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A director of escapist films goes on the road as a hobo to learn about life, which gives him a rude awakening.
- Preston Sturges
- Paramount Pictures
After years of kowtowing to studio executives by making light, fluffy fare, successful and talented movie director John L. Sullivan wants to make a "message" movie, specifically about the plight of the downtrodden in society. Beyond wanting him to continue making money-making escapist movies, the studio executives counter that his privileged background does not make him qualified to make a movie about the downtrodden. So Sullivan decides to hit the road with only 10¢ in his pocket to experience truly what it's like to be poor. The studio executives will only allow him to do so if they can follow him and document his experience. Not wanting it to be a publicity stunt, Sullivan makes a deal with his tailing party: leave him alone for a few weeks, with them all to meet up at a determined location after that time. After a few mis-starts where he can't seem to shed his privileged past, Sullivan does manage to hit the road, this time with an aspiring but struggling actress who believes she can better help him navigate road life. He met her when she did a Good Samaritan deed for him. But when Sullivan tries to do his own Good Samaritan deed in return, he finds that shedding his downtrodden life may be even harder than it was to shed his privileged life if he is able to do it at all.