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Mr. Lucky

Mr. Lucky(1943)

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teaser Mr. Lucky (1943)

It's one scheme after another for Cary Grant in Mr. Lucky (1943). As the owner of a gambling ship, Grant finds his lying, swindling, draft-dodging days numbered when heiress Laraine Day comes on board and his get-rich plan falls apart in the face of romance.

Apparently Cary Grant wasn't so easily swayed by love in real life. Grant married Barbara Hutton, the Woolworth heir and niece of E.F. Hutton, in July of 1942. A few months later, when Mr. Lucky was being cast, Louella Parsons ran an item claiming Grant's wife Hutton would play opposite him in the film. That was news to the Grant. It seems his wife had taken a look at his copy of the script for Mr. Lucky and decided she would be perfect as the glamorous heiress. Used to getting what she wanted, Hutton approached RKO head Charles Koerner with her idea. Koerner could practically smell the publicity and thought the real-life husband and wife pairing a grand idea. Grant did not agree, refusing to even consider the idea, and Laraine Day was soon cast.

Grant also had a hand in getting Mr. Lucky from script to screen. Milton Holmes, the co-screenwriter of the film, once worked as a tennis pro at the Beverly Hills Tennis Club. While there he had the opportunity to meet many stars and studio executives. One day he approached Cary Grant with the storyline for Mr. Lucky. Grant liked Holmes' idea, and Holmes was teamed with seasoned writer Adrian Scott to draft the screenplay. Unfortunately, Scott's career would come to a grinding halt in 1947 when he refused to testify before the House Un-American Activities Committee and was sentenced to a year of imprisonment as one of the "Hollywood Ten."

Mr. Lucky would go on to be RKO's biggest grosser since 1939's Gunga Din. A TV series produced by Blake Edwards would follow. 34 episodes of Mr. Lucky aired from October 1959 to June 1960 on CBS.

Director: H.C. Potter
Producer: David Hempstead
Screenplay: Adrian Scott, Milton Holmes (based on the story "Bundles of Freedom")
Cinematography: George Barnes
Editor: Theron Warth
Art Direction: Albert S. D'Agostino, Mark-Lee Kirk
Music: Roy Webb
Cast: Cary Grant (Joe Adams), Laraine Day (Dorothy Bryant), Charles Bickford (Hard Swede), Gladys Cooper (Capt. Steadman), Alan Carney (Crunk), Henry Stephenson (Mr. Bryant).
BW-100m. Closed captioning.

by Stephanie Thames

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