His Girl Friday

1940 film by Howard Hawks

His Girl Friday is a 1940 film about a newspaper editor who makes multiple attempts to prevent his ace reporter ex-wife from remarrying.

Directed by Howard Hawks. Written by Charles Lederer, based on the play The Front Page by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur.
She learned about men from him! taglines

Hildegard 'Hildy' Johnson

  • Tell me. Is the Lord of the Universe in?
  • I'm going into business for myself...I'm getting married tomorrow...It's gonna be all right. I'm gonna settle down. I'm through with the newspaper business.
  • [in her story] And so, into this little tortured mind came the idea that that gun had been produced for use. And use it he did. But the state has a 'production-for-use' plan too. It has a gallows. And at seven a.m. unless a miracle occurs, that gallows will be used to separate the soul of Earl Williams from his body. And out of Mollie Malloy's life will go the one kindly soul she ever knew.
  • [on the phone to Walter] Now get this, you double-crossing chimpanzee! There ain't gonna be any interview and there ain't gonna be any story. And that certified check of yours is leaving with me in twenty minutes. I wouldn't cover the burning of Rome for you if they were just lighting it up. And if I ever lay my two eyes on you again, I'm gonna walk right up to you and hammer on that monkey skull of yours 'til it rings like a Chinese gong! [she tears up her story] Do you hear that? That's the story I just wrote. Yes, yes, I know we had a bargain. I just said I'd write it. I didn't say I wouldn't tear it up. It's all in little pieces now, Walter, and I hope to do the same for you some day. [to newsroom] And that my friends, is my farewell to the newspaper game. I'm gonna be a woman, not a news-getting machine. I'm gonna have babies and take care of them. Give 'em cod liver oil and watch their teeth grow.
  • Next time you see me, I should be riding in a Rolls Royce giving interviews on success...So long you wage-slaves...When you're crawling up fire escapes and getting kicked out of front doors, and eating Christmas dinners in one-armed joints, don't forget your pal, Hildy Johnson!..And when the road beyond unfolds...
  • All right, now here's your story. The jailbreak of your dreams. It seems that expert Dr. Egelhoffer, the profound thinker from New York, was giving Williams a final sanity test in the Sheriff's office - you know, sticking a lot of pins in him so that he could get his reflexes. Well, he decided to re-enact the crime exactly as it had taken place, in order to study Williams' powers of co-ordination...Of course, he had to have a gun to re-enact the crime with. And who do you suppose supplied it? Peter B. Hartwell, "B" for brains...Well, the Sheriff gave his gun to the Professor and the Professor gave it to Earl, and Earl shot the Professor right in the classified ads...No, ads. Ain't it perfect? If the Sheriff had unrolled a red carpet and loaned Williams an umbrella, it couldn't have been more ideal...Egelhoffer wasn't badly hurt. They took him to the County Hospital...
  • [to Walter] How you have messed up my life. What am I going to do?...I could be on that train right now. What a sap I am falling for your line: "They're gonna name streets after me." Johnson Street!

Walter Burns

  • Tell him if he'll reprieve Earl Williams, we'll support him for senator. Tell him the Morning Post will be behind him hook, line, and sinker.
  • I wish you hadn't done that, Hildy...Divorce me. Makes a fellow lose all faith in himself...Almost gives him a feeling he wasn't wanted.
  • [to Bruce] You're getting a great little girl for yourself...You're getting something else too, Bruce, you're getting a great newspaperman ... One of the best I ever knew. Sorry to see her go. Darn sorry, Hildy.
  • No, no, never mind the Chinese earthquake for heaven's sake...Look, I don't care if there's a million dead...No, no, junk the Polish Corridor...Take all those Miss America pictures off Page Six...Take Hitler and stick him on the funny page...No, no, leave the rooster story alone - that's human interest.
  • [on the phone] Well Butch, where are you?...Well, what are you doing there? Haven't you even started?...Listen, it's a matter of life and death!...Well, you can't stop for a dame now! I don't care if you've been after her for six years. Butch - our whole lives are at stake! Are you going to let a woman come between us after all we've been through?...Butch, I'd put my arm in fire for you, up to here. Now you can't double-cross me...Put her on, I'll talk to her. Oh, good evening madam. Now listen, you ten-cent glamour girl. You can't keep Butch away from his duty!

