The Lottery Bride

Based on "Bride 66," by Herbert Stothart

Jeanette MacDonald has a place in history as an early Broadway then film star. "The Lottery Bride" is Jeanette's only film with United Artists, and also considered by many as her worst film, and still many more rate this film as the worst musical of all time. This film comes from the early 1930's a time when Americans wouldn't touch a musical if it wasnt on Broadway, this reason alone is why this failed at the box office. Joe E. Brown was nominated for a 1930 Alexandria for best supporting male actor for his role as Hoke Curtis. This is also Rudolph Friml's first film score, and Arthur Hammerstein's only film in which he produced.


(*Spoilers read at your own risk*)

A beautiful party full of glitz and glamour begins in a Norwegan nightclub "The Jazzy Viking," owned by Hilda. The club filled with music by the American band leader, Hoke Curtis, and young couples enjoy the evening. Our leading characters Jenny Swanson and Chris Svenson enter the party. Everything is well until Jenny's younger brother Nels, discloses to Jenny that he has embezzled money from the local bank. A local airman, Alberto, offers to keep Nels out of jail if Jenny performs some favors for him. But Jenny decides instead to enter a dancing marathon with Nels against her love Chris' desires. She dances the night away and rests in Albertos arms. The police come to arrest Nels, but Jenny lies to save Nels. Just as Jenny is about to be arrested, Chris discovers Jenny in Alberto's arms and flees to his brother Olaf's home in the north to be a miner. When she returns from jail, she decides that she can't live without her true love Chris, so she sells herself to a miner in the north as a "picture bride." Chris wins Jenny as his picture bride, but without looking at his new bride's picture gives her over to his brother Olaf. Hilda and Hoke being friends with Jenny decide to accompany her on her journey up north to meet her groom Olaf. Just as Hoke, Hilda, and Jenny met Olaf, they discover that Alberto has come too. Now Jenny has three men in love with her. Alberto and Chris travel up north on a dirigible, when a snow storm strikes. Olaf finds Chris and Alberto after he went after them on his dogsled. They all get lost and are rescued by a ship. Jenny and Chris finally reunite under a finale of beauiful Technicolor northern lights.

General Information:

Released: October 25, 1930

Genre: Musical

MPAA Rating: Not Rated

Studio: United Artists

Director: Paul Stein

Assistant Directors: Lonnie D'Orsa and Walter Mayo

Producer: Arthur Hammerstein

Supervision: John W. Considine Jr.

Written by: Horace Jackson

Production Manager: O.O. Dull

Editor: Robert J. Kern

Score by: Rudolph Friml

Lyrics by: J. Keirn Brennan

Musical Arrangement: Hugo Riesenfeld

Sound: J.J. Reed and Frank Maher

Photography: Ray June and Karl Freund

Set design: William Cameron Menzies

Costumes: Alice O'Neill

Duration: 85 minutes

Film: 16 mm black and white, with a two strip technicolor ending


Jeanette MacDonald (Jenny Swanson)

John Garrick (Chris Svenson)

Joe E. Brown (Hoke Curtis)

ZaSu Pitts (Hilda)

Robert Chisholm (Olaf Svenson)

Joseph Macaulay (Alberto)

Harry Gribbon (Battleaxe Boris)

Carroll Nye (Nels Trondson)

Max Davidson (Marriage Broker)

Frank Brownlee (Guard)

Paul Hurst (Lottery Agent)

Robert E. Homans (Miner)

Eugene Pallette (Miner)

Broderick O'Farrel (Bank Cashier)

Torben Meyer (Karl Olson, lottery winner)

Bobby Dunn (Olson's friend)

Budd Fine (Radio Operator)

Chuck Hamilton (Radioman)

Charles K. French (Dirigible officer)

Clarence Geldert (Dirigible lieutenant)

Michael Visaroff (Official on dock)

Murdock MacQuarrie (Captain)

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