Tracy was not initially pleased with the studio's choice of director, hoping to have George Cukor or Vincente Minnelli assigned the position.

Fay Hendry, the mother of Sonya Hendry, a young girl who appeared in the film, was awarded nearly $30,000 for injuries she sustained when the girl was struck by a falling reflector at the site of location filming.

According to an article in The Hollywood Reporter from April 1945 MGM reportedly paid $150,000 ($2.1M in 2018) for the film rights to Lewis' novel.

The poem that Cass Timberlane recites at the picnic with Virginia is "First Fig" by Edna St. Vincent Millay and goes "My candle burns at both ends / It will not last the night / But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends / It gives a lovely light!"

Walter Pidgeon who has a brief cameo in the film, was at one point considered for the title role.

According to contemporary articles in The Hollywood Reporter, Jennifer Jones, Vivien Leigh, and Virginia Grey were among those considered for the female lead.

Although MGM had its own renowned music department, the soundtrack score for this picture was provided by composer Roy Webb, conductor C. Bakaleinikoff and orchestrator Gil Grau - all on loan from RKO Radio.

Eight cats were rescued from the Los Angeles ASPCA shelter by trainer Walter Huber for this film. Six were used to portray Cleo - one as a kitten, one about four months old, and one about a year old - each with their own back-up double. The other two were used for individual scenes such as the cat wandering into the courtroom at the beginning of the film. In addition to Huber's salary as trainer, the cats were collectively paid $100 per day while the film was in production. It took Huber several visits to the shelter to get matching pairs of "alley cat" tabbies, and all were male. The two kittens were brothers.

In late 1946, Marie McDonald campaigned for the female lead.

Sinclair Lewis' novel upon which this film is based was serialized in Hearst's International Cosmopolitan magazine from May to October 1948.

Bradd brings Ginny a cocktail called a Devil's Disciple. There is no such drink, at least in 1947, although there is a Devil cocktail, which is brandy and creme de menthe.

Unusual in that Spencer Tracy's character addressed his African American housekeeper formally as "Mrs. Higbee." This was 1947, and even white maids were usually called by their first names by their employers. (Notably, 20 years later, in 1967, Isabel Sanford's character in "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?", formally introduced to Sidney Poitier's parents as "Ms. Matilda Beeks," was called "Tillie" by Tracy, Katherine Hepburn, and the actress who played their daughter.

This film was initially telecast in Los Angeles Friday 6 September 1957 on KTTV (Channel 11); in San Francisco it first aired 10 April 1958 on KGO (Channel 7), in New York City 17 October 1958 on WCBS (Channel 2), and in Philadelphia 6 January 1961 on WFIL (Channel 6).