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State Fair (1945)

The Frake family attends the annual Iowa State Fair; each member of the clan has their own reason for doing so.

Director:

Walter Lang

Writers:

Oscar Hammerstein II (screenplay), Philip Stong (from a novel by) | 2 more credits »
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ON DISC
Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Jeanne Crain ... Margy Frake
Dana Andrews ... Pat Gilbert
Dick Haymes ... Wayne Frake
Vivian Blaine ... Emily Edwards
Charles Winninger ... Abel Frake
Fay Bainter ... Melissa Frake
Donald Meek ... Hippenstahl
Frank McHugh ... McGee
Percy Kilbride ... Dave Miller
Harry Morgan ... Barker (as Henry Morgan)
Jane Nigh ... Eleanor
William Marshall ... Marty
Phil Brown ... Harry Ware
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Esmeralda Esmeralda ... The Hog
Whilwind Whilwind ... Hog
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Storyline

Farm family Frake, with discontented daughter Margy, head for the Iowa State Fair. On the first day, both Margy and brother Wayne meet attractive new flames; so does father's prize hog, Blue Boy. As the fair proceeds, so do the romances; must lovers separate when the fair closes? Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

YOUR HEART WILL SING OUT LOUD! (original print ad - all caps) See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

30 August 1945 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

It Happened One Summer See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Jeanne Crain's singing voice was dubbed by Louanne Hogan. See more »

Goofs

Women's lipstick disappears and reappears repeatedly... until they kiss someone which they always do without lipstick. See more »

Quotes

Margy Frake: [leaving the fair] I never want to see another fair.
Wayne Frake: You can say that again!
See more »

Connections

Version of State Fair (1962) See more »

Soundtracks

ALL I OWE IOWAY
Music by Richard Rodgers
Lyrics Oscar Hammerstein II
Sung by William Marshall, Vivian Blaine, Fay Bainter, Charles Winninger, and Chorus
See more »

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User Reviews

 
It's A Grand Film For Viewing
26 April 2007 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

I've no doubt that on the strength of the blockbuster hit that Richard Rodgers&Oscar Hammerstein had with Oklahoma which was still running on Broadway as this film was being made, that Darryl F. Zanuck offered the team the chance to contribute the songs for a remake of State Fair. Oklahoma in fact was a rural setting and so was Iowa for this second telling of the adventures of the Frake family at the Iowa State Fair.

What today's audiences don't appreciate was that in 1946 the Iowa state centennial was being celebrated. Some bright individual at 20th Century Fox must have realized that and a nice musical technicolor remake of the Will Rogers classic State Fair would be a can't miss at the box office. Providing of course Mr. Zanuck could assemble the talent.

Though the 1933 cast boasted people like Louise Dresser, Lew Ayres, and Janet Gaynor in support of Will Rogers, the accent there was very much on Rogers as it was HIS picture. Here the accent is on the younger generation. Charles Winninger and Fay Bainter play the older Frakes taking their prize hog, Bainter's mince pie, and children Dick Haymes and Jeanne Crain to the Iowa State Fair. Haymes and Crain, together with Dana Andrews and Vivian Blaine as the respective romantic partners carry the film here.

Rodgers and Hammerstein had a lot on their plate back in the day. Besides Oklahoma, Hammerstein was involved in creating a musical version of Bizet's Carmen which became Carmen Jones as we all know. He and Rodgers had another musical open in 1945 that was Carousel and became another American classic. When 20th Century Fox signed them for State Fair, according to a recent biography of Dick Rodgers, they never went west. Rodgers did his music from his estate in Connecticut and Hammerstein wrote the lyrics from his Doylestown, Pennsylvania farm. I guess they met in New York and express mailed the songs to Zanuck in Hollywood.

They put together a real nice score, one song It Might As Well Be Spring won the Oscar for Best Original Song from a film. The rest of the score ain't too shabby either with Isn't It Kind of Fun and That's For Me also sung beautifully. My favorite however is It's a Grand Night for Singing, a song so absolutely infectious you will be singing it yourself for days after watching State Fair.

Andrews and Crain were dubbed by other singers, but Dick Haymes and Vivian Blaine were seasoned musical performers. Haymes recorded all four of the songs above in an album for Decca that sold very well. Haymes had a smooth, but strong baritone and if scandal hadn't blown his career up a few years later, who knows to what heights he might have risen.

Every version of State Fair has something to recommend it. There was even a pilot done in the middle Seventies for a television series based on the time honored Frake family saga. For me however this one cops the prize.


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