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Mr. Skeffington (1944)

Approved | | Drama, Romance | 12 August 1944 (USA)
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Popular and beautiful Fanny Trellis is forced into a loveless marriage with an older man, Jewish banker Job Skeffington, in order to save her beloved brother Trippy from an embezzlement charge, and predictable complications result.

Director:

Vincent Sherman

Writers:

Julius J. Epstein (screen play), Philip G. Epstein (screen play) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bette Davis ... Fanny Trellis Skeffington
Claude Rains ... Job Skeffington
Walter Abel ... George Trellis
George Coulouris ... Doctor Byles
Richard Waring ... Trippy Trellis
Marjorie Riordan Marjorie Riordan ... Fanny, Jr.
Robert Shayne ... MacMahon
John Alexander ... Jim Conderley
Jerome Cowan ... Edward Morrison
Johnny Mitchell ... Johnny Mitchell
Dorothy Peterson ... Manby
Peter Whitney ... Chester Forbish
Bill Kennedy ... Bill Thatcher
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ann Codee ... French Modiste (scenes deleted)
Antonio Filauri Antonio Filauri ... Modiste (scenes deleted)
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Storyline

It's 1914 in New York City. Adult brother and sister Trippy Trellis and Fanny Trellis, whose parents are now deceased, were once wealthy, but Trippy squandered away the family fortune, about which no one knows except their cousin George Trellis and their many creditors. Fanny and Trippy still put on the façade to the outside world that they have money. The beautiful Fanny can have any man that she wants to marry, but she sets her sights on Job Skeffington, the son of Russian-Jewish immigrants. Job's wealth was self-made in finance. They met as Trippy was once employed by Job in his brokerage house. Fanny and Job, who is now aware of the Trellis' financial straits, ultimately do get married, much to the consternation of Fanny's many suitors, but most specifically to Trippy, who knows the reason why Fanny married him. Job also realizes that Fanny does not love him, but is unaware of the real reason she agreed to marry him. After their marriage, Fanny's suitors are still around with more... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

BETTE DAVIS at her very greatest See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

12 August 1944 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Das Leben der Mrs. Skeffington See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

This film's earliest documented telecasts took place in Los Angeles Tuesday 9 October 1956 on KNXT (Channel 2) and in Albuquerque Thursday 11 October 1956 on KOAT (Channel 7); it first aired in Bloomington IN Friday 9 November 1956 on WTTV (Channel 4), in both Boston and Cincinnati Saturday 8 December 1956 on WBZ (Channel 4) and on WKRC (Channel 12), and in San Francisco Sunday 6 January 1957 on KPIX (Channel 5), where it was mercilessly cut to 72 minutes in order to fit into a 90 minute time slot heavily laced with commercial interruptions. See more »

Goofs

When Job trips and falls, he drops his cane down by his feet. When he retrieves the cane, it is six paces forward to pick it up. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Jim Conderley: Good evening, Soames!
Soames: Good evening, Mr. Conderley.
Jim Conderley: Afraid I'm a little early, aren't I?
Soames: Miss Trellis wasn't expecting anyone till 8 o'clock.
Jim Conderley: Well, I thought I'd come a little ahead of time; have a little chat with Miss Fanny.
Soames: Sorry, sir; she's still dressing.
Jim Conderley: All right, I'll wait.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Some prints of "Mr. Skeffington" run 127 minutes. The film was cut from 146 minutes immediately after its world premiere run in New York City in 1944, and the cut footage was considered "lost" until the 1988 home video release from MGM/UA restored the film to its original length. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Living Out Loud (1998) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm Looking Over a Four-Leaf Clover
(1927) (uncredited)
Music by Harry M. Woods
Played on the piano at the speakeasy
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
. . . And for Bette Davis' 8th Oscar Nomination, Fanny Skeffington
18 October 2007 | by semioticzSee all my reviews

It's the 1920's, in New York, when Fanny Trellis (Bette Davis) marries into a loveless marriage--to one of many gentlemen friends of hers, Job Skeffington (Claude Rains), an older, well-off, Jewish banker. Why would the most beautiful, seductive & most sought after lady in town do such a thing? To rescue her little brother, Trippy (Richard Waring), from an embezzlement trial. Yes, for Mr. Skeffington's money; but, not for herself.

While she's married, the flamboyant & beautiful seducer of many men suitors is proposed to over & over again. There's no secrecy about it as, one by one, man after man leaves Fanny's upstairs bedroom frustrated & dejected after proposing to the married woman & being repeatedly denied. As Mr. Skeffington shows each of them in & out of his (& her) home's front door, sometimes even drinking with them while they wait in line to propose to his gorgeous wife, he shows remarkable restraint, the utmost patience & total self-confidence. This is Claude Rains, the consummate gentleman.

Because of Fanny's seductive beauty power & the scenes with male suitors who keep calling upon her after she's married, the movie is a melo-comedy. Subtly so. However, towards the end, as age & illness become central elements in the Skeffington's marriage, you'll learn why it's also a fabulous romance perfectly portrayed by Davis & Rains: a tear-jerker. Rains is one of the few actors from whom Davis couldn't steal the show! He held his own in "Now, Voyager" (1942) as Dr. Jaquith, the instrumental clever psychiatrist who brought the immortalized Charlotte Vale (Bette Davis) out of her (s)mothered shell. As Mr. Skeffington, Claude Rains holds his own lead quite admirably well & for it was nominated to receive the 1945 Oscar as Best Supporting Actor. Davis & Rains make quite a marvelous on screen pair. Both of their voices, accents & speech patterns are classy & mesmerizing in this movie.


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