Copacabana


1h 32m 1947

Film Details

Release Date
May 30, 1947
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Beacon Productions, Inc.
Distribution Company
United Artists Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 32m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
8,248ft (10 reels)

Synopsis

In New York City, Lionel Q. Devereaux and his girl friend, Brazilian singer Carmen Novarro, are given twenty-four hours to pay their hotel bill. With the help of gullible singer Andy Russell, Lionel, posing as an agent, convinces producer Steve Hunt to let Carmen audition for the Club Copacabana. When Hunt asks whom else Lionel represents, he invents a veiled beauty from Paris named Fifi and convinces Carmen to personify her. Steve hires both Carmen and Fifi, who is a sensation in the press. Lionel tells Steve that he and Carmen are engaged to keep him away from her, but Steve asks out Fifi instead. Lionel then asks Andy to play cupid with Steve and his secretary, Anne, who is in love with him. Andy urges Anne to sing her feelings to Steve, but he is indifferent to her lovemaking. After Anatole Murphy, a Hollywood producer, makes an offer to Steve to take over Lionel's contract on Fifi, a slick agent named Liggett convinces Lionel to sell Fifi's contract to him for $5,000. Liggett in turn receives $100,000 from Murphy. Liggett becomes suspicious when he sees Fifi get into a cab and Carmen get out of it. After Anne confides in Carmen that Fifi is ruining her chances at love with Steve, Lionel and Carmen stage a fight in her dressing room between Carmen and Fifi, which is followed by Fifi's disappearance. Lionel later reports that she was found dead in the river and that he is glad he killed her. He is overheard, however, and blamed for Fifi's murder. During his interrogation, Lionel explains that he made up Fifi. Steve confesses he courted Fifi only for business and that he loves Ann. Carmen then enters dressed as Fifi, and when Steve removes her veil, Carmen and Fifi are proven to be one and the same. Lionel kisses Carmen, and Murphy offers to buy the girl and the story for a Hollywood picture. Lionel subsequently receives credit for everything on the production, which opens with a song about the Club Copacabana.

Film Details

Release Date
May 30, 1947
Premiere Information
not available
Production Company
Beacon Productions, Inc.
Distribution Company
United Artists Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 32m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
8,248ft (10 reels)

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

The film's title was taken from Monte Proser's famous New York nightclub, the Copacabana, which was located at 10 East 60th St. Writer Allen Boretz' name is misspelled "Alan" in the onscreen credits. According to a June 1944 Hollywood Reporter news item, independent producer Jack H. Skirball was originally set to make the picture, with assistance from Proser. At that same time, George Raft was announced as the film's possible lead. This was the first film in which Groucho Marx appeared without his brothers. It is also the first film in which Groucho appeared in his own mustache, rather than a greasepaint one. This was Carmen Miranda's first film after leaving Twentieth Century-Fox, the studio to which she had been under contract since 1940. The film includes cameo appearances by Broadway writers Abel Green (the editor of Variety), Louie Sobol (New York Journal-American), and Earl Wilson (New York Post). At the time of the production, Groucho Marx was married to Kay Gorcey, who had a small role in this film.
       Hollywood Reporter news items add Chester Clute, Richard Elliott, Frank Scannell, Pierre Andre and Andrew Tombes to the cast, but their participation in the completed film has not been confirmed. Pierre Andre was signed to perform a specialty dance number with Dee Turnell, according to Hollywood Reporter. In mid-February 1947, Hollywood Reporter reported that producer Sam Coslow was considering reshooting scenes in which Miranda appears in a blonde wig, because of mail from Brazilian fans stating that they prefer her as a brunette. The reshot scenes were to be inserted in South American release prints only, according to the item. As reported in Los Angeles Times on July 14, 1953, Murray P. Koch sued Coslow and George Frank for $80,000, money he claimed to have advanced Beacon to aid in the making of this film. Along with Walter Batchelor and David Hersh, both of whom were dead by the time the suit was filed, Frank and Coslow held a controlling interest in Beacon, which was deemed insolvent. The disposition of this lawsuit is not known. According to Hollywood Reporter, the film was obtained for re-release by Hal R. Makelim's Atlas Pictures Co. in January 1954. The film was also re-issued in July 1972.