It's a Wonderful Life

JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: Lux presents Hollywood!


JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: Lever Brothers Company, the makers of Lux Toilet Soap, 
bring you The Lux Radio Theatre, starring James Stewart, Donna Reed, and 
Victor Moore in "It's a Wonderful Life"! Ladies and gentlemen, your producer, 
Mr. William Keighley!



WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Greetings from Hollywood, ladies and gentlemen. Tonight, we 
bring you one of the season's most inspiring hits, a Liberty Films production 
that's been nominated for the highest screen award. Yes, "It's a Wonderful 
Life"! And we present it now with its original fine stars, Jimmy Stewart and 
Donna Reed. Jimmy, in the role which won him a nomination for the best 
performance of the year. Also in our cast is starred that fine comedian, 
Victor Moore. 

"It's a Wonderful Life" is the drama of a typical American. It might be you, 
it might be me. He dreams of glory. He lives in hope. He loves and doubts. And 
only Providence puts a final value on his service to humanity. Our story 
starts before the War, when life was normal, shortages were generally unknown, 
and simple luxuries, like Lux soap, were abundant. I won't say that's the only 
reason people said, "It's a wonderful life," but I do know, from the thousands 
of letters in our files, that most of them said, "It's a wonderful soap"! And 
they keep right on saying it day after day. In fact the popularity of Lux soap 
is what makes it possible to present such entertainment as Frank Capra's great 
production, "It's a Wonderful Life" starring Jimmy Stewart as George, Donna 
Reed as Mary Hatch, and Victor Moore as Clarence.


WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: This is the story of George Bailey, citizen of Bedford 
Falls, New York. George Bailey -- who, more than anything under the sun, 
wanted to see the world. The wonderful, exciting world that lay somewhere 
beyond the limits of his home town. Oddly enough, this story does not begin in 
Bedford Falls. In fact, it doesn't begin anywhere in the world. It begins ... 
in Heaven, where the Superintendent of Angels has just summoned an apprentice 
angel named Clarence.


CLARENCE: Oh, I - I'm really going down to Earth, sir? Oh, how splendid.

JOSEPH: Yes. There's a very discouraged man down there, Clarence. George 
Bailey. At exactly ten forty-five PM, Earth time, he'll be thinking seriously 
of ending his life.

CLARENCE: Oh, dear, dear. His life.

JOSEPH: Now, I want you to stop him if you can. Now, sit down, sit down. I'll 
give you Bailey's case history.

CLARENCE: Sir, if, er ... if I should accomplish my mission... may I perhaps 
get my wings? I've been waiting over two hundred years now and, well, people 
are beginning to talk.

JOSEPH: Clarence, what's that book?

CLARENCE: "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer," sir. I was reading it when you sent 
for me.

JOSEPH: Oh, fine book, excellent. Well, you do a good job on George Bailey and 
we'll see about your wings.

CLARENCE: Oh, thank you, sir.

JOSEPH: Now, listen. When George Bailey was a boy, two events occurred that 
you should keep in mind. One was when his young brother, Harry, fell through 
the ice and almost drowned. George saved him.

CLARENCE: (writes this down) "... brother fell through the ice ... George 
saved him ..."

JOSEPH: Ever since, George has had a bad ear. All that icy water -- you 

CLARENCE: "... bad ear ..." Yes, sir.

JOSEPH: The other event came a few months later. George used to work after 
school in Mr. Gower's drug store. One day, Mr. Gower's only son died of 
influenza. It was a terrible blow and poor Mr. Gower tried to lose his grief 
in whiskey... (fades)

GOWER: (drunkenly) Where you been George? Mrs. Blaine's called twice! What 
happened to her prescription? Ya lost it, didn't ya?

YOUNG GEORGE: No, Mr. Gower, here it is.

GOWER: Why you good-fer-nuthin'! Don't you know that Blaine girl's very sick?


YOUNG GEORGE: (in pain) Mr. Gower, my ear! You're hurting my sore ear!

GOWER: I'll teach ya to loaf, ya lazy brat!

YOUNG GEORGE: Mr. Gower, you don't know what you're doing! You put something 
wrong in those capsules!

GOWER: Shut up!

YOUNG GEORGE: I know you feel bad but, look, Mr. Gower! Look! This bottle you 
used, this bottle to make up the capsules! It's poison!

GOWER: Poison?

YOUNG GEORGE: Don't hurt my sore ear again, Mr. Gower!

GOWER: Poison? Oh, George, George...


YOUNG GEORGE: It's why I didn't deliver, Mr. Gower! All I wanted was to make 

GOWER: (sobs) George, George...

JOSEPH: Well, Clarence, that was George Bailey as a boy. When he grew up, he 
wanted to go to college, but there just wasn't the money ...


JOSEPH: ... so he worked four years in the Building and Loan Association...

CLARENCE: Building and Loan Association?

JOSEPH: Oh, I forgot to tell you. George's father was in the building and loan 
business. He and George's Uncle Billy. High ideals and low bank account. 
Anyway, George worked for his father and saved enough to see him through the 
university. That summer, though, he was going to Europe. Got a job on a cattle 
boat, do a little traveling before college... (fades)

GEORGE: Boy, oh boy, oh boy! It's hard to realize it's my last night at the 
Bailey boarding house.

POP: Well, we're sure going to miss you, George.

GEORGE: Aw, I'm going to miss you, too, Pop. Hey, what's the matter? You look 

POP: Oh, I had another tussle with old Henry Potter today.

GEORGE: Oh, I thought when you put him on the Board of Directors, he'd ease 

POP: So did I.

GEORGE: Ah, I just can't understand a man like Mr. Potter. He can't begin to 
spend all the money he has.

POP: I guess Potter owns about everything he wants in Bedford Falls except our 
building and loan. That's why he hates us.

HARRY: (from off) Hey, George! Can I borrow your tuxedo studs?

GEORGE: (yells) Yeah, help yourself, Harry!

HARRY: Well, where are they? In your suitcase?

GEORGE: No, I'm not taking a tuxedo in a cattle boat, you know.

HARRY: Say, where'd you get that suitcase, anyway?

GEORGE: Oh, Mr. Gower. Going away present. And, one of these days, you're 
gonna see that bag all covered with travel labels. Italy and Baghdad and 

HARRY: Gonna have a pretty full summer, eh?

GEORGE: I'm gonna have a pretty full life!

HARRY: Hey, why don't you come to the dance tonight?

GEORGE: What? And be bored to death?

HARRY: Well, ya couldn't want a better death! Lots of pretty girls. Hey, I 
gotta hurry!

POP: I wish we could send Harry to college with you, George.

GEORGE: Aw, we've got that all figured out now, Pop. He'll take over my job at 
the Building and Loan, work four years like I did, then he'll go.

POP: He's pretty young for that job.

GEORGE: Well, no younger'n I was.

POP: Maybe you were born older, George.


POP: George, when you get out of college, I don't suppose you'd come back to 
the Building and Loan?

GEORGE: Oh, no, now, Pop, I - I - I - I just couldn't. I - I couldn't face 
being cooped up the rest of my life in a shabby little office. I-- Oh, I'm 
sorry, Pop. Now, I - I didn't mean that, but it's just this business of 
nickels and dimes. I'd go crazy. I - I want to do something big. Something 

POP: In a small way, we are doing something important, George. In that shabby 
little office, we help people figure out how they can own their own homes.

GEORGE: I know. I know, Pop. I - I just wish I felt that I-- I-- But I just 
feel like if I didn't get away, I'd bust.

POP: You're right, boy. You get yourself an education. Then -- get out o' 

GEORGE: Aw, Pop, ya-- Pop, you want a shock? I think you're a pretty great 

POP: Well, thanks, George. I'm glad to hear it. Look, um, why don't you go on 
over to Harry's dance? You'll have a good time.

GEORGE: Well, I don't know, maybe I will drop in. Yeah, maybe I will, at that.


CLARENCE: So George Bailey went to a dance. Is that important, Joseph?

JOSEPH: Why, it was at the dance he met Mary Hatch.

CLARENCE: Ah-ohhh...

JOSEPH: And three hours later, he was walking her home. George and Mary were 
feeling pretty good, Clarence. As a matter of fact, wonderful... (fades)



GEORGE AND MARY: (singing) "Buffalo Gals, can't you come out tonight? Can't 
you come out tonight? Can't you come out tonight? Buffalo Gals, can't you come 
out tonight... aaaaaaannnnnnnnd dance by the light of da moon?"

GEORGE: Hot dog!

MARY: Beautiful!

GEORGE: Oh, boy, just like an organ.

MARY: At least.

GEORGE: Gee whiz. Hey, you know - you know somethin'? If it wasn't me talkin', 
I'd say you were the prettiest girl in town.

MARY: Well, why don't you say it?

