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My Favorite Wife

My Favorite Wife(1940)

Remind Me

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Although the film was based on a story by Samuel and Bella Spewack and Leo McCarey, it was very loosely inspired by Alfred, Lord Tennyson's poem Enoch Arden in which a man who has been lost at sea for several years returns home to find that his wife believed him dead and remarried. According to information contained in the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library, J. R. McDonough, Vice President of RKO, was warned by the PCA to tone down scenes referring to a sexual relationship between "Ann" and "Burkett," as well as the suggestion in the final scene in which "Nick" tries to share "Ellen's" bed before his marriage has been declared annulled. The suggestiveness was toned down in both instances. The film's premiere was held in Louisville, KY, the hometown of star Irene Dunne. The film was nominated for the following Academy Awards: Best Art Direction, Best Original Score, and Best Original Story. In December 1940, the story was presented on the Lux Radio Theatre starring Laurence Olivier and Rosalind Russell. According to modern sources, Garson Kanin stepped in to direct portions of the film after Leo McCarey was involved in a near-fatal car accident. The story was to be remade by Fox in the spring of 1962 under the title Something's Got to Give. That production starred Marilyn Monroe and Dean Martin and was directed by George Cukor. Monroe was fired from the film for her frequent absences, however, and died shortly thereafter. All of the footage from that production was subsequently shelved and a new production was made by Fox in 1963 under the title Move Over Darling, directed by Michael Gordon and starring James Garner, Doris Day and Polly Bergen (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1961-70; F6.3323). Some footage of the Monroe version was included in a 1991 Fox Television Network documentary on her.