6.1/10
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23 user 12 critic

The Emperor Waltz (1948)

Approved | | Comedy, Musical, Romance | 2 July 1948 (USA)
A brash American gramophone salesman tries to get Emperor Franz Joseph's endorsement in turn-of-the-century Austria.

Director:

Billy Wilder
Reviews
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Bing Crosby ... Virgil Smith
Joan Fontaine ... Johanna Augusta Franziska
Roland Culver ... Baron Holenia
Lucile Watson ... Princess Bitotska
Richard Haydn ... Emperor Franz-Josef
Harold Vermilyea ... Chamberlain
Sig Ruman ... Dr. Zwieback
Julia Dean ... Archduchess Stephanie
Bert Prival Bert Prival ... Chauffeur
Alma Macrorie Alma Macrorie ... Inn Proprietress
Roberta Jonay Roberta Jonay ... Chambermaid
John Goldsworthy John Goldsworthy ... Obersthofmeister
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Storyline

Traveling Salesman Virgil Smith wants to sell his Grammophones in pre-WWI Austria. To enhance this, he especially wants to sell one to Emperor Franz Joseph, but at first the Austrian palace guards think he is carrying a bomb. He meets the Countess Johanna von Stolzenberg-Stolzenberg and after the usual misunderstandings, falls in love with her, this is especially assisted by his dog Buttons. But the relation between a Countess and an ordinary U.S. citizen cannot work in Austria, that is the Emperor's opinion. Is he wrong ? Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

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Taglines:

Paramount's Crowning Entertainment Achievement! Bing's Best Songs!


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The song "The Kiss In Your Eyes" was given new words and a new name and became a popular hit for several artists in the late 1940s under the title of "Suddenly". See more »

Quotes

Baron Holenia: [optimistically] In this, our moment of sorrow, I venture to offer some consolation. There will be other days. She'll give us some puppies yet.
Dr. Zwieback: Yes, that's the way to look at it. Come spring and we can count on another litter.
Emperor Franz-Josef: [sadly] Hmmm... the question is - can I count on another spring?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood: Hooray for Hollywood (2020) See more »

Soundtracks

Friendly Mountains
based on Austrian yodel songs (uncredited)
Lyrics by Johnny Burke
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User Reviews

 
A great vehicle for Crosby
16 April 2004 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

According to a new book out on Billy Wilder, Wilder had a much different film in mind than what emerged here. He was a contract director for Paramount at the time this was made with a few hits under his belt. And he was assigned to direct this film with Bing Crosby who was the biggest name in movies when this came out.

Crosby had a whole different film in mind and what Bing wanted Paramount gave him at that point. Wilder wanted a biting satire on the Franz Joseph court and he also wanted a the killing of the puppies, the offspring of Crosby's and Joan Fontaine's dogs to be an allegory for genocide. Crosby knew what his audiences expected from him and he opted for a lighter treatment.

The result was a second rate Billy Wilder movie, but a first class Bing Crosby film. Unlike in the thirties when Paramount just depended on Crosby's personality to put over a film, they gave this one the full A treatment. The outdoor sequences were shot in the Canadian Rockies and they serve as a great Alpine background. Though its muted, Wilder still gets some of his cynical point of view into Crosby's phonograph salesman who woos a member of Viennese royalty played by Joan Fontaine. Roland Culver who is Fontaine's father is also pretty good as the impoverished count who is quite willing to sell his title in marriage to anyone who can afford him.

Great vehicle for the winning Crosby personality.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

2 July 1948 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Emperor Waltz See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$4,070,248 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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