Bing Crosby Rediscovered

The Road Films: Bob Hope and Bing Crosby

At the age of 37, Bing Crosby had 24 films under his belt and his career in Hollywood was at a crossroads. He found a great comedic partner in Bob Hope, with whom he had first performed on stage in 1932. Starting in 1940, Hope and Crosby would star in seven “Road” films, along with co-star Dorothy Lamar. The films parodied Hollywood and revitalized Crosby’s career by exposing him to a younger audience. This film excerpt is rich in archival footage, including Crosby on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, audio interviews with Bob Hope, and scenes of Hope and Crosby hamming it up together.

The Road Films

The pairing of Bing Crosby and Bob Hope set the bar for future “bromances” featuring two male leads in a comedy who are sometimes adversaries, but stick together. The seven Road films parodied film genres such as adventure films. Learn about the ridiculous plots and gags of the films.

Road to Singapore (1940)
Road to Zanzibar (1941)
Road to Morocco (1942)
Road to Utopia (1946)
Road to Rio (1947)
Road to Bali (1952)
The Road to Hong Kong (1962)

American Masters: Bing Crosby Rediscovered premieres nationwide Tuesday, December 2 at 8 p.m. on PBS (check local listings), with a holiday encore on December 26 at 9 p.m.​