Christmas in Connecticut

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Christmas in Connecticut
One of theatrical release posters
Directed byPeter Godfrey
Produced byWilliam Jacobs
Screenplay byLionel Houser
Adele Comandini
Story byAileen Hamilton
StarringBarbara Stanwyck
Dennis Morgan
Sydney Greenstreet
Music byFrederick Hollander
CinematographyCarl E. Guthrie
Edited byFrank Magee
Color processBlack and white
Warner Bros.
Distributed byWarner Bros.
Release date
  • August 11, 1945 (1945-08-11)
Running time
101 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$3 million[2] or $4,132,000[1]

Christmas in Connecticut is a 1945 American Christmas romantic comedy film about an unmarried city magazine writer who pretends to be a farm wife and mother and then falls in love with a returning war hero. The film was directed by Peter Godfrey and stars Barbara Stanwyck, Dennis Morgan and Sydney Greenstreet.[3]


Barbara Stanwyck as Elizabeth Lane in Christmas in Connecticut

Elizabeth Lane is a single New Yorker, employed as a food writer. Her articles about her fictitious Connecticut farm, husband, and baby are admired by housewives across the country. Her publisher, Alexander Yardley, is unaware of the charade and insists that Elizabeth host a Christmas dinner for returning war hero Jefferson Jones, who read all of her recipes while in the hospital and is so fond of her that his nurse, Mary Lee, wrote a letter to the publisher. Facing a career-ending scandal, not only for herself but for her editor, Dudley Beecham, Lane is forced to comply. In desperation, Elizabeth agrees to marry her friend, John Sloan, who has a farm in Connecticut. She also enlists the help of her uncle, chef Felix Bassenak, who has been providing her with the recipes for her articles.

At Sloan's farm on Christmas Eve, Elizabeth meets Norah, the housekeeper, as well as a neighbor's baby whom they pretend is their baby. Elizabeth and John plan to be married immediately by Judge Crowthers, but the ceremony is interrupted when Jefferson arrives early. Elizabeth is smitten and it is love at first sight.

The judge returns on Christmas morning, but the ceremony is postponed when a different neighbor's baby is presented instead of the one from the day before. The household is alarmed when Felix claims that the baby has swallowed his watch. After the judge leaves, Uncle Felix admits to Elizabeth that he had lied about the watch to stop the wedding. While the household attends a local dance, the baby's real mother arrives to pick up her baby. Alexander witnesses her leaving with the child and assumes someone is kidnapping the baby. Elizabeth and Jefferson spend the night in jail, mistakenly charged with stealing a neighbor's horse and sleigh, and return to the farm early the next morning. Alexander chastises Elizabeth for being out all night and accuses her of neglecting her child. Elizabeth finally confesses all. Furious, Alexander fires her.

Jefferson's fiancée, Mary Lee, arrives unexpectedly. Dejected, Elizabeth retires to pack her things and leave the farm. Felix learns that Mary Lee has already married someone else and must break the engagement. He entices Alexander into the kitchen with the smell of cooking kidneys. He fabricates a story about a competing magazine's attempts to hire Elizabeth, and Alexander decides to hire her back. Felix tells Jefferson that he is free to pursue Elizabeth. Elizabeth's packing is interrupted, first by Alexander, and then by Jefferson. After teasing her that he is a cad who woos married women, Jefferson reveals the truth. The couple kiss and plan to marry.



The film was a big hit, earning $3,273,000 domestically and $859,000 in overseas markets.[1]

Radio adaptation[edit]

Christmas in Connecticut was presented on Stars in the Air March 20, 1952. The 30-minute adaptation starred Gordon MacRae and Phyllis Thaxter.[4]

Television adaptation[edit]

The Lux Video Theatre presented a one hour version on 13 December 1956 starring Mona Freeman, Ed Kemmer and Roland Winters.[5]


A remake of Christmas in Connecticut was made in 1992, starring Dyan Cannon as Elizabeth, Kris Kristofferson as Jefferson Jones, and Tony Curtis as Mr. Yardley. The made-for-TV movie, which first aired on TNT, was directed by Arnold Schwarzenegger, who also made a cameo as the man sitting in front of the media truck. In this remake, Elizabeth "Blane" is the hostess of her own cooking show. When her manager, Alexander Yardley, introduces her to Jefferson Jones—a forest ranger who lost his cabin in a fire—he asks her to make Jones Christmas dinner live on her show. As in the original, Elizabeth isn't as talented as she seems. This version was not as well-received as the original. As one critic wrote, "You'll be hungry for a better movie after suffering through this film".[3][6]


  1. ^ a b c Warner Bros financial information in The William Shaefer Ledger. See Appendix 1, Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television, (1995) 15:sup1, 1-31 p. 25 DOI: 10.1080/01439689508604551
  2. ^ Schatz, Thomas (1999). Boom and Bust: American Cinema in the 1940s. University of California Press. p. 229.
  3. ^ a b c "Christmas in Connecticut". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 13 November 2011.
  4. ^ Kirby, Walter (March 16, 1952). "Better Radio Programs for the Week". The Decatur Daily Review. p. 44. Retrieved May 23, 2015 – via open access
  5. ^
  6. ^ Null, Christopher. "Christmas in Connecticut". AMC. Retrieved 13 November 2014.

External links[edit]