Duffy's Tavern (film)

Duffy's Tavern is a 1945 American comedy film directed by Hal Walker and written by Melvin Frank and Norman Panama. The film stars Ed Gardner, Bing Crosby, Betty Hutton, Paulette Goddard, Alan Ladd, Dorothy Lamour, Eddie Bracken and Brian Donlevy. The film was released on September 28, 1945, by Paramount Pictures.[1]

Duffy's Tavern
Theatrical release poster
Directed byHal Walker
Produced byDanny Dare
Screenplay byMelvin Frank
Norman Panama
StarringEd Gardner
Bing Crosby
Betty Hutton
Paulette Goddard
Alan Ladd
Dorothy Lamour
Eddie Bracken
Brian Donlevy
Music byRobert Emmett Dolan
CinematographyLionel Lindon
Edited byArthur P. Schmidt
Distributed byParamount Pictures
Release date
  • September 28, 1945 (1945-09-28)
Running time
97 minutes
CountryUnited States


Duffy’s Tavern was another of Paramount’s ‘all-star cast’ films, a large scale musical based upon characters created by Ed Gardner for his popular radio show, Duffy's Tavern. Archie [played by Ed Gardner] (with regulars Eddie (Eddie Green) and Finnegan (Charles Cantor)) was surrounded by many of Paramount Pictures stars playing themselves, including Robert Benchley, William Bendix, Eddie Bracken, Bing Crosby, Cass Daley, Brian Donlevy, Paulette Goddard, Betty Hutton, Alan Ladd, Veronica Lake and Dorothy Lamour. The film's plot involves a war-displaced record manufacturer whose staff—those not sent off to war—drown their sorrows at Duffy's on credit, while the company owner tries to find ways around the price controls and war attrition that threaten to put him out of business. Bing Crosby makes two appearances in the film, once to sing with a group, which includes Betty Hutton, Sonny Tufts, Diana Lynn, Billy De Wolfe, Cass Daley, Dorothy Lamour and Howard Da Silva, a parody of "Swinging on a Star", and again in a sketch where Robert Benchley tells a bed-time story about Bing to the four Crosby boys. He is also heard, but not seen, singing "Learn to Croon", "Please", and "Love in Bloom" when recordings are presented on an on-screen phonograph. It was the film debut of the four Crosby boys other than Gary Crosby’s walk-on part in Star Spangled Rhythm.



The film was placed 15th in the list of highest-grossing movies in the US in 1945.

Bosley Crowther of The New York Times summarized it as "Take it for what it is, a hodge-podge of spare-time clowning by the gang, including a large hunk of Archie, and you’ll find Duffy’s Tavern fair enough."[2]

Film Daily commented: "There isn’t much to the story itself, which merely offers an excuse for bringing in such topflighters as Bing Crosby, Betty Hutton, Paulette Goddard, Dorothy Lamour, Eddie Bracken, Veronica Lake, to name but a handful, so that they may do their bit in the manner of guest stars. Most of the big names are introduced at the end in a benefit show staged to raise money to permit Victor Moore to reopen his record factory and put a lot of nice guys back to work."[3]



  1. "Duffy's Tavern (1945) - Overview". TCM.com. Retrieved 2015-03-26.
  2. Crowther, Bosley (1945-09-06). "Movie Review - Duffy s Tavern - THE SCREEN; 'Duffy's Tavern,' a Sprawling Film Revue, With Ed Gardner, Victor Moore at Paramount -French Film at 55th St. At 55th St. Playhouse". NYTimes.com. Retrieved 2015-03-26.
  3. "Film Daily". August 20, 1945. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  4. Reynolds, Fred (1986). Road to Hollywood. John Joyce.
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