The Glass Bottom Boat


1h 50m 1966
The Glass Bottom Boat

Brief Synopsis

A woman writing a scientist's biography is mistaken for a spy.

Film Details

Genre
Comedy
Romance
Release Date
Jan 1966
Premiere Information
New York opening: 9 Jun 1966
Production Company
Arwin Productions, Inc.; Reame Productions
Distribution Company
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 50m
Sound
Mono
Color
Color (Metrocolor)
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
2.35 : 1

Synopsis

Jennifer Nelson, a young widow working in the public relations office of a space laboratory, meets her new boss Bruce Templeton when he accidentally catches his fishing line on a mermaid outfit she is wearing while entertaining tourists on her father's glass-bottom boat. Templeton, delighted to discover that the woman he "fished out" of Catalina Bay is working at his plant, assigns her to write a definitive biography of him while he is test-piloting a new rocket. Jenny's habit of "exercising" her dog Vladimir by telephoning him at home (he runs around the house whenever the phone rings), arouses the suspicions of CIA men. When she overhears Templeton discussing the possibility that she is a foreign spy, she makes misleading phone calls at a party at Templeton's home. Unknown to her, a secret formula has been planted in her purse, and the real espionage agent pays her a visit when she arrives home. Jenny bolts out of a window and a mad chase follows. The real culprits are apprehended, and Jenny ends up in her boss's arms.

Film Details

Genre
Comedy
Romance
Release Date
Jan 1966
Premiere Information
New York opening: 9 Jun 1966
Production Company
Arwin Productions, Inc.; Reame Productions
Distribution Company
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 50m
Sound
Mono
Color
Color (Metrocolor)
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
2.35 : 1

Articles

The Glass Bottom Boat


Looking for a madcap romp complete with Cold War intrigue? Take a ride on The Glass Bottom Boat (1966) with Doris Day and Rod Taylor. Brought to you by director Frank Tashlin, famous for his send-ups of '50s and '60s mass culture, who delivers spy thriller parodies, romance and even a few musical numbers in this screwball comedy, which includes a distinctly comedic supporting cast. Doris Day plays a widow who has just started a new job in public relations at a space laboratory that develops inventions by engineering wizard Rod Taylor. Day moonlights as a mermaid for her dad's Catalina glass bottom boat tour business and, as the film opens, is literally hooked by Taylor, little knowing that he's her new boss. Taylor sets his sights on the dizzy but wholesome blond and the stage is set for mistaken identities galore, most of them set in motion by those protecting Taylor's top-secret project, known as Gismo. They become certain that Day's mysterious calls to a certain Vladimir (her dog), and other misinterpreted behavior, are proof she's a secret agent. Meanwhile, Doris sings, Rod falls hard, and the Soviets ultimately miss the boat in this classic mid-sixties romp.

It is perhaps no wonder that the French, the first (the only?) ones on the planet to fully embrace Jerry Lewis would also be the premiere filmgoers to herald Frank Tashlin as a master of the absurd, while Americans remained, during his lifetime, largely unsure what to make of him. Tashlin and Lewis made eight pictures together (beginning with Artists and Models, 1955) and it's still not known whether Dom DeLuise's performance in The Glass Bottom Boat (his second-ever film appearance) as a bumbling informant, was inspired by Lewis or not, even though it's very close to the type of wacky characters Lewis played in Tashlin's comedies. Tashlin, of course, is known for his bigger-than-life cartoon-like style (especially visible in films like The Girl Can't Help It, 1956 and Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?, 1957), a happy hangover from Tashlin's beginnings as a successful animator, working alongside luminary Tex Avery. And, as in the world of cartoons, Tashlin's live-action work is often devoted to characters with rubbery faces and plot lines that require significant suspension of disbelief.

