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That Night in Rio
Alternate Title: The Road to Rio
Director: Irving Cummings (Dir)
Release Date:   11 Apr 1941
Production Date:   15 Nov 1940--20 Dec 1940; finale filmed early Jan 1941
Duration (in mins):   90
Duration (in feet):   8,175
Duration (in reels):   10
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Cast:   Alice Faye (Baroness [Cecilia Duarte])  
    Don Ameche (Larry Martin/Baron [Manuel] Duarte)  
    Carmen Miranda (Carmen)  
    S. Z. Sakall ([Arthur] Penna)  
    J. Carrol Naish (Machado)  
    Curt Bois ([Felicio] Salles)  
    Leonid Kinskey (Pierre [Dufond])  
    The Banda Da Lua (Carmen Miranda's orchestra)  
    Frank Puglia (Pedro)  
    Lillian Porter (Luiza)  
    Maria Montez (Inez)  
    Georges Renavent (Ambassador)  
    Edward Conrad (Alfonso)  
    Fortunio Bonanova (Pereira)  
    Flores Brothers (Specialty trio)  
    Fred Malatesta (Butler)  
    Albert Morin (Eca)  
    Fredrik Vogeding (Trader)  
    Charles de Ravenne (Page boy)  
    Gino Corrado (Clerk)  
    Eugene Borden (Man at airport)  
    Andre Cuyas (Waiter)  
    George Bookasta (Bell boy)  
    Mary Ann Hyde (Secretary)  
    Vivian Mason (Secretary)  
    Barbara Lynn (Secretary)  
    Jean O'Donnell (Secretary)  
    Bettye Avery (Model)  
    Bunny Hartley (Model)  
    Marion Rosamond (Model)  
    Mary Joyce Walsh (Model)  
    Lillian Eggers (Model)  
    Roseanne Murray (Model)  
    Poppy Wilde (Model)  
    Dorothy Dearing (Model)  
    Bonnie Bannon (Model)  
    Monica Bannister (Model)  
    Jean Del Val    
    Esther Brodelet    

Summary: American nightclub entertainer Larry Martin, who has been working in Rio de Janeiro for six months, delights audiences with his impersonation of Baron Manual Duarte, a well-known investment banker and lothario who bears a striking resemblance to Larry. One evening, the baron, his American wife Cecilia and his advisors, Arthur Penna and Felicio Salles, attend the show and are impressed by Larry's performance. After the show, Duarte receives word that an important business deal, for which he "borrowed" twenty million of the bank's money, is about to fall through. The next day, Penna and Salles discover that the baron has left for Buenos Aires, where he hopes to raise the necessary funds, and that they are to cover for him. Afraid that Duarte's chief rival, Machado, will take advantage of his absence, Penna and Salles offer Larry a job impersonating the baron while he is gone. Larry agrees on the condition that they do not tell Cecilia, with whom he flirted at the club, and goes with them to the stock exchange. Penna and Salles are forced to leave Larry alone for a few moments, and he unwittingly buys a large amount of stock in the airplane company causing the baron's problems. They then hustle Larry back to the Duarte home, where that evening the baron and Cecilia are to host a reception for an ambassador. Cecilia, who quickly guesses that Larry is not the baron because he treats her more kindly than he, is prevailed upon by Penna and Salles not to let Larry know she is aware of the scheme. The evening progresses smoothly as Larry and Cecilia flirt and carry off the impersonation in front of the guests. Before the party ends, the baron returns after getting the needed funds. Penna and Salles "exchange" Larry for the baron, but not before Machado pigeon holes Larry and conducts a business deal in French, which Larry does not understand. Later that night, the baron, jealous of Cecilia's attentions to Larry, accompanies her to her dressing room and tries to get her to admit that she is in love with Larry. Although Cecilia did not know that her husband had returned, she realizes that it is he, and to teach him a lesson, pretends that she loves Larry. The next morning, Duarte deduces that Cecilia knew the truth and decides to turn the tables on her by having his employees tell her that he did not return until the morning. While Cecilia frantically worries that she was romancing Larry instead of Duarte, Machado arrives at the baron's office. It transpires that the deal he concluded with Larry was to buy the airline, including the newly purchased stock, at a handsome profit for the baron. As the baron signs the papers, Larry goes to see Cecilia to ask for a letter of recommendation, which will also assuage the jealousy of his girl friend Carmen. When Larry explains that he left the house before midnight the previous evening, Cecilia figures out that Duarte is trying to trick her. Just then, Duarte returns home and, in a whispered conference with Larry, admits that he loves Cecilia and will cease his playboy ways. After Larry leaves, Duarte carries Cecilia upstairs, and later, the happy couples sing together at the nightclub. 

Production Company: Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.  
Distribution Company: Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp.  
Director: Irving Cummings (Dir)
  Ad Schaumer (Asst dir)
Producer: Darryl F. Zanuck (Exec prod)
  Fred Kohlmar (Assoc prod)
Writer: George Seaton (Scr)
  Bess Meredyth (Scr)
  Hal Long (Scr)
  Samuel Hoffenstein (Addl dial)
  Jessie Ernst (Adpt)
Photography: Leon Shamroy (Dir of photog)
  Ray Rennahan (Dir of photog)
Art Direction: Richard Day (Art dir)
  Joseph C. Wright (Art dir)
Film Editor: Walter Thompson (Film ed)
Set Decoration: Thomas Little (Set dec)
Costumes: Travis Banton (Cost)
  Joseff (Alice Faye's jewels des by)
Music: Alfred Newman (Mus dir)
  Herbert Spencer (Mus arr)
Sound: W. D. Flick (Sd)
  Roger Heman (Sd)
Dance: Hermes Pan (Dances staged by)
  Charles Friedman (Prod number des by)
Production Misc: Zacharias Yaconelli (Carmen Miranda's English coach)
  Gilbert Souto (Don Ameche's Portuguese coach)
  Dante Orgalini (Tech adv)
Color Personnel: Natalie Kalmus (Technicolor col consultant)
  Morgan Padelford (Assoc)
Country: United States

