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A Song Is Born (1948)

With her gangster boyfriend under investigation by the police, a nightclub singer hides out in a musical research institution staffed by bachelor professors - one of whom begins to fall for her.

Director:

Howard Hawks

Writers:

Billy Wilder (based on the story "From A to Z" by), Thomas Monroe (based on the story "From A to Z" by)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Danny Kaye ... Professor Hobart Frisbee
Virginia Mayo ... Honey Swanson
Benny Goodman ... Professor Magenbruch
Tommy Dorsey ... Tommy Dorsey
Louis Armstrong ... Louis Armstrong
Lionel Hampton ... Lionel Hampton
Charlie Barnet ... Charlie Barnet
Mel Powell ... Mel Powell
Ford Washington Lee Ford Washington Lee ... Buck
John William Sublett John William Sublett ... Bubbles
Page Cavanaugh Trio ... The Page Cavanaugh Trio (as The Page Cavanaugh Trio)
The Golden Gate Quartette ... The Golden Gate Quartette (as The Golden Gate Quartet)
Samba Kings Samba Kings ... The Samba Kings (as Russo and The Samba Kings)
Hugh Herbert ... Professor Twingle
Steve Cochran ... Tony Crow
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Storyline

Gangster's moll Honey Swanson goes into hiding when her boyfriend is under investigation by the police. Where better to hide than a musical research institute staffed entirely by lonely bachelors? She gets more than she bargained for when the head of the institute Professor Hobart Frisbee starts to fall for her. Written by Col Needham <col@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Danny's latest is his greatest! See more »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 October 1948 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

That's Life See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$2,400,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

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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Did You Know?

Trivia

Joseph Crehan (District Attorney), Robert Dudley (Justice of the Peace) and Jack Gargan (Stemnotypist) are listed in the AFI Catalog as cast members for this film, but were not seen and have been omitted from the cast list. See more »

Goofs

At one point, during the last musical session when the two gangsters are holding everyone captive, the wires making the drum jump up and down can be seen. See more »

Quotes

Professor Hobart Frisbee: [to Miss Bragg, after she has summoned a cab for Honey Swanson] It's all yours, Crabapple Annie!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Superman II: Restoring the Vision (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

A Song Is Born
(1948)
Words and Music by Don Raye and Gene de Paul (as Gene De Paul)
Orchestrations by Sonny Burke
Sung by Virginia Mayo (uncredited) (dubbed by Jeri Sullavan (uncredited))
Sung and played by Louis Armstrong (uncredited)
Played by Tommy Dorsey (uncredited)
Sung by The Golden Gate Quartette (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

 
It's worth watching for the music alone.
8 March 2006 | by jimmegbSee all my reviews

While there is a decent plot and Danny Kaye does a good job, the best parts are the music scenes with Benny Goodman, Lionel Hampton, Louis Armstrong, Tommy Dorsey and many others. It is a great collection of popular artists of the 40's and earlier.

There are surprises in the plot, especially if you don't recognize some of the actors until they perform.

Danny Kaye's form of humor is not fully appreciated now, but in his time he drew a large following. This movie is a good example of his artistry. His best movie was probably "Hans Christian Anderson." I watched it as a kid and I can still remember the song "Beautiful, Beautiful Copenhagen."


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