It's a Wonderful Life (1946) Poster

Henry Travers: Clarence



  • Clarence : Strange, isn't it? Each man's life touches so many other lives. When he isn't around he leaves an awful hole, doesn't he?

  • Clarence : [In book inscription]  Remember, George: no man is a failure who has friends.

  • Clarence : You see, George, you've really had a wonderful life. Don't you see what a mistake it would be to throw it away?

  • [George has discovered his brother Harry's tombstone] 

    Clarence : [explaining]  Your brother, Harry Bailey, broke through the ice and was drowned at the age of nine.

    George Bailey : That's a lie! Harry Bailey went to war! He got the Congressional Medal of Honor! He saved the lives of every man on that transport!

    Clarence : Every man on that transport died. Harry wasn't there to save them, because you weren't there to save Harry.

  • George Bailey : Look, who are you? Who are you really?

    Clarence : I told you, George. I'm your guardian angel.

    George Bailey : Yeah, well what else are you? Are you a hypnotist?

    Clarence : No, of course not.

    George Bailey : Then why am I seeing all these strange things?

    Clarence : Don't you understand, George? It's because you were never born.

    George Bailey : Well, if I was never born... who am I?

    Clarence : You're nobody. You have no identity.

    George Bailey : What do you mean no identity? My name is George Bailey!

    Clarence : There is no George Bailey.

    [George searches his pockets for identification, finds none] 

    Clarence : You have no papers, no cards, no driver's license, no 4F card, no insurance policy.

    [George finally searches his watch pocket for the rose petals from Zuzu] 

    Clarence : They're not there either.

    George Bailey : What?

    Clarence : Zuzu's petals... You've been given a great gift, George: A chance to see what the world would be like without you.

  • George Bailey : Well, you look about the kind of angel I'd get. Sort of a fallen angel, aren't you? What happened to your wings?

    Clarence : I haven't won my wings, yet. That's why I'm called an Angel Second Class. I have to earn them. And you'll help me will you?

    George Bailey : [sarcastic]  Sure, sure. How?

    Clarence : By letting me help you.

    George Bailey : I know one way you can help me. You don't happen to have 8,000 bucks on you?

    Clarence : No, we don't use money in Heaven.

    George Bailey : Well, it comes in real handy down here, bud!

  • Clarence : [hearing Nick's cash register ding]  Oh-oh. Somebody's just made it.

    George Bailey : Made what?

    Clarence : Every time you hear a bell ring, it means that some angel's just got his wings.

  • George Bailey : Now, come on, get your clothes on, and we'll stroll up to my car and get... Oh, I'm sorry. I'll stroll. You fly.

    Clarence : I can't fly! I haven't got my wings.

    George Bailey : You haven't got your wings. Yeah, that's right.

  • Nick : Hey look, mister. We serve hard drinks in here for men who want to get drunk fast, and we don't need any characters around to give the joint "atmosphere". Is that clear, or do I have to slip you my left for a convincer?

    George Bailey : [intervening]  Nick, hold on. Just give him the same as mine. He's no trouble.

    Nick : Okay.

    [Nick walks away to tend to the bar] 

    George Bailey : [to Clarence]  What's the matter with him? I never saw Nick act like that before.

    Clarence : You'll see a lot of strange things from now on.

  • George Bailey : Clarence?

    Clarence : Yes, George?

    George Bailey : Where's Mary? If this is all real and I was never born, what became of Mary?

    Clarence : [hesitates]  Well... I don't... I can't...

    George Bailey : [grabs Clarence by his collar]  Look, I don't know how you know these things, but if you know where my wife is, you'll tell me.

    Clarence : I... I'm not supposed to tell.

    George Bailey : Please, Clarence, where's my wife? Tell me where my wife is.

    Clarence : You're not going to like it, George.

    George Bailey : Where is she? What happened to her?

    Clarence : She became an old maid. She never married...

