Melody in May (May 1, 1936)
Released on May 1, 1936: Singing star Ruth Etting helps a small town teen boy get his secret sweetheart away from the boy she is dating.
Produced by Lee S. Marcus
Directed by Ben Holmes
Written by Stanley Rauh
The Actors: Ruth Etting (Ruth Etting), Frank Coghlan Jr. (Tommy Bradshaw), Margaret Armstrong (Ma Bradshaw), Joan Sheldon (Mary Callahan), Kenneth Howell (Chuck Benton), Robert Meredith (orchestra leader Harry), Donald Kerr (sound man), Robert McKenzie (townsman pitching horseshoes), Dorothy Short (high school girl)
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It Had To Be You . . .
Ruth Etting was one of the biggest singing stars of the early 1900's thanks to her amazing talent and the promotion abilities of her Chicago gangster husband 'Moe the Gimp' Snyder. Her name was known worldwide . . . if not her face. She sang on Broadway, in nightclubs and on records, but most of her fans would never know her if she walked up to them, and that is the premise of this romantic musical short. Ruth Etting, as herself, is off to a small town where no one will know who she is to enjoy a quiet vacation from her hectic work schedule. In this little town soda shop she watches as Tommy, the shy soda jerk is made fun of by all of the other school kids. When Tommy's date to the big dance backs out Ruth Etting goes to the dance with Tommy, and when the kids discover that the older lady dancing with teen Tommy is the famous Ruth Etting, Tommy becomes the hit of the dance and the envy of all the boys . . . and Mary, the girl he is sweet on, all of a sudden dumps her boyfriend to the curb in favor of Tommy . . . . ahhhh, what a little fame can do for a fellow's love life in May, when every young man's fancy turns to thoughts of the ladies. In her personal life, 1936 wasn't the best of times for the wife of a notorious gangster. A year after making this movie short Ruth divorced gangster husband Moe and fell in love with her pianist, but gangster Moe was terribly jealous and he shot her boyfriend, almost killing him, and went to prison for the attempted murder. The scandal pretty much ended her career as a singer, and this is one of her last performances as a top singing star. Pop a big bowl of white kernel popcorn with plenty of warm melted butter on it and enjoy one of the biggest singing sensations from a hundred years ago.
Frank Coghlan Jr. and Joan Sheldon
Frank Coghlan Jr., Kenneth Howell and Joan Sheldon
Frank Coghlan Jr. meets Ruth Etting
Frank Coghlan Jr. sees Mary
Frank Coghlan Jr. smiles at Joan Sheldon
Frank Coghlan Jr.
Joan Sheldon watches Frank Coghlan Jr.
Margaret Armstrong and Frank Coghlan Jr.
Mary Armstrong and Ruth Etting
Robert Meredith and Ruth Etting
Robert Meredith and Ruth Etting at recording session
Ruth Etting sings for a recording session