The Gay Sisters

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Gay Sisters
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Irving Rapper
Produced by Henry Blanke
Hal B. Wallis
Written by Lenore J. Coffee
Stephen Longstreet (novel)
Music by Max Steiner
Cinematography Sol Polito
Editing by Warren Low
Distributed by Warner Bros.
Release dates 1942
Running time 110 minutes
Country United States
Language English

The Gay Sisters is a 1942 American drama film directed by Irving Rapper, and starring Barbara Stanwyck, George Brent, Geraldine Fitzgerald, Donald Crisp, Gig Young (who adopted his character's name as his screen name) and Nancy Coleman. The Warner Bros. motion picture was based on a novel by Stephen Longstreet.


Fiona, Evelyn, and Susanna are the Gaylord sisters. There are no brothers. When their mother dies on the sunken RMS Lusitania, and their army officer father, Penn Gaylord, is killed in France, they must manage their Fifth Avenue mansion by themselves—never realizing their half billion dollar inheritance because of legal system gimmickry. Fiona (Barbara Stanwyck) is the eldest of the three children, and the daughter whom Penn referred to as "my son" and "the head of the household" upon his departure for the European front. Fiona tells the family servants that she will henceforth be known as "Miss Gaylord" rather than "Miss Fiona".

Fiona and her two sisters grow up, and Fiona marries her antagonist, Charles Barclay (George Brent), in a last-ditch effort to finalize the probate of Penn's will, which had been tied up in court for some 25 years. Barclay had campaigned to keep the will from being settled, just so he could force the three sisters to sell him their mansion for the purpose of leveling it and profitably developing the real estate. His motive appears to be nothing more than greed. This was the case, even though Barclay used as his purported reason for tying up the will, Penn's wartime bequeathal (in a French will) of 10% of the Gaylord estate to a French orphanage. Fiona has no objection to the approximately 50 million dollar change in the original American will on behalf of those less fortunate, but she is adamantly opposed to the real estate development. She makes this known at a court proceeding when she and her sisters walk out on the latest round of delaying tactics. Fiona's unwavering opposition is based on her father's last instructions to her before his departure to Europe and subsequent death in combat. He tells his daughter that their loyalty to the family home is "almost as much" as their loyalty to God. For some 175 years prior to World War II, the Gaylord creed had always been, "Never sell the land!"



External links

Creative Commons License