Bored Of Education

film no. 146

technical details:

Production K-1.

Release no. C-581.

Filmed July 13 to 16, 1936. See the 'miscellaneous' section below for details.

First previewed at the Stadium on August 5, 1936.

Title sheet prepared by Elmer Raguse on August 6, 1936.

Negative shipped on August 13, 1936.

Cutting continuity submitted August 19, 1936.

Released August 29, 1936. It was the 146th film in the series to be released. The reissue of the book lists Aug. 20th, while the 1977 edition, and Maltin's earlier book, list Aug. 29th, which makes it the usual Saturday release.

Copyrighted September 3, 1936, by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Corporation. Registration no. LP6593. Renewed November 1, 1963, with registration no. R324749. This copyright is currently due to expire at the end of 2031.

All-talking one-reeler.

Opening title: 'Hal Roach presents Our Gang in "Bored Of Education".' This film was the first with a new title design.

King World Productions episode no. 11a, available in both colorized and original black-and-white versions.

the crew:

Produced by Hal Roach
Credited in the film as a presenter.
Directed by Gordon Douglas
This credit appears in the film.
Assistant Director: Don Sandstrom
This credit derives from the production sheets.
Photography: Art Lloyd, A. S. C.
This credit appears in the film.
Assistant Cameraman: Ernie Smith
This credit derives from the production sheets.
Film Editor: William Ziegler
This credit appears in the film. Maltin & Bann credit William Randall.
Sound: William Randall
This credit appears in the film.
Animal trainer: Tony Campanaro
He trained the current Pete.
1st Prop Man: Bob Saunders
This credit derives from the production sheets.
2nd Prop Man: Dick Varni
This credit derives from the production sheets.
1st Grip: Bones Vreeland
This credit derives from the production sheets.
2nd Grip: Jaques
This credit derives from the production sheets, which don't reveal the last name.
Script Clerk: Ellen Hansen
Later known as Ellen Corby. This credit derives from the production sheets.
Wardrobe: Mary
This credit derives from the production sheets, which don't reveal the last name.
Makeup: Jack Casey
This credit derives from the production sheets.
Hairdresser: Peggy Zardo
This credit derives from the production sheets.
Gaffer: J. Hollywood
This credit derives from the production sheets.
Released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Indicated in the opening title card.
Passed by the National Board of Review
As indicated in the film.
Western Electric System
As indicated in the film.
Approved by the Motion Picture Producers & Distributors of America
Certificate no. 2431.
studio personnel
general manager - David Loew until early to mid 1936. He was replaced by Mat O'Brien, who was also secretary and treasurer.
vice president in charge of production - S. S. Van Keuren
Roach's assistant on production activities - Lawrence Tarver
assistant secretary-treasurer, comptroller - Hugh Huber
film editor and sound department - Elmer Raguse
story department - Jack Jevne
casting - Joe Rivkin
publicity and advertising - Fred Purner
art department - Arthur I. Royce
construction department - C. E. Christensen
paint department - James Follette
property department - W. L. Stevens
electrical department - William Lewis
laboratory superintendent - Charles Levin
process department - Roy Seawright
still photographer - Bud "Stax" Graves
musical director - Marvin Hatley
men's wardrobe - Harry Black
women's wardrobe - Dorothy Callahan
purchasing department - Russell Walker
cashier - Mrs. M. Van Keuren
paymaster - Mrs. Grace Cash
transportation director - Bob Davis
garage - Walter Johnson
commissary - W. M. Furlong
school teacher - Fern Carter
possible uncredited involvement
writing - Hal Yates, Carl Harbaugh, Hal Law, John Guedel, Felix Adler, Harry Langdon, Richard Flournoy and Gordon Douglas may have been among the gag writers.
property department - Charles Oelze was probably involved in this capacity.

the kids:

Carl "Alfalfa" Switzer
Lead role. The nickname wasn't used in this film. He pretends to have a toothache, and ends up singing with a stopper caught in his throat.
George "Spanky" McFarland
Featured role. The nickname wasn't used in this film. Everything that happens to Alfalfa is Spanky's idea.
Billie "Buckwheat" Thomas
Supporting role. The nickname wasn't used in this film. He's left out of Spanky and Alfalfa's scheme.
Eugene "Porky" Lee
Small part. The nickname wasn't used in this film. He eats Darla's apple.
Darla Hood
Small part. She's the only one who's excited about the first day of school.
Baby Patsy May
Extra. Her photo is shown during the opening credits, but she isn't noticeable in the film. However, she does appear in publicity photos for the scene in front of the school.
Joe "Corky" Geil
Extra. He sits behind Alfalfa.
Harold Switzer
Extra. He sits behind Spanky.
John Collum
Extra. He sits behind Corky.
Sidney Kibrick
Extra. He sits to the right of Corky.
Natalie Lowell
Extra. She sits behind Buckwheat.
Genie Lowe
Extra. He's the Asian boy sitting behind Porky. Otherwise known as Eugene Lowe.
Daniel Boone
Extra. He sits behind Sidney.
Donald Proffitt
Extra. He sits behind Harold.
Dickie DeNeut
Extra. He sits in front of Sidney.
Barbara Goodrich
Extra. She sits in the back of Buckwheat's row.
Billy Minderhout
Extra. Also known as Billy Mindy. He sits in front of Alfalfa.
Barbara Bletcher
Extra. She sits two seats behind Porky.
Patsy Barry
Extra. She's seen in the opening scene in front of the school. There's a famous photo of this scene in which she's on the left side, and copies of this photo often have her signature. She's also signed classroom photos as well, but is identified as a different kid in those.
other kids
Extras. There are four additional kids in the classroom, and perhaps one or two shown outside the school in the opening scenes that didn't make it into the classroom scene. Maltin & Bann list Dorian Johnston in both editions of their book, and added Robert "Spike" Lentz for the 1992 edition. The payroll ledger doesn't mention either of them regarding this production.

