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Callaway Went Thataway

Callaway Went Thataway(1951)


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Panama and Frank's credit reads: "Written, produced and directed by Norman Panama and Melvin Frank." Howard Keel is listed twice in the closing credits, first as "Smoky Callaway," then as "Stretch Barnes." The film ends with the following written statement: "This picture was made in the spirit of fun and was meant in no way to detract from the wholesome influence, civic-mindedness and the many charitable contributions of western idols of our American youth, or to be a portrayal of any of them." According to news items in Daily Variety and Variety, the disclaimer was added to distance the film from any known Western star, especially William Boyd, who portrayed "Hopalong Cassidy" in the television series of the same name, which ran from June 24, 1949 through December 23, 1951, was syndicated for many years and was one of the burgeoning television medium's first large-scale successes. Like "Smoky Callaway" in Callaway Went Thataway, Boyd was hired to make additional films for television after edited versions of his theatrical films of the 1930s and 1940s became national sensations. Also like the film's hero, Boyd made personal appearances, many for charitable causes, and numerous products featuring his likeness as Hopalong Cassidy, from lunch boxes to clothing, were sold during the early 1950s. A Daily Variety news item on November 15, 1951 stated that Boyd's manager, Ben Stabler, had demanded to see a preview of Callaway Went Thataway to "ascertain if it did reflect unfavorably on Boyd." The item noted that after Stabler saw the film he concluded that "the satire on the cowboy stars is a good, well-done picture."
       Actor comedian Stan Freberg made his onscreen motion picture debut in Callaway Went Thataway. Freberg, who was a popular television and comedy recording performer, had previously provided voices to a number of animated and puppet characters for motion pictures and television, including the Time for Beanie television series. Although actress Argentina Brunetti is listed in the CBCS as "Irate Mother," she was not in the viewed print and her role May have been taken over by Louise Lorimer, who portrayed the angry woman in New York who criticizes "Smoky" for not giving more to disadvantaged children. According to news items, portions of the film were shot on location in San Francisco, CA. In addition, several interior and exterior scenes were shot in and around the Beverly Hills Hotel in Beverly Hills, CA and the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.