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Friday Night Spotlight - Screwball Comedies
Remind Me

Introduction to Screwball Comedies

Laughter can be both healing and liberating, a fact proven by the popularity of screwball comedy after it emerged as a new American art form in movies of the 1930s and early '40s, when the country was enduring the Great Depression and bracing itself for World War II. TCM focuses on this zany and beloved genre as we continue our Friday Night Spotlight franchise. Each Friday evening in November, talented comedy star Matthew Broderick presents three classic screwball comedies, featuring traditional Battle of the Sexes storylines and starring some of the genre's greatest practitioners.

The king of screwball has to be Cary Grant, who matches wits with Irene Dunne in both The Awful Truth (1937) and My Favorite Wife (1940), Katharine Hepburn in Bringing Up Baby (1938) and Rosalind Russell in His Girl Friday (1940). Carole Lombard delights opposite John Barrymore in Twentieth Century (1934) and William Powell in My Man Godfrey (1936), while Claudette Colbert sparkles opposite Clark Gable in It Happened One Night (1934) and Joel McCrea in The Palm Beach Story (1942). Barbara Stanwyck, usually thought of as a dramatic actress, showed off her screwball smarts in two 1941 films, dazzling Henry Fonda in The Lady Eve and Gary Cooper in Ball of Fire.

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Inspired by weekend family programming in movie theaters across the country from the 1930s into the 1950s, TCM is offering similar...more

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  • It Happened One Night
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  • The Awful Truth
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