This Week of Grace

Last updated

This Week of Grace
This Week of Grace (1933 film).jpg
Directed by Maurice Elvey
Written by H. Fowler Mear
Jack Marks
Story by Nell Emerald
Maurice Braddell
Produced by Julius Hagen
Starring Gracie Fields
Henry Kendall
John Stuart
Cinematography Sydney Blythe
Edited by Jack Harris
Music by Percival Mackey
Distributed by Radio Pictures (UK)
Release date
  • July 1933 (1933-07)
Running time
92 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom

This Week of Grace is a 1933 British comedy film directed by Maurice Elvey and starring Gracie Fields, Henry Kendall and John Stuart. [1] The screenplay concerns a poor, unemployed woman who is made housekeeper at the estate of a wealthy duchess. It was promoted with the tagline "Cinderella in modern dress". [2] It includes songs written by Harry Parr-Davies, including "My Lucky Day" and "Happy Ending". [3]



Grace Milroy loses her job working at a factory. However, through a strange set of circumstances, she is taken on as housekeeper at the nearby Swinford Castle the home of the eccentric Duchess of Swinford. She is initially coldly received by the other staff but she soon wins them over with her personality and hard work. While working there she falls in love with the Duchess' nephew, Viscount Swinford and eventually marries him. Later when she wrongly believes him to have married her under the mistaken impression she is rich she leaves him and goes to take a job on the stage working in the chorus line. Eventually the misunderstanding is cleared up and the couple reconcile.



The film was made by Twickenham Studios following a dispute between Radio Pictures, who owned the rights to Fields, and Associated Talking Pictures (ATP) who had previously made her films. [4] It was part of an attempt by Twickenham to move away from making Quota quickies towards higher budgeted quality productions a strategy that continued until the bankruptcy of its owner Julius Hagen. As the sound stage at Twickenham was already booked, the film was shot at Ealing Studios.


The film is one of the least well-known of Fields' work. It has been noted for its promotion of a national consensus between classes - the first time this had been featured in a Fields film. It was theme which was to become a cornerstone of her work during her years of mainstream popularity. [5] It was well-received on its release with Kine Weekly observing that the film consolidated Fields as "England's premier entertainer". [6]

Preservation status

Thought to have been lost, it was loaned to the British Film Institute as a result of its 2010 search for missing films, and a copy was made for the National Archive. [7]

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Gracie Allen</span> American actress (1895–1964)

Grace Ethel Cecile Rosalie Allen was an American vaudevillian, singer, actress, and comedian who became internationally famous as the zany partner and comic foil of husband George Burns, her straight man, appearing with him on radio, television and film as the duo Burns and Allen.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Twickenham Studios</span> British film studio

Twickenham Film Studios is a film studio in St Margarets, in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, that is used by various motion picture and television companies. It was established in 1913 by Ralph Jupp on the site of a former ice rink. At the time of its original construction, it was the largest film studio in the United Kingdom.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough</span> British duchess (1660–1744)

Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, Princess of Mindelheim, Countess of Nellenburg, was an English courtier who rose to be one of the most influential women of her time through her close relationship with Anne, Queen of Great Britain. The Duchess of Marlborough's relationship and influence with Anne were widely known, and leading public figures often turned their attentions to her, hoping for favour from Anne.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Stanley Holloway</span> British actor, singer and comedian (1890–1982)

Stanley Augustus Holloway was an English actor, comedian, singer and monologist. He was famous for his comic and character roles on stage and screen, especially that of Alfred P. Doolittle in My Fair Lady. He was also renowned for his comic monologues and songs, which he performed and recorded throughout most of his 70-year career.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Gracie Fields</span> British actress, singer and comedian (1898–1979)

Dame Gracie Fields was an English actress, singer, comedian and star of cinema and music hall who was one of the top ten film stars in Britain during the 1930s and was considered the highest paid film star in the world in 1937. She was known affectionately as Our Gracie and the Lancashire Lass and for never losing her strong, native Lancashire accent. She was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) and an Officer of the Venerable Order of St John (OStJ) in 1938, and a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in 1979.

<i>Nightmare</i> (1964 film) 1964 film

Nightmare is a 1964 British horror film directed by Freddie Francis and starring Jennie Linden. It was written by Jimmy Sangster, who also produced the film for Hammer Films. The film focuses on a young girl in a finishing school who is plagued by nightmares concerning her institutionalized mother.