Bruce Baldwin

  • [on the phone to Hildy] I was sitting right in the taxi where you left me and the young lady seemed to have a dizzy spell and I just...Yes, she's a blonde. Yes, very blonde.
  • [To Hildy] I don't know what they're gonna think up there in Albany. They had to send the money to the police station...Where's mother? She said she was coming up here...Where'd she go?...Hildy! Tell me where my mother was going?...Did she get the money from you?...I'll take that money, Hildy...I've decided I can handle things around here and I'll take that certified check too...This is my wallet. Say, there's something funny going on. [To Walter] Hey, what are you doing?...[To Hildy] Hildy, I'm taking the nine o'clock train...Hildy, I just want you to answer me one question - you don't want to come with me...answer me, Hildy, you don't, do you?...Hildy, tell me, please tell me the truth. If you ever loved me, Hildy -? [To Walter] You're doing all this to her, I know that. She wanted to get away from you and everything you stand for, but you were too smart. You caught her and changed her mind...[To Hildy] Come on, Hildy, you're coming with me right now...I see, I'll keep. I'm like something in the icebox, aren't I?...You just don't love me...The point is that you never intended to be decent and live like a human being...I see what you are now. You're just like him and all the rest...I understand all right, I understand...Oh Hildy, I don't think you ever loved me at all...

Mollie Malloy

  • [to a group of newspapermen] I came to tell ya what I think of ya, all of ya...You crumbs have been makin' a fool out of me long enough. I never said I loved Earl Williams and was willing to marry him on the gallows. You made that up, and about my being a soul-mate and having a love-nest with him...I met Mr. Williams just once in my life when he was wandering around in the rain without his hat and coat on like a sick dog the day before the shooting. I went up to him like any human being would and I asked him what was the matter. And - and he told me about being fired after being on the same job for fourteen years. And I brought him up to my room because it was warm there...Aw listen to me, please. I tell ya, he just sat there talking to me all night. He never once laid a hand on me. And - and in the morning, he went away. And I never saw him again till that day of the trial. Sure I was his witness!...That's why you're persecuting me, because Earl Williams treated me decent and not like an animal, and I said so!...It's a wonder a bolt of lightning don't come down and strike you all dead! A poor little fella that never meant nobody no harm. Sitting there this minute with the Angel of Death beside him, and you cracking jokes!
  • Now you want me to talk...Oh ain't that funny. You wouldn't listen to me before. Not even for a minute. And now you want me to talk...What do ya want to know for? So you can write some more lies, so you can sell some more papers. I'll give you a wonderful story - only this time it'll be true!


  • Mayor: Do you realize there are two hundred thousand votes at stake? And if Earl Williams don't hang, we're gonna lose 'em?
  • Mayor: A guy who's done nothing for the last forty years but play pinochle gets elected Governor and right away, he thinks he's a Tarzan.
  • Diamond Louie: Down Western Avenue, we was going sixty-five miles an hour...We run smack into a police patrol. you know what I mean? We busted it in half!...Can you imagine bumping into a load of cops? They come rolling out like oranges!...When I come to, I was running down Thirty-fourth Street...The driver got knocked cold...I don't think she's [Bruce's mother] squawking much, you know what I mean?...Say listen, me with a gun on the hip and a kidnapped old lady on my hands, I'm gonna stick around askin' questions from a lot of cops?


Bruce: Even ten minutes is a long time to be away from you.
Hildy: What did you say?
Bruce: What?
Hildy: Go on. [He laughs sheepishly] Well, go ahead.
Bruce: Well, I just said, 'Even ten minutes is a long time to be away from you.'
Hildy: I heard you the first time. I like it. That's why I asked you to say it again.