GEORGE: I don't know. Maybe I will. Hey, how old are you, anyway?

MARY: Eighteen.

GEORGE: Eighteen?!

MARY: Too young or too old?

GEORGE: No, no, no that's just right. It sorta fits you. Hey, look where we 

MARY: Hm? Oh, the old Granville house.

GEORGE: Yeah, I gotta throw a rock!

MARY: Oh, no, George. I love that old house.

GEORGE: Well, don't you know about deserted houses? You - you make a wish and 
then throw a rock!

MARY: George, but it's such a lovely old place. I wish I lived there.

GEORGE: In there? I wouldn't live in it as a ghost! Now, watch. Watch this. 
Here we go.


GEORGE: How 'bout it, huh? Pretty good shot, huh? Broke a window, huh?

MARY: What'd you wish, George?

GEORGE: Oh... I don't know. Not just one wish. A whole hatful of 'em. Mary, 
I'm shakin' the dust of this crummy little town off my feet and I'm gonna see 
the world! Italy, Greece, the Parthenon, the Coliseum. And then I'm comin' 
back here and go to college and see what they know. And then I'm gonna build 
things. I'm gonna build air fields and skyscrapers a hundred stories high and 
bridges a mile long, and then I'm gonna - gonna-- ... Hey - hey, Mary? What is 
it you want? What do you want, huh? You want the moon? All you gotta do is 
just say the word and I'll--

MARY: Okay. The moon. I'll take it. Then what?

GEORGE: Then what? Well - well, then you could swallow it... and - and it'd 
dissolve like an aspirin, you know? And the moonbeams'd shoot out of your 
fingers and the ends of your hair and the - the, uh... You - you think I'm 
talkin' too much?

GRUMPY OLD MAN: (yells from off mike) Yes! Whyn't you kiss her instead of 
talking her to death?!

GEORGE: How's that?

GRUMPY OLD MAN: Aw, youth is wasted on the wrong people.


GEORGE: Well, hey! Hey, just a minute, mister! Hey, you come on back here, 
I'll show you some kissing that'll--

UNCLE BILLY: George! George!

GEORGE: Hey, Uncle Billy! Look here, I'm gonna kiss Mary! Watch!

UNCLE BILLY: George! Get in the car, quick! Your father's had a stroke!

GEORGE: What? What?

UNCLE BILLY: George, get in, hurry!


JOSEPH: Well, George's father died that night, Clarence. So, of course, George 
couldn't go to Europe. But, that fall, just as he was ready to leave for 
college, the directors of the building and loan had a meeting. They were going 
to appoint a successor to Mr. Bailey... (fades)



DR. CAMPBELL: What was that you said, Mr. Potter? 

POTTER: I said, as long as Peter Bailey's dead, let's dissolve the Building 
and Loan. We don't need it.

UNCLE BILLY: Now wait a minute--

POTTER: No, you wait a minute! Peter Bailey was not a businessman. Ideals 
without common sense can ruin a town. What do we get? A discontented, lazy 
rabble instead of a thrifty working class.


GEORGE: Now hold on, Mr. Potter!

POTTER: Oh, I meant no disrespect, George, but--

GEORGE: Now, wait a minute there. Why my father ever started this cheap, 
penny-ante building and loan, I'll never know. But just remember this, Mr. 
Potter, this rabble you're talking about. They do most of the working and 
paying and living and dying in this community. Well, is it too much to have 
them work and pay and live and die in a couple of decent rooms and a bath?! 
Anyway, my father didn't think so! People were human beings to him! But to you 
-- a warped, frustrated, old man -- they're cattle! Well, in my book, Mr. 
Potter, he died a much richer man than you'll ever be.

POTTER: I'm not interested in your book, George. I'm talking about the 
Building and Loan.

GEORGE: You're talking about something you can't get your fingers on and it's 
galling -- that's what you're talking about. Well, this town needs this measly 
one-horse institution, if only to have some place where people can borrow a 
few dollars without crawling to you! Now, come on, Uncle Billy!


TILLY: What happened, George?

EUSTACE: Yeah, all we heard was a lot of yelling!

UNCLE BILLY: Boy, oh, boy, you should've heard George!

GEORGE: Yeah, they're in there voting us out of business.

TILLY: Well, who cares? I can get another job. I'm only forty-one.

EUSTACE: Forty-five.

UNCLE BILLY: Will you get out of here, George, you missed your boat trip. Do 
you wanna miss college, too?


DR. CAMPBELL: George! We just voted Potter down! We're still in business!

UNCLE BILLY: Whoopee! We're still in business! We're still in business!

DR. CAMPBELL: But there's one condition, George. They've appointed you to take 
your father's place.

GEORGE: Appoint me?! But I'm going to college. Look, this is my last chance! 
Uncle Billy's your man!

DR. CAMPBELL: George, you've got to take it, they'll vote with Potter 
otherwise. They said so, they even... (fades)


CLARENCE: I know. George Bailey didn't go to college.

JOSEPH: That's right, Clarence. He gave his college money to Harry. Harry went 

CLARENCE: But what happened to that good-looking girl? You know, Mary?

JOSEPH: Oh, George saw her now and then. Not very often, though, because Mary 
went away to school, too. Anyway, George waited four years more for Harry to 
come back and take over the Building and Loan. He could still see the world. 
He planned to work in the oil fields, Venezuela. Except when Harry came home, 
he wasn't alone. There was a girl with him. His wife... (fades)


MRS. BAILEY: George?

GEORGE: Yeah, I'm out here on the porch, Mother. I just thought I'd get some 

MRS. BAILEY: Well, how - how do you like your new sister-in-law? 

GEORGE: Aw, she's swell.

MRS. BAILEY: Looks like she can keep Harry on his toes.

GEORGE: Yeah. Yeah and keep him out of Bedford Falls, anyway.

MRS. BAILEY: What do you mean?

GEORGE: Well, Ruth's father... he's got a wonderful job for Harry up in 

MRS. BAILEY: Buffalo? Well, that means you-- 

GEORGE: Yeah. 

MRS. BAILEY: You can't--


MRS. BAILEY: George, uh, did you know Mary Hatch is back from school?

GEORGE: Hm? Yeah, yeah.

MRS. BAILEY: Nice girl, Mary.

GEORGE: Mm hmmm.

MRS. BAILEY: Oh, stop grunting!

GEORGE: Well...

MRS. BAILEY: Give me one good reason why you shouldn't call on Mary.

GEORGE: Well, Sam Wainwright. Sam's crazy about Mary.

MRS. BAILEY: Well, she's not crazy about him.

GEORGE: Well, now, how do you know that? Did she discuss it with you? How do 

MRS. BAILEY: Besides, Sam's away in New York.

GEORGE: Oh. And all's fair in love and war, huh? Uh huh, I see. (mock serious) 
Okay, Mother, I think I'll go out and find that girl and do a little 
passionate neckin'.

MRS. BAILEY: Oh! George!

GEORGE: Goodbye, Mrs. Bailey. By the way, do you want any books at the 

MRS. BAILEY: Library?! George! George, you go and see Mary, do you hear?!



MARY: George? Is that you out there?

GEORGE: Uh, oh, hello, Mary.

MARY: Well, are you coming in?

GEORGE: I just happened to be passin' by here and--

MARY: Oh. I thought you were picketing. Have you made up your mind?

GEORGE: How's that?

MARY: Have you made up your mind?

GEORGE: 'Bout what?

MARY: About coming in. Your mother just phoned. She said you were coming over.

GEORGE: My mother--? Just phoned--? What's she mean, coming--? I just happened 
to be passing by, that's all! I didn't--

MARY: Well?

GEORGE: Well, all right, I'll come in for a minute but I - I didn't tell 
anybody I was coming here. A fella can't go out for a walk nowadays without--  
When d'you - When d'you get back?

MARY: Tuesday.

GEORGE: Ah. Where'd you get that dress?

MARY: Do you like it?

GEORGE: Well, it's all right.

MARY: Well, no point standing here on the porch. Come on in.


GEORGE: I still can't understand it. I didn't tell anybody I was comin' here, 
ya know.

MARY: Would you rather leave?

GEORGE: Well, no, I don't wanna be rude. I'll sit down for a while.

MARY: It's nice about your brother and Ruth, isn't it?

GEORGE: Yeah, yeah, yeah. That's all right.

MARY: Don't you like her?

GEORGE: Well, of course I like her. She's a peach!

MARY: Oh, just marriage in general you're not enthusiastic about, hm?

GEORGE: No, no. Marriage is all right for a lot of people. It's all right for 
Harry ... Sam Wainright ... and you. 

MARY: For Sam--?

MRS. HATCH: (from off) Mary?!

MARY: (yells) It's George Bailey, Mother!

MRS. HATCH: What's he want?!

