Watch It

On DVD: Now | On Blu-ray: TBD

Vivacious Lady Details


James Stewart and Ginger Rogers were "an item" when Vivacious Lady was filmed, and their obvious real-life affection for one another pours over onto the screen. Stewart plays Peter Morgan, a young botany professor who while on a visit to New York impulsively marries free-spirited nightclub singer Francey (Rogers). A few obstacles lie in the path of connubial bliss, however, including Peter's bitchy ex-fiancee Helen (Frances Mercer) and his stern college-dean father Peter Morgan Sr. (Charles Coburn). Hoping to break the news of his marriage gently to Helen and his father, Pete contrives to keep the union a secret, with the expected embarrassing results. Before the final fade-out, both Morgan Senior and Morgan Junior are on the outs with their respective wives, and it takes an uproariously tearful reunion on a passenger train to straighten things out. In his first outing as a producer, director George Stevens shows off his two-reel-comedy training with a number of hilarious comedy setpieces (the best is a slapsticky cat-fight between the two rivals for Pete's affections), though things tend to slow down towards the end. Stevens also finds room for several of his favorite character actors, including Grady Sutton, Franklin Pangborn and Willie Best, to do their time-honored specialties. Best of all is Beulah Bondi as James Stewart's mother (one of several such assignments), delivering a most unusual and touchingly funny performance. In short, Vivacious Lady was a guaranteed box-office smash even before the cameras began to turn. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi


Awarded by
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Robert de Grasse Best Cinematography 1938 Nominee


Ginger Rogers
as Francey Brent
James Stewart
as Peter Morgan
James Ellison
as Keith Morgan
Beulah Bondi
as Martha Morgan
Charles Coburn
as Peter Morgan, Sr.
Frances Mercer
as Helen
Franklin Pangborn
as Apartment Manager
Grady Sutton
as Culpepper
Jack Carson
as Charlie
Alec Craig
as Joseph the Chauffeur
Lloyd Ingraham
as Noble the Professor
Barbara Pepper
Bobby Barber
as Italian
Maurice Black
as Headwaiter
Dorothy Moore
as Hat Check Girl
Phyllis Kennedy
as Jenny the Maid
Dennis O'Keefe
Stanley Blystone
Ray Mayer
as Man on Train
Edgar Dearing
William Brisbane
Helena Grant
Frank M. Thomas
as Train Conductor
Maude Eburne
as Wife in Couple
George Chandler
as Man on Train
Spencer Charters
as Husband in Couple
Vernon Dent
Hattie McDaniel
as Hattie the Maid
Floyd Shackelford
as Porter
Kay Sutton
Vinton Haworth
as Druggist


George Stevens
George Stevens
Ernest Pagano
Robert de Grasse
Roy Webb
Composer (Music Score)
Carroll Clark
Art Director
Van Nest Polglase
Art Director
Pandro S. Berman
Associate Producer
Darrell Silvera
Set Designer
Irene Sharaff
Costume Designer
Mel Burns