Hildy: I spent six weeks in Reno, then Bermuda, oh, about four months, I guess. It seems like yesterday to me.
Walter: Maybe it was yesterday, Hildy. Been seeing me in your dreams?
Hildy: Oh, no, Mama doesn't dream about you anymore, Walter. You wouldn't know the old girl now.
Walter: I'd know you anytime, anyplace, anywhere.

Hildy: A big fat lummox like you - hiring an airplane to write: 'Hildy, don't be hasty, remember my dimple.' Walter. It delayed our divorce twenty minutes while the judge went out to watch it.
Walter: I've still got the dimple and in the same place.

Hildy: All I know is that instead of two weeks in Atlantic City with my bridegroom, I spent two weeks in a coal mine with John Krupsky. You don't deny that, do you Walter?
Walter: Deny it? I'm proud of it. We beat the whole country on that story.
Hildy: Well, I suppose we did. That isn't what I got married for!

Walter: What's the use of fighting, Hildy? I'll tell you what you do. You come back to work on the paper, and if we find we can't get along in a friendly fashion, we'll get married again.
Hildy: Oh Walter, you're wonderful - in a loathsome sort of way. Listen, Walter, you are no longer my husband and no longer my boss. And you're not going to be my boss.
Walter: All right, take it. Work for somebody else. That's the gratitude I get.
Hildy: Oh, I wish you'd stop hamming.
Walter: What were you when you came here five years ago? A little college girl from a school of journalism. I took a doll-faced hick.
Hildy: Well, you wouldn't take me if I hadn't been doll-faced...
Walter: Listen. I made a great reporter out of you, Hildy. But you won't be half as good on any other paper and you know it. We're a team. That's what we are. You need me and I need you, and the paper needs both of us.
Hildy: Sold American! Listen, Walter, the paper's gonna have to get along without me. So are you. It just didn't work out, Walter.
Walter: Well, it would have worked out if you'd been satisfied with just being editor and reporter - but not you! You had to marry me and spoil everything.
Hildy: I wasn't satisfied? I suppose I proposed to you?

Walter: And I still claim I was tight the night I proposed to you. If you had been a gentleman, you would have forgotten all about it. But not you.
[Hildy throws her pocketbook at the back of his head, but he ducks]
Walter: You're losing your eye. You used to be able to pitch better than that.

Walter: Hildy, you've got to help me out. Just this once...This will bring us back together again. Just the way we used to be. This is bigger than anything that ever happened to us. Don't do it for me, do it for the paper.
Hildy: Scram, Svengali.
Walter: Now look, if you won't do it for love, how about money? Forget the other offer. I'll raise you twenty-five bucks a week.

Hildy: Listen to me, you great big bumble-headed baboon.
Walter: I'll make it thirty-five bucks and not a cent more.
Hildy: Walter, are you gonna listen?
Walter: But good grief, how much is that other paper gonna pay you?
Hildy: There isn't any other paper.
Walter: Oh! Well in that case, the raise is off. You go back to your old salary...
Hildy: Walter, I want to show you something. It's here. It's a ring. Take a good look at it. Do you know what it is? It's an engagement ring. I tried to tell you right away, but you would start reminiscing. I'm getting married, Walter, and I'm also getting as far away from the newspaper business as I can get.
Walter: What?
Hildy: I am through.
Walter: You can marry all you want to, Hildy, but you can't quit the newspaper business.
Hildy: Oh! Why not?
Walter: I know you, Hildy. I know what quitting would mean to you.
Hildy: And what would it mean?
Walter: It would kill ya.
Hildy: You can't sell me that, Walter Burns.
Walter: Who says I can't? You're a newspaperman.
Hildy: That's why I'm quitting. I want to go someplace where I can be a woman.
Walter: You mean be a traitor.
Hildy: A traitor? A traitor to what?
Walter: A traitor to journalism. You're a journalist, Hildy.
Hildy: A journalist? Hell, what does that mean? Peeking through keyholes? Chasing after fire engines? Waking people up in the middle of the night to ask them if Hitler's gonna start another war? Stealing pictures off old ladies? I know all about reporters, Walter. A lot of daffy buttinskis running around without a nickel in their pockets and for what? So a million hired girls and motormen's wives'll know what's going on. Why-... Golly, what's the use? Walter, you-you wouldn't know what it means to want to be respectable and live a half-way normal life. The point is, I-I'm through.

