|Five of a Kind|
|Directed by||Herbert I. Leeds|
|Screenplay by||Lou Breslow|
|Produced by||Sol M. Wurtzel|
|Cinematography||Daniel B. Clark|
|Edited by||Fred Allen|
|Music by||Samuel Kaylin|
|Distributed by||20th Century Fox|
Five of a Kind is a 1938 American comedy film directed by Herbert I. Leeds and written by Lou Breslow and John Patrick. The film stars Jean Hersholt, Claire Trevor, Cesar Romero, Slim Summerville, Henry Wilcoxon and Inez Courtney. The film was released on October 14, 1938, by 20th Century Fox. The film follows the escalating rivalry between radio journalists Duke Lester (Romero) and Christine Nelson (Trevor) that culminates in a competition to cover the exploits of the famous Canadian quintuplets, the Wyatts, played by the Dionne quintuplets.
Reporters on rival newspapers, Christine Nelson (Claire Trevor) and Duke Lester (Cesar Romero), meet on the trail of a run-away heiress and engage in a series of tricks to get the scoop.
After being fired due to deliberate misinformation, Nelson gets a job as a radio interviewer setting her sights on the Dionne Quintuplets. Lester gets wind of the interview, arrives first, and reignites the ‘war’. Nelson wins this round.
To counter Nelson’s popularity, Lester fabricates a story about sextuplets. Thinking she is breaking the story, Nelson talks on air to Lester’s fake doctor. Other newshounds quickly expose the story as false; destroying a planned benefit for a New York orphanage-hospital.
When Lester discovers the impact of his actions, he works to repair the damage and save the benefit.
- Dionne quintuplets as Wyatt quintuplets
- Yvonne Dionne as Yvonne
- Cécile Dionne as Cécile
- Marie Dionne as Marie
- Annette Dionne as Annette
- Emilie Dionne as Émelie
- Jean Hersholt as Dr. John Luke
- Claire Trevor as Christine Nelson
- Cesar Romero as Duke Lester
- Slim Summerville as Jim Ogden
- Henry Wilcoxon as Dr. Scott Williams
- Inez Courtney as Libby Long
- John Qualen as Asa Wyatt
- Jane Darwell as Mrs. Waldron
- Pauline Moore as Elinor Kingsley
- Johnny Russell as Dickie
- Andrew Tombes as Dr. Bruno
- David Torrence as Sir Basil Crawford
- Marion Byron as Nurse Corday
- Hamilton MacFadden as Andrew Gordon
- Spencer Charters as Rev. Matthew Brand
- Charles D. Brown as Editor Crane
The Wyatt Quintuplets in the movie are shown to live an idealized version of the life of the Dionne Quints. Shortly after their birth, the Dionne girls were made wards of the state and raised in a theme park type hospital situation which was across the street from the parents they were taken from. For the first nine years of their life, the Dionne Quints children were treated like a zoo attraction. While they were under state care, they made this movie and its predecessor, The Country Doctor; both featuring Jean Hersholt as their kindly caretaker, Dr John Luke.
- "Five of a Kind (1938) – Overview". TCM.com. Retrieved 2015-10-02.
- Nugent, Frank S. (1938-10-31). "Movie Review – Five of a Kind – The Screen – ' Five of a Kind,' All Dionnes, Is Shown at the Globe; Notes on 'Storm' and 'Irish and Proud of It' At the Rivoli At the Belmont At the Teatro Hispano". NYTimes.com. Retrieved 2015-10-02.
- John Howard Reid (1 May 2005). Hollywood's Miracles of Entertainment. Lulu.com. pp. 59–. ISBN 978-1-4116-3522-7.
- Cruz, Gilbert (2009-01-28). "A Brief History of Multiple Births". TIME. Archived from the original on January 30, 2009. Retrieved 2015-10-02.
- Barry Monush (2003). Screen World Presents the Encyclopedia of Hollywood Film Actors: From the silent era to 1965. Applause Theatre & Cinema Books. pp. 331–. ISBN 978-1-55783-551-2.