<i>Its Love Im After</i> 1937 film by Archie Mayo

It's Love I'm After is a 1937 American screwball comedy film directed by Archie Mayo and starring Leslie Howard, Bette Davis, and Olivia de Havilland. Based on the story "Gentlemen After Midnight" by Maurice Hanline, with a screenplay by Casey Robinson, the film is about a couple who have postponed their marriage eleven times and who continue to plot and scheme their way to marriage. The film marked the third on-screen pairing of Leslie Howard and Bette Davis, following Of Human Bondage and The Petrified Forest.

<i>Sally in Our Alley</i> (1931 film) 1931 film

Sally in Our Alley is a 1931 British romantic comedy drama film directed by Maurice Elvey and starring Gracie Fields, Ian Hunter, and Florence Desmond. It is based on the 1923 West End play The Likes of Her by Charles McEvoy.

Death on the Set is a 1935 British mystery film directed by Leslie S. Hiscott and starring Henry Kendall, Eve Gray, Jeanne Stuart and Wally Patch. Its plot concerns a film director who murders a leading gangster and takes his place, later pinning the killing on a prominent actress. It is also known by the alternative title Murder on the Set.

<i>The Man from Toronto</i> (1933 film) 1933 film

The Man from Toronto is a 1933 British romantic comedy film directed by Sinclair Hill and starring Jessie Matthews, Ian Hunter and Frederick Kerr. After an inheritance is left to them if they marry, an Englishwoman and a Canadian must meet for the first time to investigate the other - with comedic results. Matthews was considered a rising film star at the time of the production, and she quickly became one of Gainsborough Pictures' leading names.

Julius Hagen (1884–1940) was a German-born British film producer who produced more than a hundred films in Britain.

<i>The Ghost Camera</i> 1933 film

The Ghost Camera is a 1933 British mystery film directed by Bernard Vorhaus, starring Henry Kendall, Ida Lupino and John Mills, and based on "A Mystery Narrative", a short story by Joseph Jefferson Farjeon.

<i>Shipyard Sally</i> 1939 British film

Shipyard Sally is a 1939 British musical comedy film directed by Monty Banks and starring Gracie Fields, Sydney Howard and Norma Varden. The film is notable for the song "Wish Me Luck as You Wave Me Goodbye", which became a major hit.

On Top of the World is a 1936 British comedy film directed by Redd Davis and starring Betty Fields, Frank Pettingell and Leslie Bradley.

Betty Fields, born in Rochdale, Lancashire, was a British actress. She was the sister of Gracie Fields. In 1936 she starred in the lead of On Top of the World in a role originally intended for her sister.

Harry Fowler Mear was a British screenwriter. He spent a number of years at Twickenham Film Studios where his work has been described as "competent but uninspired".

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Fred Groves (actor)</span> British actor

Fred Groves was a British actor of the celebrated Groves acting family. On stage from 1896, he appeared in the original West End production of Noël Coward's Cavalcade (1931-2); and was a leading man in silent films, latterly becoming a character player in movies. He appeared in the 1925 play Number 17 in the West End.

Say It with Flowers is a 1934 British musical film directed by John Baxter and starring Mary Clare, Ben Field and George Carney. The screenplay concerns a group of London shopkeepers who hold a benefit concert in a local pub to raise money for a woman to visit the seaside for her health. The film is notable for the performances of several real music hall stars Florrie Forde, Charles Coborn and Marie Kendall.

<i>Dusty Ermine</i> 1936 British film

Dusty Ermine is a 1936 British crime film directed by Bernard Vorhaus and starring Anthony Bushell, Jane Baxter and Ronald Squire. In the United States it was released under the alternative title Hideout in the Alps. It was based on the play of the same title by Neil Grant.

<i>Off the Dole</i> 1935 British film

Off the Dole is a 1935 British film starring George Formby. Formby appeared as John Willie, a stage character originally developed by his father, George Formby, Sr.; Beryl Formby, Formby Jnr's wife, also appeared in the film.


  1. "This Week of Grace". British Film Institute. Archived from the original on 15 January 2009.
  2. Shafer p.53
  3. Shafer p.199
  4. Richards. The Unknown 1930s p.44
  5. Richards The Age of the Dream Palace p.180
  6. Richards. The Age of the Dream Palace p.181
  7. Josephine Botting (29 November 2012). "BFI Most Wanted: our discoveries so far". British Film Institute. Retrieved 22 February 2013.