Dog Heaven

film no. 70


technical details:

Production G-4.

Filmed September 15 to October 13, and November 1, 1927. See the 'miscellaneous' section below for details.

The title sheet was prepared by H. M. Walker on Nov. 2, 1927.

The cutting continuity was prepared Nov. 8, 1927, and received by MGM on Nov. 9, 1927.

Released December 17, 1927. It was the 68th film in the series to be released.

Copyrighted November 26, 1929, by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Corporation. Registration no. LP867. Renewed December 19, 1956, with registration no. R182602. This copyright is currently due to expire at the end of 2024.

Silent two-reeler.

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


the crew:

Produced by Robert F. McGowan for Hal Roach
This is the way Maltin & Bann put it. The film lists Roach as the presenter, and reads "A Robert McGowan Production."
Supervised by Robert F. McGowan
This credit appears in the film, but without his middle initial.
Directed by Anthony Mack, Robert F. McGowan and Charles Oelze
Mack was actually Robert A. "for Anthony" McGowan, the nephew of Robert F. No onscreen credit was given to Oelze, but Jean Darling's mother noted his role as co-director. However, the 1927 studio datebook indicates that Oelze wasn't listed as a director for any of the shooting dates. Oelze was being listed in the payroll summaries as an assistant director during this period, though they were no longer specifying which unit he worked for. The datebook also indicates that Robert F. McGowan directed the retakes, even though he didn't receive onscreen credit.
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.
Story by Robert F. McGowan
This credit doesn't appear in the film.
Location scouting by Jack Roach
According to Maltin & Bann.
Animal Trainer: Harry Lucenay
He was Pete's owner and trainer.
Teacher: Fern Carter
Released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
As indicated in the film.
Passed by the National Board of Review
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 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 as "Joe"
Lead role. He neglects Pete in favor of Clarabelle, but realizes his mistake in the end.
Annette de Kirby as "Clarabelle"
Featured role. She aggresively pursues Joe, and later blames Pete for pushing her in the lake. A 1927 casting directory lists her as appearing in this film (but without a photo), and an autographed photo on eBay seems to settle the matter.
Bobby "Wheezer" Hutchins
Supporting role. The nickname doesn't appear in the film. He has a few funny moments at the drinking fountain and putting worms in Joe's hat.
Jay R. Smith
Supporting role. He has a fist fight with Joe, and later exchanges kisses with Jackie.
Jackie Condon
Supporting role. Jay calls him "Clementina" before the two of them kiss each other repeatedly.
Allen "Farina" Hoskins
Supporting role. The nickname doesn't appear in the film. He fishes using a mousetrap.
Jean Darling
Supporting role. She does mostly ensemble acting, but also holds Wheezer while he tries to drink from the fountain.
Mildred Kornman
Supporting role. She does mostly ensemble acting, but works the water pressure for the fountain.

the animals:

Pete (no. 1) as "Pete"
Lead role. He attempts suicide after losing Joe to a girl.
cat 060 as "Gertrude"
Small part. This is Clarabelle's cat, who takes a disliking to Pete. She's also seen in the opening scene with the black cat. Previously seen in "Tired Business Men" (no. 60).
dog 034
Bit part. This is the dog that pushes Clarabelle into the water.
Leo
Bit part. The MGM lion appears at the opening of the film.
other animals
Supporting roles, bit parts and extras.
(1.) The dog that listens to Pete's story.
(2.) The 'lady dog from the Follies' that Pete has the affair with.
(3.) The five drunken dogs.
(4.) The black cat that's glad Pete is kicking the bucket.
(5.) The five chickens on the fence watching Pete hang himself.
(6.) The seven puppies born to Pete and the lady dog.
(7.) Farina's fish.
(8.) Many worms.
(9.) The white chicken passing in the background while Pete's necking with the lady dog.
(10.) The duck in the lake.
bugwatch
Numerous flies buzzing around, particularly while Pete's drunk.

the adults:

Charley Lloyd as the man in the wheelchair
Small part. He reveals that Pete is the hero. Listed by Maltin & Bann as Charley Young.
Lyle Tayo as Clarabelle's mom
Small part. Maltin & Bann list her as the "lady at accident scene." She rewards Joe for saving her daughter.
Charles Bachman as the cop
Bit part. He's the cop that arrives on the scene after Pete rescues Clarabelle.
Ed Brandenberg as the lover on the park bench
Bit part. According to Maltin & Bann. I can't really differentiate him from Chet Brandenberg.
other adults
Bit parts and extras.
(1.) The cop who ties Pete to the tree.
(2.) The proprietor at the hardware store where the dog collar is for sale.
(3.) The woman who sells the candy and flowers to Joe.
(4.) The woman on the park bench with Brandenberg.
(5.) The man picking up litter who gets knocked over by Pete.
(6.) The man who gets rolled down the hill by Pete.
(7.) The two men and two women who arrive at the scene after Clarabelle is rescued.
(8.) The pedestrian in the background during the drinking fountain scene, plus several more at the park.

