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How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (1967)

Approved | | Comedy, Musical | 9 March 1967 (USA)
Armed with the titular manual, an ambitious window washer seeks to climb the corporate ladder.

Director:

David Swift

Writers:

Abe Burrows (book), Jack Weinstock (book) | 3 more credits »
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2 nominations. See more awards »

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Director: Burt Brinckerhoff
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Morse ... J. Pierpont Finch
Michele Lee ... Rosemary Pilkington
Rudy Vallee ... Jasper B. Biggley
Anthony 'Scooter' Teague ... Bud Frump (as Anthony Teague)
Maureen Arthur ... Hedy LaRue
John Myhers John Myhers ... Bert O. Bratt
Carol Worthington ... Lucille Krumholtz
Kathryn Reynolds Kathryn Reynolds ... Miss Smith aka Smitty (as Kay Reynolds)
Ruth Kobart ... Miss Jones
Sammy Smith Sammy Smith ... Twimble / Wally Womper
Jeff DeBenning Jeff DeBenning ... Gatch (as Jeff Debenning)
Janice Carroll Janice Carroll ... Brenda
Robert Q. Lewis ... Tackaberry
Paul Hartman ... Toynbee
Dan Tobin ... Johnson
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Storyline

Twenty-seven year old New York window washer, J. Pierrepont Finch, believes he can be a success in the corporate world after he impulsively picks up the book "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying". The book promises its reader that he can climb the corporate ladder simply and quickly. The Worldwide Wicket Corporation, the business in the office building whose windows he washes is, according to the book, the perfect type of business. There he meets secretary Rosemary Pilkington, who sees in Ponty (as she calls him) an unassuming man who she believes the corporate world will eat alive. But Ponty, memorizing what the book tells him, does quickly climb the corporate ladder but not by doing any real work. Ponty has a few obstacles along the way such as: Bud Frump who sees Ponty as a rival and is the nephew by marriage of the company president J.B. Biggley; Hedy La Rue, a curvaceous but simple woman who has a secret or not-so-secret tie to someone important in the company; Mr. ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Of all the Broadway musical comedies that ever made the screen sing out - nothing succeeds like "Succeed"! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Musical

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 March 1967 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

How to Succeed in Business... See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

The Mirisch Corporation See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying won the Pulitzer Prize in Drama in 1962. Only nine musicals have won the Pulitzer Prize in drama - one per decade from the 1930s to the 1990s. They are as follows: Of Thee I Sing (1972) from the 1930s, South Pacific (1958) from the 1940s, Fiorello from the 1950s, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (1967) from the 1960s, A Chorus Line (1985) from the 1970s, American Playhouse: Sunday in the Park with George (1986) from the 1980s, Rent (2005) from the 1990s, Next to Normal from the 2000s and Hamilton from the 2010s. See more »

Goofs

When all the secretaries are "working", they first change shoes from white to colored. After they make up their hair and stuff, a man yells "coffee break!" When they all get up to go, they're still wearing their white shoes. See more »

Quotes

TV Announcer: A day without a wicket is like a day without sunshine.
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Soundtracks

Gotta Stop That Man
(uncredited)
Written by Frank Loesser
Performed by Robert Morse and executives
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Office politics spring eternal
30 May 2001 | by marcslopeSee all my reviews

This was one of the rare Broadway musicals whose book is actually more interesting than its score. So while roughly a half-dozen Frank Loesser songs from the stage version are deleted, they're not really missed. What survives is a witty skewering of office politics, featuring much of the Broadway cast. And while such '60s business staples as rampant sexism and smoking now look quaintly offensive, the gleeful satirizing of backstabbing and skulduggery in business will always be relevant. David Swift, whose training was in TV, doesn't do much with the widescreen format (except for the ingenious ballet-mechanique in "A Secretary Is Not a Toy"), but he cuts cleverly away from the production numbers just as the musical-comedy silliness is on the verge of becoming embarrassing, and he splices in some delectable location shots of '60s New York. The color scheme is bright, the pacing brisk, the cast friendly, the production values refreshingly modest. At a time in movie history when so many adaptations of stage hits were overbudgeted and overlong, what a pleasure to see something to faithful to its source material -- and so unpretentious.


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