Warner slapped him for real and made his ear bleed, reducing him to tears. [82][86], Due to all the above actions, this is one of the few RKO films not controlled by Turner Entertainment/Warner Bros. in the US. It's a Wonderful Life, of course, is the 1946 film that was co-written and directed by Frank Capra, starring James Stewart as George Bailey: a very compassionate and good-hearted man who reaches a point of frustration and despair (leading him to contemplate suicide), when an angel is sent to Earth in order to show George how meaningful his life truly is. Goodrich called Capra "that horrid man" and recalled, "He couldn't wait to get writing it himself." Univ. In 1997, PBS aired Merry Christmas, George Bailey, taped from a live performance of the 1947 Lux Radio Theatre script at the Pasadena Playhouse. "[28] Stewart and Capra had previously collaborated on You Can't Take It with You (1938) and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939). "Frank Capra: Interviews." Seneca Falls, New York, claims that Frank Capra was inspired to model Bedford Falls after the town after a visit in 1945. [N 3][18]. Fonda, however, was cast in John Ford's My Darling Clementine (1946), which was filmed at the same time that Capra shot It's a Wonderful Life. Potter becomes irate and the gardener releases the attack dogs, which cause the boys to flee. Production: What we know about It's A Wonderful Life: The Rest of the Story Key Facts. The sequel is aiming for a 2015 holiday release. The lives George touched are vastly different. Warner, who was cast as the drugstore owner Mr. Gower, had studied medicine before going into acting. The following may read as a brilliant satire of Hollywood - with its current obsession with sequel-izing, remaking and re-imagining seemingly every bankable property conceivable being well documented - but thus far, it appears to be a real thing. Capra's new production company, Liberty Films, had a nine-film distribution agreement with RKO. It is a story of being trapped, of compromising, of watching others move ahead and away, of becoming so filled with rage that you verbally abuse your children, their teacher, and your oppressively perfect wife. In 1993, Republic Pictures, which was the successor to NTA, relied on the 1990 U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Stewart v. Abend (which involved another Stewart film, Rear Window) to enforce its claim to the copyright. Jones, Ken D., Arthur F. McClure and Alfred E. Twomey. Feelgood 1946 Christmas classic It's a Wonderful Life is to get an unlikely sequel more than 60 years on, it has been revealed. But somehow, they all resemble theatrical attitudes, rather than average realities. [58], In 1990, It's a Wonderful Life was deemed "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" by the United States Library of Congress and selected for preservation in their National Film Registry. Variety is reporting that Star Partners and Hummingbird Prods. The script by Bob Farnsworth and Martha Bolton was wonderful, and I wanted to be involved with his version of the film immediately.”, For the sake of playing devil's advocate, could the latest script for an It's a Wonderful Life followup be as good as Grimes indicated? "[66], —Film historian Andrew Sarris in "You Ain't Heard Nothin' Yet. The go-to source for comic book and superhero movie fans. RKO studio's head of special effects, Russell Shearman, developed a new compound using water, soap flakes, foamite, and sugar to create "chemical snow" for the film. Covering 4 acres (1.6 ha), the town consisted of a main street stretching 300 yards (three city blocks) with 75 stores and buildings, and a residential neighborhood. In 1977 the film was remade as a made-for-TV movie. In the "Pottersville" sequence, he wrote, George Bailey is not seeing the world that would exist had he never been born, but rather "the world as it does exist, in his time and also in our own". Among the companies that released the film on home video before Republic Pictures stepped in were Meda Video (which would later become Media Home Entertainment), Kartes Video Communications (under its Video Film Classics label), GoodTimes Home Video, and Video Treasures (now Anchor Bay Entertainment). It displays friendship better … Barker, Martin and Thomas Austin. [39][40], Filming started on April 15, 1946, and wrapped on July 27, 1946, exactly on deadline for the 90-day principal photography schedule. [87], However, the film was believed to be in the public domain at the time, and as a result, Markle and Holmes responded by returning Capra's initial investment, eliminating his financial participation, and refusing outright to allow the director to exercise artistic control over the colorization of his films, leading Capra to join in the campaign against the process.