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Encyclopedia > Mr. Deeds Goes to Town
Mr. Deeds Goes to Town
Directed by Frank Capra
Produced by Frank Capra
Written by Clarence Budington Kelland (story)
Robert Riskin (screenplay)
Starring Gary Cooper
Jean Arthur
Cinematography Joseph Walker
Editing by Gene Havlick
Distributed by Columbia
Release date(s) April 16, 1936
Running time 115 min.
Country Flag of the United States United States
Language English
IMDb profile

Mr. Deeds Goes to Town is a 1936 comedy film, based on the story Opera Hat by Clarence Budington Kelland. The film was written by Kelland and Robert Riskin, and directed by Frank Capra. It starred Gary Cooper and Jean Arthur. Image File history File links Mdgtt1936. ... This article is about the film director. ... Robert Riskin (March 30, 1897–September 20, 1955) was an American screenwriter and playwright, best known for his collaborations with director-producer Frank Capra. ... Gary Cooper (born Frank James Cooper May 7, 1901 – May 13, 1961) was a two-time Academy Award-winning American film actor of English heritage. ... Jean Arthur (October 17, 1900 – June 19, 1991) was an Oscar-nominated American actress and a major film star of the 1930s and 1940s. ... Joseph Walker or Joe Walker can refer to more than one person of note, including: Joseph A. Walker, a United States military aviator Joseph A. Walker, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright (The River Niger) J. E. Walker, former president of the Universal Life Insurance Company. ... is the 106th day of the year (107th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1936 (MCMXXXVI) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will take you to calendar). ... Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... See also: 1935 in film 1936 1937 in film 1930s in film years in film film // Events January 6 - first Porky Pig animated cartoon September 28 - The Marx Brothers Harpo Marx marries actress Susan Fleming Top grossing films in North America Red River Valley Academy Awards Best Picture: The Great... Comedy film is genre of film in which the main emphasis is on humor. ... Categories: Stub | Hats ... Robert Riskin (March 30, 1897–September 20, 1955) was an American screenwriter and playwright, best known for his collaborations with director-producer Frank Capra. ... This article is about the film director. ... Gary Cooper (born Frank James Cooper May 7, 1901 – May 13, 1961) was a two-time Academy Award-winning American film actor of English heritage. ... Jean Arthur (October 17, 1900 – June 19, 1991) was an Oscar-nominated American actress and a major film star of the 1930s and 1940s. ...

Contents

Plot

In the middle of the Great Depression, Longfellow Deeds (Gary Cooper), part-time greeting card poet and tuba-playing inhabitant of the hamlet of Mandrake Falls, Vermont, inherits the enormous fortune of 20 million dollars from his late uncle, Martin Semple. He is found and taken to New York City by his uncle's unctuous attorney, John Cedar (Douglass Dumbrille). For other uses, see The Great Depression (disambiguation). ... New York, New York and NYC redirect here. ... Douglass Dumbrille (October 13, 1889 – April 2, 1974) was an actor and one of the Canadian pioneers in early Hollywood. ...


Cedar gives his cynical troubleshooter, ex-newspaperman Cornelius Cobb (Lionel Stander), the task of keeping reporters away from the heir. He is outfoxed however by star reporter Louise "Babe" Bennett (Jean Arthur), who appeals to Deeds' romantic fantasy of rescuing a damsel in distress by masquerading as a poor worker named Mary Dawson. She pretends to faint from hunger in his presence and worms her way into his confidence. She proceeds to write a series of enormously popular articles mocking Longfellow's hick ways and odd behavior, naming him the "Cinderella Man." Meanwhile, Cedar tries to get Deeds' power of attorney in order to hide his financial misdeeds. Troubleshooting is a form of problem solving. ... Lionel Stander & Freeway Lionel Jay Stander (January 11, 1908 – November 30, 1994) was an American character actor in movies, radio, theater and television. ... A power of attorney or letter of attorney in common law systems or mandate in civil law systems is an authorization to act on someone elses behalf in a legal or business matter. ...


However, Deeds proves to be a shrewd observer of people, easily fending off greedy opportunists and Cedar as well. He wins Cobb's wholehearted respect and eventually Babe's love. Complications arise when Cobb finds out the reporter's true identity, leaving Deeds heartbroken.


Just as he is ready to return to Mandrake Falls in disgust, a dispossessed farmer breaks into his mansion and threatens him with a gun. He expresses his scorn for the seemingly heartless, ultra rich man, who won't lift a finger to help the multitudes of desperate poor. The intruder then comes to his senses, but Deeds realizes what he can do with his troublesome fortune: he decides to provide fully equipped ten-acre farms free to thousands of homeless families if they will work the land for several years.


Alarmed at the prospect of losing control of the fortune, Cedar joins forces with Deeds' only other relative and his grasping, domineering wife in seeking to have Deeds declared mentally incompetent. This, along with Babe's betrayal, finally breaks his spirit and he sinks into a deep depression.


During his sanity hearing, things look bleak for Deeds, especially since he initially refuses to defend himself. Cedar even gets his Mandrake Falls tenants, eccentric elderly sisters, Jane and Amy Faulkner (Margaret Seddon and Margaret McWade), to testify that he is "pixilated." However, when Babe convinces him that she truly loves him, he systematically punches holes in Cedar's case (before punching Cedar in the face) and the judge declares him to be "the sanest man who ever walked into this courtroom."


Etymology of "pixilated"

The film popularized the word "pixilated", which in this case meant craziness, or Deed's seemingly illogical behavior in the film. The 1932 book, The American Notebooks by Nathaniel Hawthorne: Based Upon the Original Manuscripts in the Pierpont Morgan Library, edited by Randall Stewart, includes the entry:

"Pixilated"—a Marblehead word, meaning bewildered–wild–&c &c Probably derived from Pixy—a fairy.
The New English Dictionary gives "pixyled," with the meaning "led astray by pixies," "bewildered," but not "pixilated."

