Next Time We Love: First Teaming of Jimmy Stewart and Margaret Sullavan

Next Time We Love is the first of the four films Jimmy Stewart made with the great Margaret Sullavan (who was later married to his friend Henry Fonda); the others being “Three Comrades,” “The Shopworn Angel,” and the sublime Lubitsch-directed melodrama, “The Shop Around the Corner.”

In this classic Hollywood picture about the eternal conflicts between career and marriage, Jimmy Stewart plays newspaper reporter Christopher Tyler, happily married to Cicely (Sullavan), an actress devoted to her career. However, when Christopher receives his first foreign assignment in Rome, Cicely refuses to accompany him. Christopher is understandably upset. Later, Cicely confides in her best friend Tommy Abbott (Ray Milland) that she refused to go because of her pregnancy and doesn’t want to be a bother.

After a series of separations, caused by Cicely’s desire to stay at home and become a Broadway celeb and Christopher’s urge to engage in globetrotting to Roma, Moscow and China, we witness the expected misunderstandings and reconciliations.

Even critics of the time found it refreshing as Time magazine wrote that for a change, the reporter played by Stewart is not a clich character that’s “drunkard, lecher, or buffoon.” The charm of the lead players, and the strong chemistry between them, make this serviceable comedy enjoyable. The film also offers early evidence why Stewart would become one of Hollywood’s most prominent leading men.

Credits

Running time: 87 minutes.
Release date: January 27, 1936

Produced by Paul Kohner
Directed by Edward H. Griffith
Screenplay: Melville Baker based on Ursula Parrott’s novel
Camera; Joseph Valentine
Editor: Ted Kent