Songs: "I, Yi, Yi, Yi, Yi (I Like You Very Much)," "Chica, Chica, Boom, Chic," "Boa Noite (Good Night)," "They Met in Rio" and "The Baron Is in Conference," music and lyrics by Mack Gordon and Harry Warren.
Composer: Mack Gordon
  Harry Warren
Source Text: Based on the play The Red Cat by Rudolph Lothar and Hans Adler (New York, 19 Sep 1934).
Authors: Hans Adler
  Rudolph Lothar

Copyright Claimant Copyright Date Copyright Number
Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corp. 11/4/1941 dd/mm/yyyy LP10399

PCA NO: 6905
Physical Properties: col: Technicolor
  Sd: Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording

 
Genre: Musical comedy
 
Subjects (Major): Businessmen
  Doubles
  Impersonation and imposture
  Jealousy
  Neglected wives
  Nightclub entertainers
 
Subjects (Minor): Americans in foreign countries
  Brazilians
  Business rivals
  Facial tics
  Financial crisis
  Necklaces
  Parties
  Playboys
  Rio de Janeiro (Brazil)
  Servants
  Stock market

Note: The working titles of this film were A Latin from Manhattan , Rings on Her Fingers , They Met in Rio and The Road to Rio . A 15 Nov 1940 HR news item noted that Twentieth Century-Fox had to change the title from The Road to Rio because of a conflict with Paramount, which wanted them not to release their picture until six months after the release of Paramount's Road to Zanzibar in order to avoid any confusion over the similar titles. According to notes for a late Sep 1940 meeting with executive producer Darryl F. Zanuck, contained in the Twentieth Century-Fox Produced Scripts Collection at the UCLA Arts--Special Collections Library, Madeleine Carroll, Paulette Goddard, Rosalind Russell and Joan Bennett were considered for the role of "Baroness Cecilia Duarte."
       According to the MPAA/PCA Collection at the AMPAS Library, the Breen Office had serious reservations about the initial script, and indicated that the script would not be passed unless it was clarified that "Baron Manuel Duarte" and "Cecilia" were not actually living together as husband and wife while "Cecilia" was under the impression that "the Baron" was "Larry Martin." The PCA urged the studio to write in a situation whereby "Cecilia" would only kiss "the Baron" while she believed that he was "Larry," which would therefore spark "the Baron's" jealousy without implying the occurence of an illicit sexual affair. According to a 12 Nov 1940 letter to Joseph Breen from Zanuck, the script was submitted to the Brazilian Ambassador in Washington, D.C., who approved it and stated that it would be "the kind of picture that will be helpful to North and South American relations." A report in the MPAA/PCA filed noted that the picture was rejected for distribution in Ireland, although no reason was given.
       Although a 28 Oct 1940 HR news item stated that Charles Henderson, the studio's "musical supervisor," had started work on the picture, the extent of his contribution to the completed film has not been determined. According to a 14 Feb 1941 HR news item, the film was to have a special "stage show" trailer, during which some of the musical numbers would be presented in a live stage show before a feature film. The trailer was necessitated by the legal problems between the music publishing companies BMI and ASCAP, which resulted in studios not being able to advertise their musical pictures on the radio. The trailer was to have its initial run during the presentation of Tobacco Road at the Roxy Theatre in New York City, and the news item noted that the studio had sent $10,000 worth of feather costumes to the Roxy for use in the trailer. This film marked the sixth and final teaming of Faye and Don Ameche, and the first film in which Carmen Miranda played a character with a name other than her own. According to modern sources, Faye and Ameche recorded and filmed the song "Chica, Chica, Boom Chic" as a dance number, but only the sequence of Miranda and Ameche singing the song is in the released picture.
       That Night in Rio is a remake of Folies Bergère de Paris , a 1935 United Artists release also based on the play by Rudolph Lothar and Hans Adler. That picture, also produced by Zanuck, was directed by Roy Del Ruth and starred Maurice Chevalier and Merle Oberon. A French language version of Folies Bergère de Paris , entitled L'homme de Folies Bergère was shot simultaneously to the English version (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40 ; F3.1414). In 1951, Twentieth Century-Fox remade the film again as On the Riviera , which was directed by Walter Lang and starred Danny Kaye and Gene Tierney. 

Bibliographic Sources:   Date   Page
American Cinematographer   Apr 41   p. 169.
Box Office   15 Mar 1941.   
Daily Variety   7 Mar 41   p. 3, 8
Film Daily   7 Mar 41   p. 11.
Hollywood Reporter   4 Oct 40   p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter   15 Oct 40   p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter   22 Oct 40   p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter   28 Oct 40   p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter   4 Nov 40   p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter   5 Nov 40   p. 5.
Hollywood Reporter   8 Nov 40   p. 2.
Hollywood Reporter   15 Nov 40   p. 3, 11
Hollywood Reporter   29 Nov 40   p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter   20 Dec 40   p. 6.
Hollywood Reporter   27 Dec 40   p. 11.
Hollywood Reporter   9 Jan 41   p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter   14 Feb 41   p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter   7 Mar 41   p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter   10 Mar 41   pp. 1-2.
Hollywood Reporter   3 Apr 41   p. 3.
Motion Picture Daily   8 Mar 41   p. 1, 12
Motion Picture Herald   8 Mar 41   p. 36.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest   25 Jan 41   p. 45.
New York Times   10 Mar 41   p. 21.
Variety   28 Aug 1940.   
Variety   12 Mar 41   p. 14.

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