Hildy: He's an insurance salesman. That's a good, honest business, isn't it?
Walter: Oh certainly, it's honest. It's also adventurous, it's romantic. Listen, Hildy, I can't picture you being surrounded by policies, policies...
Hildy: I can, I can, and I like it, what's more. Besides, he forgets the office when he's with me...He doesn't treat me like an errand boy either, Walter. He treats me like a woman.
Walter: He does, does he? How did I treat ya, like a water buffalo?
Hildy: I don't know from water buffalos, but I do know about him. He's kind and he's sweet and he's considerate. He wants a home and children.
Walter: Sounds more like a guy I ought to marry. What's his name?
Hildy: Uh, Baldwin. Bruce Baldwin.
Walter: Baldwin, Baldwin. Oh, I knew a Baldwin once. A horse thief in Mississippi. Couldn't be the same fella, could it?
Hildy: You're now talking about the man I'm marrying tomorrow.
Walter: Tomorrow? As soon as that?

Walter: She deserves all this happiness, Bruce. All the things I couldn't give her. Yeah, all she ever wanted was a home.
Bruce: Well, I'll certainly try to give her one.
Walter: I know you will, Bruce. Where are you gonna live?
Bruce: Albany.
Walter: Albany, huh? Got a family up there then?
Bruce: No, just my mother.
Walter: 'Just your mother.' Oh, you're gonna live with your mother?
Bruce: Well, just for the first year.
Walter: Oh, that will be nice! Yes, yes, a home with mother - in Albany too!
Bruce: Mighty nice little town - Albany. They've got the state capital there, you know.
Walter: Well Bruce, how is business up there? Any better?
Bruce: Well, Albany's a mighty good insurance town. Most people there take it out pretty early in life.
Walter: Yeah, well I can see why they would.
Bruce: I figure I'm in one business that really helps people. Of course, we don't help you much while you're alive, but afterward - that's what counts!

Walter: Listen, Bruce, I, uh, let me get that straight, I must have misunderstood you. You mean you're taking the sleeper today and then getting married tomorrow?
Bruce: Oh, well, it's not like that.
Walter: Well, what is it like?
Hildy: Oh poor Walter. He'll toss and turn all night. Perhaps we better tell him Mother's coming along, too.
Walter: [To Hildy] Mother? Why, your mother kicked the bucket!
Bruce: No, my mother, my mother.
Walter: Oh, your mother. Oh, well, that relieves my mind.
Hildy: [To Walter] It was cruel to let you suffer that way. [To Bruce] Isn't Walter sweet? Always wanting to protect me.
Walter: Well, I admit I wasn't much of a husband, but you can always count on me, Hildy.

Bruce: You know, Hildy, he's not such a bad fellow.
Hildy: No, he should make some girl real happy.
Bruce: Uh-huh.
Hildy: [To herself] Slap-happy.
Bruce: He's not the man for you. I can see that. But I sort of like him. He's got a lot of charm.
Hildy: Well, he comes by it naturally. His grandfather was a snake.

Walter: Well, he'll (Egelhoffer) say the same as all the rest.
Hildy: Suppose he does.
Walter: Well, what's the scheme, Hildy?
Hildy: Look Walter, you get the interview with Earl Williams. Print Egelhoffer's statement. And right alongside of it - you know, double column - run your interview. Alienist says he's sane. Interview shows he's goofy.
Walter: Aw Hildy, you can do it. You could save that poor devil's life.

