Ball of Fire

Gary Cooper was already cast in Ball of Fire (1942) when he heard producer Samuel Goldwyn was having trouble casting his co-star, so he suggested Barbara Stanwyck who he had just worked with for Frank Capra in Meet John Doe.

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Ball of Fire

The caption for the publicity still for Ball of Fire (1942) reads “Fun on the phone….” when Gary Cooper mistakenly believes he’s talking to Sugarpuss’ biological father.

Ball of Fire


Barbara Stanwyck in her Oscar nominated role as Sugarpuss O’Shea in a publicity still for Ball of Fire (1942), the only such nomination for a female in a Hawks film, despite all the terrific Hawksian women over the decades.

Ball of Fire

Gary Cooper as Prof. Potts behind the scenes of Ball of Fire (1942).

Ball of Fire

the professors have an impromptu dance lesson in Ball of Fire (1942).

Ball of Fire

Gary Cooper “Star of Ball of Fire” in a print ad for RC Cola.  RC Cola was introduced in 1905 and is apparently still being made, although I can’t recall the last time I saw it at the supermarket.  It is bottled by Dr. Pepper Snapple Group.

Ball of Fire

Gary Cooper checks Barbara Stanwyck for cold symptoms in Ball of Fire (1942).  It was Billy Wilder’s final screenplay before he became a writer/director with The Major and the Minor (1943).

Ball of Fire

Gary Cooper takes leave of his fake bachelor party in search of Sugarpuss in a scene from Ball of Fire (1942).

Ball of Fire

Gary Cooper in a publicity still as Prof Potts in Ball of Fire (1942).

Ball of Fire

Gary Cooper as Prof Potts in a publicity still for Ball of Fire (1942).  It was the second film in a row Howard Hawks made with Coop, after Coop’s Oscar winning performance in Sergeant York (1941).

Ball of Fire

Barbara Stanwyck engages in some “hoi toi toi” with Gary Cooper behind the scenes of Ball of Fire (1942)

Ball of Fire

Howard Hawks poses with co-stars Gary Cooper and Barbara Stanwyck and Tully Marshall as one of the professors in Ball of Fire (1942).

Ball of Fire


Gary Cooper and the professors are held hostage by Dan Duryea as Duke Pastrami while  benefactor Mary Field as Miss Totten tensely looks on in Ball of Fire (1942).

Ball of Fire

 

ball1Ball of Fire is Howard Hawks’ 26th film

Ball of Fire premiered Dec 31, 1941 in Boston and Chicago and Jan 1, 1942 in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Barbara’s costume is altered for family audiences in this euro poster.

Ball of Fire

Barbara Stanwyck is lead singer for Gene Krupa and his Orchestra in Ball of Fire (1942),  with her singing voice dubbed by Anita O’Day, Gene’s lead singer at the time.  Gene was arguably the greatest drummer of the big band era, gaining wide recognition and popularity with Benny Goodman in the 30s before leading his own orchestra.