It Happened One Night (1934)

 ●  English ● 1 hr 45 mins

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This delightful love story delves into the adventures of the impulsive and rebellious socialite Ellie Andrews, who impetuously marries gold-digger King Wesley, but her wealthy father has it annulled. Tired of her father's control, she runs away, by diving off the family yacht in Miami and heads for New York. On the bus she meets street-smart reporter Peter Warne. They end up traveling together as Warne hopes to get a great story, and Ellie needs his worldly help. Nearing New York, with their many adventures coming to an end, they find that they are reluctantly in love and afraid to admit it to each other. After she mistakenly thinks that Warne has run out on her, Ellie returns to King Wesley, but for how long?
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Did you know? Director Frank Capra came up with the idea about "the walls of Jericho" because Claudette Colbert refused to undress in front of the camera. Read More
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Supporting Actor
Supporting Actor
Supporting Actress
Supporting Actor
Supporting Actor
Supporting Actor
Supporting Actor


Assistant Director


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Executive Producer




Screenplay Writer
Story Writer

Camera and Electrical

Director of Photography


Music Director


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Costume and Wardrobe

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Film Type:
Feature Film
Colour Info:
Black & White
Sound Mix:
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1, 1.37 : 1
Together for the first time!
Errors in Geography
In the opening scene, Daddy's yacht is supposedly anchored off Miami. Yet in the distance are tall coastal hills, similar to what one might see in Southern California. Such a topographical feature is unknown in South Florida.

Errors in Geography
When Peter is held up by the train at a crossing, the caboose is plainly marked SP (Southern Pacific). But he is supposed to be in New Jersey. Although there might be SP box cars in New Jersey, there would not be an SP caboose.

Crew/Equipment Visible
After King lands and taxis in the autogyro, apparently the sole occupant, a man is visible in the cockpit crouching down as King walks around and to the rear of the autogyro.

Audio/Video Mismatch
In the closing scene, the manager has given Peter a trumpet. We hear him play it, but the last 3 notes he plays are clearly three trumpets playing in harmony.

In the exterior view of the bus running off the road (after the "flying trapeze" song), the driver is a different person and the curtain that is behind him in the interior view is missing.

When Peter is making breakfast for Ellen, as the table is first set, there are six doughnuts on the plate in the lower left corner of the screen, but when they sit and begin eating and discussing what there is to eat, there are only two.

When Peter is driving a car with Ellie beside him, she puts a scarf around her neck which repeatedly changes between shots.

Ellie Andrews calls Peter by his name at the train terminal before she actually knows it. In a later scene, she asks him what his name is.

When Peter is chasing after the police escort that Ellen is riding in, the road has a solid line down the middle. As he pulls over to the side of the road and gets the flat tire, there is no line down the middle of the road. It is a different road.

As Peter is singing and threatening to take off his pants, Ellie begins to bolt behind the hanging blanket. A half second later there is a shot of Ellie looking at him for a solid second, and then bolting to the other side of the blanket.
According to William L. Shirer's "Berlin Diary", this movie was one of Adolf Hitler's and Joseph Stalin's favorites movies.

This movie is credited for pioneering the genre of mis-adventurous romantic comedies.

Clark Gable gave the Oscar that she had one for this movie, to a child who admired it, telling him it was the winning of the statue that had mattered, not owning it. The child returned the Oscar to the Gable family after Clark's death.

This was the first film to win the Oscar "grand slam" (Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director and Screenplay).

When director Frank Capra asked Claudette Colbert to expose her leg for the hitchhiking scene, she at first refused. Later, after having seen the leg of her body double, she changed her mind insisting that "that is not my leg!"

When Clark Gable showed up for work on the first day, he reportedly said grimly, "Let's get this over with."

She was so convinced that she would lose the Oscar competition in 1935 to write-in nominee Bette Davis, that Claudette Colbert decided not to attend the awards ceremony. When she, contrary to her belief, won that year for her performance in this movie, she was summoned from a train station to pick up her Oscar.

Robert Montgomery turned down the male lead, saying the script was the worst thing he had ever read.

This movie holds the record along with Gigi (1958), The Last Emperor (1987) and The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) (2003) of winning all the awards in every single category in which was nominated at the Academy Awards including best picture.

Director Frank Capra came up with the idea about "the walls of Jericho" because Claudette Colbert refused to undress in front of the camera.

Constance Bennett and Myrna Loy, among others, turned the script down. Claudette Colbert only accepted because Capra promised he would double her salary and she would be done in four weeks. She disliked the film so much she didn't even attend the Oscars; when she won for Best Actress, she was found about to leave on a trip and was rushed to the ceremony, where she made her acceptance speech in a traveling suit.

Friz Freleng's unpublished memoirs mention that this was one of his favorite films, and that it contains at least three things upon which the character "Bugs Bunny" was based: - The character Oscar Shapely's (Roscoe Karns) personality - The manner in which Peter Warne (Clark Gable) was eating carrots and talking quickly at the same time - An imaginary character mentioned once to frighten Oscar Shapely named "Bugs Dooley." Other mentions of "Looney Tunes" characters from the film include Alexander Andrews (Walter Connolly) and King Westley (Jameson Thomas) being the inspirations for Yosemite Sam and Pepé LePew, respectively.

While shooting the scene where he undresses, Clark Gable had trouble removing his undershirt while keeping his humorous flow going and took too long. As a result the undershirt was abandoned altogether. It then became cool to not wear an undershirt which resulted in a large drop in undershirt sales around the country. Legend has it that in response, some underwear manufacturers tried to sue Columbia.

Claudette Colbert complained nearly every day during the making of the film. On the last day of shooting, she told a friend "I just finished making the worst picture I've ever made".

Columbia Pictures was considered a Poverty Row studio at the time of the film's release. Both MGM and Warner Brothers would lend out temperamental actors to Columbia as a 'humbling experience.' Studio boss Harry Cohn, who was loath to pay for his own roster of contract stars during the early 30's, would invariably assign them to work on Frank Capra's films. Although the studio had received Oscar nominations prior to this picture, its success virtually single-handedly lifted Columbia out of the ranks of poverty row.

Claudette Colbert only wears four different outfits throughout the course of the film: a flimsy nightgown at the beginning, her traveling suit, Clark Gable's pajamas, and her wedding dress.