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According to a statement at the end of the credits, this picture was produced under the auspices of the motion picture committee cooperating for national defense. A January 15, 1941 news item in Los Angeles Examiner notes that Warner Bros. budgeted $1,200,000 for the film, that Sam Wood was to direct, that Eddie Albert was to co-star with Jack Haley and Jack Oakie and that Cole Porter was to write the songs. According to an March 11, 1941 Hollywood Reporter news item, Al Dubin was to collaborate with Arthur Schwartz on the songs. Other Hollywood Reporter news items add the following information about the production: Mark Hellinger was initially assigned as associate producer. The studio considered making the film in Technicolor. The Dudley Chambers Choral Group was to be included, but its participation in the final film has not been determined. A unit was sent to Honolulu to film hula dancers for scenes in the movie.
According to a press release dated April 16, 1941 included in the file on the film at the AMPAS Library, the Navy Blues Sextet was created when United States soldiers were asked to choose the six most beautiful women from a field of 150, many of whom were Warner Bros. contract players. A May 1, 1941 press release lists the winners as Georgia Carroll, Alexis Smith, Loraine Gettman, Kay Aldridge, Marguerite Chapman and Peggy Diggins. Hollywood Reporter notes that Claire James replaced Alexis Smith before filming when the latter was assigned to Dive Bomber, and an October 8, 1941 press release notes that Alice Talton replaced Claire James before the filming of You're in the Army Now. Navy Blues marked the motion picture debut of actor/comedian Jackie Gleason.