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Four Mothers

Four Mothers(1941)

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According to the Hollywood Reporter review, this film was the first to use a new RCA sound process called Vitasound. Modern sources note that "Moonlight and Tears," a song by Jack Scholl and Heinz Roemheld, is heard in part in the film. Fannie Hurst's story was also the basis for the Warner Bros.' films Four Daughters, directed by Michael Curtiz in 1938 and Four Wives, also directed by Curtiz, in 1939 (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40; F3.1452, F3.1460). Four Mothers was the last of the films Warner Bros. made about the Lemp family. All three starred the Lane sisters as three of the Lemp sisters. The first film in the trilogy earned John Garfield an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor. Although Garfield's character dies in that film, he was so popular that he was revived in a flashback in Four Wives. Many of the same cast also starred in the Warner Bros. film, Daughters Courageous, released in 1939, which had a similar plot line (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40; F3.0970). Hurst's story also inspired the 1954 Warner Bros. musical Young at Heart, starring Doris Day, Dorothy Malone, Elizabeth Fraser and Frank Sinatra and directed by Gordon Douglas.