Small Talk  
  18 May 1929  
  sound short  

Director Producer/Story Titles Story Cinematography Editor Sound recording
Robert F. McGowan Hal Roach H.M. Walker Robert A. McGowan F.E. Hershey
Art Lloyd
Richard C. Currier Elmer Raguse


PIC Favourite bit

•Filmed March 25 to April 6, 1929.   12 shooting dates went into the making of this film.  Two weeks after shooting finished for "Saturday's Lesson" (no. 88), the 'start' date arrived for "Small Talk" on Mar. 25th.  During those two weeks, sound equipment was installed at the studio.  This is specifically written into the 1929 studio datebook for Mar. 15th and 16th, and Mar. 18th through 23rd. Shooting for "Small Talk" continued until the 'finish' date of Apr. 6th.  No shooting took place on Mar. 24th or 31st, which were both Sundays.  Robert F. McGowan directed on each of the shooting dates.  After this, a week and a half passed before the Our Gang unit began shooting "Railroadin'" (no. 90).
•Publicity photos reveal deleted footage in which the kids are sitting on the curb outside the wealthy estate. In one shot, they're in front of the gate and get chased away by Harmon.  This is why he later knows that they've been prowling around there all day.
•Since the studio only had one set of sound equipment, the Laurel & Hardy short "Unaccustomed As We Are," which was being made at the same time as this Our Gang short, had to be filmed at night to accomodate the kids, who could only work until five in the afternoon.
•The press release reveals that the Culver City fire and police departments were involved in this film. Perhaps some of the extras were actual firefighters and police officers.
•The press release indicates that this was a two-reeler, but this is almost certainly incorrect since the cutting continuity and the Copyright Catalog both indicate that the film was a three-reeler. In fact, the continuity states that the first reel ends as Eddy tickles Wheezer, and the second reel ends as Joe explains the parrot to Farina and they exit the room.
•Later studio publicity states that it was during the making of this film that the kids were first encouraged to address each other by their character names while off-camera. This way, they wouldn't waste film by absent-mindedly using their real names.
•Production G-23.
•It was the 86th film in the series to be released.  However, according to Maltin's earlier book, The Great Movie Shorts, as well as Richard Lewis Ward's A History Of The Hal Roach Studios, the release date was April 18, 1929.  This was probably either a preview date or a mistake.
•Copyrighted July 30, 1929, by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Corporation.  Registration no. LP893.  Renewed September 13, 1956, with registration no. R176921.  This copyright is currently due to expire at the end of 2024.
Did you notice?

DVD screencapture - Lord Heath - Laurel & Hardy - Another Nice Mess - Bobby 'Wheezer' Hutchins
DVD screencapture - Lord Heath - Laurel & Hardy - Another Nice Mess - Joe Cobb
DVD screencapture - Lord Heath - Laurel & Hardy - Another Nice Mess - Allen 'Farina' Hoskins
DVD screencapture - Lord Heath - Laurel & Hardy - Another Nice Mess - Mary Ann Jackson
Mary Ann
DVD screencapture - Lord Heath - Laurel & Hardy - Another Nice Mess - Jean Darling
DVD screencapture - Lord Heath - Laurel & Hardy - Another Nice Mess - Harry Spear
Lyle Tayo
Mrs. Brown
Helen Jerome Eddy
Wheezer's new mother
Pat Harmon
Officer in charge
Edith Fortier
Charles McMurphy
Officer in charge

Acknowledgements: (Robert Demoss/The Lucky Corner)
The Little Rascals: The Life And Times Of Our Gang by Leonard Maltin & Richard W. Bann (book)

This page was last updated on: 03 July 2022