The Under-Pup
Theatrical release poster
Directed byRichard Wallace
Written byGrover Jones (screenplay)
I. A. R. Wylie (story)
Produced byJoe Pasternak
StarringGloria Jean
Robert Cummings
CinematographyHal Mohr
Edited byFrank Gross
Music byCharles Previn
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
  • September 1, 1939 (1939-09-01) (United States)
Running time
88 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budgetover $465,000[1]

The Under-Pup is a 1939 American feature film by Richard Wallace that introduced soprano singing star Gloria Jean to the screen.[2]


The story, adapted by Grover Jones from a magazine story by Australian author I. A. R. Wylie, casts Gloria as a streetwise girl who is sent to a summer camp for wealthy girls. She is at first bullied by the other girls, but she stands up for herself and wins everyone over, including the girl who had bullied her the most, to earn a place in their group, "The Purple Order of Penguins".



Filming took place from May to June 1939.[3] It was originally budgeted at $445,000.[4]


The film had its premiere in Scranton.[5]

The film was well received, and was followed by an unofficial sequel, A Little Bit of Heaven (1940). Many of the cast members from The Under-Pup appear in the second film, but with different character names.

Radio adaptation

The film script was adapted for radio and was presented on Lux Radio Theater on April 15, 1940, with Gloria Jean and Nan Grey reprising their film roles.[6][7]


  1. ^ "United States Court of Appeals For the Ninth Circuit - Universal vs Cummings". Internet Archive. p. 93.
  2. ^ "The Under-Pup". FilmAffinity. Retrieved 29 December 2015.
  3. ^ "United States Court of Appeals For the Ninth Circuit - Cummings vs Universal 1944". Internet Archive. p. 565.
  4. ^ Dick, Bernard K. (2015). City of Dreams: The Making and Remaking of Universal Pictures. University Press of Kentucky. p. 121. ISBN 9780813158891.
  5. ^ SCRANTON'S DAY OF GLORIA By EDWARD J. EUSTACE. New York Times 3 Sep 1939: X4.
  6. ^ "Lux Radio Theatre Log".
  7. ^ "Those Were the Days". Nostalgia Digest. 38 (3): 32–39. Summer 2012.