New Faces of 1937

New Faces of 1937 is a black and white 1937 American musical film. Its plot is similar to The Producers (1968). Intended as the first film of an annual RKO revue series, poor reception ended plans for future productions.

New Faces of 1937
Lobby card to New Faces of 1937
Directed byLeigh Jason
James Anderson (assistant)
Produced byEdward Small
Written byStory:
George Bradshaw
David Freedman
("A Day at the Brokers")
Harold Kussell
Harry Clork
Howard J. Green
Nat Perrin
Philip G. Epstein
Irv S. Brecher
StarringJoe Penner
Milton Berle
Harriet Hilliard
William Brady
Jerome Cowan
Thelma Leeds
Music byRoy Webb
CinematographyJ. Roy Hunt
Edited byGeorge Crone
Distributed byRKO Radio Pictures (1937) (USA) (theatrical)
C&C Television Corporation (1955) (USA) (TV)
RKO Home Video (USA) (video) (laserdisc)
Release date
  • July 2, 1937 (1937-07-02)
Running time
100 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$775,000[1]


A crooked theatrical producer deliberately sets about creating an unsuccessful show after selling more than 100% of it to investors.



An alternate title for this film, which was in production from late March to mid-May 1937, had been listed as Young People. Singer Rene Stone, who appears in the film, was discovered by Edward Small singing while cleaning dishes in a Manhattan restaurant.[2]


  • "New Faces"
Music and Lyrics by Charles Henderson
Played during the opening credits
Sung and danced by showgirls (including The Brian Sisters) and showboys to open the final show
Danced by Ann Miller
Sung by Harriet Hilliard and showgirls
  • "The Widow in Lace"
Music by Harold Spina
Lyrics by Walter Bullock
Sung by Thelma Leeds and showgirls at rehearsal
Played and danced by unidentified children, probably The Loria Brothers
  • "Our Penthouse on Third Avenue"
Music by Sammy Fain
Lyrics by Lew Brown
Played on piano by Harriet Hilliard and sung by her and William Brady
  • "It Goes to Your Feet"
Music by Sammy Fain
Lyrics by Lew Brown
Played and sung by Eddie Rio and Brothers
Danced by Lowe, Hite and Stanley act, with Lorraine Krueger
  • "If I Didn't Have You"
Music by Sammy Fain
Lyrics by Lew Brown
Sung by Harriet Hilliard and William Brady
  • "Love Is Never Out of Season"
Music by Sammy Fain
Lyrics by Lew Brown
Sung by William Brady and danced by Harriet Hilliard and male chorus
  • "When the Berry Blossoms Bloom"
Written by Joe Penner and Hal Raynor
Sung and danced by Joe Penner in the show
  • "Peckin'"
Music and Lyrics by Ben Pollack and Harry James
Additional lyrics by Eddie Cherkose (1937)
Sung and danced by The Three Chocolateers, The Four Playboys and chorus in the big finale in the show
  • "Bridal Chorus (Here Comes the Bride)"
from "Lohengrin"
Music by Richard Wagner
Swing version in the song "Peckin'"
  • "The Wedding March"
from "A Midsummer Night's Dream, Op.61"
Music by Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy
Swing version in the song "Peckin'"


The film recorded a loss of $258,000.[1] Reviews were mixed.[3][4]

The film was meant to be the first in a series of musical revues designed to introduce new RKO talent, but this did not eventuate. Film writers Richard B. Jewell and Vernon Harbin wrote that:

Containing not a single memorable musical number or inspired comedy routine, this tedious mish-mash caused the studio embarrassment a-plenty. Theatre owners and audiences displayed such hostility towards the Edward Small production in general, and Penner and Parkyakaras in particular, that RKO cancelled plans to make a New Faces of 1938.[5]


  1. Richard Jewel, 'RKO Film Grosses: 1931-1951', Historical Journal of Film Radio and Television, Vol 14 No 1, 1994 p57
  2. Around and About in Hollywood Read, Kendall. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 18 May 1937: 10.
  3. THE THEATRE: Top Summer Fare Wall Street Journal (1923 - Current file) [New York, N.Y] 02 July 1937: 13.
  4. THE SCREEN: A Suspicious Glance at 'New Faces of 1937,' at the Music Hall-New Films at Rialto and Palace At the Rialto By FRANK S. NUGENT. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 02 July 1937: 25.
  5. Richard B. Jewell & Vernon Harbin, The RKO Story, Octopus 1984 p 108
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.