Tashlin's hand-picked supporting cast for The Glass Bottom Boat is a veritable who's who of comic character actors: George Tobias and Alice Pearce reprise their roles as the nosey neighbors from Bewitched, of which they'd already been a successful part for several seasons; John McGiver (The Patty Duke Show) is the sour-faced corporate executive; Edward Andrews (Tea and Sympathy, 1956) as the randy General; Paul Lynde (Bye Bye Birdie, 1963) as the over-zealous security guard; and Dick Martin (Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In) is perfect as Taylor's opportunistic and womanizing co-worker. TV and radio host Arthur Godfrey plays Day's rough and ready father and delivers a musical interlude as well. Keep your eyes peeled for a most surprising cameo appearance by Robert Vaughn (The Man from U.N.C.L.E.) as well. Australian-born Rod Taylor (The Time Machine, 1960) is perfectly cast as the romantic lead and straight man amid this mayhem and is convincing, as usual, as the smart and debonair recipient of Day's ire and affection.

Gadgets are another key part of Tashlin's cast, and The Glass Bottom Boat has a number of them -- from the anti-gravity invention known as Gismo, to a kitchen with every space-age gimmick imaginable, including a push-button, self-cleaning eggbeater and a mess-hating robot that is activated when anything touches the floor (yes, that goes for people too).

At the time, reviews of The Glass Bottom Boat suggested that Tashlin brought out a new quality in his star Doris Day and raised her comedic skills to new heights. The movie was Day and Tashlin's first film together and they would go on to collaborate on Caprice (1967) the following year, which Day wanted to turn down, but was already committed to it by her husband/manager Marty Melcher. In 1968, at the time of Melcher's death, Day discovered that he had mismanaged or embezzled all of her career earnings and she was flat broke. Day bounced back with The Doris Day Show, and eventually was awarded damages from her former lawyer, who had helped Melcher "manage" her business.

Producer: Martin Melcher, Everett Freeman
Director: Frank Tashlin
Screenplay: Everett Freeman
Art Direction: Edward C. Carfagno, George W. Davis
Cinematography: Leon Shamroy
Editing: John McSweeney, Jr.
Music: Frank De Vol
Cast: Doris Day (Jennifer Nelson), Rod Taylor (Bruce Templeton), Arthur Godfrey (Axel Nordstrom), John McGiver (Ralph Goodwin), Paul Lynde (Homer Cripps).
C-111m. Letterboxed. Closed captioning. Descriptive Video.