MARY: (yells) I don't know! (to George) What do you want?

GEORGE: Me? Not a thing! Not a thing! And I - I just came in to get warm!

MARY: (yells) He's making violent love to me, Mother!

MRS. HATCH: You just tell him to go right back home. Sam said he'd call you 
tonight from New York, didn't he?

MARY: (yells) I guess so! (to George) How about some music?



GEORGE: (offended) You know, your mother needn't-- You know, I didn't come 
here to--

MARY: What did you come here for, then?

GEORGE: (annoyed) I don't know! You're supposed to be the one with all the 
answers! You tell me!

MARY: (matching him) Oh, why don't you go home?!

GEORGE: I don't know why I came here in the first place! Good night!

MARY: Good night!


MRS. HATCH: Mary! Telephone, Mary!

GEORGE: The way you're shouting, you'd think that--


MARY: You'd think what?


MARY: All right, I'll get it! George, on your way out, would you mind turning 
off the phonograph?

GEORGE: I'd be very happy to!



GEORGE: Doggone crazy song!


MARY: Hello? Sam?

SAM: (on the phone) Mary! Gee, it's good to hear your voice!

MARY: How are you, Sam?

GEORGE: I forgot my hat!

MARY: Hee-haw.

SAM: What?

MARY: Oh, I was just talking to an old friend of yours. George Bailey.

SAM: Old mossback George?

MARY: Old mossback George.

SAM: Well, put him on. I'll talk to him, too!

MARY: Wait a second. George?

MRS. HATCH: He doesn't want to speak to George!

MARY: He does so. He asked for him.

GEORGE: (to Mary) Did you call me? Because if you did, I'm in a hurry, I got--

MARY: Sam wants to talk to you.

GEORGE: Oh? Um, hiya, Sam.

SAM: Hey, fine pal you are. Tryin' to steal my girl!

GEORGE: What do you mean? Nobody's tryin' to steal anybody's girl. Here, Mary, 
take the phone--

SAM: No, no, wait, wait, George. I want to speak to you both. Tell Mary to get 
on the extension upstairs.

GEORGE: (to Mary) He says for you to get on the extension upstairs.

MARY: I can't. Mother's on the extension.

MRS. HATCH: I am not!

MARY: We can both hear, George. Just put your head a little closer. 


MARY: There, that's - that's better. (to Sam) Uh, we're - we're listening, 

SAM: Well, I have a big deal coming up that's going to make us all rich. 
George, you remember that time you told me about making plastics out of 

GEORGE: Soybeans? Yeah, yeah... soybeans. Yeah.

SAM: Well, my father's checked into it, George, see? And now he's going to put 
up a factory! How do you like that?

GEORGE: A factory, huh?

SAM: And here's the point, George. I may have a job for you, unless you're 
still married to that broken-down Building and Loan. Oh, Mary?

MARY: Uh, I'm here.

SAM: You tell that guy I'm giving him the chance of a lifetime, you hear?

MARY: (to George) He - he says it's the chance of a lifetime.

GEORGE: Give me that phone.

MARY: Here's George again, Sam.


MARY: George!

GEORGE: (intense) Now you listen to me, Mary! I don't want any plastics and I 
don't want any job, and I don't want to get married -- ever -- to anyone! Do 
you understand that? 


MARY: (sobs)

GEORGE: I want to do what I want to do! And - and you're not gonna trick me! 
And you're-- Mary ... 

MARY: George...

GEORGE: Mary... Oh, Mary, darling... I love you, Mary...


CLARENCE: Well, well. So George Bailey and Mary Hatch were--?

JOSEPH: Yes. George and Mary were married. 


JOSEPH: And they started off on their honeymoon in Ernie Bishop's taxicab.


ERNIE: Hey, where were you two going on this here now honeymoon?

GEORGE: We're gonna shoot the works, Ernie! A whole week in New York, a whole 
week in Bermuda, the highest hotel, the oldest champagne, the hottest music 
and the prettiest wife!

ERNIE: Ha ha! So you're finally gettin' out of Bedford Falls, heh? Then what?

GEORGE: (to Mary) Then what, honey?

MARY: After that, who cares?

GEORGE: That does it! Hey, you know, Mrs. Bailey, I haven't kissed you yet.

ERNIE: Hey, George, there's something funny going on over there! Look, look 
over there at the bank! It looks like a run!

GEORGE: Pull over there a minute, will ya, Ernie?

MARY: George, let's not stop. Please. Let's go straight to the station.


GEORGE: Now, wait a minute. Better see what it is. I'll be right back.

MARY: George, please! George!



WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: In a few moments, we'll return with the second act of "It's 
a Wonderful Life" starring James Stewart, Donna Reed, and Victor Moore. 
Meanwhile, here's our Hollywood reporter, Libby Collins. Looking very smart, 
too, may I say?

LIBBY COLLINS: Well, thank you, Mr. Keighley. You know, after seeing Paulette 
Goddard's wardrobe for Paramount's new comedy "Suddenly, It's Spring," I just 
had to rush out and buy something new. Looking at all those lovely clothes was 
just too much for my self-control!

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Well, you look stunning, Libby.

LIBBY COLLINS: Thank you again, Mr. Keighley.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Tell me about the picture. I understand that Paulette's 
portrayal of an ex-WAC is truly delightful.

LIBBY COLLINS: Oh, yes, it is! And Fred MacMurray gives a perfect 
characterization of her wayward husband. Between the two of them, "Suddenly, 
It's Spring" is a high-spirited comedy with emphasis on the romantic side.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Well, naturally.

LIBBY COLLINS: (chuckles) But, really, Mr. Keighley, that wardrobe of Miss 
Goddard's certainly will make clothes-conscious girls sit up and take notice. 
I bet you'll think so, too, Mr. Kennedy.

JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: Well, Libby, men seldom know much about styles. Well, 
what I notice about a dress is the general effect when a woman wears it. Some 
girls always seem to have that "right-on-the-beam" look. You know what I mean.

LIBBY COLLINS: (chuckles) Well, I think what you have in mind, Mr. Kennedy, is 
good grooming. Screen stars certainly put great emphasis on it. A perfect 
hairdo. Fresh, beautifully cared for skin. Those are essential.

JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: That must be the reason Lux Toilet Soap continues to be a 
studio standby, no matter how often other styles change.

LIBBY COLLINS: Well, that's what Miss Goddard told me. She says her beauty 
facials are so quick and easy and work so well, she's never without a supply 
of Lux Toilet Soap. "I can depend on it for daily complexion care," she said.

JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: I wish you'd tell the ladies in our audience how easy 
these Lux soap facials are, Libby.

LIBBY COLLINS: Well, here's what Paulette Goddard does. She says, "I cover my 
face with the fragrant Lux soap lather and work it well in. I rinse with warm 
water, then cold, and use a soft towel to pat my skin dry. Gives skin quick 
new beauty," she says.

JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: Daily Lux soap facials do make skin lovelier. Recent 
tests by skin specialists proved it. In three out of four cases, complexions 
became softer and smoother in just a short time.

LIBBY COLLINS: A lovely Lux complexion makes a woman so attractive. I wish 
every girl who hasn't tried Lux Toilet Soap would begin using it tomorrow.

JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: That's sound advice, Libby! When nine out of ten screen 
stars recommend a beauty soap, you know it has to be good. So, why not try Lux 
Toilet Soap? Hollywood's own complexion soap. We pause now for station 
identification. This is CBS, the Columbia Broadcasting System!


WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Act Two of "It's a Wonderful Life" starring Jimmy Stewart as 
George, Donna Reed as Mary, and Victor Moore as Clarence.


WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Well, we're back in heaven again, where the Superintendent 
of Angels is reviewing the case history of a mortal named George Bailey. 
Clarence, the apprentice angel, is very eager to depart on his mission to the 


CLARENCE: Poor George Bailey! Oh, he's certainly in desperate trouble, Joseph. 
I'll go to him at once.

JOSEPH: Now, you sit down, Clarence, sit down. We're nowhere near the point 
where George Bailey is thinking of taking his life.

CLARENCE: We're not?

JOSEPH: Now, where were we? Oh, yes, yes. George and Mary had just started out 
on their honeymoon when they ran smack into the financial panic of 1932. In 
the waiting room of the Building and Loan, a hundred frantic people were 
clamoring for their savings...


GEORGE: Hey, what's going on, Uncle Billy? What's happened? All those people 
out there?

UNCLE BILLY: This is a pickle, George. All I know is the bank called our loan 
an hour ago. I had to hand over all our cash.

GEORGE: Holy mackerel!

UNCLE BILLY: Whole town's gone crazy. Bank's in the same spot we are!

GEORGE: Our charter--!

UNCLE BILLY: What about our charter?

GEORGE: Our charter says we have to stay open till six p.m. The state can take 
away our license if we don't!

