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Naughty But Nice (1939)

Approved | | Comedy, Musical | 1 July 1939 (USA)
Professor Hardwick teaches at Winfield College and detests the new swing music that is the craze. He has written a rhapsody which he takes to New York to be published. Staying with his Aunt... See full summary »


Ray Enright


Richard Macaulay (screenplay), Jerry Wald (screenplay)




Cast overview, first billed only:
Ann Sheridan ... Zelda Manion
Dick Powell ... Professor Donald 'Don' Hardwick
Gale Page ... Linda McKay
Helen Broderick ... Aunt Martha Hogan
Ronald Reagan ... Ed 'Eddie' Clark
Allen Jenkins ... Joe Dirk
Zasu Pitts ... Aunt Penelope Hardwick
Maxie Rosenbloom ... Killer (as Maxie Rosenblum)
Jerry Colonna ... Allie Gray
Luis Alberni ... Stanislaus Pysinski
Vera Lewis ... Aunt Annabella Hardwick
Elizabeth Dunne Elizabeth Dunne ... Aunt Henrietta Hardwick
William B. Davidson ... Samuel 'Sam' 'Simsy' Hudson - Music Publisher (as Bill Davidson)
Granville Bates ... Judge Kennith B. Walters, Superior Court
Halliwell Hobbes ... Dean Burton, Winfield College


Professor Hardwick teaches at Winfield College and detests the new swing music that is the craze. He has written a rhapsody which he takes to New York to be published. Staying with his Aunt Martha, he is surrounded by swing and after a few drinks, he is photographed hanging on the chandelier. He finds that he can only sell his rhapsody to Eddie and Miss McKay puts lyrics to it. It is a big swing sensation and the partnership of Hardwick and McKay crank out the hits until Zelda breaks up the team. Zelda wants to sing the hot songs and have Hudson, the Home of the Hits, publish the music. Written by Tony Fontana <tony.fontana@spacebbs.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The "Oomph" Girl's Greatest Tri"Oomph"


Comedy | Musical


Approved | See all certifications »






Release Date:

1 July 1939 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Professor Steps Out See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


This film's earliest documented telecast took place in Tucson Monday 24 September 1956 on KDWI (Channel 9); it first aired in Albuquerque Saturday 6 October 1956 on KOAT (Channel 7), in Phoenix Tuesday 23 October 1956 on KVOS (Channel 12), in Boston Friday 26 October 1956 on WBZ (Channel 4), in Salt Lake City Tuesday 12 February 1957 on KUTV (Channel 2), and in Portland OR Sunday 24 March 1957 on KOIN (Channel 6). See more »


Referenced in The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit (1956) See more »


I'm Up a Tree
based on "Fröhlicher Landmann (The Merry Farmer)"
Music by Robert Schumann
Sung a cappella by Allen Jenkins
See more »

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User Reviews

Silly Little Film
25 November 2006 | by Maliejandra KaySee all my reviews

Naughty But Nice is the story of a professor of music (Dick Powell) who wants his rhapsody to be published. His innocence and lack of taste buds rope him into a contract writing popular music with a female singer (Gale Page), a style that he hates. He becomes hugely popular, and another singer (Ann Sheridan) attempts to steal his talents for herself through shady means.

It is very strange to see Powell in such a film as the character he is. He is an extreme intellectual at the expense of his charm and handsomeness. He does get to show off his beautiful voice, but it is quickly and not very memorable. Zasu Pitts, a former silent movie star, makes a favorable impression as an eccentric and funny aunt of Powell.

There are some very enjoyable parts to the film, especially the bits about the lemonade, but it is rather predictable in places and somewhat dull in others.

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