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Hollywood Party (1934 film)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Hollywood Party
Hollywood Party1934.jpg
theatrical poster
Directed by
Written by
Produced by
CinematographyJames Wong Howe
Edited byGeorge Boemler
Music by
Distributed byLoew's Inc.
Release date
  • June 1, 1934 (1934-06-01) (US)
Running time
75 minutes (original)
68 minutes (existing)
CountryUnited States

Hollywood Party, also known under its working title of Hollywood Revue of 1933 and Star Spangled Banquet,[1][2] is a 1934 American pre-Code musical film starring Laurel and Hardy, The Three Stooges, Jimmy Durante, Lupe Vélez and Mickey Mouse (voiced by an uncredited Walt Disney). It was distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. Each sequence featured a different star with a separate scriptwriter and director assigned.


Laurel and Hardy with Lupe Vélez in a scene of the movie
Laurel and Hardy with Lupe Vélez in a scene of the movie

Jungle movie star "Schnarzan" (Jimmy Durante), a character in parody of Tarzan, is advised by his manager that he needs new lions for his pictures, as his old ones are "worn out". At a wild Hollywood party with many varied guests, including a "lion provider", hilarity ensues. After it all gets out of hand, Schnarzan awakens to find he is just plain old Durante, who had a strange dream.[3]


Live action cast

Uncredited cast

Voice cast

Production background

During production the movie was known as Star Spangled Banquet and the Hollywood Revue of 1933.[1] Although Hollywood Party has no director credited, it has been asserted that Allan Dwan, Edmund Goulding, Russell Mack, Charles Reisner, Roy Rowland and Sam Wood directed various scenes with the overwhelming majority directed by Richard Boleslavsky.[4] George Stevens directed the Laurel and Hardy sequence[4] and Dave Gould directed the "Feelin' High" dance number with choreography by Georgie Hale. Seymour Felix and Eddie Prinz directed final reshoots.[5][6] Around the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer backlot, the choreographers of the dance sequences were competing with those staging the MGM movie Dancing Lady, vying to see who could create the most elaborate dance number.[7]

The movie had many sequences cut or reshot after several references proved too esoteric for foreign audiences. A sequence that had featured Thelma Todd (impersonating Mae West), Lupe Vélez, Jimmy Durante and Zasu Pitts playing bridge was deleted after it was lost on British viewers not yet familiar with the game.[6] Additional episodes that featured actors Herman Bing, Johnny Weissmuller, Jackie Cooper and Max Baer were cut from the movie. As a result, surviving prints run approximately 68 minutes, but the original run time was 75 minutes. Famed songwriters Rodgers and Hart contributed most of the music.[4] Gus Kahn wrote "Moonlight Serenade" for the 1933 Busby Berkeley movie Footlight Parade. However, when that song was cut from the Warner Bros. picture, it was placed a year later in Hollywood Party and sung by Eddie Quillan.[8]

The movie was neither a financial nor critical success. It was considered too avant garde to appeal to general audiences. It remains significant today for its 31 stars, including Laurel and Hardy, radio celebrity Jack Pearl, The Three Stooges (in their final appearance for MGM), and Mickey Mouse. The Three Stooges routine was written by Arthur Kober.[9] The Mickey Mouse sequence introduces a Technicolor cartoon, The Hot Choc-late Soldiers, created by Walt Disney with music by Nacio Herb Brown, and lyrics by Arthur Freed.


Critical reception for Hollywood Party upon its original release was largely negative.[2] Multiple exhibitors wrote in to the Motion Picture Herald to express their disgust with the movie, and one theater manager from Kentucky called it "One of the poorest excuses for a picture we have ever played".[10] The New York Times wrote that it "may have been very funny while it was being made, but as it comes to the screen it is not a little disappointing".[11]

See also


  1. ^ a b Variety, March 13, 1934.
  2. ^ a b Kaufman, J.B. (June 1993). "Before Snow White". Film History. 5 (2): 164–172. JSTOR 27670718.
  3. ^ "Hollywood Party".
  4. ^ a b c Variety, March 29, 1934
  5. ^ Variety, November 18, 1933
  6. ^ a b Variety, February 22, 1934
  7. ^ Variety, October 31, 1933
  8. ^ Variety, August 22, 1933
  9. ^ Variety, October 12, 1933
  10. ^ Jenkins, Henry (1992). What Made Pistachio Nuts?: Early Sound Comedy and the Vaudeville Aesthetic. Columbia University Press. pp. 110–132. ISBN 9780231078559. Retrieved 4 June 2015.
  11. ^ "Hollywood Party (1934)". The New York Times. May 26, 1934. Retrieved June 4, 2015.

External links

This page was last edited on 30 October 2022, at 12:10
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