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The book Our Hearts Were Young and Gay is based on the real-life teenage adventures of Emily Kimbrough and Cornelia Otis Skinner and on their autobiographical book of the same name. Kimbrough acted as technical advisor on the film and also played a bit part. Hollywood Reporter news items noted that Katharine Hepburn was initially considered for the role of "Cornelia," and that Jane Withers and Mimi Chandler were tested for roles in this film. Paramount News reported that the college dance scenes were shot at the Los Angeles YMCA gymnasium. Gail Russell, Diana Lynn, James Brown and Bill Edwards reprised their roles in the sequel to this film, Our Hearts Were Growing Up. According to a January 25, 1945 Hollywood Reporter news item, Skinner and Kimbrough took legal action against Paramount to prevent a sequel; however, a judge ruled in favor of the studio. Our Hearts Were Young and Gay was silent screen star Dorothy Gish's first speaking film role.