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20 user 4 critic

Zenobia (1939)

Approved | | Comedy | 21 April 1939 (USA)
A modest country doctor in the antebellum South has to contend with his daughter's upcoming marriage and an affectionate medicine show elephant.

Director:

Gordon Douglas

Writers:

Corey Ford (screen play), Walter DeLeon (original story) (as Walter De Leon) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Oliver Hardy ... Dr. Tibbett
Harry Langdon ... Professor McCrackle
Billie Burke ... Mrs. Tibbett
Alice Brady ... Mrs. Carter
James Ellison ... Jeff Carter
Jean Parker ... Mary Tibbett
June Lang ... Virginia
Olin Howland ... Attorney Culpepper
J. Farrell MacDonald ... Judge
Stepin Fetchit ... Zero (as Step'n Fetchit)
Hattie McDaniel ... Dehlia (as Hattie McDaniels)
Philip Hurlic Philip Hurlic ... Zeke (as Phillip Hurlic)
Hobart Cavanaugh ... Mr. Dover
Clem Bevans ... Sheriff
Tommy Mack ... Butcher
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Storyline

A southern country doctor is called on by a visiting circus man to cure his sick elephant. After the doctor heals the grateful beast, the elephant becomes so attached to him that it starts to follow him everywhere. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <dbubbeo@cmp.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

What a Girl! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 April 1939 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

This Time It's Love See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Hal Roach Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (colorized)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Hal Roach Studios approached Walter Winchell about filming an introduction to the film's trailer, calling it "The first full-length feature to incorporate the principles of the Bill of Rights as a motivating force of the story". Winchell declined. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Tibbett: Oh, Zeke, where are you?
Zeke: Here I is.
Dr. Tibbett: You get the boots shined?
Zeke: Ya sah
Dr. Tibbett: Oh, that's fine. Let's put 'em on.
Zeke: Dr. Tibbett, will I ever turn white?
Dr. Tibbett: Oh, I'm afraid not, Zeke. Why?
Zeke: Well, I'm never gonna be nothin' else 'cept just what I am, only bigger?
Dr. Tibbett: Well, what's wrong with being just what you are?
Zeke: Just that all the other little boys around, they can go to parties, like the party tonight. Cause they're white. And I can't, cause I'm not.
[...]
See more »

Alternate Versions

Colorized version is cut to 65 minutes. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Of Mice and Men (1939) See more »

Soundtracks

I Dreamt I Dwelt in Marble Halls
(1843) (uncredited)
From the operetta "The Bohemian Girl"
Music by Michael William Balfe
Lyrics by Alfred Bunn
Sung by Oliver Hardy and Billie Burke with Burke on piano
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Love Pachyderm Style
4 April 2009 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

For those wondering what Oliver Hardy was doing in a film without Stan Laurel, we have to remember that Hal Roach created the team back in silent days when he had these two comedians both signed to contracts with him. Their contracts were negotiated separately unlike Abbott and Costello or the Ritz Brothers, etc. So with Ollie signed with studio again and Stan balking at terms, Hal Roach decided to pair Hardy with Harry Langdon who was trying to recapture the stardom he enjoyed in the silent era.

Ollie is a country doctor in post Civil War Mississippi who lives with wife Billie Burke and daughter Jean Parker in genteel poverty. James Ellison, late of the Hopalong Cassidy series, wants her hand in marriage, but his mother Alice Brady forbids it as Jean's parents are just not her sort.

Nevertheless Ollie and Billie try to help Jean with her romance, but Ollie gets himself entangled with traveling medicine show man Harry Langdon and his performing elephant Zenobia. When the pachyderm becomes ill, Ollie effects a cure and the beast's gratitude makes his life miserable.

Though they were advertised as a team, Langdon and Hardy are not a team really in this film, though their scenes with Zenobia are pretty funny. They're like Abbott and Costello in The Time Of Their Lives, a comedy team in two separate roles in which they only interact occasionally. Actually Burke and Brady, a couple of veteran Broadway performers, have some scenes together and they're pretty good in and of themselves.

Getting Alice Brady and Billie Burke was a casting coup of sorts for Hal Roach. Look at the rest of his cast which he got from the major studios, if he was to have a new comedy team, they would be launched properly.

Of course Stan Laurel came to terms and Langdon and Hardy were no more. But Zenobia is a film filled with gentle humor and some good comic situations.


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