UNCLE BILLY: How can we stay open till six without any money? George, where're 
you goin'?

GEORGE: Out to talk to those people. C'mon!


GEORGE: Now, please! Now, now, please, folks! Now, just a minute! Just a 
minute, now, please!

CHARLIE: How about our money, George? Where's our money?

GEORGE: Now, come on, now, please! Now, wait a minute, now! Listen to me! Now, 
you're thinking of this place all wrong. Your money's not here!

CROWD: (ad-libs) What?

GEORGE: Wait a minute, now, let me tell you. Let me tell you. Your money's in 
people's houses! In the Kennedy house, and the MacClaren house, and in your 
house, and a hundred others. Now, what are you going to do? Foreclose on 

CHARLIE: I got two hundred and forty dollars in shares. Now lemme have it!

GEORGE: All right, all right, Charlie. Now, you'll get your money in sixty 

CHARLIE: Sixty days?!

GEORGE: Well, now, look, that's what you - that's what you agreed on when you 
bought your shares.

RANDALL: I got my money! 

CROWD: (ad-libs) Where?

RANDALL: Old Man Potter's taken over the bank! He'll pay you fifty cents on 
every dollar!

CHARLIE: (to crowd) Then let's take our shares to Potter! Half is better than 

GEORGE: Wait a minute, wait a minute, please, folks! I beg of you not to do 
this. If Potter gets hold of your shares, he'll be owning this building and 
loan. And he's got the bank. He's got the bus line. He's got the department 
stores. And now he's after us because he wants to keep you living in his 
shacks and paying the kind of rent he decides to charge. Now, we can get 
through this thing all right, but we've got to stick together! We've got to 
have faith in each other!

MRS. THOMPSON: My husband's out of work. We need money.

ANGRY MAN: I got doctor bills to pay!

WORRIED WOMAN: I can't feed my kids on faith!

CROWD: (ad-libbing) Me, too! What about that, George?!

MARY: How much do you need? We've still got some money!

GEORGE: Hey, Mary!

MARY: Here it is, George! You told me to hold on to it. Would have made a nice 
honeymoon -- bought furniture, too! 

GEORGE: Hey, now, wait a minute, folks! Listen, I got two thousand dollars! 
All right, Charlie, how much do you need?

CHARLIE: Two hundred and forty dollars.

GEORGE: (pleading) Now, Charlie, now, listen -- just enough to tide you over!

CHARLIE: I said, two hundred and forty dollars!

GEORGE: Okay, okay. Uncle Billy give Charlie two hundred and forty dollars. 
All right, Ed, now, how much just to get by?

ED: Twenty dollars, I suppose.

GEORGE: Now you're talking! Mrs. Thompson, how about you?

MRS. THOMPSON: Twenty dollars will do me.

GEORGE: Good, good, twenty dollars. Uncle Billy? Pay it back when you can, 
now. Pay it back when you can. All right, all right, who's next?


UNCLE BILLY: Look at the clock! Look!

GEORGE: (counts) Five seconds... four seconds... three... two... one... Six 
o'clock, we made it! Lock that door, Eustace, quick! 


GEORGE: Boy, we're still in business, Uncle Billy! We even got two bucks left!

TILLY: George, there's a call for you!

GEORGE: Okay, and then call my wife, will you? She's probably over at 

TILLY: Mrs. Bailey's on the line.

GEORGE: I don't want Mrs. Bailey, I want my wife. Mrs. Bailey. Mrs. Bail-- 
Tha-- That's my wife! Give me the phone, will you? Hey, Mary? Listen, Mary, 
I'm sorry, I - I - Hm? Come home? Well, what home? Well, Three-twenty-three 
Sycamore? Well, whose home is that? What? Well, Mary, how can I--? Well, sure, 
all right, sure, I'll - I'll be there. (fades)

JOSEPH: Clarence? Guess what Three-twenty-three Sycamore was?

CLARENCE: His mother-in-law's house, huh?

JOSEPH: Oh, no. Number Three-twenty-three Sycamore was the old Granville 
house. The one George threw rocks at and made wishes. Yes, sir, that's where 
they spent their honeymoon. That's where they started housekeeping. They were 
still living there two years later when old man Potter asked George to stop 
over at his office... (fades)

POTTER: Sit down, George, sit down. Uh, have a cigar.

GEORGE: Well! Thank you, sir.

POTTER: Now, George, you're a young man -- married, making, say, forty dollars 
a week at the Building and Loan--

GEORGE: Forty-five.

POTTER: Forty-five. Now, if you were some ordinary yokel, I'd say you were 
doing fine. But George Bailey is intelligent, ambitious. He hates the Building 
and Loan almost as much as I do. He's been dying to get out of town ever since 
he was born. But he's trapped. Trapped into frittering his life away playing 
nursemaid to a lot of garlic-eaters. Do I paint a correct picture, George, or 
do I exaggerate?

GEORGE: Well, what's your point, Mr. Potter?

POTTER: My point is that you're the only man in town who's licked me. George, 
I want to hire you. Manage my affairs. I'll start you off at twenty thousand 
dollars a year.

GEORGE: (stunned) Twenty thou--? Twenty thousand dollars a year? Are you sure 
you're talkin' to me? I'm George Bailey. Don't you remember me? The Building 
and Loan, remember?

POTTER: Yes, George Bailey. Whose ship has just come in, providing he has 
sense enough to climb aboard.

GEORGE: Well, but - but - what about the Building and Loan?

POTTER: (angry) Confound it, man, I'm offering you a three-year contract at 
twenty thousand dollars a year! Is it a deal or isn't it?

GEORGE: No! No! The answer's "no"! Doggone it! If you offered me a million 
dollars to stay around this town and play stooge to you, the answer'd still be 
"no"! Now, lemme alone! Don't bother me!


MARY: George, what did Mr. Potter want?

GEORGE: (tired) Oh, it was nothing. He just-- talk, talk, I don't know, it was 
nothin' ... (sighs deeply) Aw, gee... Mary Hatch... Mary, why in the world 
d'you ever marry a guy like me, anyway?

MARY: (chuckles) To keep from being an old maid.

GEORGE: I was gonna see the world. I was gonna build things. I was gonna give 
you the moon. What have I given you, what have I given you? Not even a new 
dress, not for months. I-- Gee whiz, I feel awful.

MARY: So do I. Mornings especially.

GEORGE: You could have married Sam Wainwright, anybody else in town. 

MARY: I didn't want to marry anybody else. I want my baby to look like you.

GEORGE: You didn't even have a honeymoon, and I promised you that you - you - 
you - you - you - you - you-- You what?

MARY: My baby.

GEORGE: (stunned) Your--? You mean-- Hey-- Mary-- Mary, you mean you're on the 


JOSEPH: Well, Mary had her baby, Clarence. A boy.

CLARENCE: You don't say!

JOSEPH: Then, she had another one. A girl.

CLARENCE: Well, whaddya know?

JOSEPH: Night after night, George'd come home late from the office. Things 
weren't good with the Building and Loan. Potter was really bearing down on 
him. Then came the war. Mary had another baby by then. 

CLARENCE: Ohhhhh...

JOSEPH: But she still had time to help out in U.S.O. Uncle Billy sold war 
bonds. And George's brother Harry became a real hero -- shot down fifteen 

CLARENCE: But George. What about George?

JOSEPH: Well, George was 4F -- his bad ear. He was an air raid warden. On V-E 
Day, he wept and prayed. On V-J Day, he wept and prayed again.

CLARENCE: We're, uh, we're getting pretty close to today, aren't we sir?

JOSEPH: Yes, Clarence. You now know almost everything you have to know about 
George Bailey. Except what happened that finds him down there at this moment, 
wanting to die.

CLARENCE: Well, sir? Well?

JOSEPH: Well, today's the day before Christmas, er, Earth time. George is 
pretty excited...

GEORGE: Hey, Tilly! Eustace! Hey, look at the newspaper! "Commander Harry 
Bailey decorated by the President"! That's my kid brother! The Congressional 
Medal of Honor!

EUSTACE: Gosh, George! Gosh!

GEORGE: What do you think about that? Fifteen Jap planes! And the last one he 
got was just about to dive into a transport loaded with soldiers! You know 
what that means? He saved lives -- hundreds of lives! Hey-- Gee whiz, where's 
Uncle Billy?

TILLY: Gone to the bank, George. 


TILLY: He's depositing that eight thousand dollars.

GEORGE: Good, good, good. Who's that in his office there?

TILLY: It's that man again. The bank examiner.

GEORGE: Uh oh, oh, yeah. (to Carter, the bank examiner) Well, good afternoon, 
Mr. Carter! (to Tilly) Hey, uh, Tilly, get the books for Mr. Carter, will ya? 
(to Carter) You know, that's my brother's picture there, Mr. Carter, he shot 
down fifteen planes, and one of 'em was just about to... (fades)

UNCLE BILLY: Well, well. Mr. Henry F. Potter come to the bank to deposit some 
more loot, eh?