by Emily Soares
The Glass Bottom Boat

The Glass Bottom Boat

Looking for a madcap romp complete with Cold War intrigue? Take a ride on The Glass Bottom Boat (1966) with Doris Day and Rod Taylor. Brought to you by director Frank Tashlin, famous for his send-ups of '50s and '60s mass culture, who delivers spy thriller parodies, romance and even a few musical numbers in this screwball comedy, which includes a distinctly comedic supporting cast. Doris Day plays a widow who has just started a new job in public relations at a space laboratory that develops inventions by engineering wizard Rod Taylor. Day moonlights as a mermaid for her dad's Catalina glass bottom boat tour business and, as the film opens, is literally hooked by Taylor, little knowing that he's her new boss. Taylor sets his sights on the dizzy but wholesome blond and the stage is set for mistaken identities galore, most of them set in motion by those protecting Taylor's top-secret project, known as Gismo. They become certain that Day's mysterious calls to a certain Vladimir (her dog), and other misinterpreted behavior, are proof she's a secret agent. Meanwhile, Doris sings, Rod falls hard, and the Soviets ultimately miss the boat in this classic mid-sixties romp. It is perhaps no wonder that the French, the first (the only?) ones on the planet to fully embrace Jerry Lewis would also be the premiere filmgoers to herald Frank Tashlin as a master of the absurd, while Americans remained, during his lifetime, largely unsure what to make of him. Tashlin and Lewis made eight pictures together (beginning with Artists and Models, 1955) and it's still not known whether Dom DeLuise's performance in The Glass Bottom Boat (his second-ever film appearance) as a bumbling informant, was inspired by Lewis or not, even though it's very close to the type of wacky characters Lewis played in Tashlin's comedies. Tashlin, of course, is known for his bigger-than-life cartoon-like style (especially visible in films like The Girl Can't Help It, 1956 and Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?, 1957), a happy hangover from Tashlin's beginnings as a successful animator, working alongside luminary Tex Avery. And, as in the world of cartoons, Tashlin's live-action work is often devoted to characters with rubbery faces and plot lines that require significant suspension of disbelief. Tashlin's hand-picked supporting cast for The Glass Bottom Boat is a veritable who's who of comic character actors: George Tobias and Alice Pearce reprise their roles as the nosey neighbors from Bewitched, of which they'd already been a successful part for several seasons; John McGiver (The Patty Duke Show) is the sour-faced corporate executive; Edward Andrews (Tea and Sympathy, 1956) as the randy General; Paul Lynde (Bye Bye Birdie, 1963) as the over-zealous security guard; and Dick Martin (Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In) is perfect as Taylor's opportunistic and womanizing co-worker. TV and radio host Arthur Godfrey plays Day's rough and ready father and delivers a musical interlude as well. Keep your eyes peeled for a most surprising cameo appearance by Robert Vaughn (The Man from U.N.C.L.E.) as well. Australian-born Rod Taylor (The Time Machine, 1960) is perfectly cast as the romantic lead and straight man amid this mayhem and is convincing, as usual, as the smart and debonair recipient of Day's ire and affection. Gadgets are another key part of Tashlin's cast, and The Glass Bottom Boat has a number of them -- from the anti-gravity invention known as Gismo, to a kitchen with every space-age gimmick imaginable, including a push-button, self-cleaning eggbeater and a mess-hating robot that is activated when anything touches the floor (yes, that goes for people too). At the time, reviews of The Glass Bottom Boat suggested that Tashlin brought out a new quality in his star Doris Day and raised her comedic skills to new heights. The movie was Day and Tashlin's first film together and they would go on to collaborate on Caprice (1967) the following year, which Day wanted to turn down, but was already committed to it by her husband/manager Marty Melcher. In 1968, at the time of Melcher's death, Day discovered that he had mismanaged or embezzled all of her career earnings and she was flat broke. Day bounced back with The Doris Day Show, and eventually was awarded damages from her former lawyer, who had helped Melcher "manage" her business. Producer: Martin Melcher, Everett Freeman Director: Frank Tashlin Screenplay: Everett Freeman Art Direction: Edward C. Carfagno, George W. Davis Cinematography: Leon Shamroy Editing: John McSweeney, Jr. Music: Frank De Vol Cast: Doris Day (Jennifer Nelson), Rod Taylor (Bruce Templeton), Arthur Godfrey (Axel Nordstrom), John McGiver (Ralph Goodwin), Paul Lynde (Homer Cripps). C-111m. Letterboxed. Closed captioning. Descriptive Video. by Emily Soares

Quotes

I want to talk to you a minute. Those phone calls, there is no question about it. She's an agent, operating for the-
- Edgar Hill
She's no more an agent than you are! And if you're the best the CIA can come up with, this country is in big trouble!
- Bruce Templeton
Now look here! We'll have to detain her.
- Edgar Hill
Mrs Nelson can leave here whenever she wishes!
- Bruce Templeton
What's that noise?
- Edgar Hill
What? Oh, well I locked her in the closet.
- Bruce Templeton
Hey! What in heavens name do you think you're doing?
- Jennifer Nelson
You talkin' to me?
- Bruce Templeton
Yes I'm talking to you! That's my suit on your line!
- Jennifer Nelson
Oh I'm sorry.. that's a funny looking suit.
- Bruce Templeton
It's my mermaid tail. and would you please throw it back?
- Jennifer Nelson
You wouldn't hit a coward, would you?
- Zack Malloy
Donna, may I borrow a dime please? I have to call my dog.
- Jennifer Nelson
Hey! You're the mermaid
- Bruce Templeton
Yes, I'm the mermaid
- Jennifer Nelson
Didn't recognize you with your clothes on.
- Bruce Templeton

Trivia

Notes

Location scenes filmed on Catalina Island.

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States 1966

Released in United States 1966