Three Loan Wolves

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Three Loan Wolves
Directed by Jules White
Produced by Jules White
Written by Felix Adler
Starring Moe Howard
Larry Fine
Curly Howard
Beverly Warren
Harold Brauer
Jackie Jackson
Joe Palma
Wally Rose
Cinematography George F. Kelley
Edited by Edwin H. Bryant
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release date(s)
  • July 4, 1946 (1946-07-04)
Running time 16' 40"
Country United States
Language English

Three Loan Wolves is the 93rd short subject starring American slapstick comedy team the Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.


Told in flashback, the Stooges tell their son (Jackie Jackson) how he came to have three fathers. The Stooges, owners of a pawn shop, owe money to the Gashouse Protection Society, a bunch of loan sharks. To complicate matters, a lady (Beverly Warren) leaves a baby in the shop as part of a plan to sell a phony diamond and the Stooges wind up caring for the kid. The trio manage to defeat the crooks and when they finish telling the story, the kid goes off to find his real mother.

Production notes[edit]

The title is a parody of Columbia's movie series "The Lone Wolf."[1]

The theme reverts to the syncopated, jazzy version of "Three Blind Mice" previously used on Gents Without Cents, Three Pests in a Mess, Booby Dupes and Idiots Deluxe instead of the revamped, 'sliding strings' version used during this period.

Curly's illness[edit]

Three Loan Wolves was filmed near the end of Curly Howard's career. The 42-year-old comedian had suffered a series of minor strokes several months prior to filming, and his performances had been unpredictable. By the time of Three Loan Wolves, he had lost a considerable amount of weight, and lines had creased his face. Larry Fine and Moe Howard look stocky by comparison.

While director Edward Bernds devised ways to cover Curly's illness, Jules White simply gave most of Curly's lines to Larry. With Three Loan Wolves, White made Larry the main character (his first time in the spotlight since the Stooges' inaugural short for Columbia Pictures in 1934, Woman Haters), with nearly the entire film revolving around him. Curly also tried desperately to maintain his falsetto voice, but was clearly unable to. Several scenes are heartbreaking to watch, as the once-superstooge had been relegated to an occasional line of dialogue.[2]

Beverly Warren appeared at a 2003 Three Stooges convention in Fort Washington, Pennsylvania, and reported that Curly's illness was not discussed on the set. She added that filming was completed at such a rapid pace, she rarely saw Curly or Moe (as she only shared screen time with Larry).[3]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Lenburg, Jeff; Howard Maurer, Joan; Lenburg, Greg; (1982). The Three Stooges Scrapbook, p. 77, Citadel Press. ISBN 0-8065-0946-5
  3. ^ User Oanabay; present at 2003 convention

External links[edit]