The New Pupil

film no. 191

technical details:

Production 2677.

Release no. C-137.

Filmed February 7 to 10, 1940.

Copyrighted April 22, 1940, by Loew's Incorporated. Registration no. LP9607. Renewed April 24, 1967, with registration no. R409178. This copyright is currently due to expire at the end of 2035.

Released April 27, 1940. It was the 190th film in the series to be released.

All-talking one-reeler, lasting 10 minutes and 50 seconds.

Opening title: 'Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer presents Our Gang in "The New Pupil".'

the crew:

Produced by Jack Chertok and Richard Goldstone for M-G-M
The film credit reads: Produced by Loew's Incorporated.
Directed by Edward Cahn
This credit appears in the film.
Director of Photography: Paul Vogel, A. S. C.
This credit appears in the film.
Film Editor: Ralph E. Goldstein
This credit appears in the film.
Screen Play by Hal Law and Robert A. McGowan
This credit appears in the film, but without McGowan's middle initial.
Art Director: Richard Duce
This credit appears in the film.
Released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Indicated in the opening title card.
Western Electric Sound System
As indicated in the film.
Approved by the Motion Picture Producers & Distributors of America
Passed by the National Board of Review
As indicated in the film.
Teacher: Fern Carter

the kids:

George "Spanky" McFarland as "Spanky"
Featured role. He has a crush on the new girl and wears a dress to please her. His alter ego is "Mrs. Murphy."
Carl "Alfalfa" Switzer as "Alfalfa"
Featured role. He's also smitten with the new girl, and becomes "Mrs. Jones," whose baby is named "Sally Ann."
Juanita Quigley as "Sally Stevens"
Featured role. She's the new girl in class, and teaches Spanky and Alfalfa a lesson.
Darla Hood as "Darla Hood"
Featured role. She's heartbroken when Spanky and Alfalfa spend time with Sally.
Mickey Gubitosi as "Mickey"
Supporting role. He doesn't like girls, but ends up with Sally in the end, since she doesn't like boys.
Billy "Froggy" Laughlin as "Harold"
Small part. He explains the War of 1812 in class, and is then seen among the kids behind the hedge.
Billie "Buckwheat" Thomas as "Buckwheat"
Small part. He's seen mostly among the kids behind the hedge, and just barely figures into the schoolyard scenes.
Patsy Currier
Bit part. She's the girl that points out to Darla that the boys are lunching with Sally.
Darwood Kaye
Extra. He can be seen in the background of Froggy's closeup. Maltin & Bann indicate that the "Waldo" nickname was used, but he's nameless in this short, and doesn't wear the glasses.
Paul Hilton
Extra. He's behind Mickey and Darla while the kids are hiding behind the hedge.
Tommy McFarland
Extra. It looks like he's one of the boys running into the school as Spanky and Alfalfa say hello to Darla. He also seems to be sitting behind Darwood Kaye.
Joe "Corky" Geil
Extra. Not listed by Maltin & Bann. It appears that he's one of the boys running into the school as well.
Harold Switzer
Extra. Not listed by Maltin & Bann. I'm guessing that he's the really tall kid walking to the slide at the beginning of lunchtime.
Giovanna Gubitosi
Extra. Later known as Joan Blake. She can be seen in the background eating lunch on the school steps, and is to the right of Darla behind the hedge.
other kids
Bit parts and extras. There are probably at least 25 more kids in the class, many of whom end up behind the hedge.

the animals:

Bit part. The only animal in this film is the MGM lion.

the adults:

Anne O'Neal as the teacher
Small part. She introduces Sally to the class and puts a dunce cap on Alfalfa.
May McAvoy as Sally's mom
Bit part. She sends Spanky to the backyard to see Sally.

the music:

"Our Gang" by David Snell
This is played over the opening titles. This is the earlier recording, used prior to "The Big Premiere" (no. 189). This is a medley of three songs:
(1.) "London Bridge" - The earliest reference to this nursery rhyme is in a play from 1659, and it was associated with children by 1720. It may derive from a part of the "Heimskringla" by Snorri Sturluson, which was composed around 1225.
(2.) "Mulberry Bush" - Also known as "So Early In The Morning" and "This Is The Way." It was probably originally called "Here We Go Round The Bramble Tree" in the mid 18th century, with the type of tree changed by inmates of Wakefield Prison, who exercised around a mulberry bush.
(3.) "The Farmer In The Dell" - This nursery rhyme is of uncertain origins.
"Emmet's Lullaby" by Joseph K. Emmet
Written in 1876. Also known as "Go To Sleep, My Baby." In this film, it's sung by Alfalfa and Spanky.
"The Gang Goes Home" by David Snell
This is a shorter version of "Our Gang," including only "London Bridge."


Four shooting dates went into the making of this film, from February 7 to 10, 1940.

The kids go to Greenpoint Public School.

The Alfalfa Special consists of a herring, sliced pickles, sliced onion and a hot dog, and a slice of cheese.

See page 236 of Maltin & Bann's book for this film's expenses and profits.

© Robert Demoss.

My thanks to the following people for assisting with this page:
bigshotjones (for identifying Giovanna Gubitosi)

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