    George Bailey : [desperate]  Where is she? WHERE IS SHE?

    Clarence : She's... she's just about to close up the library!

    [George throws Clarence to the ground and runs off] 

    Clarence : [more frustrated]  Ohh... there must be some easier way for me to get my wings.

  • Senior Angel : A man down on Earth needs our help.

    Clarence : Splendid. Is he sick?

    Senior Angel : No, worse. He's discouraged.

  • George Bailey : Well, maybe I left the car up at Martini's. Well, come on, Gabriel.

    Clarence : Clarence!

    George Bailey : Clarence. Right... Clarence.

  • Clarence : I'm Clarence Oddbody, AS2.

    George Bailey : Oddbody... Hey, what's an AS2?

    Clarence : Angel, Second Class.

    [the bridgekeeper, overhearing it, falls backwards in his chair completely spooked] 

  • Clarence : So... you still think that killing yourself would make everyone feel happier, eh?

    George Bailey : Oh, I don't know. I guess you're right. I supposed it would have been better if I'd never been born at all.

    Clarence : What did you say?

    George Bailey : I said I wished I was never born!

    Clarence : Oh, you mustn't say things like that... Oh, now wait a minute. That's an idea now, isn't it?

    [looks upward] 

    Clarence : What do you think? Ahhh... that will do it. All right, George... you've got your wish: you've never been born.

    [Wind begins to blow violently outside the shack; Clarence yells out the door] 

    Clarence : You don't need to make all THAT fuss about it!

  • House owner : You must mean two other trees. You had me worried. This is one of the oldest trees in Pottersville.

    George Bailey : Pottersville? You mean Bedford Falls.

    House owner : I mean Pottersville! Don't you think I know where I live? What's the matter with you?

    [He proceeds toward his house. George is completely bewildered] 

    George Bailey : Oh, I don't know. Either I'm off my nut, or he is...

    [to Clarence] 

    George Bailey : ... or you are!

    Clarence : It isn't me!

  • Senior Angel : [voice-over]  bHello Joseph, trouble?

    Joseph - Angel : [voice-over]  Looks like we'll have to send someone down. There are a lot of people asking for help for a man named George Bailey.

    Senior Angel : [voice-over]  George Bailey? Yes! Tonight's his crucial night. You're right. We'll have to send someone down immediately. Whose turn is it?

    Joseph - Angel : [voice-over]  That's why I came to see you, sir. It's that clock maker's turn again.

    Senior Angel : [chuckles] 


    Senior Angel : Oh, Clarence. Hasn't gotten his wings yet, has he?

    Joseph - Angel : [voice-over]  We passed him up right along. Because, you know sir, he's got the IQ of a rabbit.

    Senior Angel : [voice-over]  Yes, but he's got the faith of a child. Simple. Joseph, send for Clarence.

    Clarence : [voice-over]  You sent for me, sir?

    Senior Angel : [voice-over]  Yes, Clarence. A man down on earth needs our help.

    Clarence : [voice-over]  Splendid. Is he sick?

    Senior Angel : [voice-over]  No, worse. He's discouraged. At exactly 10:45 pm Earth time, that man will be thinking seriously about throwing away God's greatest gift.

    Clarence : [voice-over]  Oh, dear, dear. His life. Then I've only got one hour to dress. What are they wearing now?

    Senior Angel : [voice-over]  You will spend that hour getting acquainted with George Bailey.

    Clarence : [voice-over]  Sir, if I should accomplish this mission, I mean... um. Might I perhaps win my wings? I've been waiting for over 200 years now, sir, and people ARE beginning to talk.

    Senior Angel : [voice-over]  What's that book you've got there?

    Clarence : [voice-over]  Oh, oh, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.

    Senior Angel : [voice-over]  Clarence, you do a good job with George Bailey and you will get your wings.

See also

Release Dates | Official Sites | Company Credits | Filming & Production | Technical Specs

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