It Should Happen to You is a classic 1954 film about a young woman named Gladys Glover (Judy Holliday) who has a dream of making it big in New York City. Her path to stardom is full of potholes and she is especially forlorn when she has been fired from her job as a model. Trying to find perspective Gladys takes a walk through Central Park. Gladys catches the eye of the documentary film maker Peter Sheppard (Jack Lemmon) as she sits on a bench feeding the birds. Struck by her beauty Pete introduces himself to Gladys.
It is clear that Pete is smitten with Gladys. He gets her address by offering to send her a postcard when the documentary is finished so she can see herself in it and they go their separate ways. Soon, Gladys’ attention is caught by a large billboard in Columbus Circle with the words “This space for rent.” She fantasizes that her name is on the billboard. She heads to the office and ends up paying $630 in cash to have her name on the billboard for 3 months. This spot in Columbus Circle – the Maine Memorial is featured on the TCM Classic Film Tour.
Gladys is thrilled to see her name up on the billboard but Adams Soap Company feels her advertisement is taking up their valuable marketing real-estate. Adams Soap Company invites Gladys to a meeting and offers her money in exchange for the billboard, when she declines; Adams Soap ups their offer to fund multiple billboards in different locations around town. Gladys accepts the offer and has her name plastered on six different signs around NYC.
Gladys is so obsessed with her billboard success she doesn’t notice that Pete Sheppard has fallen in love with her. Peter is patent and stands by Gladys as a platonic friend but secretly hopes to become more. Sheppard is, however, exasperated by her fascination with her signs. People in the City are intrigued by the mysterious signs. Soon, she is being asked to appear on television shows. However, the publicity is not all good. She is not aware that people are making fun of her. Watching this, Evan Adams III decides she would be easy to exploit as “the average American girl,” in a series of advertisements for Adams Soap. Relations between her and Peter Sheppard become strained as she pursues her career.
Adams, showing more and more interest in Gladys invites her to a “business conference”, which turns out to simply be an attempt at seducing her. However, when he reaches to embrace her, Gladys has had had enough and leaves. Pete Sheppard and Gladys reunite and begin planning their future together.
Oscar winner Judy Holliday was born and raised in New York City. She starred in movies throughout the 40’s and 50’s like Adam’s Rib, Born Yesterday, The Marrying Kind, Full of Life, andBells Are Ringing.
Peter Lawford, who plays Evan Adams, is known for his roles in movies like Someone to Remember, West Side Kid, The Adventures of Mark Twain, Son of Lassie, It Happened in Brooklyn, Little Women, Ocean’s Eleven, Dead Ringer, Salt and Pepper, The Deadly Hunt, and many others.
Finally, Jack Lemmon, who had his movie debut with It Should Happen To You, has had a long and impressive career spanning the late 40’s through the 90’s. He became a household name thanks to his roles in films like Some Like it Hot, The Odd Couple, The Out of Towners, That’s Life!, JFK, Grumpy Old Men, Getting Away With Murder, 12 Angry Men, and Tuesdays With Morrie.
* In an effort to stay current, we are constantly updating our tours with new locations and cannot guarantee the presence of locations mentioned on our site. If you have a particular interest in locations from a specific TV show or movie, please let your tour guide know and we will do our best to accommodate your request.