- Actor Allusion:
- When the mayor tells him he's through, Walter replies, "Listen, the last man that said that to me was Archie Leach, just a week before he cut his own throat." Archie Leach was Cary Grant's real name.
- Walter Burns yells at the escaped killer, Earl Williams, hiding in the roll-top desk, "Get back in there, you Mock Turtle!" Grant previously played the Mock Turtle in the 1933 adaptation of Alice in Wonderland.
- And Ralph Bellamy's character is described as looking like Ralph Bellamy.
- AFI's 100 Years 100 Laughs: #19.
- Gender Flip: Hildy Johnson was a man in the original play. During auditions, Howard Hawks's secretary read reporter his lines and Hawks liked the way the dialogue sounded coming from a woman, resulting in the script being rewritten to make Hildy female and the ex-wife of Walter Burns.
- Throw It In!:
- Howard Hawks encouraged spontaneity and ad-libbing. Rosalind Russell thought, while shooting, that she didn't have as many good lines as Cary Grant had, so she hired an advertisement writer through her brother-in-law and had him write more clever lines for the dialog. Since Howard Hawks allowed for spontaneity and ad-libbing, he, and many of the cast and crew didn't notice it, but Grant knew she was up to something, leading him to greet her every morning: "What have you got today?"
- According to Ralph Bellamy, Cary Grant ad-libbed the scene where describes Bruce Baldwin as looking like Ralph Bellamy.
- What Could Have Been:
- This was originally going to be a straight-forward adaptation of The Front Page, until Howard Hawks got the idea of making Hildy Johnson a woman.
- Jean Arthur was the first choice for Hildy, but she refused to work with Hawks again after Only Angels Have Wings. Carole Lombard was considered, but was deemed too expensive.
- Katharine Hepburn, Claudette Colbert, Margaret Sullavan, Ginger Rogers and Irene Dunne were offered the role, but turned it down, Dunne because she felt the part was too small and needed to be expanded. Joan Crawford was reportedly also considered.
- Many critics in 1940 felt that Cary Grant was badly miscast as Walter Burns, and that Clark Gable would have been much better in the part.
- Working Title: The Bigger They Are.
Trivia / His Girl Friday