Three Girls About Town

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Three Girls About Town


Theatrical poster
Directed by Leigh Jason
Produced by Samuel Bischoff
Written by Richard Carroll
Starring Joan Blondell
Binnie Barnes
Janet Blair
Cinematography Franz Planer
Edited by Charles Nelson
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release date
  • October 23, 1941 (1941-10-23)
Running time
75 minutes
Country United States
Language English

Three Girls About Town is a 1941 Columbia comedy film directed by Leigh Jason. The story is written by Richard Carroll and stars Joan Blondell, Binnie Barnes and Janet Blair (in her film debut).

Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. is an American film studio, production company and film distributor that is a member of the Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group, a division of Sony Entertainment's Sony Pictures subsidiary of the Japanese multinational conglomerate Sony Corporation.

Comedy is a genre of film in which the main emphasis is on humour. These films are designed to make the audience laugh through amusement and most often work by exaggerating characteristics for humorous effect. Films in this style traditionally have a happy ending. One of the oldest genres in film, some of the very first silent movies were comedies, as slapstick comedy often relies on visual depictions, without requiring sound. When sound films became more prevalent during the 1920s, comedy films took another swing, as laughter could result from burlesque situations but also dialogue.

Leigh Jason was an American film director and screenwriter. He was born in New York, New York, and died in Woodland Hills, Los Angeles.



The Merchants Hotel is hosting a convention for morticians and a mediation meeting between aircraft manufacturers and their workers. This makes hotel manager Puddle worry about a newspaper article criticizing the hotel's convention hostesses, sisters Faith and Hope Banner. Tommy Hopkins, a reporter in love with Hope, has tried to get her to take another job with "regular" hours, but she needs the money to pay for the education of her younger sister Charity at an expensive private school. However, right after Hope and Tommy's argument, Charity shows up and announces that she is going to quit school to be a hostess like her sisters. They try to change her mind.

Meanwhile, a dead body is found in the hotel. The sisters, worried about the hotel's already damaged reputation, decide to dump the corpse somewhere else. Hope tries to talk Tommy into doing the moving, but he sees a scoop for his newspaper after recognizing the victim is in fact the missing labor mediator everyone has been waiting for. Hope is unable to persuade him to keep quiet, so they take the body down the fire escape and hide it in a room. Unfortunately, it is discovered by the mortician occupant; he telephones for the police, then runs out.

Fire escape emergency exit usually mounted to the outside of a building

A fire escape is a special kind of emergency exit, usually mounted to the outside of a building or occasionally inside but separate from the main areas of the building. It provides a method of escape in the event of a fire or other emergency that makes the stairwells inside a building inaccessible. Fire escapes are most often found on multiple-story residential buildings, such as apartment buildings. At one time, they were a very important aspect of fire safety for all new construction in urban areas; more recently, however, they have fallen out of common use. This is due to the improved building codes incorporating fire detectors, technologically advanced fire fighting equipment, which includes better communications and the reach of fire fighting ladder trucks, and more importantly fire sprinklers. The international building codes and other authoritative agencies have incorporated fire sprinklers into multi-story buildings below 15 stories and not just skyscrapers.

Hope and Faith retrieve the body and hide it in a laundry cart. Tommy steals it from the girls and, looking for a hiding place from a police search, stumbles upon a high-stakes poker game. He has no choice but to set the body down at the table, calling him "sleepy Joe". The corpse wins every hand he "plays" (with Tommy's help), and the others call him a "lucky stiff". Hope and Faith barge in. Thinking quickly, Hope claims she has been looking for her misbehaving husband. The girls carry "Joe" out, but have to take him into a random room to avoid the chief of police. They dump it in a coffin in mortician Josephus Wiegel's room. The coffin is then hauled away into the morticians' convention room. Fred Chambers, Tommy's editor, finds him, but when Tommy tells him he lost the body, he fires him. Charity, who is strongly attracted to Tommy and has been kissing him at every opportunity, tells him where the body is. After he leaves, Charity tells Hope that Tommy is in love with her.

When the Chronicle, Tommy's former newspaper, reports he found the corpse, the police chase after him. Tommy ends up at the mediation meeting and poses as the mediator. He appeals to both parties' patriotism and manages to get them to reach a compromise.

Afterward, the chief of police arrests him. Hope persuades Puddle to give the body to Tommy, but they drag it into a room full of policemen and are taken into custody themselves. On the way out, Tommy is promoted by the editor, who has learned that he prevented the strike.

When the body is carried out through the hotel lobby, a drunk named Charlemagne recognizes it and, with a clap of his hands, brings it back to life. It turns out he had just put the man in "suspended animation" through hypnosis. Everyone is released. Tommy offers to let the police chief off the hook for false arrest if he can get a marriage license immediately, rather than having to wait days. Hope believes it is Charity he intends to wed, but Tommy corrects her. When Charity shows up and continues lying about her relationship with Tommy, Hope puts her over her knee and spanks her. Faith joins in, followed by Puddle.

Hypnosis purportedly special psychological state with certain physiological attributes

Hypnosis is a state of human consciousness involving focused attention, reduced peripheral awareness, and an enhanced capacity to respond to suggestion. The term may also refer to an art, skill, or act of inducing hypnosis.


Joan Blondell American actress

Rose Joan Blondell was an American actress who performed in movies and on television for half a century. She began her career in vaudeville.

Binnie Barnes English actress

Gertrude Maud Barnes, known professionally as Binnie Barnes, was an English actress whose career in films spanned 50 years, from 1923 to 1973.

Janet Blair actress

Janet Blair was a big-band singer who became a popular American film and television actress.

IMDb Online database for movies, television, and video games

IMDb is an online database of information related to films, television programs, home videos and video games, and internet streams, including cast, production crew and personnel biographies, plot summaries, trivia, and fan reviews and ratings. An additional fan feature, message boards, was abandoned in February 2017. Originally a fan-operated website, the database is owned and operated by, Inc., a subsidiary of Amazon.

Turner Classic Movies American classic movie-oriented television channel

Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is an American movie-oriented pay-TV network operated by Warner Bros., a subsidiary of AT&T's WarnerMedia. Launched in 1994, TCM is headquartered at Turner's Techwood broadcasting campus in the Midtown business district of Atlanta, Georgia.

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