Cast

  • Gary Cooper as Longfellow Deeds/Cinderella Man. Cooper was director Capra's first, last and only choice.[citation needed]
  • Jean Arthur as Louise "Babe" Bennett/Mary Dawson. Arthur was not the first choice for the role. Principal photography had already begun when Capra "discovered" his heroine in a rush screening.[1]
  • George Bancroft as MacWade aka "Mac"
  • Lionel Stander as Cornelius Cobb
  • Douglass Dumbrille as John Cedar
  • Raymond Walburn as Walter
  • H.B. Warner as Judge May
  • Ruth Donnelly as Mabel Dawson
  • Walter Catlett as Morrow

Gary Cooper (born Frank James Cooper May 7, 1901 – May 13, 1961) was a two-time Academy Award-winning American film actor of English heritage. ... Jean Arthur (October 17, 1900 – June 19, 1991) was an Oscar-nominated American actress and a major film star of the 1930s and 1940s. ... George Bancroft (September 30, 1882 - October 2, 1956) was an American actor. ... Lionel Stander & Freeway Lionel Jay Stander (January 11, 1908 – November 30, 1994) was an American character actor in movies, radio, theater and television. ... Douglass Dumbrille (October 13, 1889 – April 2, 1974) was an actor and one of the Canadian pioneers in early Hollywood. ... Raymond Walburn (September 9, 1887 – July 26, 1969) was an American character actor who appeared in dozens of Hollywood comedies during the 1930s and 1940s. ... H. B. Warner (26 October 1875, London - 21 December 1958, Woodland Hills, California) was a British actor, born Henry B. Warner. ... Walter Catlett (February 4, 1889 - November 14, 1960) was an American actor. ...

Awards

Capra won the 1936 Academy Award for Directing, while Cooper received the first of his five nominations for Best Actor. The film was also nominated for Best Picture, Best Screenplay (Robert Riskin), and Best Sound Recording (John P. Livadary). See also: 1935 in film 1936 1937 in film 1930s in film years in film film // Events January 6 - first Porky Pig animated cartoon September 28 - The Marx Brothers Harpo Marx marries actress Susan Fleming Top grossing films in North America Red River Valley Academy Awards Best Picture: The Great... The Academy Award for Directing is one of the awards given to directors working in the motion picture industry by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. ... // The Academy Award for Best Motion Picture is one of the Academy Awards, awards given to people working in the motion picture industry by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which are voted on by others within the industry. ... The Academy Award for Writing Adapted Screenplay is one of the Academy Awards, the most prominent film awards in the United States. ... Robert Riskin (March 30, 1897–September 20, 1955) was an American screenwriter and playwright, best known for his collaborations with director-producer Frank Capra. ... The Academy Award for Sound Mixing is an Academy Award that recognizes the finest or most aesthetic sound mixing or recording, and is generally awarded to the production sound mixers and re-recording mixers of the winning film. ...


It was voted Best Picture of the Year (1936) by the New York Film Critics and the National Board of Review. 1936 (MCMXXXVI) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will take you to calendar). ...


Adaptations, remake and non-sequel

A radio adaptation of the film was originally broadcast on February 1, 1936 on Lux Radio Theater. A short-lived TV series of the same name ran from 1969 to 1970, starring Monte Markham as Longfellow Deeds. It was also remade as Mr. Deeds in 2002, starring Adam Sandler and Winona Ryder. Lux Radio Theater, one of the genuine classic radio anthology series (NBC Blue Network (1934-1935); CBS (1935-1954); NBC (1954-1955)) adapted first Broadway stage works, and then (especially) films to hour-long live radio presentations. ... A television program is the content of television broadcasting. ... The year 1969 in television involved some significant events. ... See also: 1969 in television, other events of 1970, 1971 in television and the list of years in television. For the American network television schedule, please see 1970-71 American network television schedule. ... Monte Markham (born 21 June 1935 in Manatee, Florida, United States) is an actor. ... Mr. ... This is a list of film-related events in 2002. ... Adam Richard Sandler (born September 9, 1966) is an American comedian, actor, musician, screenwriter, and film producer. ... Winona Ryder (born October 29, 1971) is a two-time Academy Award-nominated and Golden Globe-winning American actress. ...


A mistaken belief is that a sequel called Mr. Deeds Goes to Washington was written and eventually became Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. Although the latter has some similarities to Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, including starring Jean Arthur and being directed by Capra, its 1939 screenplay was actually based on an out-of-print novel, The Gentleman from Montana, and was an entirely separate project.[2] This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Mr. ...


Popular culture

  • The lyrics to the 1977 Rush song "Cinderella Man" on the A Farewell to Kings album, are based on the story of Mr. Deeds Goes to Town.

Rush is a Canadian rock band comprising bassist, keyboardist, and lead vocalist Geddy Lee, guitarist Alex Lifeson, and drummer and lyricist Neil Peart. ... Rush (A Farewell to Kings) A Farewell to Kings is the fifth studio album by the Canadian band Rush, released in 1977 (see 1977 in music). ...

References

  1. ^ Capra 1971, p. 184.
  2. ^ Capra 1971, p. 254.
  • Capra, Frank. Frank Capra, The Name Above the Title: An Autobiography. New York: The Macmillan Company, 1971. ISBN 0-30680-771-8.
  • Michael, Paul, ed. The Great Movie Book: A Comprehensive Illustrated Reference Guide to the Best-loved Films of the Sound Era. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall Inc., 1980. ISBN 0-13-363663-1.

External links


 
 

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