Bruce: How long would the interview take?
Walter: Oh, about an hour for the interview. Another hour to write it. That's about all.
Bruce: Hildy, we could take the six o'clock train if it'd save a man's life.
Hildy: No, Bruce. [To Walter] If you want to save Earl Williams' life, you write the interview yourself. You're still a good reporter.
Walter: Aw, Hildy. You know I can't write that kind of thing. It takes a woman's touch. It needs that heart, that...
Hildy: Now don't get poetic, Walter. Get Sweeney. He's the best man you've got on the paper for that sob-sister stuff.
Walter: [explaining that Sweeney is not to be found because he is out celebrating the birth of twins] So Sweeney has twins, and Earl Williams gets hanged tomorrow. [to Bruce] Well you argue with her. You argue with her. Otherwise, you're going on a honeymoon with blood on your hands. How can you have any happiness after that? All through the years, you'll remember that a man went to the gallows because she was too selfish to wait two hours. I tell ya, Bruce, Earl Williams' face will come between you on the train tonight and at the preacher's tomorrow, and all the rest of your lives.
Hildy: I just remembered. Sweeney was only married four months ago.
Walter: All right, Hildy, you win. I'm licked.

Walter: [to Bruce] You persuade Hildy to do the story and you can write out a nice fat insurance policy for me.
Bruce: I refuse to use my wife for business purposes.
Hildy: We could use that money, Bruce. How long would it take to get him examined?
Bruce: Well, I could get a company doctor here in twenty minutes.
Hildy: Alright Bruce, suppose you have Mr. Burns examined over in his office and see what they'll allow on that old carcass of his...
Walter: Say, I'm better than I ever was. How do ya like...
Hildy: There was never anything to brag about. Now look, Bruce. I'll go back and change and dress. And after you get the check, you phone me. I'll be in the press-room of the Criminal Courts Building. Oh Walter!
Walter: What?
Hildy: By the way, I think you'd better make that a certified check.
Walter: What do you think I am, a crook?
Hildy: Yes. No certified check, no story. Get me?
Walter: It'll be certified. Want my fingerprints?
Hildy: No thanks. I've still got those.

Roy Bensinger: A new lead on the hanging - This alienist from New York, Dr. Max J. Egelhoffer, Egelhoffer, yeah, he's gonna interview with him in about half an hour in the Sheriff's office...Here's the situation on the eve of the hanging...A double guard is being thrown around the jail, the Municipal Buildings, railroad terminals, and elevated stations to prepare for the expected general uprising of radicals at the hour of execution.
Murphy: The Sheriff has just put two hundred more relatives on the payroll to protect the city from the Red Army which is leaving Moscow in a couple of minutes.

Hildy: I have to do a yarn on Williams. Did he know what he was doing when he fired that gun?
Murphy: If you ask us, 'No.' If you ask the state alienist, the answer is 'Yes.'
Hildy: Who is he? What's he do?
Jake McCue: He was a bookkeeper. He starts out at twenty dollars a week and after fourteen years, he gradually works himself up to seventeen fifty...Plus the company goes out of business and Williams loses his job...
Ernie: So he starts hangin' around the park, listenin' to a lot of soapbox spellbinders makin' phony speeches and begins to believe 'em.
Endicott: And makes some of his own.

Walter: [after designating Hildy as the beneficiary of his life insurance policy] Well, by that time, you'll probably have made enough so that the money won't mean anything to you. But suppose you haven't made good Bruce? What about Hildy's old age? Think of Hildy. Ah - I can see her now. White-haired. Lavender and old lace. Can't you see her, Bruce?
Bruce: [dreamily] Yes. Yes I can.
Walter: She's old, isn't she? Now Bruce, don't you think that Hildy is entitled to spend her last remaining years without worries of money? Of course you do, Bruce.
Bruce: Of course, if you put it that way.
Walter: And remember, I love her too.
Bruce: Yes, I'm beginning to realize that.
Walter: And the beauty of it is, she'll never have to know until I've passed on. Oh well, maybe she'll think kindly of me after I'm gone.
Bruce: Gee! You make me feel like a heel comin' between ya.
Walter: No, no Bruce. You didn't come between us. It was all over for her before you came on the scene. For me...it'll never be.

