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If I Had a Million

If I Had a Million(1932)

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Early scripts in the Paramount script files at the AMPAS Library provided the above writing credits, however, not all writers were credited with stories. Whitney Bolton's story for the "Grandma" episode was originally called "Jenifer Walker." According to an October 1932 script, Cary Grant was originally cast as "O'Brien" in "The Three Marines" episode. A news item in Film Daily noted that Norman McLeod was slated to direct Roland Young and Alison Skipworth in a sequence called "Good Company," an "original story which Nina Wilcox Putnam [was] writing especially for the Paramount character actress." It has not been determined if "Good Company" is the original title for the "Road Hogs" sequence, which featured Skipworth and W. C. Fields in the released film, or if the Putnam story was used for another sequence.
       Three sequences originally intended for the film never made it to the final print. "The Pheeneys" was to star Cary Grant and Miriam Hopkins, and "The Man Who Drops Dead," by Oliver H. P. Garrett, was to be directed by Thornton Freeland and star Clive Brook. Available contemporary information does not reveal if these sequences were filmed or dropped during the pre-production phase of the project. An additional sequence, "The Randall Marshalls" was also abandoned, probably after filming commenced. However, contemporary sources and Paramount scripts for that episode provide the following credits: Tiffany Thayer and Walter DeLeon, Adaptation; Louis D. Lighton, Associate Producer; Lothar Mendes, Director; William Scully, Assistant Director; Harry Schwartz, Unit Manager; David Abel, Photography; and Sylvia Sidney (Mrs. Marshall) and Fredric March (Mr. Marshall). A news item in Hollywood Reporter reported that the sequence was dropped due to March's reluctance to film retakes without salary. The same news item reported that March's co-star in the episode was Carole Lombard.
       According to correspondence in the MPAA/PCA files at the AMPAS library, scripts for each sequence were sent to the AMPP for approval and only minor changes were suggested; however, on November 4, 1932 after the final print was previewed by the AMPP, director Colonel Jason S. Joy wrote to Paramount producer Harold Hurley and registered New York censor Dr. James Wingate's disapproval of the prostitute sequence, known as "Violet," and noted that Wingate felt that the sequence should never have been shot as they had originally suggested. By November 14, 1932, as noted in a letter from Hurley to Joy, Paramount had made further eliminations in that scene and deleted "the first shot where Bennett runs into the girl soliciting on the street, the couple coming down the stairs where the man in pantomime tips his hat to the dame, the line 'The stairs are killing me,' and a few other bits of action." A scene commonly deleted by local censor boards was the one in which "Violet" gets into bed in the hotel room, then throws back the covers, removes her stockings and pulls the covers back over herself. Another scene deleted by many local censors was the execution of "John Wallace," especially the shots of the guards preparing him for execution and opening the door of the execution chamber. Sounds of sobs and screams were also eliminated. In England, the "razzberry" sound made by "Phineas V. Lambert" was changed to a "whistle."
       Pre-release news items in Film Daily indicate that Richard Arlen, Tempe Piggott and Margaret Fealy were cast in the film. Contemporary sources indicate that the "Three Marines" sequence was filmed in Ocean Park, CA, and the "Road Hogs" sequence was filmed on location in Hollywood, on North Bronson Avenue, Franklin Avenue, Hillhurst Avenue, Vine Street and La Brea Avenue. Although modern sources credit Edward Sutherland with direction of the "Grandma" episode, Stephen Roberts is credited with its direction in contemporary sources, and no contemporary information corroborates Sutherland's participation in this episode or in any other in the film. Modern sources further credit Norman McLeod with direction of the "Road Hogs" sequence and H. Bruce Humberstone with direction of "The Forger" episode, however, contemporary information, as reflected above, conflicts with these credits. Modern sources include the following additional cast members: Edwin Stanley (Mr. Galloway); James Burtis (Jailer); Frank Hagney (Mike); Charles McMurphy (Mike); Russ Powell (Bartender); Morgan Wallace (Mike); Eddie Baker (Desk clerk); Larry Steers, Herbert Moulton (Glidden's associates); Marc Lawrence (Hood); James Bush (Teller); Fred Holmes (China store clerk); Syd Saylor (Driver); Lester Dorr (Pedestrian); Clair Bracy and Vangie Beilby (Idylwood residents).