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How to Be Very, Very Popular (1955)

Approved | | Comedy | 6 January 1956 (Belgium)
Two girls on the lam hide out in a college fraternity.


Nunnally Johnson


Edward Hope (novel), Nunnally Johnson | 3 more credits »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Betty Grable ... Stormy Tornado
Sheree North ... Curly Flagg
Robert Cummings ... Fillmore 'Wedge' Wedgewood
Charles Coburn ... Dr. Tweed
Tommy Noonan ... Eddie Jones
Orson Bean ... Toby Marshall
Fred Clark ... B.J. Marshall
Charlotte Austin ... Midge
Alice Pearce ... Miss 'Syl' Sylvester
Rhys Williams ... Cedric Flagg
Andrew Tombes ... Police Sgt. Moon
Noel Toy Noel Toy ... Cherry Blossom Wang
Emory Parnell ... Chief of Police
Harry Carter ... Bus Driver
Jesslyn Fax ... Music Teacher
Learn more

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Song-and-dance girls Curly and Stormy Tornado hide out with the guys at Bristol College when they know they can identify the killer of a fellow performer at their San Francisco cabaret. But they rather stand out in their stage costumes and soon all sorts of trouble is heading their way. The fact that Curly has been hypnotised doesn't help. Written by Jeremy Perkins {J-26}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


They worked their way through college ... and brother how they worked ! See more »




Approved | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


A December 1954 item in "The Hollywood Reporter"'s "Rambling Reporter" column indicated that the studio wanted Marilyn Monroe to appear in the film with Jane Russell, her co-star in the studio's highly successful 1953 production Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953). See more »


Stormy: You're still a pupil?
Wedgewood: That's right.
Stormy: Well what kind of a for-crying-out-loud kind of school could you be in?
Wedgewood: This one, Bristol College.
Stormy: This is a college?
Wedgewood: Well, of course, what did you think it was?
Stormy: I think you better let me outta here. I had all the college boys I want on Saturday nights thank you... tanked up on the two dollar gin.
See more »


Referenced in Biography: Marilyn Monroe: The Mortal Goddess (1996) See more »


Shake, Rattle and Roll
Written by Charles F. Calhoun
Played by the band at commencement
See more »

User Reviews

An Undiscovered Masterpiece? No, but not as bad as you think...
27 July 2001 | by TJBNYCSee all my reviews

"How to Be Very, Very Popular" was anything but upon its release, and has not gained any stature since. In fact, its reputation has actually grown worse. It's infamous as the picture that Marilyn Monroe refused to do, leading to her celebrated walk-out on Fox. Sheree North, a practically unknown dancer-starlet, was quickly put into the role, coiffed and made up to look almost exactly like MM. The film, needless to say, bombed, and Sheree--strong armed into being a virtual Monroe clone--bore the brunt of most of it. Betty Grable (MM's co-star from "How to Marry a Millionaire") took advantage of the film's lack of success and used it as her chance to retire from the grind. In retrospect, the film really isn't all that bad--although it's obvious why Monroe balked at playing the North role; it's little more than window-dressing. Actually, had North been given the role from the get-go, and not encouraged to look and sound EXACTLY like a carbon copy MM, the picture might've been pulled off as a cute, harmless little comedy. The film was clearly a step down for a superstar of Monroe's stature, but could've been a nice, showy stepping stone for a rising starlet. Grable is her usual warm, bright self, but she's getting a bit old to be playing scantily-clad chorines. Next to the very young North, especially, she looks decidedly matronly. North isn't given much to work with (again, it's hard to comment on a performance which was basically conceived as a blurred copy of an original), but she does get to do a splendid, wild, rock and roll dance to "Shake, Rattle & Roll." Sadly, the film's complete failure relegated the promising North to the back burner; and she had much more musical and dramatic talent than Jayne Mansfield, whom Fox began to build up instead. So, if "How to Be Very, Very Popular" should show up on television one afternoon, sit back and enjoy it. It may not be great cinema, but it's an underrated little slice of mindless entertainment.

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Release Date:

6 January 1956 (Belgium) See more »

Also Known As:

Como Usar as Curvas See more »


Box Office


$1,565,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (Western Electric Recording)


Color (Color by Deluxe)

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See full technical specs »

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