Cast & Crew
Jimmy Whalen, the elevator boy in a classy apartment building, takes pity on destitute Nancy Lee, who has found refuge in the building's basement. He persuades the superintendent to hire her as a maid and the two young people become friendly, but when Jimmy asks Nancy to spend Saturday with him, she refuses and will not say why. Secretly, she has planned a visit to her baby son Bobby at a children's home. Although she loves Jimmy, she is worried that he will not accept her son. When she accidentally breaks a Ming vase that belongs to Thomas J. Jesse, an eccentric, presently insolvent, resident, Nancy flees her job in a panic. Jimmy searches everywhere for Nancy to tell her that she has only broken a copy of the real vase. He traces her to the children's home through a letter, where he discovers Bobby. Finally, through the Missing Person's Bureau, Jimmy finds Nancy in the hospital, recovering from pneumonia, and confesses his love for her and for Bobby. Jesse suggests that Nancy recuperate in the empty apartment belonging to unpleasant Mr. Murdock, who is out of town. Murdock returns unexpectedly and threatens to call the police, until Jesse points out that Murdock's wife will not be happy to learn about his secret "love nest." Murdock accidentally breaks the authentic vase in his anger, and Jesse forces him to write a check for its value. Wealthy again, Jesse offers Jimmy a job after he and Nancy marry.
Jack L. Warner
That Man's Here Again
Indeed, this Warner Bros. programmer, directed by Louis King (younger brother of director Henry King), packs a lot into its brief hour. Tom Brown plays Jimmy, a young elevator operator who finds destitute Nancy (Mary Maguire) and convinces his hotel manager to give her a break by taking her on as a maid. Hugh Herbert plays an eccentric tenant named Thomas, who seems to have money but is nonetheless always broke--and always upbeat. He tries to help the young lovers as best he can when circumstance drives them apart, but another tenant, Mr. Murdock (Joseph King), is a mean philanderer who just might spoil Thomas's plans.
The script by Lillie Hayward--with uncredited contributions from Dalton Trumbo--was based on a novel by Australian writer I.A.R. Wylie entitled Young Nowheres, which had already been the basis for two previous films: Young Nowheres (1929) and Someday (1935), the latter a British quota-quickie directed by Michael Powell.
24-year-old Tom Brown had started as a child actor in the silent era and would go on to a lengthy career in movies and television, with his final credit coming in 1979. 51-year-old Hugh Herbert, meanwhile, was an established, highly popular vaudevillian and playwright who had moved to Hollywood with the coming of sound. In That Man's Here Again, he delivers exactly the comic performance that audiences would have expected from him.
Mary Maguire, 18, (real name: Helene Francis Maguire) had just arrived in Hollywood after making a couple of pictures in her native Australia, including one called The Flying Doctor (1936). That film's director, Miles Mander, gave her a letter of introduction addressed to John Farrow, a Hollywood director also from Australia. Farrow tested Maguire, and Warner Brothers liked what it saw and put her under contract, starting with That Man's Here Again, in which she is very appealing and pretty. But the studio released her after a year because she started refusing assignments. She signed with Fox in 1938 and became romantically involved with its chairman, Joseph Schenck. A Fox publicity announcement from the time said "lipstick is her only cosmetic vice, soap and water are her beauty aids, [and] she does a little sketch painting to satisfy her artistic urge... She drives a Pontiac coupe, collects sea-shells and she likes to play ping-pong." But her stint at Fox didn't last long either. After a year, she moved to England to make a few more movies, and her film career ended after a dozen titles in all.
Trade paper Variety liked That Man's Here Again: "[Producer] Bryan Foy's ability to turn out good entertainment is well demonstrated... With only the names of Hugh Herbert and Tom Brown as draws, the cast is well picked. Mary Maguire, the Australian girl who makes her debut, is revealed as possessing striking beauty and excellent talent. Hugh Herbert gives his customary finished comedy performance. Joe King is a good heavy... Director Louis King has done a first-rate job, overlooking no bets and keeping the picture moving at a fast pace."
By Jeremy Arnold
That Man's Here Again
The film's working title was Love Begins. The film marked the screen debut of Mary Maguire, an Australian actress. This film is a remake of the 1929 First National film Young Nowheres, directed by Frank Lloyd and starring Richard Barthelmess (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1921-30, F2.6588).