Some Like It Hot Overview:

Some Like It Hot (1959) was a Comedy - Black-and-white Film directed by Billy Wilder and produced by Billy Wilder, I.A.L. Diamond and Doane Harrison.


Hailed by the American Film Institute as the funniest American movie of all time...

When two Chicago musicians (Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon) accidentally witness the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, they trade in their union suits for flapper frocks and hightail it down to Florida as the newest members of an all-girl jazz band. Things get complicated when they meet sexy band-mate Sugar Kane Kowalczyk (Marilyn Monroe) and eccentric millionaire 'playboy' Osgood Fielding III. Mayhem ensues as they try to keep their true identities hidden from Sugar, Osgood -- and the mobsters who are after them!

Directed by Billy Wilder, Some Like It Hot would mark the first collaboration with his new writing partner, I.A.L. Diamond, as well as Academy-Award winning actor Jack Lemmon, who would go on to star in six of his final ten films.


Although director Billy Wilder intended the film to be shot in color, he changed his mind when test footage revealed the greenish tint of Curtis and Lemmon's make-up. To help coach them in the finer points of female impersonation, the film-makers hired Vander Clyde, a legendary drag artist known throughout Europe as Barbette. And as Curtis couldn't maintain a high-pitched voice for an entire take, Paul Frees, who also appears as the "funeral director" of Spats' speakeasy, was engaged to dub the voice of Josephine.


To close the film, Wilder and Diamond came up with one of the most memorable tag lines in motion picture history: "Nobody's perfect." Interestingly enough, it was not meant to stay in the film. "We wrote it the night before we had to shoot it, and I mentioned a line I'd considered using at some earlier point," recalled Diamond. "Billy said, 'Do you think it's strong enough for the tag of the picture?' and I said 'I don't know.' But it was getting to be 11:00 at night, so we wrote it that way, and he said, 'Well, maybe we'll think of something better on the set.' Fortunately, we didn't think of anything better on the set."


Some Like It Hot was inducted into the National Film Registry in 1989.

Academy Awards 1959 --- Ceremony Number 32 (source: AMPAS)

Best ActorJack LemmonNominated
Best Art DirectionArt Direction: Ted Haworth; Set Decoration: Edward G. BoyleNominated
Best CinematographyCharles Lang, Jr.Nominated
Best Costume DesignOrry-KellyWon
Best DirectorBilly WilderNominated
Best WritingBilly Wilder, I. A. L. DiamondNominated

BlogHub Articles:

Silver Screen Standards: Transformative Drag in Some Like It Hot (1959)

By Jennifer Garlen on May 9, 2024 From Classic Movie Hub Blog

Transformative Drag in Some Like It Hot (1959) Some Like It Hot (1959) is widely celebrated as one of classic Hollywood?s greatest comedies, even though its cross-dressing plot roused conservative ire and caused the movie to be released without Hays Code approval in 1959. Thanks to the brilliant ... Read full article

Cinemallennials: Some Like It Hot (1959)

By Dave Lewis on Apr 7, 2021 From Classic Movie Hub Blog

Cinemallennials: Some Like It Hot (1959) For those of you who are unfamiliar with Cinemallennials, it is a bi-weekly podcast in which I, and another millennial, watch a classic film that we?ve never seen before, and discuss its significance and relevance in today?s world. In today?s episod... Read full article

Marilyn: Behind the Icon – Some Like It Hot

By Gary Vitacco-Robles on Jul 28, 2020 From Classic Movie Hub Blog

Marilyn: Behind the Icon ?A Comedic and Pregnant Monroe Triumphs inSome Like It Hot and Wins the Golden Globe In 2000, the American Film Institute honored Some Like It Hot as the ?Best Comedy of All Time.? In the six decades after its release, the film achieved acclaim worldwide as one of the... Read full article

COMEDY GOLD #6: The maracas scene from Some Like It Hot (1959)

By Carol Martinheira on Jun 22, 2018 From The Old Hollywood Garden

COMEDY GOLD #6: The maracas scene from Some Like It Hot (1959) On June 22, 2018June 22, 2018 By CarolIn Uncategorized It?s Billy Wilder?s birthday today and I thought I?d pay tribute to the great man in this COMEDY GOLD special by talking about his comedy masterpiece, ... Read full article

7 things I love about Some Like It Hot (1959)

By Carol Martinheira on Oct 23, 2017 From The Old Hollywood Garden

7 things I love about Some Like It Hot (1959) On October 23, 2017October 23, 2017 By CarolIn Uncategorized Ah, Some Like It Hot. Who doesn’t love Some Like It Hot? In fact, I?d go as far as to say that very few movies are as universally beloved as this. And why n... Read full article

See all Some Like It Hot articles

Quotes from

Junior (really Joe): Look, if are you interested in whether I am married or not?
Sugar: Oh, I'm not interested at all.
Junior: Well, I'm not.
Sugar: That's very interesting!

Little Bonaparte: [thick Italian accent] Thank you, fellow opera-lovers. It's been ten years since I elected myself president of dis organization... an' if I say so myself, you made duh right choice. Let's look at duh record: In duh lass fissel year we made a hundred an' twelve million dollars before taxes... only we ain't paying no taxes!

Sugar: Oh Josephine! The most wonderful thing happened!
Josephine: What?
Sugar: Guess.
Josephine: They repealed prohibition?
Daphne: Oh come now, you can do better than that.

read more quotes from Some Like It Hot...

Facts about

Porgy and Bess was being filmed right next to where the indoor scenes for this film were being shot. Sammy Davis Jr., Sidney Poitier and Dorothy Dandridge frequently visited the set.
According to Jack Lemmon, George Raft spent hours teaching him and Joe E. Brown how to tango.
Tony Curtis has said that he asked Billy Wilder if he could imitate Cary Grant for his stint as the millionaire in the movie. Wilder liked it and they shot it that way. Apparently, Grant saw the parody of himself and stated, "I don't talk like that."
read more facts about Some Like It Hot...
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Best Costume Design Oscar 1959

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National Film Registry

Some Like It Hot

Released 1959
Inducted 1989

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Also directed by Billy Wilder

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Also produced by Billy Wilder

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Also released in 1959

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