Dr. Noah Praetorius falls in love with Debra, a student who finds out that she is pregnant by her old boyfriend.


Joseph L. Mankiewicz (written for the screen by), Curt Goetz (play)
1 nomination. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Cary Grant ... Dr. Noah Praetorius
Jeanne Crain ... Deborah Higgins
Finlay Currie ... Shunderson
Hume Cronyn ... Prof. Rodney Elwell
Walter Slezak ... Prof. Barker
Sidney Blackmer ... Arthur Higgins
Basil Ruysdael ... Dean Lyman Brockwell
Katherine Locke ... Miss James


Successful and well-liked, Dr. Noah Praetorius becomes the victim of a witch hunt at the hands of Professor Elwell, who disdains Praetorius's unorthodox medical views and also questions his relationship with the mysterious, ever-present Mr. Shunderson. Fuel is added to the fire when Praetorius befriends young Deborah Higgins, who has become suicidal at the prospect of having a baby by her ex boyfriend, a military reservist who was called up for service in the Korean War and killed in action. Written by Kelly

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama | Romance


Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


In the scene with the model trains collision, actor Walter Slezak makes a comment about the chief dispatcher "blowing his brains out" for making the mistake that caused the wreck. In real life, this is how he would end his own life in 1983 at age 80. See more »


In the closed captioning, the music at the concert at the end is identified as "The Prize song" from Wagner's "Die Meistersinger", twice, and the chorus is described as singing in German. The music is actually Brahms' "Academic Festival Overture", which is heard throughout the movie, not just in the final concert, and the chorus is singing "Gaudeamus Igatur" which is in Latin. The "Prize Song" is heard on the radio at the Higgens' farm and is the background music for Noah and Deborah's tour of the dairy. See more »


Prof. Rodney Elwell: Doctor Praetorius, won't you admit that your practice flourished in Goose Creek because you took advantage of the ignorance of its backward inhabitants? Of the pathetic willingness of those poor people to rely upon a belief in miraculous cure rather than scientific knowledge? And because of the readiness with which so many people will prefer the glamorous quack to the licensed practitioner?
Doctor Noah Praetorius: Despite your definition of a quack as someone who does not practice medicine according to your rules, ...
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Version of Praetorius (1965) See more »


Happy Birthday to You
Music by Mildred J. Hill
Lyrics by Patty S. Hill
Played on the bass violin and sung by all
See more »

User Reviews

Deep and Fully Entertaining
10 December 1998 | by DadSweetSee all my reviews

This is indeed a very well hidden film which should be up there with North By Northwest, Citizen Kane, and the like. For its time, People Will Talk took on the most controversial topics of the day (even of TODAY) including: abortion, unintended pregnancy, HUAC and McCarthy-style witch hunting, taxpayer-subsidized farming not to grow food ... and the list goes on. Perhaps most up front is the defending of American individualism that was then (and is perhaps more than ever now) under attack. All of this was presented very cleverly, often with wholesome comedy. A great film with top actors, writing and direction. Only the very ending is a bit soppy ... not the least of which is the dopey expression on Carey Grant's face of imbecilic ecstasy while conducting his university's orchestra. Otherwise, it was a nearly perfect film.

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Release Date:

September 1951 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Dr. Praetorius Story See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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