Pick a Star

Released May 20, 1937 (Feature).

A Hal Roach Musical Comedy where a young girl, Cecilia (Rosina Lawrence) comes to Hollywood with her friend Nellie (Patsy Kelly), hoping to get her big break in the movies. She achieves movie stardom with the help of a lothario (Mischa Auer) and her secret admirer Bob (A pre-Wizard of Oz Jack Haley). At a studio, she and Nellie happen upon Laurel and Hardy as they shoot a couple of scenes. This was also released as Movie Struck in the UK.

Stan and Babe took one day out on 16 November 1936 from shooting Way Out West to film guest scenes for Hal Roach’s musical comedy Pick a Star. In the first of two scenes, they are shooting a Western as Mexican bandits with Walter Long, under the direction of moustache-less James Finlayson (He looks rather odd without it too).

Here, they explain the use of special movie prop bottles, or breakaways, to Nellie with a graphic (and for the boys, painful) demonstration featuring their heads and, naturally, a real bottle…

In the second scene, the boys play some musical nonsense. Stan finds he can play a tune on a toy trumpet, while Ollie tries to out-do him by playing a tiny harmonica. Ollie swallows his instrument, and Stan finds that he can play tunes by pressing Ollie’s ample belly in just the right spots.

You can see a YouTube clip of the musical sequence here. Apologies if an annoying advert pops up first, it is worth the wait!

Regular nemesis Walter Long in an uncredited appearance in the Western / Mexican bandit sequence

The Western scene with Patsy Kelly, Fin and Rosina Lawrence with Mischa Auer is here – there are two sequences, at the start of the 8 minute clip and at 4:20 or so in. 

In the second of the western sequences there’s even a few seconds of Stan and Babe sort of ‘playing themselves’, which is really interesting.

The opening credits show a picture of Stan and Ollie but they are not identified, nor are they in the comprehensive cast list in the end credits either, so technically, they both are uncredited.

Stan and Ollie under the ‘direction’ of Fin in their other appearance in Pick A Star
A lobby card / poster for Pick A Star
%d bloggers like this:
search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close