Cast & Crew
William A. Seiter
Samuel S. Hinds
Photos & Videos
While staying at the Hotel San Francisco, Emory Muir encounters a strange woman in a heavy veil, who faints when she is surrounded by a mob of people gathering around a car accident. After Emory whisks her away in a taxi, the woman, Miss Colfax, asks to return to the hotel, where she finally reveals her bucktoothed face to her benefactor. Later, Miss Colfax, who is in reality Carol Corliss, a beautiful movie star suffering from agoraphobia brought on by a confrontation with over-zealous fans, overhears Emory and his uncle, Judge Thaddeus Parks, discussing the Parks's mountain retreat. In disguise as the homely Miss Colfax, Carol begs Emory to take her with him to the retreat, and he reluctantly drives her there. To protect her reputation, Emory gives Carol the big, untidy cabin, then goes off to sleep in a nearby shack. While bird watching the next morning, Emory spies an undisguised Carol swimming in the lake and follows her wet footprints back to the cabin. Confused and curious, Emory telephones Carol's psychiatrist in San Francisco and demands to know her identity. Although the doctor refuses to name Carol, Emory stumbles on a photograph of the star while he is in town. By the time Emory returns to her cabin, the lazy, tempermental Carol has decided to reveal herself to him and is shocked when he refuses to believe that she is a movie star. In spite of her efforts to convince him, Emory maintains his ruse as a skeptic and bullies her into cleaning up the cabin and cooking his meals. Eventually Jay Holmes, Carol's egotistical co-star, tracks her to the cabin and demands that she return to the city with him. Carol, who is now in love with Emory, threatens Jay with a gun just as Sheriff Twing arrives. After the disapproving sheriff disarms Carol, Emory shows up and, telling Jay that he is Carol's psychiatrist, finagles him into staging a phony fight as part of her "treatment." Desperate to prove her identity, Carol then takes Emory to the village movie theater, where her latest picture is being screened. After she "convinces" Emory that she really is Carol Corliss, she announces herself to the audience. In spite of the mob that forms, Carol remains calm and embraces her fans. Although cured of her agoraphobia, Carol fights with Emory over Jay and her career, and the couple separates. The next morning, a weeping Carol connives with Minna, Twing's granddaughter, to have the sheriff force Emory into marrying her on moral grounds. The sheriff, however, confuses Jay with Emory and, at gunpoint, makes the actor sign the marriage license instead of Emory. Before Jay and Carol are pronounced man and wife, Minna rushes in with Emory, who agrees to wed Carol on condition that the marriage be annuled once they have returned to the city. Eventually Carol, who has resumed her movie career, reconciles with Emory, but also learns through Jay that she is not legally married to him.
William A. Seiter
Samuel S. Hinds
Pandro S. Berman
P. J. Faulkner Jr.
Van Nest Polglase
Clem A. Portman
The action begins at a posh San Francisco hotel, where guest Emory Muir (George Brent) plays good Samaritan and rescues a veiled woman (Rogers) driven into a faint when a nearby car accident attracts a large crowd around her. Recovering when alone with her benefactor, the mystery woman introduces herself as "Clara Colfax," and lifts her veil to reveal a mousy dark wig, bottle-bottom glasses and improbable buck teeth. Over hearing Emory's conversation with his judge uncle (Grant Mitchell) regarding the family mountain retreat, "Clara" wheedles an invitation, which Muir grants against his better judgment.
"Miss Colfax," as it develops, is in fact movie star Carol Corliss, who's had a phobia of crowds since a near-trampling by zealous fans, and is presently dodging publicity commitments she doesn't wish to face. Her ruse begins to fall apart when Emory surreptitiously catches her swimming sans disguise; on a trip for provisions, he uncovers her identity with the aid of a fan-magazine photo. On his return, the temperamental star decides to drop the pretense and reveal the truth; to her great shock, Muir asserts that he never heard of her, and demands she begin pitching in with the household chores.
There're several more machinations involving Carol's shrink (Samuel S. Hinds) and an overbearing co-star (Alan Mowbray) before she can face her fears and sort out her growing feelings for Muir. Screen writer Allan Scott drew from a novel by the pioneering investigative journalist Samuel Hopkins Adams, whose comic prose had been the basis of Columbia's recent overwhelming success with It Happened One Night (1934). The songwriting team of Oscar Levant and Dorothy Fields was engaged to deliver a trio of numbers -"Out of sight, Out of Mind," "Don't Mention Love to Me" and "I've Got a New Lease on Life," and Astaire choreographer Hermes Pan was called upon for the dance sequences.
In her autobiography Ginger: My Story, Rogers had understandably vivid recall of the location shoot at California's Big Bear Lake. Director William A. Seiter required her to do a thirty-foot underwater swim, even after she pointed out how the crew members were floating their beers in the lake to keep them chilled. "Even though it was August, that mountain water was COLD!!...During the take, as I swam underwater, my bathing trunks were slowly sliding off. It was all I could do to keep them from coming off altogether. If the camera had picked that up, the Hays Office would have had something to criticize!"
Rogers further acknowledged that both Astaire and Katharine Hepburn had taken a pass on In Person before she accepted. "Those negative opinions never bothered me. If I read a script and could imagine myself playing the role, I was interested...Kate Hepburn was right; she would have looked idiotic with the false teeth that the plot required. Neither Astaire nor Hepburn had my absurd sense of humor, which made it simple for me to look ridiculous, and I did look ridiculous in this film." Time noted how RKO's publicity department studiously kept all images of Rogers as "Clara" under wraps until the opening of In Person.
Producer: Pandro S. Berman
Director: William A. Seiter
Screenplay: Allan Scott; Samuel Hopkins Adams (novel); Glenn Tryon (uncredited)
Cinematography: Edward Cronjager
Art Direction: Van Nest Polglase
Film Editing: Arthur Schmidt
Cast: Ginger Rogers (Carol Corliss, aka Clara Colfax), George Brent (Emory Muir), Alan Mowbray (Jay Holmes), Grant Mitchell (Judge Thaddeus Parks), Samuel S. Hinds (Dr. Aaron Sylvester), Joan Breslau (Minna), Louis Mason (Sheriff Twing), Spencer Charters (Parson Calverton Lunk).
by Jay S. Steinberg
The working title of this film was Tamed. Hollywood Reporter announced in November 1934 that Fred Astaire was RKO's first choice for the picture's male lead. RKO borrowed George Brent from Warner Bros. for the production. Motion Picture Herald's "The Cutting Room" includes Henry Stephenson and Shelly Hall in the cast, while Hollywood Reporter news items and production charts list Jack Hatfield, Monte Vandergrift and Bud Jamison as cast members. The participation of these actors in the final film has not been confirmed. Scenes for this film were shot at Big Bear Lake in Southern California. Modern sources credit Mel Berns as makeup artist and John Miehle as still photographer. Additional modern source cast includes Lew Kelly (Mountain man), Bob McKenzie (Theater manager), Lee Shumway (Studio representative), Tiny Jones (Woman in theater), William B. Davidson (Director Bill Sutter) and George Davis (Cabbie). Bud Jamison's character is listed as "Man in elevator." According to modern sources, Public Property was a second working title.