Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square


Year: 1940
Country: United States
Run Time: 92 minutes


In the hit comedy "The Front Page" (first filmed in 1931) a successful reporter, Hildy Johnson, wants to leave journalism for a normal married life. His editor, Walter Burns, tries to pursuade him to stay. Running parallel to their conflict is a series of complicated events revolving around a convicted murderer's escape from jail on the eve of his execution. The drama hinges on whether Hildy will give in to his instinct for a great story or leave town as planned with his anxious fiancee. In this 1940 remake, Howard Hawks retained the two basic storylines, and much of the witty dialogue, but made one major change. Hildy is now a woman (Rosalind Russell), whose conflict with the editor (Cary Grant) is complicated by the fact that they were once married to each other. Since Walter's interest in Hildy extends beyond her value as a reporter, the drama takes on a new personal meaning.

Hawks' film is also distinguished by the director's famous innovation of overlapping dialogue. In almost every scene, people are interrupting each other, with two or even three conversations going on at once. This makes the film unbelievably hectic, certainly one of the fastest-paced comedies ever made. (Mac.)

Charles Lederer (from a play by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur)

Howard Hawks

Joseph Walker

Gene Havlick

Principal Cast
Cary Grant, Rosalind Russell, Ralph Bellamy, Gene Lockhart, Helen Mack, Porter Hall, Ernest Truex, John Qualen, Cliff Edwards, Clarence Kolb, Roscoe Karns

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