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The Forest Rangers

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The Forest Rangers (1942) starring Fred MacMurray, Paulette Goddard, Susan Hayward
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The Forest Rangers (1942) starring Fred MacMurray, Paulette Goddard, Susan Hayward

In The Forest Rangers, Fred MacMurray fights arson, forest fires, and a romantic triangle with Paulette Goddard and Susan Hayward!

Celia (Paulette Goddard) and Tana (Susan Hayward) trapped in a forest fire at the climax of “The Forest Rangers

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Ranger Don Stuart fights a forest fire with timber boss friend Tana ‘Butch’ Mason, and finds evidence of arson. He suspects Twig Dawson but can’t prove it. Butch loves Don but he, poor fool, won’t notice her as a woman; instead he meets socialite Celia in town and elopes with her. The action plot (Don’s pursuit of the fire starter) parallels Tana’s comic efforts to scare tenderfoot Celia back to the city.

Cast of characters

  • Fred MacMurray (The Caine Mutiny, My Three Sons) as Don Stuart. The forest ranger of the title. Fighting a forest fire, he gets help from the men who work for the lovely Tana, aka. “Butch”. He suspects arson, but has no proof …. Everyone thinks he and Butch will get married. But that’s before he meets Celia …
  • Paulette Goddard (The Great Dictator, The Young in Heart) as Celia Huston Stuart. The lovely socialite that Don meets. He attends a parade in town where a firecracker startles a horse carrying her. She’s thrown, and it’s love at first sight. She and Don marry the following day.
  • Susan Hayward (House of Strangers, I Married a Witch) as Tana ‘Butch’ Mason. The lovely owner of the local mill. She’s shocked when Don marries another woman.
  • Lynne Overman (Roxie Hart) as Jammer Jones
  • Albert Dekker (Marie Antoinette) as Twig Dawson. Twig is the man that Don suspects of setting the fires. After all, he has a grudge against Tana. But, he’s in jail when the next arson breaks out …
  • Eugene Pallette (My Man Godfrey, The Big Street) as Howard Huston
  • Regis Toomey as Frank Hatfield. The pilot, who helps battle the fires from the air. He has a crush on Tana …. But she doesn’t return his affections.


  • Tall Grows The Timber, Music by Friedrich Hollaender, Lyrics by Frank Loesser, Sung by Fred MacMurray
  • Jingle Jangle Jingle, Music by Joseph J. Lilley, Lyrics by Frank Loesser, Sung by chorus

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