Night After Night (film)
|Night After Night|
|Directed by||Archie Mayo|
|Written by||Kathryn Scola (continuity)|
|Screenplay by||Vincent Lawrence|
|Based on||"Single Night" (short story)|
by Louis Bromfield
|Produced by||William LeBaron (uncredited)|
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures|
|70 or 76 minutes|
Night After Night is a 1932 American pre-Code drama film starring George Raft, Constance Cummings, and Mae West in her first movie role. Others in the cast include Wynne Gibson, Alison Skipworth, Roscoe Karns, Louis Calhern, and Bradley Page. Directed by Archie Mayo, it was adapted for the screen by Vincent Lawrence and Kathryn Scola, based on the Cosmopolitan magazine story Single Night by Louis Bromfield, with West allowed to contribute to her lines of dialogue.
Although Night After Night is not a comedy, it has many comedic moments, especially with the comic relief of West, who plays a supporting role in her screen debut.
Joe Anton (Raft) is a speakeasy owner who falls in love with socialite Miss Healy (Cummings). He takes lessons in high-class mannerisms from Mabel Jellyman (Skipworth). Joe does not know that Miss Healy only pays attention to him because he lives in the elegant building that her family lost in the Wall Street Crash of 1929. After a risky encounter with his old flame Iris Dawn (Gibson) after which Miss Healy kisses him, Joe is ready to marry her, but she's engaged to her friend Mr. Bolton, although admitting she's just marrying him for his money. Joe decides to instead pursue Iris, just as Miss Healy begins to genuinely fall in love with him. Meanwhile, Maudie Triplett (West) befriends Mrs. Jellyman and offers to hire her as a hostess in one of her elegant beauty parlors.
- George Raft as Joe Anton
- Constance Cummings as Miss Jerry Healy
- Wynne Gibson as Iris Dawn
- Mae West as Maudie Triplett
- Alison Skipworth as Miss Mabel Jellyman
- Roscoe Karns as Leo
- Louis Calhern as Dick Bolton
- Bradley Page as Frankie Guard
- Al Hill as Blainey
- Harry Wallace as Jerky
- George Templeton as Patsy
- Marty Martyn as Malloy
- Tom Kennedy as Tom (the bartender)
West portrays a fictionalized version of Texas Guinan and the film remains primarily remembered as the launching pad for her career. Raft campaigned to cast his friend and former employer Guinan herself but the studio opted for West since she was nine years younger. Raft believed that the part would have launched a major film career for Guinan (then aged 48), which proved to be the case for West instead. (West was reportedly a fan of Guinan and incorporated some of the flamboyant Guinan's ideas into her own acts).
The film was Raft's first leading role and came about due to response to his work in Scarface. According to Filmink "this picture is best best remembered today for introducing Mae West to cinema audiences – and she’s brilliant – but Raft was excellent too as a former gangster turned nightclub manager who is having a mid life crisis."
The film is recognized by American Film Institute in these lists:
- 2005: AFI's 100 Years...100 Movie Quotes:
- Cloakroom Girl: "Goodness, what beautiful diamonds!"
- Maudie Triplett: "Goodness had nothing to do with it, dearie."
- – Nominated
- Night After Night at the American Film Institute Catalog
- "Night After Night". Allmovie. Retrieved April 15, 2010.
- Asker, Everett (2013) The Films of George Raft, McFarland & Company. p.30
- Vagg, Stephen (February 9, 2020). "Why Stars Stop Being Stars: George Raft". Filmink.
- "AFI's 100 Years...100 Movie Quotes Nominees" (PDF). Retrieved July 30, 2016.