Cast & Crew
In an Italian restaurant in New York City, Judith Poe Wells, the great-granddaughter of Edgar Allan Poe and the author of an as-yet-unpublished "serious" play, eats three plates of spaghetti. When she is unable to pay for her meal, another patron, famous playwright George Macrae, offers to pay the bill for her. Judy refuses and instead sings with the restaurant's orchestra. Amazed by her vocal ability, George follows her out and introduces himself as George Blake. She tells him of her struggle to write "serious" pieces when audiences want frothy tripe. They part company and George sneaks into his apartment, where his producer, Sam Gordon, his girl friend, Lulu Riley, and his friends, Jimmy, Harry and Al Ritz, are waiting impatiently for him. The next day, while Judy is packing to return to her hometown, she receives a check from Sam as a payment for optioning her play. She goes to his office to discuss their plans, but while she is waiting, she meets George, who asked Sam to send her the check out of pity, and they make a date for that night. That evening, George takes Judy to a nightclub, where the master of ceremonies talks her into singing. Sam and Lulu arrive at the club after Judy's song and inform George that Evelyn Moore, the star of his musical comedy, has quit. Ecstatic, George asks Judy to take Evelyn's place, but she angrily walks out after telling him that she will have nothing to do with his "stupid musical comedies." Disgusted with Lulu's bad influence on George's behavior, Sam has the Ritz Brothers find Judy. Sam talks Judy into performing the play, which is also to feature famed violinist Rubinoff, while Lulu is sent on a vacation. After rehearsing together, Judy and George fall in love, and after the dress rehearsal, he tells her that he loves her. Having read rumors of the romance in a gossip column, Lulu flies back, tells Judy to keep away from George and informs George that they were married one day while they were drunk. Upon hearing this, Judy leaves the city and returns to her old job selling sheet music. One day, she receives music for a musical adaptation of her play that Sam bought. Angry at the thought of her work being reduced to a "mere" musical, she rushes back to New York and into the theater where the play is being performed. As the audience chants for the author to take a bow, Judy forgets her anger and, to the audience's delight, announces that she has been working on a new piece. Lulu and George arrive in time to hear the news, and in her anger at seeing Judy in the theater, Lulu does not notice that her purse has come open, and her and George's marriage license has fallen out. Harry notices that it has not been signed, and as George and Judy celebrate the oversight with a kiss, the curtain is drawn.
Tip, Tap And Toe
A. L. Von Kirbach
Darryl F. Zanuck
You Can't Have Everything -
Shot on the Fox lot in West Los Angeles from April 22 until mid-June of 1937, You Can't Have Everything stars Faye as Judith Poe Wells, the author of an unproduced play who happens to be the great-granddaughter of horror writer Edgar Allan Poe. And, like her great-grandfather, she is nearly penniless, and unable to pay for a meal at an Italian restaurant. Another patron and fellow playwright, George Macrae (Don Ameche), offers to pay for her dinner, but she turns him down and sings with the restaurant's orchestra instead. While packing to go back to her hometown after her failure in New York City, Judy gets a surprise check and an option on her play. Unbeknownst to her, George asked his producer, Sam Gordon (Charles Winninger) to option the play out of pity. When the star of George's latest musical comedy, Evelyn Moore (Phyllis Brooks), quits the show, George asks Judy to take her place. Complications set in when George's ex-girlfriend Lulu (Louise Hovick, also known as striptease artist Gypsy Rose Lee, making her film debut) comes back to New York and tells George that they are actually married, having tied the knot while drunk. Also in the cast were The Ritz Brothers, English actor Arthur Treacher (who specialized in playing butlers and eventually founded a famous fish-n-chips chain in the United States), singer Tony Martin (who married Alice Faye shortly after production ended), Louis Prima and His Band, the violinist David Rubinoff, appearing as himself, and the famous specialty dancers, Tip, Tap and Toe.
Although The Ritz Brothers were well known in vaudeville and had worked under contract to Fox as a team, Darryl Zanuck had considered only using Jimmy Ritz in this picture, without his brothers Harry and Al, but Jimmy refused and Zanuck finally relented. Released on August 3, 1937, Variety called You Can't Have Everything "a wild and hilarious filmusical, one of the best of the series of this type which 20th Century-Fox has turned out. [...] Another backstage story and all the principals are familiar types of the theatre. [...] The Ritz Bros. sing and dance in their underwear; they disguise themselves as scrub women and do a routine in the YWCA; they do a good floor number with Louis Prima, and his band; and they give Hovick excellent support in some amusing blackouts."
AFI|Catalog. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://catalog.afi.com/Film/7923-YOU-CAN'T-HAVE-EVERYTHING?sid=c086f662-ebed-4b0b-832b-f89161098914&sr=4.6817636&cp=1&pos=0
Mack Gordon. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://michaelfeinsteinsamericansongbook.org/songwriter.html?p=104
Motion Picture Herald. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://lantern.mediahist.org/catalog/motionpictureher128unse_0498
Staff, V. (n.d.). You Can't Have Everything. Retrieved from https://variety.com/1936/film/reviews/you-can-t-have-everything-1200411285/
By Lorraine LoBianco
You Can't Have Everything -
A little exercise won't hurt you.- Judith Wells
I get all the exercise I need from going to the funerals of my athletic friends.- George Macrae
Hands off, or I'll cut your heart out just like an olive!- Lulu Riley
Why don't you go out and look for a nice fatal accident?- Lulu Riley
The above plot summary was obtained from a screen continuity contained in the Twentieth Century-Fox Produced Scripts Collection located at the UCLA Theater Arts Library. The working title of this film was Last Year's Kisses. Hollywood Reporter production charts include Joan Davis and Frances Drake in the cast, but their participation in the completed film is doubtful. A Hollywood Reporter news item noted that Melville Baker was writing the screenplay for the picture, but his contribution to the finished film has not been confirmed. According to a Twentieth Century-Fox publicity release, executive producer Darryl F. Zanuck had originally wanted to feature actor Jimmy Ritz in the film without his brothers Harry and Al. The brothers strongly protested, however, and they were all featured in the picture. Another publicity release noted that Zanuck had hired Samuel Pokrass, Sid Kuller and Ray Golden to write a special comedy number for the Ritzes. Their contribution to the completed picture, however, has not been confirmed. Louise Hovick, better known as famous striptease artist Gypsy Rose Lee, made her screen-acting debut in this picture. Alice Faye and Tony Martin were married after the film was completed, but divorced in 1940.