Williams: He [the soap-box speaker] said everything should be made use of.
Hildy: It makes quite a bit of sense, doesn't it?...Now look, Earl, when you found yourself with that gun in your hand, and that policeman coming at you, what did you think about?...You must have thought of something...Could it have been, uh, 'production for use'?...What's a gun for Earl?
Williams: A gun?...Why to shoot, of course.
Hildy: Oh. Maybe that's why you used it.
Williams: Maybe.
Hildy: Seems reasonable?
Williams: Yes, yes it is. You see, I've never had a gun in my hand before. That's what a gun's for, isn't it? Maybe that's why.
Hildy: Sure it is.
Williams: Yes, that's what I thought of. Production for use. Why, it's simple isn't it?
Hildy: Very simple.
Williams: There's nothing crazy about that, is there?
Hildy: Nope. Nothing at all.
Williams: You'll write about that in your paper, won't you?
Hildy: You bet I will.
Williams: I liked talking to you.

Mollie: Aren't they inhuman?
Hildy: I know. They're newspapermen.
Mollie: All they've been doing is lying. All they've been doing is writing lies...Why won't they listen to me?

Murphy: Why can't you hang this guy at five o'clock instead of seven?
Bensinger: Sure, it won't hurt you, and we'd make the city edition.
Sheriff: Oh well now, that's, that's kind of raw, Roy. After all, I can't hang a man in his sleep just to please the newspaper.
Newsman: No, but you can reprieve him twice so the hanging's three days before election, can't ya?
Endicott: You can run on a law and order ticket. You can do that all right.
Sheriff: Honest boys, I had absolutely nothing to do with those reprieves. He's just as sane as I am.

Newsman: Well, I still say that anybody that can write like that ain't gonna give it up permanently and sew socks for a guy in the insurance business. Now I give that marriage three months and I'm layin' three to one. Any takers?
Hildy: [entering the room] I'll take that bet. Geez. It's getting so a girl can't leave the room without being discussed by a bunch of old ladies...
Newsman: Oh, don't get sore, Hildy. We were only saying a swell reporter like you wouldn't quit so easy...
Hildy: Oh, I can quit all right without a single quiver. I'm gonna live like a human being. Not like you chumps.

Walter: [describing Bruce] He looks like, uh, that fellow in the movies, you know, uh, Ralph Bellamy.
Benji: Oh him.
Walter: Can you handle it?
Benji: I've never flopped on you yet, have I?

Mayor: Have you seen Sheriff Hartwell?
Endicott: It's hard to tell, your Honor. You see, there's so many cockroaches around here.

Hildy: Mrs. Baldwin - Mother!
Mrs. Baldwin: Don't you 'Mother' me! Playing cat and mouse with my poor boy, keeping him locked up, making us miss two trains and you supposed to be married tomorrow.
Hildy: I'll be with you in five minutes.
Mrs. Baldwin: You don't have to go with me at all. Just give me Bruce's money and you can stay here forever as far as I'm concerned - you and that murderer you caught...Which one of these men is it? They all look like murderers to me.
Endicott: Wait a minute, Hildy. What murderer did you catch?...
Hildy: I don't know what she's talking about. I haven't said any such thing.
Mrs. Baldwin: I am quoting my son, and he has never lied to me.
Hildy: That's ridiculous. In the first place, I never said anything like that.
Mrs. Baldwin: Yes you did.
Hildy: No, I didn't. I said I was trying to find the murderer. [To the news-hungry reporters] She got it all balled up. Can't you see that?

