Tin Pan Alley


1h 34m 1940

Brief Synopsis

Songwriters Calhoun and Harrigan get Katie and Lily Blane to introduce a new one. Lily goes to England, and Katy joins her after the boys give a new song to Nora Bayes. All are reunited when the boys, now in the army, show up in England.

Film Details

Release Date
Nov 29, 1940
Premiere Information
New York opening: week of 22 Nov 1940
Production Company
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Distribution Company
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 34m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
9,000ft (12 reels)

Synopsis

In New York, in 1915, 46th Street and 8th Avenue was known as Tin Pan Alley, the headquarters of shoestring song publishers. Among those struggling to be recognized are ex-vaudevillian Harry Calhoun and his tunesmith partner, Skeets Harrigan. The existence of Calhoun and Harrigan is so tenuous that Skeets must participate in periodic bouts in the boxing ring in order to pay the rent. In desperation, they recruit the singing Blane sisters to plug their songs, and when Katie Blane and Skeets fall in love, Katie loans Skeets the money to buy the tune that makes them a success. However, Skeets's first love is his business, and when he gives a well-known singer the song that he had promised to Katie, Katie leaves in despair to join her sister Lily in her London act. In London, the sisters become the toast of the town while back in New York, Skeets and Calhoun's business hits the skids and Skeets is forced to return to the boxing ring to pay their bills. When war is declared, the partners, disgusted for having rejected the next hit tune, enlist in the army and are sent overseas to London. On the day that they are to ship out to France, Skeets and Katie rekindle their romance, and when Armistice is declared, they are all happily reunited in New York.

Film Details

Release Date
Nov 29, 1940
Premiere Information
New York opening: week of 22 Nov 1940
Production Company
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Distribution Company
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.
Country
United States

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 34m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)
Color
Black and White
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
1.37 : 1
Film Length
9,000ft (12 reels)

Award Wins

Best Score

1940

Quotes

Trivia

The censors ordered cuts in the "Sheik of Araby" number because the costumes were deemed too revealing.

Scenes which were deleted from final version appear In "Hidden Hollywood: Treasures From The 20th Century Fox Vaults"

Notes

According to materials contained in the Twentieth Century-Fox Produced Scripts Collection at the UCLA Theater Arts Library, this film was based on the original unpublished story "Life is a Song" by Pamela Harris. In memos from the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library, Joseph I. Breen, Director of the MPPDA, ordered that cuts be made in the "Sheik of Araby" number because the dancers' costumes violated production code stipulations regarding semi-nudity. The film won an Academy Award for Best Musical Score.