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The working titles of this film were Enough for Happiness, A Likely Story, It's a Likely Story, Murder, She Had to Say Yes and Beautiful but Dangerous. According to a late April 1952 Daily Variety news item, RKO changed the title from It's a Likely Story to Beautiful but Dangerous to avoid confusion with its 1946 release A Likely Story. In August 1951, Daily Variety reported that Paramount had purchased the story as a vehicle for William Holden. According to a Daily Variety news item, Dick Powell was to slated to direct the picture. In April 1952, Los Angeles Examiner announced that Paramount had sold the script to RKO because of Holden's scheduling conflicts. The same item noted that the purchase marked RKO's return to production after more than 100 employees were dismissed from the studio.
A Hollywood Reporter news item adds Tom Young, Art Shurr, Ben Lee and Harry Waldo to the cast, but their participation in the final film has not been confirmed. Although She Couldn't Say No was not the last picture Robert Mitchum made at at RKO, the studio at which he had been under contract for many years, it was the last RKO release to star him. According to modern sources, Mitchum disliked the script so much he went on suspension to avoid acting in it.