Cast & Crew
On a train en route to the small town of Fallbridge, Maine, Dr. Joseph McRory, the town's physician for thirty-five years, is about to go on a two-month vacation, when he meets an easy-going doctor from California named Jim Pearson. Unaware that Jim is his temporary replacement, McRory takes an immediate disliking to the young doctor because of his flippant attitude. Upon their arrival in Fallbridge, McRory, realizing who Jim is, makes plans to replace him as soon as possible, then goes fishing locally in case his patients should need him. At McRory's house, Jim meets the town's beautiful schoolteacher, Trudy Mason, who is engaged to stuffy pharmacist Roy Chesley, and begins to fall in love with her. He then ingratiates himself to the villagers by "calling" a square dance in McRory's honor. Jim's friendly professional manner proves effective when, asked by Emily, the shy daughter of Fallbridge's drunken newspaper editor, Bill Walters, to help her father, Jim cures him of his debilitating headaches by helping him to stop drinking whiskey. McRory's vacation is delayed when he has an attack of appendicitis, and, with Trudy's help, Jim successfully performs an emergency appendectomy and wins McRory's approval. After Trudy and Jim enjoy a town sleighride together, McRory encourages Jim not to allow his true love to marry another man, as McRory did years earlier. Later, while helping Jim deliver a baby, Trudy misses a date with Roy. When she returns home at dawn, Roy scolds her, then further infuriates her by saying that Jim is not interested in marriage. Tired of being fought over, Trudy breaks her engagement with Roy and refuses to see Jim. Meanwhile, Dr. Ronnie Jenks, whom McRory originally asked to replace Jim, opens up an office to compete with McRory. Next, Roy's father, C. J. Chesley, head of the town council, leads a fight to keep McRory from achieving his dream as the hospital's chief of surgery. When Jenks and McRory are both ordered to take an examination, Jim coaches McRory. During the test, however, the doctors are called to the schoolhouse to investigate an epidemic. After Jenks alarms the town by diagnosing the children with equine encephalitis, Jim and McRory discover that the schoolboys had simply been smoking cigarettes. Chesley, embarrassed at having called Washington, D.C. for a vaccine shipment, offers McRory the hospital position on the condition that Jim become his assistant. Jim and Trudy then decide to marry.
Fred Datig Jr.
Charles R. Moore
John "skins" Miller
Norman Ollestad Jr.
Ariane Allen Ross
Robert Emmett Dolan
Joseph J. Lilley
Dr. Benjamin Sacks
Sol C. Siegel
James Van Heusen
Welcome Stranger (1947) - Welcome Stranger
Producer: Sol C. Siegel
Director: Elliott Nugent
Screenplay: Arthur Sheekman (screenplay and adaptation); N. Richard Nash (adaptation); Frank Butler (story)
Cinematography: Lionel Lindon
Art Direction: Franz Bachelin, Hans Dreier
Music: Robert Emmett Dolan
Film Editing: Everett Douglas
Cast: Bing Crosby (Dr. James 'Jim' Pearson), Joan Caulfield (Trudy Mason), Barry Fitzgerald (Dr. Joseph McRory), Wanda Hendrix (Emily Walters), Frank Faylen (Bill Walters), Elizabeth Patterson (Mrs. Gilley), Robert Shayne (Roy Chesley), Larry Young (Dr. Ronnie Jenks), Percy Kilbride (Nat Dorkas), Charles Dingle (Charles 'C.J.' Chesley)
Welcome Stranger (1947) - Welcome Stranger
Picture show's on Tuesday.- Mrs. Gilley
What's showing Tuesday?- Jim Pearson
Some picture with Bob Hope in it.- Mrs. Gilley
I'll wait 'til a week from Tuesday.- Jim Pearson
Welcome Stranger reunited Bing Crosby and Barry Fitzgerald, who starred together in the 1944 Academy Award winning Paramount film Going My Way. According to a Hollywood Reporter news item, in early May, near the end of the shooting schedule for Welcome Stranger, assistant directors Dick McWhorter and Jimmie Rosenberger were replaced by unit business manager Mel Epstein and Mickey Moore because of time conflicts. A song entitled "Smack in the Middle of Maine," which was written by Johnny Burke and James Van Heusen for the film, was not used in the final version.
Portions of this film were shot at the Paramount ranch in Calabasas, at Lake Munz, and in the San Fernando Valley, CA. According to Par News, British censorship rules prohibiting the use of such words as "ether" and "anesthetic," as well as the showing of surgical instruments, necessitated filming the emergency appendectomy scenes twice. In the English version, instruments in the operating room cabinets were covered with towels, and the use of dissolves created the impression of the actual operation. Barry Fitzgerald reprised his role in a April 5, 1954 Lux Radio Theatre broadcast, co-starring Cary Grant.