the animals:

Pete the Pup IV
Bit part. He's shown outside the school at the beginning of the film.
Bit part. The MGM lion appears at the opening of the film.

the adults:

Rosina Lawrence as "Miss Lawrence"
Featured role. She's given onscreen credit. She's the new teacher and isn't easily fooled.
Jack Egan as the ice cream man
Small part. He delivers ice cream to the school.
in still images
The Unfinished Portrait of George Washington is hanging in the classroom.

the music:

"Good Old Days" by Leroy Shield
Copyrighted Jan. 10, 1931.
(A15.) This is played over the opening titles and as we first see the school. The second verse is repeated as Spanky and Alfalfa eat ice cream and the end title appears.
"Good Morning To You" by Mildred J. Hill and Patty Smith Hill
First published in 1893 as "Good Morning To All" in a songbook called Song Stories For The Kindergarten. In this film, Alfalfa sings it outside, and later, the class sings it to Miss Lawrence. The song was rewritten with new lyrics as "Happy Birthday To You."
"Believe Me If All Those Endearing Young Charms" by Thomas Moore
This melody was put to the poem My Lodging It Is In The Cold Ground, and first printed that way in 1737, but probably existed long before that. Moore put new words to the melody in 1808. The melody was also used for "Fair Harvard." The Moore song was a number ten hit for John McCormack in 1911. In this film, it's sung by Alfalfa. Marvin Hatley received arrangement credit for this version, which was copyrighted on May 18, 1936.


Hal E. Roach Studios
This entire film was shot at the studio, no doubt on Stage 4.


Four shooting dates went into the making of this film. Almost five months had passed since shooting finished for "Arbor Day" (no. 145). Shooting started on July 13th and continued until July 16th. After this, six days would pass before the Our Gang unit began work on "General Spanky" (no. 150).

Here's a breakdown of the production costs:
wk. ending July 4 - $381.07.
wk. ending July 11 - $1676.30.
wk. ending July 18 - $2604.49.
wk. ending July 25 - $317.77.
wk. ending Aug. 1 - $281.62.
wk. ending Aug. 8 - $56.33.
wk. ending Aug. 15 - $254.37.
As can be seen, the highest dollar amount occurred during the week of shooting. The second highest amount is for the previous week, which probably reflects the writing process. Later weeks reflect the editing and printing stages of production.

On July 10th, the Evening Vanguard of Venice, CA, reported the following: "Production starts next week on the heaviest schedule in the more than twenty-two years' history of the Roach studios. Filming opens on the series of twelve 'Our Gang' shorts. 'Spanky' McFarland will be featured with Darla Hood, 'Alfalfa' Switzer, 'Buckwheat' Thomas, 'Porky' Lee and 'Baby Patsy' May. It marks the fifteenth year for 'Our Gang.' "

July 18, 1936, was considered by the studio to be the 15th anniversary of the Our Gang series. A reunion took place at the studio that day with Allen 'Farina' Hoskins, Jackie Condon, Mary Kornman, Johnny Downs, and Joe Cobb. Newsreel footage was shot showing the former Gangsters with the current group. Messages were read from Jackie Cooper, Mickey Daniels, and Dickie Moore. Also present were four Our Gang directors: Bob McGowan, Gus Meins, Fred Newmeyer, and Gordon Douglas. A Los Angeles Examiner article of July 19th mentions that Newmeyer (erroneously identified as Fred Kenmeyer) directed the first film. It also states that "Pete the Pup IV barked the greeting for his great-grandfather, the original monocled dog, who was unable to be present because of personal appearances in Atlantic City." Also not able to attend were Jackie Davis, who was on a European tour, and Sunshine Sammy, who was conducting an orchestra in New York. "Hal Roach, Jr., announced that the studio was organizing an Our Gang Club, whose members were to consist of the 35 children who have been under contract with Our Gang. Every effort is to be made to locate each one of these children, and a monthly News Letter will be sent out to each of those located. . . Each person present was presented a silver loving cup as a momento of the luncheon and their association with Our Gang."

Prior to filming this short, the Our Gang kids went on a nationwide tour beginning on April 12th in Duluth. Spanky, Alfalfa, Buckwheat, and Darla, were joined by Pete the Pup, Harold Switzer, and master of ceremonies Joe Cobb. The tour was cut short in June while visiting Detroit. All of the kids came down with the measles, except Alfalfa.

The negative cost on this film was $18,471.78.

An item of August 13, 1936, reveals that this short was shown as part of the "Our Gang" Review along with "Arbor Day" (no. 145) 'from last season's schedule' and a silent classic, "The Big Show" (no. 7).

The same press item states that "Bored Of Education" was the first of the new season's series of twelve one-reelers on school days. This is almost correct, as over half of the season's releases dealt with school.

The date of the first day of school in this film is Sep. 14th.

This film won the Academy Award for Best One-Reel Short of 1936. The awards ceremony took place on Mar. 4, 1937.

The script submitted to MGM was given the catalog number B357.

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© Robert Demoss.

My thanks to the following people for assisting with this page:
Rob Stone (for providing the production number)
Joe Moore (for providing the copyright information)
Piet Schreuders (for providing copyright dates for the music)
Matthew Lydick (for the correct spelling of Dickie DeNeut's last name, and for helping with Eugene Lowe)
Paul Mular (for providing info on the Cabin Fever laserdiscs)

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