6.4/10
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22 user 5 critic

Something to Sing About (1937)

Approved | | Comedy, Musical | 30 September 1937 (USA)
A New York bandleader journeys to Hollywood when he is offered a contract with a studio, but he is determined to do things his way and not theirs.

Writers:

Victor Schertzinger (story), Austin Parker (screenplay)
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Cagney ... Thadeus McGillicuddy aka Terry Rooney
Evelyn Daw ... Rita Wyatt
William Frawley ... Hank Meyers
Mona Barrie ... Stephanie 'Steffie' Hajos
Gene Lockhart ... Bennett O. 'B.O.' Regan
Philip Ahn ... Ito
Marek Windheim Marek Windheim ... Mr. Farney
Dwight Frye ... Mr. Easton
Johnny Arthur ... Mr. Daviani (as John Arthur)
William B. Davidson ... Mr. Richards (as William Davidson)
Richard Tucker ... Mr. Blaine
Kathleen Lockhart ... Miss Amy Robbins
James Newill ... Jimmy - Band Member
Harry Barris ... Pinky - Band Pianist
Cully Richards Cully Richards ... Cully - Band Member
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Storyline

Popular New York band leader Terry Rooney (Cagney) is offered a lucrative film contract out in Hollywood. Rooney and his soon-to-be wife pack up and head for California. Upon arriving, they meet Mr. Regan, the head of the studio, who believes that Rooney's true lack of desire for stardom is arrogance on the band leader's part. When his first film is huge success and a hit for the studio, Regan tries to hide the truth from Rooney. Feeling a need to get away from Hollywood, Rooney takes his wife on a South Seas honeymoon cruise, only to return to the real truth of his fame. Written by SindyMac

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A Cagney You Have Never Seen! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 September 1937 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Battling Hoofer See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$900,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Zion Meyers Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Grand National Pictures head Edward L. Alperson had previously paid $25,000 for the rights to the perfect James Cagney vehicle, "Angels with Dirty Faces", and was literally begged by staff producer Edward Finney to film that property first. Inexplicably, Alperson went ahead with this film, a pet project of director Victor Schertzinger, which went way over schedule and budget, and flopped big time. Its failure broke the fledgling Grand National studio, which despite its profitable Tex Ritter series of low-budget westerns, went into bankruptcy in early 1940. See more »

Goofs

Rita is in New York when she reads of Terry's supposed relationship with Steffie on the front page of the "Express" newspaper. Meanwhile in Hollywood, Terry learns of the false rumours in exactly the same way, from the exact front page of an identical "Express" newspaper. Props used the same newspaper for both coasts. Highly unlikely. See more »

Quotes

Bennett O. 'B.O.' Regan: Hours of working, waiting, wondering! And for what? Nothing! We're no nearer to finding Terry Rooney now than when we were when we started. Why do I have to be crucified like this?
See more »

Connections

Featured in Icons of Comedy: 50 Movie Mega Pack (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Any Old Love
(uncredited)
Written by Victor Schertzinger
Sung by James Cagney and chorus ('Three Shades of Blue') in the movie he makes
See more »

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User Reviews

 
if you like 30's musicals, you'll like this one
12 March 2003 | by claudecatSee all my reviews

This little-known film is surprisingly entertaining, with lots of pre-"Singin' in the Rain" pokes at Hollywood's star machine, good songs, and a few lively dance numbers, especially the one onboard ship. James Cagney is great as usual, and the supporting cast has some fine bits of their own, especially Gene Lockhart as arrogant but ineffectual studio head "B.O." Regan. William Frawley from "I Love Lucy" gets to show a different side as a tough and efficient publicist. Unusually, the film makes a small plea for treating minorities as full-fledged people (what a concept!), though how well it succeeds in that will be up to the individual viewer. The movie also proclaims that there's nothing wrong with women band leaders--an idea still unusual today. The production design will please 30's fans: the studio's offices are a small wonder of art deco intimidation, and even the regular movie theaters have signs with beautiful typography. Odd item to watch for: the shipboard cat boxing match--they wear gloves, so no one gets hurt, but some will find it cruel. But the film overall is a fine addition to musicals of the period.


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