Oscar Movies: Romance on the High Seas (1948)


“Romance on the High Seas marls the feature film debut of Doris Day, who went on to become the most popular star in America in the 1950s.

Director Michael Curtiz, working with a screenplay by the Epstein brothers (Julius and Philip of “Casablanca” fame) and I.A.L. Diamond, cast Day as Georgia Garrett, a substitute traveler on an ocean cruise.

Georgia’s friend Elvira Kent (Janis Paige) had scheduled the cruise but at the last minute she changes her mind and cancels; she suspects her husband is cheating on her and wants to stay at home and check up on him. So she asks Georgia to go on the cruise in her place.

Meanwhile, the husband himself becomes suspicious of his wife’s cheating and hires a detective to watch Elvira while on the cruise.

Need to tell the rest of the predictable plot, namely that the detective falls for the substitute Elvira (Doris Day), making a somewhat complicated scenario with many possibilities.

What really saves the film is Day’s lovely voice and melodic tunes, by Jule Styne and Sammy Cahn, including “It’s Magic,” which was nominated for the best Song Oscar.

The supporting cast includes Oscar Levant, S. Z. Sakall, Fortunio Bonanova, Eric Blore, and Franklin Pangborn.

Oscar Nominations: 2

Song: “It’s Magic,” music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Sammy Cahn.

Scoring of a Musical: Ray Heindorf

Oscar Awards: None


Oscar Context:

The winner of the Best Song Oscar was “Buttons and Bows,” by Jay Livingston and Ray Evans, from the movie “The Paleface.”

The Scoring Oscar went to Johnny Green and Roger Edens for the Judy Garland musical, “Easter Parade.”