Buck Privates (Universal 1941, Abbott and Costello)

Buck Privates

With America on the verge of entering World War II, Abbott and Costello starred in their first feature film, Buck Privates, as privates inducted into the army. A masterpiece of loosely choreographed slapstick, incorporating many bits from their vaudeville routines, the film throws the A&C monkey wrench into the standardized routines of Army life.

Fellow privates (played by Lee Bowman and Alan Curtis) compete for a beautiful leading lady (Jane Frazee). The film also features the Andrews Sisters, who perform songs like Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy.””

Although Arthur Lubin was a contract director at Universal, Buck Privates was such a huge hit ($4 million gross on a $180,000 budget) that the studio gave him a $5,000 bonus. The huge success of the film led to Abbott and Costello in the Navy, rushed into production and released later that same year, with Bud Abbott and Lou Costello supporting Dick Powell.

Cast: Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Alan Curtis, Jane Frazee, the Andrews Sisters, Lee Bowman,

Director: Arthur Lubin
Producer: Alex Gottlieb
Director of Photography: Milton Krasner
Editor: Philip Cahn
Composers: Charles Previn, Hugh Prince
Screenwriters: John Grant, Arthur T. Horman
Art Director: Jack Otterson

USA / Universal / 84 minutes / 1941 black and white

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