[87]. [87] The company's art director, Brian Holmes, prepared 10 minutes of colorized footage from It's a Wonderful Life for Capra to view, which resulted in Capra signing a contract with Colorization Inc., and his "enthusiastic agree[ment] to pay half the $260,000 cost of colorizing the movie and to share any profits" and giving "preliminary approval to making similar color versions of two of his other black-and-white films, Meet John Doe (1941) and Lady for a Day (1933)". Both Capra and Stewart took a critical stand on the colorized editions. The town has an annual "It's a Wonderful Life Festival" in December. In his autobiography, Capra recalled, "Of all actors' roles I believe the most difficult is the role of a Good Sam who doesn't know that he is a Good Sam. Univ. So... naturally... making a sequel 67 years later is a dicey proposition, to say the least. The wastebasket suddenly catches fire and Billy cries for help. (Capra claimed the rights and the scripts cost him $50,000. A third, computer-colorized version was produced by Legend Films in 2007 and has been released on DVD, Blu-ray, and streaming services. Here is the site's breakdown of the sequel's plot: Karolyn Grimes, who played George Bailey’s daughter “Zuzu” in the original, will return for the “Wonderful Life” sequel as an angel who shows Bailey’s unlikeable grandson (also named George Bailey) how much better off the world would have been had he never been born. George's mother doesn't know him. [71], The film's positive reception has continued into the present. Jimmy Starr wrote, "If I were an Oscar, I'd elope with It's a Wonderful Life lock, stock and barrel on the night of the Academy Awards". [56], On May 26, 1947, the Federal Bureau of Investigation issued a memo stating, "With regard to the picture 'It's a Wonderful Life', [redacted] stated in substance that the film represented rather obvious attempts to discredit bankers by casting Lionel Barrymore as a 'scrooge-type' so that he would be the most hated man in the picture. We were trying to move the story along and work it out, and then somebody told us that [Capra] and Jo Swerling were working on it together, and that sort of took the guts out of it. In the film, Kermit the Frog wishes that he had never been born. [17], Only two locations from the film survive. Henry Fonda, arguably Stewart's best friend, was also considered. McMillan, 1973. p. 376-7), CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (, AFI's 100 Years ... 100 Heroes & Villains, Learn how and when to remove this template message, Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation. Stewart's father ran a small hardware store where James worked for years. [3], The film recorded a loss of $525,000 at the box office for RKO. [50], According to a 2006 book, "A spate of movies appeared just after the ending of the Second World War, including It's a Wonderful Life (1946) and Stairway to Heaven (1946), perhaps tapping into so many people's experience of loss of loved ones and offering a kind of consolation. He then rushes home. Sequel to the 1946 film which was based on the story by Philip Van Doren Stern. Goodrich, Francis, Albert Hackett and Frank Capra. When he claims to be her husband, she screams for the police and George runs away. Wasserman said Stewart would gladly play the part without hearing the story. She reveals that Billy was institutionalized after the Building and Loan failed. Interviews with potential directors are currently underway, with the plan to begin shooting in Louisiana on a $25-35 million budget by next year, in order to make a holiday season 2015 release date. George dives in and rescues him and they dry off in the tollhouse. Casting is currently underway for the It's a Wonderful Life sequel, though original cast members Jimmy Hawkins (who is 72) and Carol Coombs (78) - who played the other Bailey children in Capra's film, Tommy and Janie - are reportedly in talks to reprise their roles, along with Grimes (73). [63][64], Somewhat more iconoclastic views of the film and its contents are occasionally expressed. Throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, when the film was still under public domain status, It's a Wonderful Life was released on VHS by a variety of home video companies. You were here on my wedding night! The New York Daily Times published an editorial that declared the film and James Stewart's performance to be worthy of Academy Award consideration. Although working with three cinematographers was difficult for Capra, it turned out very well in Walker's opinion because the scenes each cinematographer shot were so different that they did not have to match each other's visual styles. [N 6] National Telefilm Associates took over the rights to the film soon thereafter. I'm all right!". [99], The Last Temptation of Clarence Odbody is a novel written by John Pierson. The film was supposed to be released in January 1947, but was moved up to December 1946 to make it eligible for the 1946 Academy Awards. "We're thrilled that we will have the opportunity to broadcast this picture," said NBC Entertainment President Warren Littlefield at the time. [16] Grant went on to make another Christmas movie staple, The Bishop's Wife. During World War II, George is ineligible for service because of his deaf ear. A clerical error at NTA prevented the copyright from being renewed properly in 1974. List of films featuring the deaf and hard of hearing, "AFI Catalog of Feature Films The First 100 Years 1893–1993", "It's a Wonderful Life: From festive flop to Christmas classic", "AFI's 100 Years ... 100 Movies 10th Anniversary Edition", "The surprising Jersey roots of 'It's a Wonderful Life, "All the Movies in Tony Crawley's Casting Calls", "RetroWeb Image Gallery | Bison Archives RKO Ranch photograph collection", "RetroWeb Image Gallery | It's A Wonderful Life", "6 things you probably didn't know about 'It's a Wonderful Life, "Hollywood Invented a New Type Of Fake Snow To Film It's a Wonderful Life", "'It's a Wonderful Life', Screen in Review", "FBI Considered "It's A Wonderful Life" Communist Propaganda", "The Weird Story of the FBI and 'It's a Wonderful Life, "Library of Congress Adds 25 Titles to National Film Registry (Published 1990)", "Complete National Film Registry Listing", "AFI Crowns Top 10 Films in 10 Classic Genres", "Wonderful? 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