POTTER: Look out, you old fool!

UNCLE BILLY: How'd ya like the news in the paper, Mr. Potter? Just can't keep 
those Bailey boys down, now, can you?

POTTER: Huh? Lemme see that newspaper!

UNCLE BILLY: Here. Sorry I can't chat, you old thief. Gotta make a deposit. 
(to Horace, the bank teller) Eh, here ya are, Horace. Deposit slip. Bank book. 
And a very merry Christmas to you.

HORACE THE TELLER: You, too, Mr. Bailey. Say, you've forgotten something, 
haven't you?

UNCLE BILLY: Horace, I've forgotten things all my life.

POTTER: (off) Get a wheel on, boy!

HORACE THE TELLER: But, Mr. Bailey, where's the money?!

UNCLE BILLY: Wha - what's that?

HORACE THE TELLER: You want to make a deposit?

UNCLE BILLY: Well, certainly I want--!

HORACE THE TELLER: Well, it's customary to bring the money with you.

UNCLE BILLY: It's gone! Where'd I put it? Where'd I put that money?!


JOSEPH: A terrible thing, Clarence, terrible. Uncle Billy couldn't find the 
money because the envelope with the eight thousand dollars was folded up in 
that newspaper he gave to old man Potter.



UNCLE BILLY: (distraught) I just don't know what happened to it, George, I 
just don't know!

GEORGE: Eight thousand dollars! Uncle Billy, the bank examiner's here and it's 
not our money, it belongs to the depositors.

UNCLE BILLY: George! What - what are we gonna do? We've traced every step I 
took. We can't stand here in the street!

GEORGE: Are you sure you didn't put that envelope in your coat pocket?

UNCLE BILLY: I - I - I think so... maybe... maybe... Oh, I'm no good to you, 
George. I'm no good!

GEORGE: (desperate) Now, listen to me! Now, listen to me! Think! Think, will 
you?! Now try and think!

UNCLE BILLY: (sobs) I can't think any more! I can't--

GEORGE: (snaps) Where's that money, you silly old fool?! You know what this 
means? It means bankruptcy and scandal and prison! One of us is going to jail! 
Well, it's not gonna be me! Now, get out o' my way, I'm goin' home!


MARY: George, dear, what's wrong? You haven't said a word since you came home!

GEORGE: With that banging on the piano-- Does she have to just keep playin' 
that same piece over and over and over again? 

JANIE: I have to practice for the Christmas party, Daddy.

MARY: What is it, dear? Another hectic day?

GEORGE: Yeah. Yeah, another red letter day for the Baileys.

PETE: Dad, the Murphys got a brand new car! You should see it!

GEORGE: What's the matter with our car? Isn't it good enough for you?

PETE: I'm sorry, Dad. I only--

MARY: Run upstairs, Petey. See if Zuzu's all right.

PETE: Okay, Mom.

GEORGE: Now, what do you mean? "See if Zuzu's all right"? What do you mean?

MARY: Oh, she caught a little cold coming home from school. She didn't button 
up her coat.

GEORGE: Well, what is it? What do you - what do you mean "just a cold"?

MARY: George, the doctor said it was nothing serious.

GEORGE: The doctor? Was the doctor here?

MARY: Well, I thought he'd better look at her.

GEORGE: It's this old drafty house. No wonder we don't all have pneumonia! 
Might as well be living in a refrigerator. Why'd we have to live here in the 
first place and stay around this measly, crummy old town?


MARY: (worried) George, what's happened?

GEORGE: Everything's happened! You call this a happy family? Why did we have 
to have all these kids?

JANIE: Daddy, how do you spell "frankincense"?

GEORGE: (shouts) I don't know how you--! Whyn't you ask your mother?!

MARY: Where're you going?


GEORGE: (off) Upstairs to see Zuzu!

MARY: (into phone) Hello? Oh, thank you, Mrs. Welch. I'm sure she'll be all 

GEORGE: Who's that?

MARY: (to George) Zuzu's schoolteacher. (into phone) What? Oh, yes, the doctor 
says she'll be fine tomorrow.

GEORGE: Here, give me that phone!

MARY: George, please!


GEORGE: (upset, into phone) Mrs. Welch? This is Mr. Bailey! Say, what kind of 
teacher are you, anyway? What do you mean sending Zuzu home like that, half-
naked? Do you realize she'll probably end up with pneumonia just because of 
your stupidity? You know, maybe my kids aren't the best-dressed kids in town, 
but at least-- Hello? Hello?


GEORGE: (screams) Janie, will you stop playing that lousy piano?! Now, cut it 
out! Stop it!


MARY: George, for heaven's sake, what's wrong with you?

GEORGE: (gets a grip on himself) I'm sorry, Janie. I'm sorry, Mary ... 


GEORGE: I - I've just got to get out of here.



POTTER: So, that's it, George. You're short eight thousand dollars in your 
accounts, eh?

GEORGE: Please, Mr. Potter, I'll pay any sort of a bonus. If you still want 
the Building and Loan, I--

POTTER: You say it was lost. Have you notified the police?

GEORGE: No, sir, I haven't done that, yet. Harry's homecoming tomorrow...

POTTER: Why come to me? What about your good friend Sam Wainwright?

GEORGE: I can't get a hold of him. He's in Europe.

POTTER: What kind of security would I have, George? What collateral?

GEORGE: Yes sir, I have some life insurance here. Fifteen thousand dollar 

POTTER: Hmm? What's your equity in it?

GEORGE: Five hundred dollars.

POTTER: And you want eight thousand? You once called me a warped, frustrated 
old man. Well, what are you but a warped, frustrated young man? Crawling on 
your hands and knees for help. Why don't you go to the riff-raff you love so 
well? Ask them for help!

GEORGE: I'll do anything, Mr. Potter, please. Please help me. My wife and 

POTTER: I'm calling the district attorney. (contemptuous) Five hundred 
dollars. You know something, George? You're worth more dead than you are 
alive. Now, get out of here! Get out!


JOSEPH: And, all the time, Potter had the eight thousand dollars in his desk 
drawer. It's still there, Clarence.

CLARENCE: But where is George, sir? Where?

JOSEPH: Well, he went over to Martini's café. He's had a couple of drinks, 
Clarence. He's just standing there, sort of in a daze... (fades)


GEORGE: Oh, God... God... Dear Father in Heaven, I - I - I'm not a praying 
man, but if - if you're up there and - and you can hear me, please, show me 
the way. I'm at the end of my rope. Show me the way, God.

MARTINI: Mr. Bailey, you all right? Don't drink any more, Mr. Bailey, please. 
You don't feel good.

WELCH: Bailey? Did you say Bailey? Which Bailey?

MARTINI: This gentleman is Mr. Bailey. George Bailey.

WELCH: George Bailey, huh?


WELCH: And the next time you talk to my wife like that, you'll get worse! It 
isn't enough she slaves teaching your stupid kids how to read and write -- you 
gotta bawl her out!

MARTINI: You get out of here, Mr. Welch! You hit my best friend! Get out!

WELCH: All right, I'm goin'!

MARTINI: Mr. Bailey, you - you okay?

GEORGE: Who was that?

MARTINI: Mr. Welch, but don't worry. He don't come in this place no more! I'll 
get something for your face -- it's bleeding!

GEORGE: No, I'm all right.

MARTINI: Please, don't go away, Mr. Bailey.

GEORGE: Leave me alone.

MARTINI: Don't go away.

GEORGE: Lemme alone!


JOSEPH: Well, George left Martini's café five minutes ago, Clarence. He's at 
the river now, on the bridge, looking at the water. Are you ready, Clarence?

CLARENCE: All ready, sir.

JOSEPH: Very well. Save George Bailey's life and you'll get your wings!

CLARENCE: My wings! Oh, thank you, Joseph. (calls out) George?! George Bailey! 
Get away from that bridge! Do you hear me, George?! George!



WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: In just a moment, we'll bring you Act Three of "It's a 
Wonderful Life" starring Jimmy Stewart, Donna Reed, and Victor Moore. The 
popular theory about beautiful blondes is that they're content to be merely 
decorative. Our lovely guest tonight, Miss Susan Blanchard, completely 
disproves that idea. Besides being a hard working Fox starlet, Susan, I 
understand you're a wonderful cook.

SUSAN BLANCHARD: I really love housekeeping, Mr. Keighley. But, most of all, I 
enjoy the training I get at the studio. It's work, but it's fun, too.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: You're an Easterner, aren't you, Susan?

SUSAN BLANCHARD: Yes. A native New Yorker.


