It was Christmas week, 1944, that the feature film Here Come the WAVES (film still above) premiered in New York, but WAVES got a sneak peek before the premiere.
The film features Betty Hutton, playing twin sisters who join the WAVES, and Bing Crosby, as the celebrity who joins the Navy in order to help the war effort.
The Frank Capra classic was released in 1946, the year after the war ended. But World War II plays a big theme in the film – the Jimmy Stewart character can’t go to war because of a childhood injury, but his brother does and becomes a war hero.
The 1945 romance features Barbara Stanwyck as a single-gal New York-dwelling food journalist Elizabeth Lane (think Martha Stewart if Martha Stewart couldn’t cook) and Dennis Morgan as Jefferson Jones, the hero sailor she’ll host for the holidays on “her” Connecticut farm.
Arrange it, are you crazy? Where am I gonna get a farm? I haven’t even got a window box!
Elizabeth Lane learning she’ll be hosting a sailor at “her” farm for Christmas.
This Ginger Rogers/Joseph Cotton film was released on January 5, 1945. In it, a soldier just released from the mental hospital (Cotton) meets a woman on leave from the state penitentiary (Rogers) on a train. She invites him home for the holidays.
Zachary Morgan (Cotton) after singing a Christmas carol with Barbara Marshall’s (Rogers) family:
I haven’t felt so easy in a long time. This is the best Christmas dinner I ever had. Yesterday, I was a stranger here. I mean, I felt like a prisoner inside myself. Now, just to be in a home like this, with people like you, maybe someplace I can come back to next month, or next year…
In this 1944 film (released in June), Deanna Durbin plays young femme fatale Abigail Martin (also known as Jackie Lamont) who discovers the wealthy man she married is not what she expected.
At one point, Durbin (as Abagail), sings:
I’ll be loving you always, / With a love that’s true always, / When the things you’ve planned need a helping hand / I will understand always, always. / Days may not be fair always, / That’s when I’ll be there, always, / Not for just an hour, not for just a day, / Not for just a year, but always.
… and friends, Christmas, 1940s. Thanks to our friends at Mothic Flights and Flutterings for finding this one for us.
Great Christmas publicity shot of the actress, circa 1940s.
This next week we’re looking at how Hollywood celebrated Christmas during the war years. Here, a Christmas publicity shot of actress Rita Hayworth, circa 1940s. Thanks to Mothic Flights and Flutterings for finding this one for us.
WAVES holiday greeting card, circa 1944. It comes from the collection of Liane Galvin.
WAVE Doris Mansfield in the snow at the WAVES boot camp at Hunter College in New York. It comes from the collection of Doris Mansfield Leichliter.