It's a Wonderful Life

Continuity mistake: While Clarence and George are at the Pottersville cemetery George asks about Mary, and in the shot facing Clarence he's holding his book upside-down with its spine facing him, but it cuts to the closeup and now the book is right-side up, with its spine facing the opposite way. (01:59:20)

Super Grover Premium member

Continuity mistake: After George rails at Uncle Billy for losing the bank deposit, when George gets home he removes his scarf and Mary tosses it onto the table beside the telephone. The scarf is still there when George and Mary head to the kitchen, but then it's suddenly gone and it's not on the floor either. Also, Pete jumps off the chair and is behind his parents, then two shots later jumps down again from that chair. (01:25:10)

Super Grover Premium member

Continuity mistake: While George is sprinkling coconut on Mary's ice cream he notices the telegram, and when he picks it up there are folds in the paper, but in the closeup the folds are different, such as the left vertical fold being gone. (00:07:15)

Super Grover Premium member

Continuity mistake: When Billy is at the bank to make the deposit he writes the date on the slip, and as he starts to take the cash out of the envelope he's still holding the nib pen between his fingers (behind the inkwell), but in the closeup the pen is gone, then in the next shot it's back between his fingers. (01:19:00)

Super Grover Premium member

Continuity mistake: After Clarence saves George from suicide, while they're both inside the bridge tollhouse, a photo suddenly appears tucked behind the thermometer between the two windows which was not in the first interior shot, and then it keeps disappearing and reappearing during this scene. Other changes occur within these shots, such as the window shade to the left of the door and Clarence's book position on the line. (01:39:50)

Super Grover Premium member

Continuity mistake: When Mr. Martini is asked if he is renting a new house, his position in front of the chicken wire cage on his truck changes as the scene cuts.

Scott215

Continuity mistake: When George sits down with Mary on the Davenport in her house's parlor, her left arm is in her lap, then the scene quickly cuts, showing her left arm now resting on the arm.

Scott215

Continuity mistake: George walks downtown to find Mary. He stops in the street as a man is walking the opposite direction. The man doesn't pass George at any point. The scene cuts to a closer angle and he has disappeared.

manthabeat Premium member

Continuity mistake: George throws a rock at the dilapidated house. He is talking about his wishes. Mary starts to turn in one angle and repeats the action in the next angle.

manthabeat Premium member

Continuity mistake: When George comes downstairs to eat with his parents, there's a lot of commotion including a barking dog. George looks down at it and the scene cuts instantly to a wider shot. He is no longer looking down.

manthabeat Premium member

Continuity mistake: When George is trying to open the gate to Mary's house, the walking stick in his right hand is pointed up, but the next shot it's pointed down.

Scott215

Continuity mistake: The walking stick carried by George as he wrestles with opening the gate to Mary's house is raised up in the closeup shot, then immediately down in the long shot when he finally is able to open the gate.

Scott215

Continuity mistake: In the run on the Building and Loan scene, Ernie approaches and stands close to Mary's left shoulder, but the long shot of George confronting the crowd shows Ernie further away from Mary and partially hidden by a column in the office.

Scott215

Continuity mistake: In the drugstore scene, young George is holding up his latest issue of National Geographic magazine for Mary to see, but the next shot shows George bending down to fill Mary's ice cream dish.

Scott215

Audio problem: When George and Mary are walking up to the dilapidated house (prior to throwing rocks at it), George is talking. At one point he is saying something and his lips aren't matching.

manthabeat Premium member

Continuity mistake: Just after George's brother comes home, George is walking across the street and a man is approaching him, but it's then a woman that passes him, not the man.

kh1616

Continuity mistake: In the scene after George and Mary's wedding, Annie suddenly appears between George's mom and Mary's mom as George and Mary make their way to Ernie's cab.

Scott215

Continuity mistake: At the beginning in the soda shop, the first little girl (Mary) is facing toward the camera, away from the other girl that comes in. When they start talking however in the next shot, both are facing outward.

manthabeat Premium member

George Bailey: Just a minute... Just a minute. Now, hold on, Mr. Potter. You're right when you say my father was no businessman. I know that. Why he ever started this cheap, penny-ante Building and Loan, I'll never know. But neither you nor anyone else can say anything against his character, because his whole life was... Why, in the 25 years since he and his brother, Uncle Billy, started this thing, he never once thought of himself. Isn't that right, Uncle Billy? He didn't save enough money to send Harry away to college, let alone me. But he did help a few people get out of your slums, Mr. Potter, and what's wrong with that? Why... Here, you're all businessmen here. Doesn't it make them better citizens? Doesn't it make them better customers? You... You said...what'd you say a minute ago? They had to wait and save their money before they even ought to think of a decent home. Wait? Wait for what? Until their children grow up and leave them? Until they're so old and broken down that they... Do you know how long it takes a working man to save $5,000? Just remember this, Mr. Potter, that this rabble you're talking about...they do most of the working and paying and living and dying in this community. Well, is it too much to have them work and pay and live and die in a couple of decent rooms and a bath? Anyway, my father didn't think so. People were human beings to him. But to you, a warped, frustrated old man, they're cattle. Well in my book, my father died a much richer man than you'll ever be!

More quotes from It's a Wonderful Life

Trivia: Many if not all of the wintry scenes were shot in a record breaking heatwave. It got so bad once, that Capra gave people a day off to recuperate.

More trivia for It's a Wonderful Life

Question: Is cousin Tilly Bailey, the secretary at the Building and Loan, Uncle Billy's daughter?

Brian Katcher

Chosen answer: We know that Tilly (Matilda) Bailey is not Uncle Billy's daughter, because when Billy "loses" the deposit money and rushes back to BBB&L, George tells him that Harry's on the telephone and we hear Tilly say, "Hurry up Uncle Billy, long distance from Washington," so presumably she's George's cousin and Uncle Billy's niece. (When there's the run on the bank we see her desk, and there are a few photographs of men, one of which may be her father).

Super Grover Premium member
More questions & answers from It's a Wonderful Life

Join the mailing list

Separate from membership, this is to get updates about mistakes in recent releases. Addresses are not passed on to any third party, and are used solely for direct communication from this site. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Check out the mistake & trivia books, on Kindle and in paperback.