This film started life as Adventure In
and was preceded by a short tour principally in Army
camps in August 1945 to get routines in shape and to memorize the
started on 3 October and was finished in early December. The first
version of the film ran for two hours. At the first proper preview in
early January 1946, the film ran 113 minutes but was received
unenthusiastically by audience and Marxes alike. Desperate cutting
before the release on 10 May 1946 reduced the film to 85 minutes.
Most of the cuts are visible in the finished film as quick fade outs.
Presented here are two scenes which appeared early in
They've been reconstructed thanks to an excerpt from Movie
script, 3rd Partial
Revision: September 5, 1945 in Simon Louvish' book Monkey
and D.L. Ames'
A Night In Casablanca - The Book of the Film,
a novelization of the film published in England in 1946.
Desert View Hotel
This scene probably appeared about 10 minutes into the film after
Governor Galoux and Captain Brizzard decided to send a telegram to the
manager of the
Desert View Hotel, offering him the post of manager of Hotel
Exterior desert, day. Only sand and
Camera slowly pans to a hand-painted sign sticking in the sand,
'FREE PARKING. This is the Desert
View Hotel -
of the High Tent District'.
Inside, another sign reads: 'Please close your tent flap
leaving'. Close shot - office.
Groucho is revealed reclining on the mattress. He wears an ill-fitting
white linen suite topped off by a red fez. Near him rests an elaborate
oriental water-cooled pipe on which he is drawing, through a long
corded tube. The pipe is rigged so that there is a cigar in the far
A giant Arab emerges from the tent marked "2".
Groucho Ah! Mr Shrak
[book: "Ah! Mr Shrak Siad"]
Checking out, eh?
(Behind Mr Shrak a veiled, slim Arab girl
tent. Groucho bows)
And Mrs Shrak Abdullah!
(A second Arab girl appears, blushing)
(A third follows)
And Mrs Shrak Abdullah!
(This continues for a considerable number of
Abdullahs, Groucho counting them on his fingers as they emerge)
Bungalow number 2, the bridal suite...
[book: Let's see, Tent no.2, the bridal suite]
Shrak Abdullah and twenty-eight wives for twenty-seven days
Mr Shrak No.
wives for twenty-eight days...
Mr Shrak Yes.
Groucho I'd have
charge you for an extra wife if you weren't on your toes - and it takes
quite a man to be on his toes with twenty-seven wives. I'd be on my
[That last phrase appears in the book as well but is crossed
out on the script and replaced with:
A guy's got to be charged up to have twenty-eight wives. That'll be a
hundred and forty francs.]
(Mr Shrak pays and stalks off, followed by his
I don't envy him. Remember, every one of those wives has
(Groucho then finds a spare wife left
bridal tent. He flings himself on the cushions beside her and consoles
Fine husband. He checks out of here
Don't cry. I wouldn't worry about him. Men are ten cents a dozen...I
wish women were.
Girl He'll come back for me.
Groucho Well, he'd better
the management is not responsible for wives left over thirty days. (He
adds passionately:) Don't be a fool, come away with me.
Girl I'll never leave here.
Africa, and Africa is a part of me.
Groucho Well, at least I'm
part of Africa.
(Suddenly Mr Shrak is standing in the
What these tents need is a
nervously with an hour-glass beside the couch, observes the running
sand with sudden horror and slithers past Mr Shrak without pausing for
Gad! Look at the time! A quarter to eleven!
(At the Office a honeymoon
couple - i.e. a couple of blushing brides, one handsome young Arab
groom and a camel who probably wasn't one of the party - are waiting to
You can have No. 2. It's still warm. As a matter of fact it got too hot
for me. It's a lovely tent, with a fine view of the ocean.
Arab groom I see no ocean.
Groucho We're working on
that. So far
we've got is the beach.
(Groucho indicates the Sahara Desert and the
the bridal tent)
What a lucky guy! Two wives. Any time he's in the mood
he can play
(Groucho then receives the telegram
So they want me to take over the
I'll never leave this Hotel! I built it up from nothing. It's my
old-age annuity - as solid as the Rock of Gibraltar. Nobody can take it
away from me.
(A sound of wind appears, followed by a sudden
tornado sweeps everything away - archway, office, tents. Like the camel
beside him, Groucho is buried up to his neck in desert sand. He raises
I've thought the whole
carefully. I'll take the job.
Yellow Camel Taxi Service
Shortly after this, Groucho arrives in Casablanca and is
greeted by Chico. After a short conversation about Chico's camel, the
scene fades but here's the continuation:
Groucho What do you do with your
How do you rent them? By the hour?
Chico I just fill them up with water
they go for eight days.
Groucho What do you feed them?
Chico Peanuts - it's the healthiest
Groucho How do you know?
Chico I was a monkey for three years.
Groucho (glancing at him
doubtfully) It's been longer than that.
By the way, what are your rates?
Chico Twenty francs for a camel with
humps, and ten francs for a camel with one hump.
Groucho What do you charge for a
Chico A camel with no humps is a
gotta horse too, but the horse has a bump.
Groucho (eyeing the street
him wistfully) If I could get back down there I'd go that way.
Chico Don't worry about the price,
Whatever you got - I take.
(They arrive at the hotel and is greeted by
takes possession of Groucho's carpet-bag)
Groucho Be careful of that.
Everything I own
world is in that bag! (The bag flips open)
Chico Hey! That bag is empty.
Groucho That'll give you an idea what
Chico (returning to
That'll be one hundred francs, Boss.
Groucho But the meter says fifty
Chico Yeh, but I told you. It's
a camel with two humps.
(Groucho gives up and pays but behind his back
removes one detachable hump. Meanwhile, Harpo produces a whisk broom
and begin violently to brush what remains of Groucho's threadbare suit)
Groucho Hey, get away from me. What's
idea? What do you do anyway?
(Harpo pulls out a red-hot iron from his
forefinger and touches the iron with a little phut)
Chico That's what he does, Boss. He's
Groucho But he was trying to undress
Chico That's his business. He dresses
undresses the Count. Rusty's got a very tough job - the Count's got a
lot of clothes. He makes sixteen changes a day.
Groucho What's so wonderful about
did that when I was three months old.