5 user

Behind the Eight Ball (1942)

The members of a summer theater group get mixed up with spies and murder.


Edward F. Cline


Stanley Roberts (original story "Off the Beaten Path"), Stanley Roberts (screenplay) | 1 more credit »




Cast overview:
Al Ritz ... Al Jester
Jimmy Ritz ... Jimmy Jester
Harry Ritz ... Harry Jester
Carol Bruce ... Joan Barry
Dick Foran ... Bill Edwards
Grace McDonald ... Babs
Johnny Downs ... Danny
William Demarest ... McKenzie
Richard Davies ... Clay Martin
Russell Hicks ... Harry B. Kemp
Vinton Hayworth ... Bobby Leonard (as Jack Arnold)
Sonny Dunham Sonny Dunham ... Orchestra Leader (as Sonny Durham and His Orchestra)


The shooting and murder of two guest stars at the Shady Ridge Summer Theatre, operated by Joan Barry, threatens to close the musical "Fun For All." To bolster the show, Joan induces Bill Edwards, who shares joint ownership with her, of the farm the theatre is located on, and Sheriff McKenzie, to hire the Jolly Jesters. They steal the show and, along the way, uncover a spy ring and a bullet-shooting clarinet. Written by Les Adams <lomghorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


You'll be gay again! Swing and sway again!...with these laugh-creatin', music-makin', merry maniacs! See more »


Approved | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Working title: "Off the Beaten Track" See more »


[When The Jolly Jesters learn that the performers they are replacing were murdered during the previous night's performance they bolt town]
Jolly Jester: Imagine them calling the show "Fun for All".
Jolly Jester: I'm glad we got out of there before they called it "Three Men in a Hearse".
See more »


Bravest of the Brave
Written by Gene de Paul and Don Raye
See more »

User Reviews

The Ritz Brothers are allowed to mostly dominate Behind the Eight Ball
12 July 2019 | by tavmSee all my reviews

Previously when they were at 20th Century-Fox, the Ritz Brothers were in support of such stars as Alice Faye, Don Ameche, and Sonja Henie. When they switched to Universal, they were usually the only stars in their pictures as they are here. So they get to perform many of their funny songs and dances as well as some funny one-liners. Despite them being the stars, however, there are other singers and dancers as well as a big band combo here. There's also a murder mystery here but that gets solved pretty quickly considering this is only an hour in length. So on that note, I say give Behind the Eight Ball a look.

0 of 0 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 5 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.






Release Date:

4 December 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Off the Beaten Track See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed