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Teacher's Pet

Teacher's Pet(1958)

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The onscreen writing credit reads: "Written by Fay and Michael Kanin." According to Hollywood Reporter, producers William Perlberg and George Seaton purchased the original screen story to Teacher's Pet from the husband-and-wife writing team of Michael and Fay Kanin in February 1952. At that time, the film was projected as a 1953 Paramount release, with the producers planning to begin production as soon as they completed their current project, The Country Girl. Production on Teacher's Pet was finally set to begin in November 1956, but filming was delayed until April 1957 in order to fit into actress Doris Day's schedule, according to Hollywood Reporter news items. Hollywood Reporter also reported that the Kanins were planning to publish their original story in an unnamed "national magazine" in 1953, but it has not been determined if their story was published.
       In April 1957, as a publicity stunt, the producers invited newspaper film critics from across the United States to appear in the film. According to Daily Variety and Hollywood Reporter news items, over 143 newspapers accepted the invitation, and a drawing was held from which fifty critics were chosen at random to appear as themselves. Norman Isaacs, the managing editor of The Louisville Times, then wrote a scathing editorial on the matter, accusing Perlberg and Seaton of "intellectual bribery." While Issacs claimed the producers could have saved $15,000 using real New York City newspapermen, who would have agreed to appear in the film for free, the producers noted that the then-current Screen Actors Guild (SAG) contract required that each performer be paid a minimum salary of $285 per week (not $375, as stated by Issacs in his editorial), and that they had agreed to donate any performer's salary to charity if any selected film critic's newspaper had so requested. Variety also pointed out that this publicity stunt cost the production over $25,000, including travel and living expenses for the forty-nine out-of-town critics selected.
       According to Hollywood Reporter news items, portions of the film were shot on location at the Los Angeles Times press room and library in mid-June 1957. Hollywood Reporter also reported that Perlberg and Seaton flew to New York on July 8, 1957 to shoot additional scenes for Teacher's Pet. In the Hollywood Reporter production charts, editor Alma Macrorie is mistakenly listed as "Elma McCroie." Hollywood Reporter news items include Joseph Hamilton, Jean Willes, George Cisar and Merry Anders in the cast, but their appearance in the released film has not been confirmed. Hollywood Reporter noted in late May 1957 that Bob Burke temporarily replaced director of photography Haskell Boggs after Boggs "suffered a ruptured blood vessel in his left eye."
       According to Los Angeles Times, the Los Angeles premiere of Teacher's Pet took place on March 20, 1958 at Paramount Hollywood theater, as a benefit for the 8-Ball Foundation of the Greater Los Angeles Press Club. Teacher's Pet received two Academy Award nominations: Gig Young was nominated as Best Supporting Actor, while the Kanins were nominated for Best Original Story and Screenplay. The title song, sung by Day, was a modest hit in 1958. Following the critical and box-office success of Teacher's Pet, Perlberg, Seaton and actor Clark Gable collaborated on another Paramount release the next year, 1959's But Not for Me.