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If I Had a Million (1932)

Passed | | Comedy, Drama | 22 February 1933 (Sweden)
A dying tycoon gives million-dollar windfalls to eight people picked from the city directory.

Directors:

James Cruze (uncredited), H. Bruce Humberstone (uncredited) | 6 more credits »

Writers:

Robert Hardy Andrews (based on a story by) (as Robert D. Andrews), Claude Binyon | 14 more credits »
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Gary Cooper ... Steve Gallagher
Charles Laughton ... Phineas V. Lambert
George Raft ... Eddie Jackson
Jack Oakie ... Private Mulligan
Richard Bennett ... John Glidden
Charles Ruggles ... Henry Peabody (as Charlie Ruggles)
Alison Skipworth ... Emily La Rue
W.C. Fields ... Rollo La Rue
Mary Boland ... Mrs. Peabody
Roscoe Karns ... Private O'Brien
May Robson ... Mrs. Mary Walker
Learn more

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Storyline

Tycoon John Glidden, dying though still vigorous, is so dissatisfied with his relatives and associates that, rather than will his money to any of them, he decides to give it away in million-dollar amounts to strangers picked from the city directory. He picks a meek china salesman; a prostitute; a forger; two ex-vaudevilleans who hate road hogs; a condemned man; a mild-mannered clerk; a boisterous marine; and an oppressed inmate of an old ladies' home. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although he is billed first, Gary Cooper (Steve Gallagher) does not appear until 54 minutes into the film. See more »

Goofs

Discovering he's about to die, millionaire Glidden decides to leave his money to names he's randomly selected from the phone book. But when first name he chooses turns out to be John D. Rockefeller, he flips a few pages further into directory and selects someone named Peabody - a name that would actually have appeared in the book before Rockefeller. See more »

Quotes

John Glidden: I want to give somebody a chance at happiness. I don't care who - I just want somebody to have something worthwhile out of what I spent my life to accumulate.
See more »

Alternate Versions

In England, the raspberry sound that Phineas V. Lambert makes was changed to a whistle. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Shadows of Suspense (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

I'm Daffy Over You
Written by Chico Marx and Sol Violinsky
Played at the bar during the Violet Smith segment.
See more »

User Reviews

IF I HAD A MILLION
3 March 2000 | by CHARLIE-89See all my reviews

This is one of those films that exists in a cinematic no-man's land, because it is in a legal copyright tangle. That is very unfortunate, because IF I HAD A MILLION is one of the finest of the early talkies. The story has a dying millionaire who doesn't want to see his fortune go to greedy relatives. Instead, he selects some names at random from the city directory and decides to give them each a million dollars. First, he gives the money to Charles Ruggles, a henpecked husband who is always having his salary deducted when he accidentally breaks china at the china shop that he works at. His nagging wife won't let him be. So, to get revenge, he takes his million to the store and breaks every piece of china in the place. Wynne Gibson as Violet is the next to get her million. She is a prostitute at a local bar, and she takes her money to rent a private hotel room for the night, to sleep alone. Gangster George Raft is unable to cash the check because he's been arrested for forgery. Next, three marines believe the check to be a fake and give it to a friend, who finds its true worth and spends it on himself. Convict Gene Raymond learns of his new-found fortune as he is being led to the electric chair. Office clerk Charles Laughton takes his money and tells off his boss. And in GRANDMA, kindly old May Robson uses the money to spruce up the old ladies home, Idyllwood. But the highlight is the W.C. Fields sequence, in which he, fed up with road hogs, buys a whole lot of used cars to use as an army against the oncoming traffic. All in all, IF I HAD A MILLION remains a true classic.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

22 February 1933 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

The Forger See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (USA) (DVD release)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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