Title: Gents Without Cents
Short Number: 81
Release Date: September 22, 1944
Running Time: 18:58
“I don’t understand it. Every time we get to that inch by inch part something always happens.”
The Stooges are small-time song-and-dance performers who are having trouble rehearsing due to loud tapping that is going on upstairs. When they go to give the rowdies a piece of their mind, three lovely ladies named Flo (Lindsay Bourquin), Mary (Laverne Thompson) and Shirley (Betty Phares) come to the door. It turns out the girls are performing their tap dance routine. The six become friends and go to a talent agent, Manny Weeks (John Tyrrell), to show off their stuff. However, he is at first unimpressed with The Stooges’ act but hires them anyway to perform at the Noazark Shipbuilding Company to entertain defense workers.
The Stooges, as “Two Souls and a Heel”, slay the audience with their hilarious “Niagara Falls” routine (“slowly I turned, step by step, inch by inch…”). When the boys receive word that the headliners (The Castor and Earl Review) have to bail, they and the girls offer to take their place. Weeks is so enthralled with The Boys’ performance that he offers to send the trio to Broadway.
The Stooges nearly leave their ladies, but end up getting married first with a honeymoon planned for — where else? — Niagara Falls.
Gents Without Cents Cast & Crew
|Directed by||Jules White|
|Produced by||Jules White|
|Written by||Felix Adler|
|Cinematography||Benjamin H. Kline|
|Edited by||Charles Hochberg|
Gents Without Cents Trivia
- The working title was Tenderized Hams
- This short premieres a swing rendition of “Three Blind Mice” as The Stooges’ theme music
- The theatrical agent’s sign lists business locations as “New York, Chicago, London … Berlin soon.” This film was released just a few months after D-Day, at a time when Allied forces were making steady advances
- The famous “Niagara Falls” is in Gents Without Cents. Now a piece of Americana pop culture, read how the ‘Slowly I Turned’ routine evolved from a vaudeville sketch.
- Filming took place from June 14-16, 1944
- The Stooges filmed the “Niagara Falls” routine in 1943 for the feature film Good Luck, Mr. Yates, but the scene was cut at the last minute. Instead of wasting the footage, Columbia built Gents Without Cents around it