the locations:

Hollenbeck Park
The scene where Clarabelle is pushed into the lake and rescued was shot at this park.
Mentone Avenue, Palms district, Los Angeles
The location of Pete's suicide attempt is a barn-like structure in the backyard of a house on Mentone.
Motor Avenue and Woodbine Street, Palms district, Los Angeles
The People's Water Company at 3392 Motor and the Masonic Hall at 3402 Motor are both shown as Pete's friend is running to rescue him. The 'water fountain' location was on the northwest corner of this intersection. There's also a shot of Pete's friend on the north side of Woodbine at the alley west of Motor, with the businesses visible at the intersection behind him. Towards the end of the film, as Joe is trying to find Pete and meets up with the Gang, they are on the south side of Woodbine just east of Motor, standing at the entrance to an alley.
Bacon's Pharmacy and Safeway Stores, Palms district, Los Angeles
This was located at 3568-3570 Motor Avenue at the corner of Tabor Street. This is where Joe buys the flowers and candy for Clarabelle. We get to see the inside of this business as well. The next door up the street is S. A. Franklin Hardware at 3566 Motor. This is where Pete tries on the dog collar. To illustrate the difference between available prints, the 'S. A. Franklin' part of the sign is visible only in the Grapevine version.
3563 Motor Avenue, Palms district, Los Angeles
This house was also used in "Heebee Jeebees" (no. 69), and still stands today. In this film, it served as Clarabelle's house. In the shot where Wheezer peers over the fence, we can see the Safeway store behind him directly across the street.

miscellaneous:

26 shooting dates went into the making of this film. Two days after shooting finished for "Heebee Jeebees" (no. 69), the 'start' date arrived for "Dog Heaven" on Sep. 15th. Shooting continued until the 'finish' date of Oct. 13th. However, activity was divided between "Dog Heaven" and retakes for "Heebee Jeebees" on Sep. 30th. Anthony Mack directed on each of these shooting dates. Also, activity was divided between "Dog Heaven" and "Spook Spoofing" on Oct. 11th, 12th and 13th, the latter directed by Robert F. McGowan. Filming then continued and finished for "Spook Spoofing." Nearly a week after the finish date, retakes were shot for "Dog Heaven" on Nov. 1st, but with Robert F. McGowan directing. Three days later, shooting began for "Rainy Days" (no. 72). No shooting took place on Sep. 18th, Sep. 25th, Oct. 2nd or Oct. 9th, which were all Sundays.

The script submitted to MGM was given the catalog number B395.


availability:

For Pete's Sake (VHS) from Cabin Fever
Released Aug. 27, 1997. This copy is an original print with very good picture quality. However, the inter-titles are freeze-framed, and the image is cropped so that the top and left sides of the picture are missing. The total footage lasts 31:23. This version has appeared on numerous bootlegs.
The Little Rascals (DVD) from Hallmark Home Entertainment
Released Aug. 19, 2003. This is a copy of the Cabin Fever version.
The Little Rascals - The Complete Collection (8 VHS set) from Genius Products
Released late Oct. 2008. This is identical to the Cabin Fever version. There is no musical soundtrack. There are also numerous clips from this film included in the documentary The Story Of Hal Roach And Our Gang.
Our Gang Volume #7 (VHS) from Grapevine Video and also from The Picture Palace
This copy is a home movie print from Blackhawk Films, but with the Blackhawk logo blacked out. The inter-titles was remade by Blackhawk, but with the original wording. The end title has been replaced. The picture quality is good, and significantly more of the frame is shown than in the RHI print, which was released by Cabin Fever and Genius. The print totals 21:38, with about 18:45 of it original footage. This version has appeared on numerous bootlegs.

special note
There's a European video release of this film lasting 22:33. The titles are all remade, with the object of making them appear original. However, the font is not quite the same as on the original prints, and there are one or two mistakes. Music is provided by the Beau Hunks with sound effects. This print is cropped the same way as the RHI version.

© Robert Demoss.


My thanks to the following people for assisting with this page:
Henry Sorenson (for providing info about the European video release of this film)
Rob Stone (for providing the production number and shooting dates)
Randy Jones (for emailing me the photo of Annette de Kirby)
Joe Moore (for providing the copyright information)


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