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Mother Wore Tights

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Title: Mother Wore Tights  
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Subject: 20th Academy Awards, Harry Jackson (cinematographer), List of film director and actor collaborations, When My Baby Smiles at Me (film), Fiesta (1947 film)
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Mother Wore Tights

Mother Wore Tights
Theatrical poster
Directed by Walter Lang
Produced by Lamar Trotti
Written by Lamar Trotti
Based on Mother Wore Tights
1944 novel 
by Miriam Young
Starring Betty Grable
Dan Dailey
Mona Freeman
Narrated by Anne Baxter
Music by Frank Burt
David Buttolph
Cinematography Harry Jackson
Edited by J. Watson Webb Jr.
Distributed by Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
Release dates September 1947 (1947-09)
Running time 107 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $4.1 million (US/ Canada rentals) [1]

Mother Wore Tights is a 1947 Technicolor musical film starring Betty Grable and Dan Dailey as married vaudeville performers, directed by Walter Lang.

This was Grable and Dailey's first film together, based on a book of the same name by Miriam Young. It was the highest grossing film of Grable's career up to this time, earning more than $5 million at the box office. It was also 20th Century Fox's most successful film of 1947.

Alfred Newman won the Academy Award for Original Music Score. Josef Myrow (music) and Mack Gordon (lyrics) were nominated for Original Song ("You Do"), while Harry Jackson was nominated for Color Cinematography.


In turn-of-the-century Oakland, California, the teenaged Myrtle McKinley (Betty Grable) is expected to follow high school by attending a San Francisco business college. Instead, she takes a job performing with a traveling vaudeville troupe, where she meets and falls in love with singer-dancer Frank Burt (Dan Dailey).

Frank proposes they marry and also entertain on stage together as an act, which proves very popular. Myrtle retires from show business after giving birth to daughters Iris (Mona Freeman) and Mikie (Connie Marshall), while her husband goes on tour with another partner.

A few years later, less successful now, Frank persuades his wife to return to the stage. The girls are cared for by their grandmother as their parents leave town for months at a time.

Iris and Mikie are school girls when they are given a trip to Boston to see their parents. Iris meets a well-to-do young man, Bob Clarkman (Robert Arthur), and is permitted to attend an exclusive boarding school there. She is embarrassed by her parents' profession, however, and mortified at what the reaction will be from Bob and all of her new school friends when they learn that her parents are performing nearby.

Myrtle and Frank take matters into their own hands, arranging with the school to have all of the students attend a show. To her great relief, Iris is delighted when her classmates adore her parents' sophisticated act. By the time she's out of school and ready to marry, Iris wants to go into show business herself.



  1. ^ "All-Time Top Grossers", Variety, 8 January 1964 p 69

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