The Doughgirls is a 1944 American comedy film, revolving around the newlywed Halstead couple, played by Jane Wyman and Jack Carson, and their misadventures trying to find some privacy and living space in the housing shortage of wartime Washington D.C. "It's zany plot moves easily with a cast of characters propelled about the screen like shuttlecocks." Eve Arden as a Russian sniper and Joe DeRita as a sleepy hotel guest, both looking for space in the overcrowded hotel are stand outs in a great cast.
|Directed by||James V. Kern|
|Produced by||Mark Hellinger|
|Written by||James V. Kern|
|Based on||The Doughgirls|
by Joseph Fields
|Music by||Adolph Deutsch|
|Edited by||Folmar Blangsted|
|Distributed by||Warner Brothers|
This black and white comedy about three couples joins the freshly wed Halsteads shortly upon arrival in their overcrowded D.C. hotel where they set out for the honeymoon suite, only to find it usurped by the previous newlywed couple, Ann Sheridan and John Ridgley as the Cadmens. Finally a third newlywed couple the Dillons, Alexis Smith and Craig Stevens, arrive to claim the suite as well. Add to this: a military contractor with a no nonsense attitude; a lecherous boss; an F.B.I. investigator; a priest (to make one couple's marriage "legal"); a group of orphan babies; a Russian who likes to shoot pigeons; and a wandering man trying to find somewhere, anywhere to get some sleep. The Doughgirls is a raucous farce where the humor comes from the unconsummated marriage of Wyman and Carson, with a great performance by Eve Arden as a visiting Russian.
Warner Bros. bought the rights for The Doughgirls stage play for $250,000 but still needed a script and a way to get the story of three unmarried couples in the same hotel suite around the censors, known as the Breen office. The studio employed James V. Kern and Sam Hellman. The duo adapted Fields' play; marrying the couples off and toning down the language. They had jokes to address overcrowding in Washington D.C., adding wartime references such as rationing and meatless Tuesdays while even adding a White House visit for the Dillons to meet the Roosevelts off camera. Jane Wyman, though not pleased with fourth billing nor the "ditsy" role, was happy with the cast and to be working. Ann Sheridan was nearly suspended over The Doughgirls when Warner Bros. refused to let her out of filming, but she used her star status and negotiated a USO tour following completion, something she had wanted for sometime.
- Ann Sheridan as Edna Stokes Cadman
- Alexis Smith as Nan Curtiss Dillon
- Jack Carson as Arthur Halstead
- Jane Wyman as Vivian Marsden Halstead
- Irene Manning as Mrs. Sylvia Cadman
- Charles Ruggles as Stanley Slade
- Eve Arden as Sgt. Natalia Moskoroff
- John Ridgely as Julian Cadman
- Alan Mowbray as Breckenridge Drake
- John Alexander as Warren Buckley
- Craig Stevens as Lt. Tom Dillon
- Barbara Brown as Elizabeth Brush Cartwright
- Francis Pierlot as Mr. Jordan
- Donald MacBride as Judge Franklin
- Regis Toomey as Agent Walsh
- Joe DeRita as The Stranger (uncredited)
- Marie De Becker as Maid (uncredited)
- P.p.k (August 31, 1944). "' The Doughgirls' Careens Along Its Dizzy Way at Hollywood -- 'Wing and a Prayer' at the Globe and the Gotham". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved December 5, 2018.
- Dick, Bernard F. (March 14, 2014). The President’s Ladies: Jane Wyman and Nancy Davis. Univ. Press of Mississippi. ISBN 9781617039805.
- Bubbeo, Daniel (June 21, 2010). The Women of Warner Brothers: The Lives and Careers of 15 Leading Ladies, with Filmographies for Each. McFarland. ISBN 9780786462360.
- Wertheim, Albert (March 16, 2004). Staging the War: American Drama and World War II. Indiana University Press. ISBN 9780253110855.
- Inc, Time (February 1, 1943). LIFE. Time Inc.
- Fields, Joseph (1943). The Doughgirls: a wartime comedy. New York City, New York: Random House.
- Tucker, David C. (January 10, 2014). Eve Arden: A Chronicle of All Film, Television, Radio and Stage Performances. McFarland. ISBN 9780786488100.