Take It Big

Take It Big is a 1944 American comedy film directed by Frank McDonald and written by Howard J. Green and Joe Bigelow. The film stars Jack Haley, Harriet Hilliard, Mary Beth Hughes, Richard Lane, Arline Judge and Fritz Feld. Also featured is Hilliard's husband in real life, bandleader Ozzie Nelson.

Take It Big
Theatrical release poster
Directed byFrank McDonald
Produced byWilliam H. Pine
William C. Thomas
Screenplay byHoward J. Green
Joe Bigelow
StarringJack Haley
Harriet Hilliard
Mary Beth Hughes
Ozzie Nelson
Arline Judge
Fritz Feld
Music byRudy Schrager
CinematographyFred Jackman Jr.
Edited byVictor Lewis
Howard A. Smith
Distributed byParamount Pictures
Release date
  • June 9, 1944 (1944-06-09)
Running time
75 minutes
CountryUnited States

The film was released on June 9, 1944, by Paramount Pictures.[1][2]


She is a singer in a nightclub, but Jerry Clinton has been rejecting other jobs and other suitors because of her romantic feelings toward Jack North, who does a comic act inside a horse's costume with his partner, Eddie Hampton.

Jack inherits a dude ranch out west. When he, Jerry and Eddie arrive, they are pleased to find it a beautiful place, unaware that they have mistakenly gone to the wrong ranch. Jack acts as boss, implementing many peculiar ideas and attracting flirtation from gold digger Gaye Livingston, until real owner Harvey Phillips turns up.

Jack's actual ranch is a rundown mess. Jerry and others persuade him that it can be improved into a prosperous place just like the other, and before long Jack's ranch is attracting tourists, also drawn by Ozzie Nelson and his Orchestra being booked to entertain there. Harvey resents the competition and intends to call in an overdue loan immediately, but Jack enters a rodeo, wins first prize in the bucking bronco competition and pays off the debt.



Pine-Thomas Productions were a unit that operated out of Paramount pictures which specialised in low budget action films. They were keen to diversify into other genres. In June 1943 Pine-Thomas signed a new contract with Paramount which included three musicals, and two bigger budgeted pictures, plus three wartime movies which would co-star Chester Morris and Russell Hayden. Jack Haley was signed to appear in two of the musicals with Mary Beth Hughes. His fee was $20,000 a film. The films were to be Rhythm Range, about an all girl rodeo, and The Duchess Rides High, about vaudeville. Rhythm Ranch became Take it Big.[3][4]

Pine Thomas filmed some scenes on Clara Bow's ranch.[5]


  1. "Take It Big (1944) - Overview". TCM.com. Retrieved 2015-08-08.
  2. "Take-It-Big - Trailer - Cast - Showtimes". NYTimes.com. Retrieved 2015-08-08.
  3. SCREEN NEWS HERE AND IN HOLLYWOOD New York Times 26 June 1943: 11.
  4. Pine and Thomas to Increase Production at Paramount New York Times 28 June 1943: 16.
  5. SCREEN NEWS HERE AND IN HOLLYWOOD New York Times 15 Oct 1943: 15. Browse this issue
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