Walter: Get Bruce out of jail? How can you worry about a man who's resting in a nice quiet police station while this is going on? Hildy, this is WAR! You can't desert me now!
Hildy: Oh Walter, get off that trapeze. You've got your story right over there in the desk. Go on. Smear it all over the front page. Earl Williams - captured by the Morning Post. I covered your story for ya and I got in a fine mess doing it. Now I'm gettin' out.
Walter: You're a drooling idiot. What do you mean you're getting out? There are 365 days in a year one can get married. How many times you got a murderer locked up in a desk? Once-in-a-lifetime. Hildy, you got the whole city by the seat of the pants.
Hildy: Sure, I know, I know...
Walter: You know. You know. You got the brain of a pancake. This isn't just a story you're covering. It's a revolution. This is the greatest yarn in journalism since Livingston discovered Stanley.
Hildy: It's the other way around.
Walter: Oh, well don't get technical at a time like this. Do you realize what you've done, honey? You've taken a city that's been graft-ridden for 40 years under the same old gang. With this yarn, you're kicking 'em out. They're giving us a chance to have the same kind of government New York's having under LaGuardia. Listen honey, if I didn't have your best interest at heart, do you think I'd waste my time arguin' with ya? You've done something big, Hildy. You've stepped up into a new class.
Hildy: Huh?
Walter: We'll make such monkeys out of those ward heelers next Tuesday nobody will vote for 'em. Not even their wives.
Hildy: Expose 'em, eh...
Walter: Certainly. We'll crucify that mob. We'll keep Williams under cover until morning so the Post can break the story exclusive. Then we'll let the Governor in on the capture. Share the glory with him.
Hildy: I get it. I get it.
Walter: You've kicked over the whole City Hall like an applecart. You've got the Mayor and Hartwell backed up against a wall. You put one administration out and another one in. This isn't just a newspaper story, Hildy. It's a career. And you standin' there bellyache-ing about whether you're catchin' an eight o'clock train or a nine o'clock train.
Hildy: Well, Walter, I never figured it that way.
Walter: You're still a doll-faced hick, that's why.
Hildy: Gee, we'd be the white-haired boys, won't we?
Walter: Sure, they'll be naming streets after you. Hildy Johnson Street. There'll be statues of ya in the park. The movies will be after ya. The radio. By tomorrow morning, I'll betcha there's a Hildy Johnson cigar. I can see the billboards now. They say, 'Light up with Hildy Johnson.'
Hildy: Oh Walter, will you stop that acting!...We got a lot to do.
Walter: Now you're talking.

Hildy: Walter? The mayor's first wife - what was her name?
Walter: You mean the one with the wart on her -
Hildy: Right.
Walter: Fanny.

Bruce: Remember, if you change your mind, I'm leaving on the nine o'clock train.
Hildy: If you want me, Bruce, you've gotta take me as I am instead of trying to change me into something else. I'm no suburban bridge player. I'm a newspaperman. Darn it.

Hildy: 'While hundreds of Sheriff Hartwell's paid gunmen stalked through the city shooting innocent bystanders, spreading their reign of terror, Earl Williams was lurking less than twenty yards from the Sheriff's Office where...'
Walter: Wait a minute, wait a minute, aren't you going to mention the Post? Doesn't the paper get any credit?
Hildy: Well, honey, I did that. Right there in the second paragraph.
Walter: Who's gonna read the second paragraph? Listen honey, for ten years, I've been telling ya how to write a newspaper story and that's all I get?

Walter: Be honest. If you were out joy-riding, plastered, and got into some scrape, why don't you admit it instead of accusing innocent people?
Mrs. Baldwin: You ruffian. How dare you talk like that to me!
Hildy: He's just a little crazy, mother.
Mrs. Baldwin: And I can tell you something more. I can tell you why they did it...They had some kind of a murderer in here, and they were hiding him.
Walter: Madam. You're a Cock-Eyed Liar, and you know it.

