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His Girl Friday (1940)

His Girl Friday poster.jpg

The originating play The Front Page had already been filmed in 1931 and the Ben Hecht-Charles Macarthur hit was turned into a battle of the sexes/career woman comedy by Howard Hawks at a reading in his home one Sunday afternoon when Rosalind Russell was visiting. She becomes Hildy, the ex of Walter Burns, go-getting newspaper editor, who wants her to cover an execution at Cook County Jail just as she’s going to get married to a man who will let her settle down. The overlapping dialogue is legendary and the performances classic, yet it’s still not my favourite screwball, despite its great newspaper jibes and submerged violence. Adapted by Charles Lederer with some uncredited help from Hecht and Morrie Ryskind. And that’s Ralph Bellamy in the Ralph Bellamy part, as Grant helpfully informs us.

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About elainelennon

An occasional movie-watching diary.

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