Bachelor in Paradise (1961): Oscar Nominated Bob Hope Comedy

MGM (Ted Richmond production)

Bob Hope was in decline as screen actor when he starred in Jack Arnold’s farcical comedy as a “romance expert”  contracted to write an expose on the sexual habits of suburban California housewives.

In order to conduct research purposes, he moves into a place called Paradise, populated by young and attractive newlyweds.

To the men’s dismay in the community, the gorgeous wives gravitate to Hope, especially Paula Prentiss, the sexy bride of Jim Hutton.

But Hope is courted seriously by the only other single resident of Paradise, of all stars, the glamorous Lana Turner (inside joke?).

Bob Hope’s collaborator Hal Kanter cowrote the screenplay with Valentine Davies, based on a story by Vera Caspary (“Laura”).

Henry Mancini and Mack Davis’ Oscar-nominated title song is the only good element in the picture.

Bob Hope could have done this kind of farce in his sleep. Prentiss and Hutton, who also appeared together in “Where the Boys Are,” have some good moments.


Oscar Nominations: 1

Song: Bachelor in Paradise, music by Henry Mancini, lyrics by Mack David

Oscar Award: None

Oscar Context:

Henry Mancini lost the Best Song Oscar to himself, winning for “Moon River,: which he co-composed with Johnny Mercer for “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.”



Running time: 109 Minutes

Directed by Jack Arnold.