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Holiday Inn (1942)

Passed | | Comedy, Drama, Music | 4 September 1942 (USA)
2:16 | Trailer
At an inn which is only open on holidays, a crooner and a hoofer vie for the affections of a beautiful up-and-coming performer.


Mark Sandrich, Robert Allen (uncredited)


Claude Binyon (screenplay), Elmer Rice (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Bing Crosby ... Jim Hardy
Fred Astaire ... Ted Hanover
Marjorie Reynolds ... Linda Mason
Virginia Dale ... Lila Dixon
Walter Abel ... Danny Reed
Louise Beavers ... Mamie
Irving Bacon ... Gus
Marek Windheim Marek Windheim ... François
James Bell ... Dunbar
John Gallaudet ... Parker
Shelby Bacon Shelby Bacon ... Vanderbilt
Joan Arnold Joan Arnold ... Daphne
Bob Crosby Orchestra Bob Crosby Orchestra ... Orchestra (as Bob Crosby's Band)
Learn more

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Lovely Linda Mason has crooner Jim Hardy head over heels, but suave stepper Ted Hanover wants her for his new dance partner after femme fatale Lila Dixon gives him the brush. Jim's supper club, Holiday Inn, is the setting for the chase by Hanover and manager Danny Reed. The music's the thing. Written by Steve Fenwick <scf@w0x0f.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


Strangely enough, "White Christmas" was not expected to be a hit song. During filming, it was thought that Bing Crosby's song, "Be Careful, It's My Heart," would be the movie's big hit. When Crosby first heard the song, he was not impressed by it. After Irving Berlin played the song on the piano during rehearsals, Crosby said in a bland voice, "I don't think we'll have any problem with that one, Irv." See more »


At one point early in the opening song & dance on stage, Crosby grabs Astaire's jacket from behind -- Astaire stops mid-motion holding his right leg up in the air. The next instant cuts to a different camera view, and Astaire is holding his *left* leg up in the air. See more »


Danny Reed: Happy New Year!
Ted Hanover: Oh, don't do that.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits prologue: DECEMBER 24 Christmas Eve See more »

Alternate Versions

The musical number "Abraham", performed by Bing Crosby, Marjorie Reynolds and the chorus, is sometimes cut from TV prints due to the use of blackface. Always included in telecasts of the film from the late 1950's through the early 1980's, it has been cut from Disney Channel telecasts of the film as well as showings on American Movie Classics after they began adding commercials to their films and editing potentially offensive sequences out. When AMC first started, it showed the film complete. See more »


Referenced in 30 Rock: Christmas Special (2008) See more »


I'll Capture Your Heart Singing
(1942) (uncredited)
Music and Lyrics by Irving Berlin
Played by the Bob Crosby Orchestra
Performed by Fred Astaire, Bing Crosby, and Virginia Dale at the nightclub
Reprised at the end with these three and Marjorie Reynolds
See more »

User Reviews

The World as it was in 1942
25 December 2000 | by Philo-19See all my reviews

It is amazing how much the world has changed in the last 58 years. 58 years? Yes!

Reviewers who fault this movie for it's patriotism and display of martial force in the midst of a "holiday" movie are obviously too young to know what the world was like when this was made. It was a time of greater innocence, greater danger and greater racial discrimination. The innocence was that of the children and the general public who could take a "standard Hollywood plot" at face value. It was a time of danger, not necessarily from within society itself (as now when crime makes streets unsafe) but from the outside with dictators killing millions while they battle for world domination. Those tanks and planes WERE freedom. Without them we would be yelling "Seig Heil" today and would not have the right to critique a simple movie. The State would have made it for you and "you Will like it"!

As the "black face" routine was showing I turned to my family and said that I was sure that despite the "classic" status of this film there were probably a lot of people wincing as they watched Bing Crosby with burnt cork all over him.

I'm sure that before he died Bing too winced a little bit at that number, but taken in the context of history it was to be expected. Al Jolson made a career of blackface and never regretted it for a minute. Most of the American population accepted that that's "the way it is". Only in the last 40 years have we learned that's NOT the way it is.

Things change and it's understandable that after almost 60 years certain depictions of society as it existed then would be out of place today. 20 years ago the movie was popular but the music was certainly out of style. With the resurgence of the "big band sound" in the last 5-10 years people are noticing that Bob Crosby and the Bobcats were participants. No doubt a certain amount of nepotism existed, but Bob Crosby was not Billy Carter to Bing's Jimmy Carter. (Anyone under 20 can now run and look up Jimmy and Billy Carter.) Bob Crosby achieved a certain amount of star status with some of his recordings. He had 4 chart topping hits and led bands for almost 50 years. He was always eclipsed by his older brother, but then Bing Crosby was THE biggest star of that time, at least among singers.

Bob's music was a Dixieland style and it lent a lightness to the big band orchestrations of Irving Berlin's songs that might have otherwise made the music ponderous, too much so for this light comedy at least.

Remember, finally that when Holiday Inn came out we were losing WW2. The Pacific was a Japanese ocean, the Atlantic was virtually controlled by German U-Boats and Allied ships were being sunk within sight of American cities. The Axis also controlled all of Europe and the Russians were being rolled back into their own homeland.

Holiday Inn was escapist entertainment from this bleak reality and it is understandable if some martial patriotism was included to hearten the home front.

For 90% of the U.S., snow at Christmas is the exception rather than the rule, but the emotions expressed by the song White Christmas hit exactly the feelings of millions of soldiers taken from their homes to fight a war. If Holiday Inn did nothing else, it gave Americans something to believe in and remember when things were at their darkest.

"May your days be merry and bright, and may all your Christmases be White."

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Release Date:

4 September 1942 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Irving Berlin's Holiday Inn See more »

Filming Locations:

Monte Rio, California, USA See more »


Box Office


$3,200,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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