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Buck Privates (Universal 1941, Abbott and Costello)

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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.

production details
Country: USA | Universal | 84 minutes
Release Year: 1941

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Director: Arthur Lubin
Writer: Arthur T. Horman,

cast
Bud Abbott as Slicker Smith
Lou Costello as Herbie Brown
Nat Pendleton as Sgt. Michael Collins
Patty Andrews as Patty Andrews
Maxene Andrews as Maxene Andrews
Laverne Andrews as Laverne Andrews
Alan Curtis as Bob Martin
Harry Strang as Sgt. Callahan
Lee Bowman as Randolph Parker III
Samuel S. Hinds as Maj. Gen. Emerson
Janet Warren as Camp Hostess
Shemp Howard as Chef
Jane Frazee as Judy Gray
Nella Walker as Mrs. Parker II
Leonard Elliott as Henry
M.J. Frankovich as Announcer
Dora Clement as Miss Durling – Camp Hostess
Jean Brooks as Camp Hostess


Alastair James is the editor in chief for Memorable TV. He has been involved in media since his university days. Alastair is passionate about television, and some of his favourite shows include Line of Duty, Luther and Traitors. He is always on the lookout for hot new shows, and is always keen to share his knowledge with others.

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