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Pan-Americana (1945)

Approved | | Musical | 27 July 1945 (Sweden)
The American journalist Jo Anne Benson works for a popular travel magazine. Jo Anne is looking for interesting stories and she travels, accompanied by the dashing photographer Dan Jordan, ... See full summary »


John H. Auer


John H. Auer (story), Lawrence Kimble | 1 more credit »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Phillip Terry ... Dan Jordan
Audrey Long ... Jo Anne Benson
Robert Benchley ... Charlie Corker
Eve Arden ... Helen 'Hoppy' Hopkins
Ernest Truex ... Uncle Rudy
Marc Cramer ... Gerold 'Jerry' Bruce
Lita Baron ... Lupita (as Isabelita)
Rosario Rosario ... Specialty Act (as Rosario and Antonio)
Antonio ... Specialty Act (as Rosario and Antonio)
Miguelito Valdés Miguelito Valdés ... Vocalist
Harold Liebman Harold Liebman ... Specialty Act (as Harold and Lola)
Lola Liebman Lola Liebman ... Specialty Act (as Harold and Lola)
Louise Burnette Louise Burnette ... Specialty
Chinita ... Specialty (as Chinita Marin)
Chuy Castillion Chuy Castillion ... Specialty


The American journalist Jo Anne Benson works for a popular travel magazine. Jo Anne is looking for interesting stories and she travels, accompanied by the dashing photographer Dan Jordan, to South America. Jo Anne hopes to meet her fiancé Charlie Corker, who lives in South America. It appears however, that Dan is in love with Jo Anne too. Complications will follow. Written by Robert

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


That HAPPY-GO-LATIN MUSICAL (original print ad - mostly caps)




Approved | See all certifications »






Release Date:

27 July 1945 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Panamericana See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


No taboleiro de bahiana
Written by Ary Barroso
English Lyrics by Mort Greene
See more »

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User Reviews

Rare Hollywood View of TRUE Latin Legends...!
30 April 2009 | by impsruleSee all my reviews

As a music presenter and a Latin-music radio host of 20 years, I was compelled to correct a couple of misstatements in previous postings about the musical artists featured in this film. While "Pan-Americana" is not exactly "An American in Paris" (...or even Manhattan), viewers should be more cognizant of what they're actually seeing and hearing.

In the post titled "Just Doesn't Cut It", the writer commented: "The contrived plot is a boy-meets-girl story, interrupted by musical performances of Latin American artists, some of which were Carmen Miranda wannabees, and none of which were memorable or even particularly good." Um... amazingly inaccurate! If only for his presence alone, Miguelito Valdes is one of the LEGENDARY vocalists and band leaders of the Latin-American popular/tropical music genre. You could think of him as a combination of two notable U.S. artists: r&b legend Jackie Wilson (from a stylistic standpoint), and crooner Tony Bennett (as far as his 'stature' within the Latin pop music genre). So... to It was actually Mr. Valdes who popularized the song "Babalu" throughout Latin-America and the U.S. in the late 1930's. Likely because of Mr. Valdes obvious African blood, he was denied the opportunity to perform it in the Broadway show "Too Many Girls." The role ultimately was given to white-Cuban actor Desi Arnaz, a more 'traditionally handsome' man (to 1940's North American eyes) who parlayed the Broadway success into an MGM contract. While Desi Arnaz was himself a charismatic performer (a decent actor and visionary television producer), he had nowhere near the vocal presence of Miguelito Valdes (Arnaz himself would have laughed at the mere notion of a comparison...).

Sprinkled throughout the film are also rare appearances by folks like the legendary Brazilian composer and band leader Nestor Amaral - the musician who accompanied Carmen Miranda to the U.S. in 1940(!). Antonio and Rosario performed to great acclaim internationally, and performed in a number of Hollywood musicals. After their breakup, their careers continued with success. Antonio would eventually become the Director of the Nacional Ballet de Espana! Chuy Reyes, who led the 'house' Latin band at Hollywood's glamorous Mocambo for years.

The point is, while they may not be major "cross-over" names like Xavier Cugat, this film is an important document of some very influential Hispanic performers. To 'dismiss' them as cut-rate is simply wrong.

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