Who Said “Play It Again, Sam”?
“Play it again, Sam” is one of the most famous lines in cinematic history, often misattributed to the classic film Casablanca (1942). However, Humphrey Bogart’s character, Rick Blaine, never actually utters these words in the movie. So who said it and where did it come from?
The Origins of the Phrase:
The iconic line “Play it again, Sam” can be traced back to the Broadway play “Everybody Comes to Rick’s,” written by Murray Burnett and Joan Alison. The play served as the basis for the film Casablanca. In the play, the character Ilsa Lund (played by Ingrid Bergman in the film) says, “Play it once, Sam, for old times’ sake.” This line was later misremembered and popularized as “Play it again, Sam” in the public consciousness.
The Film Adaptation:
When Casablanca was adapted for the big screen, the line was modified slightly. In one scene, Ilsa asks the piano player Sam (Dooley Wilson) to play their song, “As Time Goes By.” She says, “Play it, Sam. Play ‘As Time Goes By.'” However, the phrase “Play it again, Sam” was never explicitly said in the film. Despite this, the misquote became deeply ingrained in popular culture and is often associated with the movie.
Misattribution and Cultural Impact:
The misquotation became so pervasive that it eventually led to the creation of the 1972 Woody Allen film “Play It Again, Sam.” In the film, Woody Allen’s character, Allan Felix, frequently seeks advice from a vision of Humphrey Bogart, urging him to “Play it again, Sam.” This further solidified the misquote in popular culture.
1. Who actually said “Play it again, Sam” in Casablanca?
No character in Casablanca actually says the line “Play it again, Sam.” The closest line to this misquote is when Ilsa Lund says, “Play it, Sam. Play ‘As Time Goes By.'”
2. Why is the line “Play it again, Sam” so famous?
The misquote became famous due to its misattribution to the film Casablanca, which is widely regarded as one of the greatest films of all time. The line has since become a cultural reference and is often associated with the movie’s romantic and nostalgic themes.
3. Why do people misquote lines from movies?
Misquoting lines from movies is a common phenomenon. It often occurs due to the collective memory’s tendency to simplify and condense information. Additionally, misquotations can arise from parodies, adaptations, or cultural references that skew the original line.
4. Did Woody Allen write Casablanca?
No, Woody Allen did not write Casablanca. He co-wrote and starred in the film “Play It Again, Sam,” which was inspired by the misquote. However, Casablanca was written by Julius J. Epstein, Philip G. Epstein, and Howard Koch.
5. What is the significance of “As Time Goes By” in Casablanca?
“As Time Goes By” is a song played throughout Casablanca that serves as a symbol of the love between Rick Blaine and Ilsa Lund. Its recurring presence in the film adds to the romantic and nostalgic atmosphere.
6. Is Casablanca a love story?
Yes, Casablanca is widely considered a love story set against the backdrop of World War II. The film revolves around the complicated romance between Rick Blaine and Ilsa Lund.
7. How did “Play it again, Sam” become so popular if it’s a misquote?
The misquote gained popularity over time through cultural references, parodies, and adaptations like Woody Allen’s film. It became deeply ingrained in popular culture, despite not being an actual line from Casablanca.
8. Are there other famous misquotes from movies?
Yes, there are numerous famous misquotes from movies. Examples include “Luke, I am your father” from Star Wars (the correct line is “No, I am your father”) and “Beam me up, Scotty” from Star Trek (Captain Kirk never actually said this exact line).
9. Is Casablanca worth watching?
Absolutely! Casablanca is a timeless classic that still resonates with audiences today. It is praised for its stellar performances, memorable dialogue, and captivating storytelling. Watching Casablanca is a must for any film enthusiast.