be in the way of her success, she is persuaded to make the right choice for herself (obviously, happiness) by the company's elderly personal assistant – herself a former leading light of the so-called "Great White Way" but whose single-minded pursuit of fame had rendered lonely and bitter! It must be pointed out that MORNING GLORY would be remade 25 years later by Sidney Lumet: renamed STAGE STRUCK, it was still good but inferior overall, and starred Susan Strasberg, Henry Fonda, Christopher Plummer and Herbert Marshall.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 45 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.






Release Date:

18 August 1933 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Morning Glory See more »


Box Office


$239,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed