His girl for special cases

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German title His girl for special cases
Original title His Girl Friday
Country of production United States
original language English
Publishing year 1940
length 90 minutes
Age rating FSK 12
Director Howard Hawks
script Charles Lederer
music Sidney Cutner ,
Felix Mills
camera Joseph Walker
cut Gene Havlick

His girl for special cases (Eng. His Girl Friday ) is an American screwball comedy from 1940. It is based on the play Reporter (original title: The Front Page ) by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur . Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell star in the film and directed by Howard Hawks .


Walter Burns, a charmingly sly newspaper editor and reporter , tries to get his ex-wife Hildy Johnson back. Hildy has been engaged to Bruce Baldwin, a polite insurance man, for several weeks . Hildy and her fiancé Bruce want to get married the next day in Albany . The day before the planned wedding, she submits her resignation and accuses her ex-husband of all the mistakes he has made in recent years. Walter, who values her as a journalist and wife, invites Hildy and her fiancé to a restaurant. At the restaurant, he suggests a deal that they accept: Walter takes out life insurance with Bruce , while Hildy interviews the death row inmate Earl Williams in prison. Earl Williams shot a person a few weeks ago and is due to be executed the next morning.

After Hildy talks to the apparently deranged Earl in prison, she goes to the press room in the jury to write a report on Earl. This report aims to present the controversial case from a different perspective. Hildy claims that Earl has mental health problems and should therefore not be executed.

That same afternoon, Bruce receives a check for $ 2,500 for life insurance notarization. Bruce hides this check in his hat because Hildy advised him to do so. When he leaves the building, he is robbed. Bruce reports this to the police station and calls his fiancée, who tears up the report on Earl Williams out of anger. She knows immediately that Walter hired the thief to get the check back.

In the evening, Earl goes for a psychiatric examination. The psychiatrist Max J. Eggelhoffer and Sheriff Peter B. "Pinky" Hartwell now want to clarify whether Earl really has psychological problems. You give him a revolver so he can put himself into the action. Hildy told him on his last visit a few hours ago that the gun was there to shoot. When Earl holds the revolver in his hands, he shoots Sheriff Pinky Hartwell and escapes.

At the same time, Bruce leaves the police station and gets into the taxi. A few minutes later he is back in jail for allegedly molesting the blonde taxi driver Evangeline. However, Evangeline was also hired by Walter to bring him to prison.

Hildy starts again with the article about Earl Williams. Some time later, Earl appears at the window in the press room. He holds the revolver in his hand and aims at her. When the press men knock on the locked press room door, Earl hides in a desk. After the press men leave, Bruce and Molly Malloy appear in the press room. Molly helped him the day before the murder when he was standing helpless in the rain.

The press reappears after a few moments and asks Molly about Earl's whereabouts. Molly refuses and jumps out the window. Earl makes himself heard by an awkward noise. He is taken out and sent back to the police station. At the same moment Bruce appears to take the train at nine o'clock with Hildy. However, Hildy thoughtlessly dismissed him and continued writing the article. As she finishes the article, she realizes that she still loves Walter.

Background information

The original title of the film His Girl Friday (about "His faithful servant") is a variant of the expression "Man Friday", which alludes to the servant Friday (Friday) in Daniel Defoe's novel Robinson Crusoe .

Casting the film was difficult. The female lead was turned down by Irene Dunne (who was studio boss Harry Cohn very much), Katharine Hepburn (whom he disliked), Margaret Sullavan , Jean Arthur (who instead shot Arizona ) and Carole Lombard . The choice fell on Rosalind Russell, who had previously given a brilliant performance in The Women and almost stole the show from Norma Shearer and Joan Crawford .

The original, the play Reporter ( The Front Page ) by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur , has been filmed several times. Howard Hawks turned the protagonist into a woman and the whole story got an extra dimension. The remaining film versions are:

The American Film Institute voted this film # 19 in the Top 100 American Comedies of All Time .


The German dubbed version was created in 1972 on behalf of ARD .

role actor German Dubbing voice
Walter Burns Cary Grant Harald Leipnitz
Hildy Johnson Rosalind Russell Renate Pichler
Bruce Baldwin Ralph Bellamy Hartmut Reck
Sheriff Peter "Pinky" Hartwell Gene Lockhart Walter Reichelt
Mayor Fred Clarence Kolb Wolf Ackva
"Diamond Louie" Palutso Abner Biberman Tommi Piper
Mollie Malloy Helen Mack Eva Kinsky
Murphy, reporter Porter Hall Horst Naumann
Roy V. Bensinger, reporter Ernest Truex Ernst Kuhr
McCue, reporter Roscoe Karns Leo Bardischewski


His special case girl was listed on the National Film Registry in 1993 , a directory of American films.


His special case girl is considered a classic in screwball comedy. On the US review portal Rotten Tomatoes , 45 of the 46 reviews were positive, giving the film a positive rating of 98%. The average rating of the critics is 9.0 out of 10 stars.

"A smug, romantic comedy at an incredible pace, Howard Hawk's 'His Girl Friday' can be considered one of the best screwball comedies ever."

- Filmspiegel.de

“A comedy that is as amusing as it is fast-paced, which thrives on its wit and pace of language. Thanks to the excellent actors and the extraordinary script, it has lost none of its fascinating effect to this day. "

“Howard Hawks staged the material as a lively screwball comedy. The rapid verbal battles between the protagonists carry the film. For the first time, the technique of overlapping dialogue is used, in which the actors constantly interrupt each other. The film ironizes the relationship between the sexes in line with the genre, but also subliminally criticizes a corrupt legal system and questions the reporting of scandal journalists. "

- prism :


  • Ben Hecht , Charles MacArthur : Reporter. A piece in three acts (original title: The Front Page ). Edited for the German stage by Rudolph Lothar . [Not for sale stage manuscript.] Felix Bloch Erben, Berlin undated

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. cf. the article Friday (fictional character) in the English Wikipedia
  2. His girl for special cases ( Memento of the original dated November 5, 2017 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. at the synchronous database @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.synchrondatenbank.de
  3. His Girl Friday at Rotten Tomatoes
  4. Critique of His girl for special cases on Filmspiegel.de
  5. His Girl Friday. In: Lexicon of International Films . Film service , accessed July 18, 2017 .Template: LdiF / Maintenance / Access used 
  6. His girl for special cases at Prisma