SUSAN BLANCHARD: It was the Broadway theater that inspired me to think of show 
business as a career.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Well, that's interesting.

SUSAN BLANCHARD: I used to save my allowance and go to every play I could. One 
of my favorite actresses was Jane Wyatt.


SUSAN BLANCHARD: Imagine, Mr. Keighley, what a thrill it was for me to meet 
her right here in Hollywood.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Jane Wyatt's latest picture "Boomerang" was made in the 
east, I understand.

SUSAN BLANCHARD: Mm hm, yes. But she and Dana Andrews, who stars in 
"Boomerang" with her, were in Hollywood to see a studio showing of the 


SUSAN BLANCHARD: Jane Wyatt is my ideal of a stage and screen star. So 
talented, and so lovely to look at. Just as lovely in real life, too. 

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: She is indeed. 

SUSAN BLANCHARD: 'Twasn't long before I discovered that she's as keen about 
Lux Toilet Soap for beauty care as I am. You know, I'm a Lux girl, too. 

JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: We're glad to hear you say that, Miss Blanchard, because 
that's a very beautiful Lux complexion I see before me. Just right for blue 
eyes and ash-blonde hair.

SUSAN BLANCHARD: Thank you, Mr. Kennedy. Any girl in pictures is delighted to 
find out about Lux Toilet Soap as a beauty care. Active lather facials are so 
quick and easy. And they really make a difference in your skin. 

JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: Thousands of busy, attractive women have discovered that, 
Miss Blanchard. Daily Lux soap complexion care does make skin lovelier. 
Otherwise, it wouldn't be the choice of nine out of ten screen stars.

SUSAN BLANCHARD: Lux Toilet Soap is all-around beauty care for me. I use it as 
a bath soap, too. It has such delightful perfume. Leaves a lovely fragrance on 
the skin.

JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: Thank you, Miss Susan Blanchard. I hope our audience will 
be seeing that lovely Lux complexion of yours in a screen close-up one of 
these days. Now, back to our producer, William Keighley.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Act Three of "It's a Wonderful Life" starring Jimmy Stewart, 
Donna Reed, and Victor Moore.


WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Numb with despair -- convinced, as Mr. Potter said, that 
he's worth more dead than alive, George Bailey stands on a bridge staring at 
the dark and frigid waters below. Suddenly, there's a splash.

CLARENCE: (off) Help! Help, I'm drowning! Oh! Help!

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: No, that's not George. It's Clarence, the apprentice angel. 
And there goes George in after him. Hm. It's a few minutes later, now, and, in 
the bridgekeeper's shack, George and Clarence are drying off.


BRIDGEKEEPER: You both sure you're all right? You want a doctor?

GEORGE: No, I'm all right, I'm all right.

CLARENCE: Oh, I'm fine. This underwear-- I didn't have time to get anything 
more stylish. My wife gave me this on my last birthday. I passed away in it.

BRIDGEKEEPER: You - you what, mister?

CLARENCE: Oh, I see Tom Sawyer's drying out, too.


CLARENCE: My book. I left in such a hurry, I brought Tom Sawyer with me.

GEORGE: Hey, how'd you happen to fall in?

CLARENCE: Oh, I jumped in. I jumped in to save you.

GEORGE: Jumped in to save me?

CLARENCE: Well, I - I did, didn't I? You didn't go through with it, did you?

GEORGE: Go through with what?

CLARENCE: Suicide.

BRIDGEKEEPER: Hey, it's against the law to commit suicide around here!

CLARENCE: Yeah, it's against the law where I come from, too.

BRIDGEKEEPER: Where do you come from?


GEORGE: Oh, that's very funny, very funny.

CLARENCE: Your - your lip's bleeding. 

GEORGE: Yeah. Yeah, I got a bust in the jaw in answer to a prayer.

CLARENCE: Oh, no, George. I'm the answer to your prayer.

GEORGE: Hey, how - how'd you know my name?

CLARENCE: Oh, I know all about you.

GEORGE: Well, who are you supposed to be, anyway?

CLARENCE: Clarence Oddbody, A-S-2.

GEORGE: Clarence Oddbody. What's - what's the A-S-2 for?

CLARENCE: Angel, Second Class.

BRIDGEKEEPER: Hey, I'm gettin' outta here! You may not need a doctor, but I 


CLARENCE: Cheerio, my good man!

GEORGE: Hey, look here, why'd you want to save me?

CLARENCE: Because I'm your guardian angel, George.

GEORGE: Oh, I see, uh huh. Well, you look like about the kind of an angel I'd 
get. What - what, uh, what happened to your wings?

CLARENCE: I haven't won my wings yet. That's why I'm an Angel, Second Class.

GEORGE: Oh, I see.

CLARENCE: But you can help me earn them, George, by letting me help you.

GEORGE: Oh, uh huh. Don't happen to have eight thousand bucks on you, do you?

CLARENCE: Oh, no, no. We - we don't use money in Heaven.

GEORGE: Oh, that's right, yeah, I keep forgetting. I see. Comes in pretty 
handy down here, bub.

CLARENCE: (chuckles) Oh, tut tut tut.

GEORGE: Of course, I found it out a little late. You know, I'm worth more dead 
than alive!

CLARENCE: You mustn't talk like. Joseph will never give me my wings if you 
keep feeling that way. You just don't realize what you've done for your folks. 
Why, if it hadn't been for you--

GEORGE: Yeah, if it hadn't been for me, everybody'd be better off! My wife, 
and my kids and my friends--

CLARENCE: Ohhhh, this is not going to be easy.

GEORGE: They'd all be better off if I hadn't been born.

CLARENCE: What did you say?

GEORGE: I said, I wish I'd never been born!

CLARENCE: George, that's wonderful.

GEORGE: Wonderful? What?

CLARENCE: The idea you just gave me. Well, you've got your wish. You've never 
been born.

GEORGE: I've never been born?

CLARENCE: Exactly. No worries, no eight thousand dollars to get, nothing. You 
simply don't exist.

GEORGE: All right, all right, okay, all right.

CLARENCE: George, I can do things. Strange things. I can show you the world, 
George, the way it would be if you hadn't been born.

GEORGE: Hey, wait. Say, wait a minute! This ear of mine. Say something else in 
that bad ear.

CLARENCE: You don't have a bad ear any more. Oh, I don't think you're 
concentrating. Don't you see? You're not the George Bailey you think you are. 
You're-- Well, uh, you're nobody.

GEORGE: Well, that's the doggonedest thing I ever-- that - that ear--

CLARENCE: Your lip's stopped bleeding, too.

GEORGE: Yeah, yeah... Hey, what's - what's happenin' around here? What is 
this, anyway? I need a drink, that's what I need! What about you, angel, you 
want a drink?

CLARENCE: Well, I - I don't quite know.

GEORGE: C'mon, c'mon, we'll go as soon as our clothes are dry.

CLARENCE: Clothes ARE dry, George.

GEORGE: Hey, so they are, that's funny. Well, look, let's get dressed and 
we'll stroll over to Martini's and then-- Oh, oh, excuse me, I mean, I'll 
stroll, you fly.

CLARENCE: Ha, no, no, I don't have my wings.

GEORGE: (over him) You don't have your wings yet. That's right, I forgot that 
again. Couple of drinks and we'll both fly, huh?


NICK: What'll ya have, fellas?

GEORGE: Hey, where's the boss? Where's Martini?

NICK: Look, wise guy, I'm the boss, see?

GEORGE: Okay. Well, double scotch. Quick, will ya?

NICK: What's yours?

CLARENCE: You know what I'd just love? Some mulled wine.

NICK: Huh?

CLARENCE: Heavy on the cinnamon and light on the cloves. Off with you, my lad, 
and lively now!

NICK: Now, cut it out!

GEORGE: (to Nick) Oh, come on, here. Just give him the same as I ordered. He's 

NICK: Ehh. Two double scotches.

GEORGE: What about this place? It's all changed.

CLARENCE: All of Bedford Falls has changed. You're having your wish, George. 
You've never been born. Oh, there'll be lots of things you've never seen 


CLARENCE: Oh, good. Somebody's just made it.

GEORGE: Made what?

CLARENCE: Every time a bell rings, it means some angel's got his wings.

NICK: What'd you say?

GEORGE: Ah, look, uh, Clarence, I don't think you better talk about angels 
around here.

CLARENCE: Don't they believe in angels?

GEORGE: Oh, yeah, they believe in them, but, you know, it's just, uh--

CLARENCE: Then why should they be surprised when they see one?

GEORGE: Ah, don't mind him, bartender. He's just a little fella - he just 
never grew up. How old are ya, anyway, Clarence?

CLARENCE: Well, next May I'll be two hundred and ninety-three.

NICK: That does it! A couple of pixies, eh? Go on, get, do you hear me? Get!

GEORGE: Where's Martini? Will you call him--?

