Heebee Jeebees

film no. 69


technical details:

Production G-3.

Filmed August 29 to September 13 and September 30, 1927. See the 'miscellaneous' section below for details.

Title sheet prepared by H. M. Walker on Sep. 29, 1927.

Cutting continuity submitted October 7, 1927.

Copyrighted November 1, 1927, by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Corporation. Registration no. LP24609. Renewed July 11, 1955, with registration no. R152703. This copyright is currently due to expire at the end of 2022.

Released November 19, 1927. It was the 67th film in the series to be released.

Silent two-reeler.

Opening title: '"Our Gang" Comedies - Hal Roach presents His Rascals in "Heebee Jeebees".'


the crew:

Produced by Robert F. McGowan for Hal Roach
This is the way Maltin & Bann put it. The film credits Roach as a presenter, with a separate credit reading "A Robert McGowan Production."
Directed by Anthony Mack
Mack was actually Robert A. "for Anthony" McGowan, the nephew of Robert F. This credit appears in the film.
Photographed by Art Lloyd
This credit appears in the film.
Edited by Richard Currier
This credit appears in the film.
Titles by H. M. Walker
This credit appears in the film.
Animation by Roy Seawright
This credit derives from Seawright's payroll status as the studio animator during this period. Seawright animated the dog howls coming out of Joe's mouth as well as the donkey braying.
Story by Robert F. McGowan
Indicated in the cutting continuity.
Animal Trainer: Harry Lucenay
He was Pete's owner and trainer.
Teacher: Fern Carter
Released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Indicated at the opening of the film.
Passed by the National Board of Review
As indicated in the film.
All Rights Reserved Under International Convention of Buenos Aires
As indicated in the film.
studio personnel
director-general - Leo McCarey
general manager - Warren Doane
assistant general manager - L. A. French
secretary-treasurer - C. H. Roach
construction supervisor - C. E. Christensen
laboratory superintendent - Charles Levin
optical effects supervisor - Roy Seawright
still photographer - Bud "Stax" Graves
transportation director - Bob Davis
possible uncredited involvement
assistant direction - Probably Charles Oelze.
assistant cameraman - Probably Clair Boshard.
cutting - Probably Lloyd Campbell.
writing - Robert A. McGowan, Jean Yarbrough and Charlie Hall may have been among the gag writers.
property department - Charles Oelze, Don Sandstrom and Thomas Benton Roberts were probably involved in this capacity.

the kids:

Joe Cobb
Featured role. He's changed into a dog, and spends most of the film howling and biting people's legs, as well as getting into a fight with Jean's stuffed dog.
Allen "Farina" Hoskins
Featured role. He's changed into a cat and sits on a fence and meows, getting a shoe thrown at him. He also confronts a real cat and goes after a rat.
Jay R. Smith
Featured role. He's changed into a monkey and harasses the fruit man. At the party, he swings from the chandelier.
Jackie Condon
Featured role. He's changed into a donkey and eats grass and kicks people.
Harry Spear
Featured role. He's changed into a goat and eats paper and butts people.
Jean Darling
Supporting role. Joe gets into a fight with her stuffed dog. She's identified in the cutting continuity only as a 'little girl,' and might be the one described in the crowd at the hypnotist's performance.
Bobby "Wheezer" Hutchins
Small part. He points out the transformed boys to the women. Promotional material provided with the continuity indicates that he's changed into a bee, but the continuity doesn't mention this.
Mildred Kornman
Small part. A publicity photo reveals her presence in this film.
Richard and Robert Smith
Small parts. A publicity photo reveals their presence in this film.
other kids
Presumed extra. There is at least one additional kid in the party scene, and she looks quite a lot like Nanette Fabray.

the animals:

Pete (no. 1) as "Pansy"
Small part. He's hynotised to go in reverse and also climbs onto the minister's lap.
Leo
Bit part. The MGM lion appears at the opening of the film.
other animals
Small parts and bit parts.
(1.) The cat that's confronted by Farina.
(2.) The white rat chased by Farina.
(3.) The images of animals superimposed over the kids' faces as they're hypnotized, including a dog, cat, monkey, donkey and goat.
(4.) The fish in the bowl that Jay plays with.

the adults:

George B. French as "Prof. Electra"
Featured role. He's the one that hypnotizes the kids and steals from his adult subjects. Maltin & Bann list Bobby Vernon, who resembles this actor, but a 1927 casting directory indicates that French appeared in this film, and he looks entirely like the professor.
Charles Bachman as the cop
Supporting role. Presuming he's the cop described in the continuity, the Professor hypnotizes him into thinking he's a little boy. He then plays pranks on people.
Dorothy Vernon as Wheezer's mom
Supporting role. It isn't clear from the continuity which woman is Wheezer's mom, but she's probably at the party.
Lyle Tayo as Joe's mom
Supporting role. She's perplexed by her son's behavior, and might also be described doing other things, but would be identified only as a 'woman.'
other adults
Supporting roles, small parts and bit parts. The 1927 directory lists Edgar Sherwood and Grace Wood as appearing in this film, but I don't yet know which parts they played.
(1.) "Mrs. Droopleberry," who tries to sing while the kids make animal sounds.
(2.) The fat lady that's hypnotized to dance.
(3.) The man that's harassed by the hypnotized cop and the kids. This could actually be more than one character.
(4.) The butler.
(5.) The fruit man whose cart is overturned by Jay.
(6.) The pianist accompanying Mrs. Droopleberry.
(7.) The woman whose brooch is stolen by the hypnotist.
(8.) The minister.
(9.) The man who throws a shoe at Farina.
(10.) The remaining people at the party, including the host, "Mrs. Von Tudor." The continuity also describes some 'crows' laughing at what they're seeing, which perhaps is a reference to black people.
(11.) The musicians assisting the hypnotist.
(12.) The two cops seen at the end of the film with the professor.
(13.) The crowd of spectators at the hypnotist's performance, including an old lady.

the music (sort of):

"Whispering Winds Of The Desert"
This is the song sung by Mrs. Droopleberry.

the locations

3563 Motor Avenue, Palms district, Los Angeles
A publicity photo showing Joe Cobb, Lyle Tayo and Charles Bachman, reveals the use of this house, which was featured in the next short, "Dog Heaven" (no. 70).

miscellaneous:

13 shooting dates went into the making of this film. About a week after shooting finished for "The Old Wallop" (no. 68), the 'start' date arrived for "Heebee Jeebees" on Aug. 29th. Shooting continued until the 'finish' date of Sep. 13th. No shooting took place on Aug. 28th, Sep. 4th, or Sep. 11th, which were all Sundays, nor on Sep. 5th, which was Labor Day. It should be noted that activity for this film was written into the datebook page for Sep. 14th, but crossed out, suggesting that perhaps filming went more quickly than anticipated. Just two days after the finish date, filming began for "Dog Heaven" (no. 70). On Sep. 30th, filming was divided between "Dog Heaven" and retakes for "Heebee Jeebees." After this, work continued on "Dog Heaven." Anthony Mack directed on each of the shooting dates.

The script submitted to MGM was given the catalog number B443.


availability:

This film is considered to be lost and is therefore unavailable on video. Most of the information listed above derives from the cutting continuity, which was submitted for copyright purposes to the Library of Congress.


© Robert Demoss.


My thanks to the following people for assisting with this page:
Rob Stone (for providing the production number and shooting dates)
Randy Jones (for providing me with pictorial evidence of Mildred Kornman and the Smith twins in this film)
Joe Moore (for providing the copyright information)


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