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Dr. Archibald Joseph Cronin's novel was published serially in 1938 in Good Housekeeping. A news item in Hollywood Reporter notes that RKO bought the Cronin novel as a vehicle for Carole Lombard. A pre-production news item in Hollywood Reporter adds that production on the film was suspended for several weeks for Lombard's appendectomy. According to New York Times, George Stevens omitted part of a medical examination of a woman who was in the bus accident because the audience found it funny when the doctor tested her reflexes. This was producer Pandro Berman's last picture for RKO. He left the studio to work for M-G-M. In 1940, Olivia de Havilland and Herbert Marshall starred in a Lux Radio Theater version of this story.