NICK: Stop askin' about Martini! He ain't here and he-- (harshly) Hey, you! 
Rummy! Didn't I tell you never to come panhandlin' around here?!

CLARENCE: George, look!

GEORGE: It's Mr. Gower! Mr. Gower! Listen, Mr. Gower, don't you know me? This 
is George Bailey!

GOWER: (drunkenly) You - you buy me a drink, mister? Just one drink, will ya, 

NICK: Pinky?

PINKY: Yeah, Nick?

NICK: Throw the rummy out!

GOWER: Oh, no, no, please--

GEORGE: Hey, bartender, that's - that's Mr. Gower, the druggist!

NICK: That rumhead spent twenty years in jail for poisonin' some kid. If you 
know him, you must be a jailbird yourself. (yells) Pinky! Here's two more! Get 
'em outta here! (fades)

CLARENCE: Well, get up, George. Good thing he threw us in this snow bank, heh?

GEORGE: Where's - where's Mr. Gower?

CLARENCE: Mr. Gower doesn't know you, George. You see, you weren't there to 
stop him from putting poison into that prescription.

GEORGE: What do you mean, I wasn't there? Look, now, tell me, what are you? 
Are you a hypnotist?

CLARENCE: George...

GEORGE: Look, why am I seeing all these strange things here?

CLARENCE: Don't you understand? It's because you were not born.

GEORGE: Well, if I wasn't born, then who am I?

CLARENCE: Nobody. You have no identity.

GEORGE: What do you mean, I have no identity?

CLARENCE: No papers, no driver's license, no 4-F card, no insurance policy.

GEORGE: Zuzu's bell!


GEORGE: Zuzu's bell. I bought my little girl a bell to hang on the Christmas 
tree and I forgot to give it to her. I've got it in-- (searches for it) It's 
gone. It's gone, too. Everything's gone.

CLARENCE: But you've been given a great gift, George. A chance to see what the 
world would be like if you'd never been born.

GEORGE: You're crazy. You're crazy as a bedbug and you're drivin' me crazy, 
too! Now, look, I'm goin' home to my wife and family, do you understand that? 
And I'm going home alone!


JOSEPH: Better not leave him alone, Clarence. Keep following him.

CLARENCE: Joseph! Oh, I'll stay near him, sir. Poor George, he's seeing Main 
Street now, the way it'd be if he hadn't lived. The thing that's really 
shocked him, sir, is the Building and Loan office. Know what's there now? 

JOSEPH: What's he doing? Can you see?

CLARENCE: He's talking to Ernie Bishop, the taxi driver. He wants to go home.

JOSEPH: You'd better tag along, Clarence.

CLARENCE: Oh, I will, sir. I will.



GEORGE: C'mon, step on it, will ya, Ernie? Get me home. I'm off my nut!

ERNIE: (a much harder man than before) Where do you live, buddy?

GEORGE: Aw, now, doggone it, Ernie, don't you start pullin' that stuff on me. 
Three-twenty-three Sycamore!

ERNIE: Three-twenty-three Sycamore?

GEORGE: Yeah, hurry up. Zuzu's sick.

ERNIE: Okay, buddy.

GEORGE: Hey, look, Ernie, I - I don't know what's happenin'. I'm goin' crazy 
or something. I've got some bad liquor. I-- Now, look, tell me this now. 
You're Ernie Bishop, right? And you live with your wife and kid down in--

ERNIE: (sharply) You seen my wife?

GEORGE: What do you mean? Seen your wife? I've been in your house a hundred 
times! We built it for you, didn't we?

ERNIE: Bud, my wife took the kid and ran away five years ago and I ain't never 
seen you before in my life, see?

GEORGE: Okay, Ernie, okay. Okay. Just step on it. Get me home.


GEORGE: Mary! Mary, where are you?! Janie! Petey! Zuzu! Zuzu! Where are you?

CLARENCE: This is just an old abandoned house, George. You have no wife. No 

GEORGE: Where are they? What have you done with them?

ERNIE: (off, to Bert the cop) There you are, Bert. That's him, see? I told ya!

BERT: All right, up with your hands!

GEORGE: Oh, Bert! Bert the cop, thank heaven, you're here!

BERT: Now, look, why don't you be a good fella and I'll take you to a doctor?

GEORGE: Bert. Now, Bert, listen to me. What's the matter with you guys? Now 
listen, it's that fellow there. He says he's an angel. He tried to hypnotize 

BERT: I hate to use my nightstick, but I guess I-- Oww!

CLARENCE: Run, George, run! He can't hit you while I'm biting him!

BERT: Owwww!

CLARENCE: George, run! My teeth aren't what they used to be! Joseph, help! 
Joseph! Joseph!


BERT: Where'd they go, Ernie? Where'd they go?

ERNIE: I - I don't know! They just disappeared!


JOSEPH: Clarence?!

CLARENCE: Oh, Joseph, I hope you don't mind my calling on you like I did.

JOSEPH: It was very irregular, Clarence. You're by yourself again. Where's 

CLARENCE: He's at his mother's house, sir.

JOSEPH: Well, if George hasn't been born, he has no mother.

CLARENCE: Oh, he's being very stubborn, sir. He'll just have to find these 
things out for himself.

JOSEPH: But his mother! That's a terribly bitter blow to a man. His own mother 
not knowing him.

CLARENCE: You mean I shouldn't have let him--?

JOSEPH: I mean, you'd better find him right away. Oh, and stop biting 
policemen, Clarence!


CLARENCE: I'm here again, George.

GEORGE: My mother -- my own mother didn't know me! If only Harry were here, my 
brother were only back from Washington.

CLARENCE: Your brother fell through the ice and was drowned at the age of 

GEORGE: That's a lie! He got the Congressional Medal of Honor! He saved the 
lives of every man on that transport!

CLARENCE: Every man on that transport died. Strange, isn't it? Each man's life 
touches so many other lives. Harry wasn't there to save them because you 
weren't there to save Harry. Don't you see, George? You really had a wonderful 
life. Don't you see what a mistake it would be to throw it away?

GEORGE: Clarence...


GEORGE: Where's Mary? Please, where's my wife?

CLARENCE: I, uh, I'm not supposed to tell.

GEORGE: Tell me where she is.

CLARENCE: You're not going to like it, George.

GEORGE: Where is she? I'll choke it out of you, if I have to! Where's my wife?

CLARENCE: The library. She works there. She's just about to lock up for the 
night. So, I, uh-- George! George! Come back! (sadly, to himself) Oh, there 
must be some easier way for me to get my wings.


GEORGE: Mary! Mary!

MARY: I'm sorry, the library's closed.

GEORGE: Mary, it's George! Don't you know me?

MARY: No, I don't know you. Let me go!

GEORGE: Mary, please don't do this to me! Mary, please, help me! Help me! 
Where're our kids, Mary? I need you, Mary! Please!

MARY: Get away from me! Help! Help!

GEORGE: Help me, Mary! I'm George! Mary!

MARY: (screams)


JOSEPH: Clarence?

CLARENCE: Oh, where is he, Joseph? Where's George? I'm afraid I've lost him, 

JOSEPH: You knew you shouldn't have let him try to see Mary. Now, they're 
after him -- a mob! They think he was trying to hurt her!

CLARENCE: Joseph, I won't even get one wing, will I?

JOSEPH: You have one more chance, Clarence. Get over to the bridge by the 
river. I think George has seen just about enough.

CLARENCE: But - but the mob?!

JOSEPH: Don't worry -- they've lost him, too. Now, hurry up!

CLARENCE: Oh, thank you, Joseph! Thank you!


GEORGE: Clarence? ... (yells) Clarence! Clarence, where are you?

CLARENCE: I'm here, George.

GEORGE: Help me, Clarence. Get me back. I don't care what happens to me. Only 
get me back to my wife and kids, please. I want to live again!

CLARENCE: Oh, thank you, George. Thank you, Lord!

GEORGE: I want to live again, please. Oh, God, please, let me live again!

BERT: (from off) George? Is that you down there, George?

GEORGE: Now, get out of here, Bert! Get out of here! You come any closer and 
I'll let you have it!

BERT: What the Sam Hill you yelling for, George?

GEORGE: C'mon--! George? George! Bert! Bert, do you know me?

BERT: Know you? I've been looking all over town for you. Where you been?

GEORGE: Hey, Bert! Bert! I'm alive again, Bert!

BERT: You sure you're all right? Hey, your mouth's bleedin'!

GEORGE: It is? Hey! My mouth's bleedin'! Bert, lookit! Look at the blood come 
out of there, would ya? Oh! Hey! Where's--? Zuzu's Christmas bell, Bert, I had 
it right in my pocket-- 


GEORGE: Here it is! Hey, it's in my pocket! What do you know about that? Hey, 
merry Christmas, Bert!

