Rumpus in the Harem

Rumpus in the Harem is the 171st short film released by Columbia Pictures in 1956 starring American slapstick comedy team The Three Stooges (Moe Howard, Larry Fine and Shemp Howard). The comedians released 190 short films for the studio between 1934 and 1959.

Rumpus in the Harem
Directed byJules White
Produced byJules White
Written byFelix Adler
StarringMoe Howard
Larry Fine
Shemp Howard
Joe Palma
Vernon Dent
George J. Lewis
Diana Darrin
Helen Jay
Ruth Godfrey White
Harriette Tarler
Suzanne Ridgeway
Johnny Kascier
CinematographyRay Cory
Edited byHarold White
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release date
  • June 21, 1956 (1956-06-21) (U.S.)
Running time
15:56
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish

Plot

The Stooges play the proprietors of the Cafe Casbah Bah, a Middle Eastern restaurant. One morning, Moe and Larry are awakened by their crying sweethearts, who are in need of money to pay off a bad debt. While attempting to prepare a meal for customers Hassan Ben Sober (Vernon Dent) and the Gin of Rummy (George J. Lewis), the Stooges try to think of a way to raise the needed cash. In the interim, they discover a plan that their hungry customers are hatching. These two thieves are attempting to rob the tomb of Rootentooten, which contains a priceless diamond, but they discover that the Emir of Schmow (Johnny Kascier) has already gotten his hands on the diamond. The two plotters start wailing and are thrown out of the restaurant. The Stooges then attempt to retrieve the diamond themselves, as there is a $50,000 reward at stake.

The Stooges arrive at the Emir of Shmow's palace, all three dressed as Santa Claus. They then manage to acquire the diamond and make a quick exit, but not before dealing with a burly guard.

Production notes

Rumpus in the Harem is a remake of 1949's Malice in the Palace, using ample stock footage.[1] It was the first of four shorts filmed in the wake of Shemp Howard's November 1955 death using earlier footage and a stand-in: all new footage was shot on January 10, 1956.[2]

"Fake Shemp"

As Shemp Howard had already died, for these last four films (Rumpus in the Harem, Hot Stuff, Scheming Schemers and Commotion on the Ocean), Columbia utilized supporting actor Joe Palma to be Shemp's double. Even though the last four shorts were remakes of earlier Shemp efforts, Palma's services were needed to film new scenes in order to link existing stock footage.[1]

For Rumpus in the Harem, Palma is seen from the back several times. The first time occurs in the restaurant when Moe declares that the trio must do something to help their sweethearts. Larry then concludes the conversation by saying "I've got it, I've got it!" Moe inquires with "What?" Larry replies, "a terrific headache!" Later, Palma is seen from the back being chased in circles by the palace guard. A few lines of dialogue appear — "Whoa, Moe, Larry! Moe, help!" — by dubbing Shemp's voice from the soundtracks of Fuelin' Around and Blunder Boys.[1] Palma is seen one final time, making a mad dash for the open window, and supplying his own yell before making the final jump. This was one of the few times during his tenure as Shemp's double that Palma was required to speak without the aid of dubbing.[2]

See also

References

  1. Solomon, Jon (2002). The Complete Three Stooges: The Official Filmography and Three Stooges Companion. Comedy III Productions, Inc. p. 481. ISBN 0-9711868-0-4.
  2. Lenburg, Jeff; Howard Maurer, Joan; Lenburg, Greg; (1982). The Three Stooges Scrapbook, p. 263, Citadel Press. ISBN 0-8065-0946-5
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