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The Philadelphia Story (1940)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Romance | 17 January 1941 (USA)
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When a rich woman's ex-husband and a tabloid-type reporter turn up just before her planned remarriage, she begins to learn the truth about herself.

Director:

George Cukor

Writers:

Donald Ogden Stewart (screen play), Philip Barry (based on the play by)
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Popularity
4,881 ( 1,659)
Won 2 Oscars. Another 3 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Cary Grant ... C. K. Dexter Haven
Katharine Hepburn ... Tracy Lord
James Stewart ... Macaulay Connor
Ruth Hussey ... Elizabeth Imbrie
John Howard ... George Kittredge
Roland Young ... Uncle Willie
John Halliday ... Seth Lord
Mary Nash ... Margaret Lord
Virginia Weidler ... Dinah Lord
Henry Daniell ... Sidney Kidd
Lionel Pape ... Edward
Rex Evans Rex Evans ... Thomas
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Storyline

Philadelphia socialites Tracy Lord and C.K. Dexter Haven married impulsively, with their marriage and subsequent divorce being equally passionate. They broke up when Dexter's drinking became excessive, it a mechanism to cope with Tracy's unforgiving manner to the imperfect, imperfections which Dexter admits he readily has. Two years after their break-up, Tracy is about to remarry, the ceremony to take place at the Lord mansion. Tracy's bridegroom is nouveau riche businessman and aspiring politician George Kittredge, who is otherwise a rather ordinary man and who idolizes Tracy. The day before the wedding, three unexpected guests show up at the Lord mansion: Macaulay Connor (Mike to his friends), Elizabeth Imbrie - the two who are friends of Tracy's absent brother, Junius- and Dexter himself. Dexter, an employee of the tabloid Spy magazine, made a deal with its publisher and editor Sidney Kidd to get a story on Tracy's wedding - the wedding of the year - in return for Kidd not ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The 3-Star Laugh Hit! See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

17 January 1941 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Philadelphia Story See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

James Stewart had no plans to attend the Oscar ceremony the year he was nominated for this film. Just before the ceremony began, he received a call at home "advising" him to slip into a dinner jacket and attend the ceremony. He did and he received the award for Best Actor. This was in the days before an accounting firm kept the Oscar voting results secret. See more »

Goofs

In the closing scene, a miscue by Grant and possible one by Hepburn, come off OK. Tracy opens a side door to announce to the guests that she and her fiancé "that was" have decided to call it a day. Dexter is standing behind her, and she says, "uh ... Dexter, what next?" He says "Three (sic) years ago I did you out of a wedding in this house by eloping to Maryland." She says to the guests, "Two years ago, uh, you were invited ..." She corrected the number of years which Grant clearly states wrongly - three, to two, but in catching and correcting his error, she got the rest of the line wrong. See more »

Quotes

Margaret Lord: Oh, dear. Is there no such thing as privacy any more?
Tracy Lord: Only in bed, mother, and not always there.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in M*A*S*H: Images (1977) See more »

Soundtracks

Lydia, the Tattooed Lady
(1939) (uncredited)
Lyrics by E.Y. Harburg
Music by Harold Arlen
Performed by Virginia Weidler (vocal and piano)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
One of the best Romantic Comedies
18 September 2003 | by MF210See all my reviews

My Rating: ***1/2 out of ****.

The Philadelphia Story is one of the earlier Romantic Comedies. It is also one of the best. This film basically has what most romantic comedies today dont have. That would be a well-written script, Great Acting, and actually funny.

The acting is a huge strength in the film. This is called Katharine Hepburn's best role by many, while I admit she is excellent in a number of scenes, I think she tends to overact at times. Cary Grant is great here. Everyone else is Great but I believe James Stewart to be the standout. He is perfect for this role, its a flawless performance, that he deservedly won the Best Actor Oscar for.

The Script has wonderful dialogue thats delivered flawlessly by the actors. Even simple dialogue like "Isn't that awful" was delivered superbly by Katharine Hepburn. George Cukor made this project look like nothing, he made many films which were "womens films" but he does a damn good job here.

If you think Romantic Comedies of today are good, look at The Philadelphia Story and they will pale in comparison. The Philadelphia Story is a very good film and worth remembering, unlike the mediocre to crappy romantic comedies of today. The Philadelphia Story is highly recommended.


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