BERT: Well, merry Christmas. Get in the car, I'll drive you home.

GEORGE: You will, Bert? Well, do that. And turn the siren wide open, huh? 
Merry Christmas, Bedford Falls! Hey! Merry Christmas, old Building and Loan! 
Merry Christmas, Mr. Potter! Yippee! (fades)


GEORGE: C'mon! Hey, Bert, c'mon - c'mon in with me, huh?


GEORGE: Wha - What's with all these people? These reporters? Wha--? (laughs) 
Hey! Merry Christmas, reporters! Hey, Mr. Bank Examiner, merry Christmas!

CARTER: Mr. Bailey, there's a deficit!

GEORGE: I know. Eight thousand dollars, I'll bet, huh? 

SHERIFF: George, I've - I've got a little paper here, I'm sorry--

GEORGE: I'll bet it's a warrant for my arrest, isn't that wonderful? Merry 
Christmas! Hey, where's Mary? You know? Oh, look at this wonderful, old, 
drafty house! Isn't it wonderful? Have you seen my wife? Where's Mary?

CHILDREN'S VOICES: Merry Christmas, Daddy! Merry Christmas, Daddy!

GEORGE: Kids! Hey, kids! Janie! Petey! Oh, I could eat you up! Where's your 

JANIE: She went looking for you, Daddy, with Uncle Billy.

ZUZU: Daddy!

GEORGE: Zuzu! My little gingersnap! How do you feel, huh?

ZUZU: Fine, Daddy. Not a smidge of temperature!

GEORGE: Not a smidge of temp--?! Hallelujah!

MARY: George! George, darling!

JANIE: It's Mommy! Mommy's home!

GEORGE: Mary! 

MARY: George, where have you been? 


MARY: Oh, George!

GEORGE: Mary! Just let me touch you! Oh, you're real, Mary! Oh, you've no idea 
what happened to me.

MARY: You've no idea what's happened either. They're on their way here!

GEORGE: Who? Who's on their way? Oh, it's the police department? I don't-- The 
FBI? The National Guard? I'm alive again, Mary! (quietly) Oh, listen, Mary, 
I'm alive again.

MARY: Oh, yes, darling, yes. Now - now, close your eyes and - and come on 
downstairs... (fades)


GEORGE: (fades in) Wh - what is it? Can - can I open my eyes yet, Mary? What's 
goin' on here?

MARY: Now, now, keep your eyes closed! Now, I'll just walk you over here by 
the Christmas tree and--

GEORGE: Well, there's people -- I hear lots of people. What - what is it? 

MARY: Just one minute now. We're all ready, Uncle Billy! Come in, everybody!

CROWD: Hooray!

UNCLE BILLY: George! Look -- just look! 

GEORGE: Uncle Billy?!

UNCLE BILLY: Money, George! A laundry basket filled with money! Money for you! 
Mary did it, George! Mary!

GEORGE: I don't understand. What money? What--?

MARY: People - people heard you were in trouble, darling. These people, your 
friends! They've collected this money for you! The eight thousand dollars!

GEORGE: Charlie -- wait, there's Martini -- and Mr. Gower! Hey, how are you, 
Mr. Gower? Mrs. Thompson. Ed. Tom. Everybody.

ERNIE: None of us would have a roof over our heads if it wasn't for you, 

GEORGE: Gosh, this is wonderful! Hey, Mary, look! Look who's coming in--
Mother! Hi, Mother! Hey! And Harry!

HARRY: Got Mary's telegram, George! I flew in as fast as I could.

ERNIE: Hey, hey, everybody, a toast! How about a toast!

HARRY: Good idea, Ernie! A toast... to my big brother, George. The richest man 
in town!

CROWD: Hooray!


ZUZU: Daddy, my Christmas bell. You didn't forget?

GEORGE: Forget? Here, honey. Here's your bell.

ZUZU: Daddy!


MARY: Darling, what's this on the table here? What's this book?

GEORGE: (chuckles) "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer."

MARY: Well, look, there's something written in it.

GEORGE: (reads aloud) "Dear George: Remember, no man is a failure who has 
friends. Thanks for the wings. Love, Clarence."

MARY: Clarence?

GEORGE: Yeah. He's a very dear friend of mine.


ZUZU: Daddy, Mrs. Welch says, every time a bell rings, an angel gets his 

GEORGE: That's right, Zuzu, that's right. That's right. Attaboy, Clarence. 
Attaboy, Clarence! Happy landings!



WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: It's a wonderful life - so long as we can have such fine 
performances as we enjoyed tonight - from Jimmy Stewart, Donna Reed, and 
Victor Moore. Jimmy, I'd like to thank whatever guardian angel whisked you 
back from Texas for our show this evening.

JIMMY STEWART: Well, that guardian angel was an airline's wing, uh, Bill.

DONNA REED: You were in Texas for the premiere of this picture weren't you, 

JIMMY STEWART: Yeah, Frank Capra and I went down for five openings in as many 
nights. Pretty good down there in Texas.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: All of them in Texas, Jimmy?

JIMMY STEWART: Yeah, every one of 'em. Five premieres over Texas-- You know, 
it's a pretty big state, takes that many to--

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: (laughs) Jimmy, I'm sure your fans were proud to read that 
you received an honorary degree from Princeton just the other week.

DONNA REED: Yes, how about that, Jimmy? Do we call you "professor" now?

JIMMY STEWART: Mm, no, no, no, no. It - it's just an M.A. 

VICTOR MOORE: Oh? Master of Arts?

JIMMY STEWART: Well, I'd-- It might've been, I don't know. Might be for 
Murdering Architecture. That's what I studied.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: (laughs) Well, you know Donna has an honorary degree to her 
credit, too: "L.L.C."

VICTOR MOORE: What's that, Bill?

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: "L.L.C."? Well, you can see for yourself. A "Lovely Lux 

DONNA REED: (laughs) Well, thank you, Bill. Or, rather, thank Lux Toilet Soap. 
It's a wonderful complexion care. I use it faithfully.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: With wonderful results, I see.

JIMMY STEWART: Ah, what's happening next Monday night on Lux, Bill?

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Next week, we have another of the season's most successful 
films. It's Twentieth Century Fox's thrilling screen hit, "Leave Her to 
Heaven" with lovely Gene Tierney. 

CROWD: Aaaahhhh.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: And a star who appears in answer to literally hundreds of 
requests: Cornel Wilde. 

CROWD: (swooning) Oooohhhhh.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Based on the best-selling novel of the same name, "Leave Her 
to Heaven" is the strange, dramatic story of a woman whose twisted mind and 
fiendish jealousy drive her to any lengths to hold the man she loves.

VICTOR MOORE: That ought to make great listening, Bill.

DONNA REED: I wouldn't miss it for anything.

ALL: (ad lib) Good night.

WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: And thanks a million!



WILLIAM KEIGHLEY: Lever Brothers Company, the makers of Lux Toilet Soap, join 
me in inviting you to be with us again next Monday evening when the Lux Radio 
Theatre presents Gene Tierney and Cornel Wilde in "Leave Her to Heaven." This 
is William Keighley saying, "Goodnight to you, from Hollywood!"



JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: Here's a sure way to save on your meat and grocery bills. 
Turn in used fats -- kitchen fats -- to your butcher and receive a generous 
price for every pound. The worldwide supply of fats is still desperately short 
and every drop you save helps in the making of soap, refrigerators, and other 
needed items. So save and turn in your used kitchen fats. Donna Reed appeared 
through the courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, producers of "The Beginning or 
the End" starring Brian Donlevy and Robert Walker. James Stewart will soon be 
seen in the Robert Riskin production for RKO, "Magic Town." Victor Moore will 
soon be seen in Roy Del Ruth's production "It Happened on Fifth Avenue." Our 
music was directed by Louis Silvers. This program is broadcast to our men and 
women overseas through the cooperation of the Armed Forces Radio Service. And 
this is your announcer, John Milton Kennedy, reminding you to tune in again 
next Monday to hear "Leave Her to Heaven" with Gene Tierney and Cornel Wilde. 


JINGLE SINGERS: Spry -- when you bake and fry
Spry -- for your cake and pie
Spry -- it's your shortening buy
Rely on Spry!

ANNOUNCER: Want fried foods crisp, golden, better-tasting? Try Spry, the pure 
vegetable shortening that gives you delicious, better-tasting fried foods. So 
digestible, too, the Spry way!

JINGLE SINGERS: Rely on Spry! S-P-R-Y!
Rely on Spry! S-P-R-Y!


JOHN MILTON KENNEDY: Be sure to listen in again next Monday night to hear the 
Lux Radio Theater presentation of "Leave Her to Heaven." This is CBS, the 
Columbia Broadcasting System.



Originally broadcast: 10 March 1947