On Again Doctor Trivia
- Jim Dale was very proud of doing his stunts in Again
Doctor. He went down the stairs on the trolley, and he jumped in to
the hammock on the island. These caused a him serious injury, and he
suffered with back problems for years. This was all good training for
him as years later he took the role of P T Barnum on Broadway, and this is
full of stunts.
- The newly thinned down Scrubba married Michael Caine.
- Eric Rogers who provided the music for most of the
Carry Ons appears as the clarinet player at the hospital party.
- When Wilfred Brambell appears in a small cameo as
a 'dirty old man', a snatch of the Steptoe and Son theme can be heard.
- A hasty reappraisal of all things medical for the
Carry Ons in reflection of the success of 1968’s Carry On Doctor, this
script in fact began life as part of a rival film series. Talbot Rothwell
had been commissioned to write Doctor In Clover for the producer Berry Box.
In the event, Tolly’s screenplay was passed over in favour of an effort from
Norman Wisdom scribe Jack Davies.
- However, when Peter Rogers resurrected the idea in
November 1968, with Carry On Doctor still awaiting general release, the Rank
Organisation’s legal advisor Hugh J Parton got nervous. He commented; “The
medical mission and slimming cure provide most of the story, and I know I
have read it all somewhere before it’s possible that the whole plot may have
originated in one of Richard Gordon’s [Doctor] books. If it were a book in
which we already own film rights, there could be no claim for copyright
infringement but awkward questions would arise over credits.”
- Indeed, the character earmarked for Kenneth Williams
in the original script also caused concern. Hugh Parton observed that: “The
dialogue of Frederick Carver is so reminiscent of Sir Lancelot Spratt that I
wonder whether there is any intention of parodying him and, if so, whether
the character of Spratt was not originally created by Richard Gordon.” In
fact the only concession to these concerns was to remove the Sir from
Frederick Carver in the script. Kenneth’s haughty medical persona would have
to wait until Carry On Matron for that deserved knighthood!
- Although nobody really left the Carry On series
forever in the eyes of cast and crew, it is fitting hat Jim Dale’s final
appearance for almost a quarter of a century features subtle references to
earlier romps. During the Long Hampton Hospital Dance, filmed incidentally
in Pinewood Studio’s canteen, composer Eric Rogers includes a snippet of his
score from Jim’s debut film, Carry On Cabby. An orchestration of the Carry
On Spying song, The Magic Of Love, is also included as Jim weaves in and out
of the dancers with his hands full of buffet food.
- Moreover, Eric Rogers makes his second and final
Carry on gag appearance as the Bandleader who intones the immortal line:
“the next dance is a general excuse me”. The line was energetically circled
in red ink in Eric’s shooting script.
- Musical reference is also included for the wordless
and uncredited cameo appearance by Steptoe and Son’s eternal dirty old man,
Wilfrid Brambell. As with Harry H Corbett’s appearance in Carry On
Screaming!, Eric Rogers includes a burst of the familiar Ron Grainer theme
for the classic BBC rag ‘n’ bone situation comedy. Wilfrid’s lusty
performance, suitably filmed on April Fool’s Day 1969, earned him a Special
Rate fee of £100. It was well timed. Although the television series had come
to an end in 1965 the BBC announced their intentions to resurrect Steptoe
and Son in colour in June 1969. The show returned, better than ever, in