Mayor: Well, it looks like ten years apiece for you two birds.
Walter: Does it?
Hildy: Whenever you think you've got the Morning Post licked, it's time for you to get out of town.
Mayor: Whistling in the dark? Well that isn't gonna help you this time. You're through.
Walter: Listen. The last man who said that to me was Archie Leach just a week before he cut his throat. [Archie/Archibald Leach was Cary Grant's real name.]
Sheriff and the Mayor: Is that so?
Walter: We've been in worse jams than this, haven't we, Hildy?
Hildy: Nope.

Hildy: Remember the time we stole Old Lady Haggerty's stomach off the coroner's physician...We proved she'd been poisoned then, didn't we, Walter? We had to hide out for a week. Do you remember that?...That's where, I mean, how...
Walter: We could have gone to jail for that too, you know that.
Hildy: I guess so.

Walter: Aw yes, maybe you're right, Hildy. It's a bad business. Well, you're gonna be better off. Say, you better get going.
Hildy: Where would I go?
Walter: Well, to Bruce, of course.
Hildy: But you know, he's gone. He took the nine o'clock train.
Walter: Just send him a wire. He'll be waiting at the station when you get into Albany. Now go on.
Hildy: I don't know. I got so messed up, Walter. Maybe...
Walter: Get going, Hildy.
Hildy: Get going? What is that with you?
Walter: ...Now look, honey. Can't you understand? I'm trying to do something noble for once in my life. Now get out of here before I change my mind. Come on.
Hildy: But Walter, listen, just a minute...
Walter: ...Send the fellow a wire. He'll be waiting when you get in. Come on.
Hildy: Who'll write the story?
Walter: I'll do it myself. Won't be half as good as you can do it, but what's the difference?
Hildy: It's my story. I'd kinda like to think that it...I get it, Walter. The same old act, isn't it? Trying to push me out of here, thinking I'll be stupid enough to want to stay.
Walter: Now I know I deserve that, Hildy...but this is one time you're wrong. Look honey, when you walk out that door, part of me will go right with ya. But a whole new world's gonna open up for you. I made fun of Bruce and Albany and all that kind of thing, you know why?
Hildy: Why?
Walter: I was jealous. I was sore because he could offer you the kind of life I can't give ya. That's what you want, honey.
Hildy: I-I could stay and do the story, and take the train in the morning. Doesn't make that much difference.
Walter: Now forget it. Come on, come on. Goodbye dear, and good luck.

Hildy: I thought you were really sending me away with Bruce. I didn't know you had him locked up. I thought you were on the level for once. I think you were just standing by and letting me go off with him without doing a thing about it.
Walter: Oh come on, honey. What do you think I was? A chump?
Hildy: And I thought you didn't love me.
Walter: Oh, what were you thinking with?
Hildy: I don't know. Well, what are you standing there gawking for? We have to get him out of jail. Send Louie down with some honest money and send him back to Albany where he belongs.
Walter: Sure, sure.

Walter: [To Duffy on the phone] We're coming over to the office. No, don't worry about the story. Hildy's gonna write it. Course she's not quitting. She never intended to. We're gonna get married.
Hildy: Can we go on a honeymoon this time, Walter?
Walter: Sure. Hey Duffy, you can be managing editor. No, no, not permanently. Just for the two weeks we're away on a honeymoon...I don't know where we're going. [To Hildy] Where are we going?
Hildy: Niagara Falls.
Walter: [To Duffy] Niagara Falls, Duffy.
Hildy: Two whole weeks, Walter?
Walter: Sure. You've earned it. [To Duffy] What? What? Strike? What strike? Where? Albany? Well, I know it's on the way Duffy, but I can't ask Hildy to...
Hildy: All right, we'll honeymoon in Albany.
Walter: OK, Duffy! Ha, ha, ha. Well, isn't that a coincidence? We're going to Albany. I wonder if Bruce can put us up?


  • She learned about men from him!
  • The Year's Wildest, Wittiest Whirlwind of a Love Battle... Outrageously Racy... Sparkling... Gay!


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