Desperation turns to inspiration and results in fake news

Jan 11, 2019

Friday 8pm MEET JOHN DOE - (1941) A drama starring Gary Cooper and Barbara Stanwyck.   A man needing money agrees to impersonate a nonexistent person who said he'd be committing suicide as a protest, and a political movement begins.

 

 

 A reporter (Barbara Stanwyck) writes a fictitious column about someone named "John Doe," who is distraught at America's neglect of the little people and plans to kill himself. The newspaper then hires a ballplayer-turned-hobo (Gary Cooper) to pose as John Doe. In a series of radio addresses written by a publisher with fascist leanings, Doe captures the public's imagination. When he finally realizes he has been used, Doe comes to his senses and becomes the man he never knew he could be.

TRIVIA: 

  • Four different endings were filmed, but all were ultimately deemed unsatisfactory during previews. A letter from an audience member suggested a fifth ending, which director, Frank Capra liked and used in the finished film.
  • Regis Toomey had already memorized his monologue about the John Doe Clubs for his audition, so the day he was supposed to shoot it, Frank Capra asked if he needed a rehearsal. Toomey didn't, so they shot the scene in one take.
  • The rooftop set for the final scene in was built in an icehouse to capture the sense that it was taking place on Christmas Eve. Barbara Stanwyck later said after shooting the scene she had to go to "the hospital for a defrost."

    

Tags: