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Screen Achievements Bulletin lists Wilson Collison's story as an "unpublished novel." According to 1937 Hollywood Reporter news items, Irene Dunne and Katharine Hepburn were first considered for the lead in this picture. Henry Fonda, who acted with Barbara Stanwyck for the first time in the production, was borrowed from Walter Wanger, to whom he was under contract. Stanwyck and Fonda made only two other films together, The Lady Eve and You Belong to Me, both 1941. According to modern sources, Stanwyck, who had been on suspension from RKO, made this film to fulfill requirements in her non-exclusive contract. RKO production files indicate that shooting was halted for one week in late July 1938 after Stanwyck became ill. Production files also note that the exterior New York scenes were shot at the Columbia Ranch in Burbank, CA. Although modern sources claim that Frances Mercer was the only actress among the other "pranksters" who had acted in films before, all but two of the "debs" (Catherine O'Quinn and Linda Terry) had prior film experience.