Tuesday, September 27, 2011


The Lemon Drop Kid
(aka "Damon Runyon's The Lemon Drop Kid")
Paramount, 1951, B/W, 91 minutes, ***½
Premiere release March, 1951
General release April, 1951

When racetrack tout Bob Hope finds himself in hot water with the mob, he hits upon a fast money-making racket: phony Santa Clauses collecting for an "old folk's home." Fast-paced comedy, from Damon Runyon's story, also stars Lloyd Nolan, William Frawley, Marilyn Maxwell.

A fast-paced comedy with one-liners flying by at a rate that's too fast to keep up with! This is the film that brought us the Christmas standard "Sliver Bells" - it contains the most beautiful production number of that song . The film is loaded with laughs and has some great musical numbers.

Produced by: Robert L. Welch
Directed by: Sidney Lanfield
Screenplay by: Edmund Hartmann, Robert O'Brien and Frank Tashlin
Additional Dialogue by: Irving Elinson
Story by: Edmund Beloin
Based on the book The Lemon Drop Kid by Damon Runyon
Music Score by: Victor Young
Vocal Arrangements by: Joseph J. Lilley
Songs by: Jay Livingston and Ray Evans
Art Direction: Hal Pereira and Franz Bachelin
Set Decoration: Sam Comer and Ross Dowd
Costumes: Edith Head
Makeup Supervision: Wally Westmore
Sound Recording by: Don McKay and Walter Oberst
Director of Photography: Daniel L. Fapp
Special Effects: Paul Lerpae
Process Photography: Farciot Edouart
Editorial Supervision: Archie Marshek

Cast: Bob Hope [Lemon Drop Kid], Marilyn Maxwell [Brainey Baxter], Lloyd Nolan [Oxford Charlie], Jane Darwell [Nellie Thursday], Andrea King [Stella], Fred Clark [Moose Moran], Jay C. Flippen [Straight Flush], William Frawley [Gloomy Willie], Harry Bellaver [Sam the Surgeon], Sid Melton [Little Louie], Ben Welden [Singin' Solly], Ida Moore [Bird Lady], Francis Pierlot [Henry Regan], Charles Cooley [Goomba], Society Kid Hogan [Society Kid], Harry Shannon [Policeman John], Bernard Szold [Honest Harry], Tor Johnson [Super Swedish Angel], Tom Dugan [No Thumbs Charlie], Additional Cast: Almira Sessions [Mrs. Santoro]

Musical Program: [0:31] They Obviously Want Me to Sing (sung and danced by Marilyn Maxwell and Chorus Girls); [0:44] It Doesn't Cost a Dime to Dream (sung by Marilyn Maxwell and Bob Hope); [0:51] Jingle Bells (sung by Santa Clauses); [0:52] Jingle Bells in counterpoint to Silver Bells (sung by Chorus); [0:53] Silver Bells (with special lyrics, croaked by William Frawley); [0:54] Silver Bells (production number sung by Marilyn Maxwell, Bob Hope and Chorus)

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