Make Me a Star (1932)

Passed   |    |  Comedy, Drama, Romance

Make Me a Star (1932) Poster

Merton Gill is longing to become a cowboy actor and leaves his hometown to try his luck in Hollywood, but there his acting ability is regarded as non-existent. Actress Flips gives him a ... See full summary »


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12 August 1999 | David-240
| Very touching drama - not really a comedy.
Billed as a comedy about a gormless man who becomes a Hollywood star, this is actually a moving drama about the savageness of the film industry. Stuart Erwin is very fine as the young man, an innocent lost in the wilds of Hollywood. His performance is reminiscent of the performances of Charles Ray in silent films, a winning combination of warmth and naivety. The character wants to be a a serious actor, but his attempts at drama cause only laughter. After describing one such incident Blondell responds to "That must have been funny" with "Only if you find coal-mine explosions funny". Blondell, as a fellow actor, understands Erwin's pain - her performance is also excellent.

Finally Erwin is tricked into making a comedy film - which he believes is a drama. His devastation at the preview, as the crowd roar with laughter around him, will move you to tears.

Sadly the film ends too abruptly without resolving these complex issues. And the stars making "guest appearances" actually just walk through - a shame that something more imaginative wasn't done with them - and Zasu Pitts only has a tiny role (still funny though).

Great to see how early talkies were made - look at the size of the camera with all that casing to mask the noise. Make sure you see this moving "comedy" - most worthwhile. And afterwards see "Show People" (1928) to see how the talkies transformed Hollywood so quickly.

Critic Reviews

Did You Know?


Joan Blondell, as Flips Montague, had at least eight wardrobe changes during production.

She first appeared in a Majestic Studios office wearing a silky, light-colored blouse with black slacks. In her next scene, while convincing production assistant Chuck Collins to find a background role for Merton Gill, she wore a full-length skirt with a striped shirt and cap. Next, likely for a screen role, she appeared in western apparel consisting of a riding outfit with a checkerboard vest and knee-high boots. In the next scene, with Merton in the restaurant, she wore a plaid dress with a wide black belt and cap.

While attempting to convince Jeff Baird of Merton's abilities, she appeared in a dark dress with white collar, and matching gloves, cap and heels. During filming of Wide Open Spaces, the call sheet described her apparel as a riding habit. Following, she's off-camera for the final scene of Wide Open Spaces in a REPEAT WARDROBE that she wore in Jeff Baird's office - the dark dress with white collar, cap and added black handbag. Perhaps the two scenes were filmed in the same day.

In her apartment, the day of the Sneak Preview, she wore a dark pantsuit with a white-laced collar and matching short sleeves, and a dark headband. Finally, in one last apartment scene, she appeared in a floral-designed short-sleeved dress with a white collar, bow, and thin black belt.


'Flips' Montague: Serves you right, you big lug!


The actor list on Majestic Studios' Call Sheet for Wide Open Spaces misspelled Bud Jamison's name as Bud Jamieson.


Red River Valley
Played during the end credits


Plot Summary


Comedy | Drama | Romance

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