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Love Before Breakfast

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Love Before Breakfast
Theatrical release poster
Directed byWalter Lang
Written byShort story:
Faith Baldwin
Film story:
Claude Binyon (uncredited)
Harry Clork
Doris Malloy
Preston Sturges
(all uncredited)
Add'l Dialogue:
Gertrude Purcell (uncredited)
Herbert Fields
Produced byEdmund Grainger
StarringCarole Lombard
Preston Foster
Cesar Romero
CinematographyTed Tetzlaff
Edited byMaurice Wright
Music byArthur Morton
Franz Waxman
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
  • March 9, 1936 (1936-03-09)
Running time
70 minutes
CountryUnited States

Love Before Breakfast is a 1936 American romantic comedy film starring Carole Lombard, Preston Foster, and Cesar Romero, based on Faith Baldwin's short story Spinster Dinner, published in International-Cosmopolitan in July 1934. The film was directed by Walter Lang from a screenplay by Herbert Fields assisted by numerous contract writers, including Preston Sturges.


Kay Colby (Carole Lombard) is a Park Avenue beauty with two suitors: fiancé Bill Wadsworth (Cesar Romero) and Scott Miller (Preston Foster). To clear his way, Scott buys the oil company Bill works for and sends him to Japan. Then he sends his own girl friend, Countess Campanella (Betty Lawford), to Honolulu to get her out of the way as well. Kay is upset by Bill's leaving, and annoyed by Scott pressing his suit, but Scott has the assistance and approval of Kay's mother (Janet Beecher) in his efforts, and the advice of his friend and business partner, Brinkerhoff (Richard Carle).[1]



Love Before Breakfast had the working title of Spinster Dinner, the title of the Faith Baldwin short story it was based on. Several months before filming began, it was reported that Melvyn Douglas would take the male lead.

Carole Lombard was under contract to Paramount, who lent her to Universal for this film, in exchange for Margaret Sullavan going there to do So Red The Rose. Lombard also brought technical staff from Paramount, including photographer Ted Tetzlaff and costume designer Travis Banton.[2]

Lombard, who had the contractual right to reject scripts, did not like the ones she was presented for Love Before Breakfast, including those written by Preston Sturges, Claude Binyon, Samuel Hoffenstein, Harry Clork, Doris Malloy and William Conselman. Eventually, she accepted Herbert Fields's script.[2]

Love Before Breakfast was in production from 16 December 1935 to 27 January 1936,[3] and was released on 9 March 1936.


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