Professor Ned Brainard’s, (Fred MacMurray) discovery of flubber hasn’t quite brought him – or his college – the riches he thought. The Pentagon has declared his discovery to be top secret and the IRS has slapped him with a huge tax bill, even if he has yet to receive a cent. He thinks he may have found the solution in the form of flubbergas, which can change the weather. It also helps Medfield College’s football team to win a game. At home, his wife Betsy is jealous of the attention lavished on him by an old high school girlfriend.
Professor Ned Brainard: Well, it seems to me that a lot of people are going around these days selling fear. All kinds of fear. Fear of bombs, bugs, smog, surpluses, fallout, falling hair, even fear of Mr. Hawk.
We find ourselves apologizing, Hiding our heads, or jumping at shadows.
I can remember when groundhog day only came once a year in this country.
Now, I see a lot of students from my science class here in the courtroom. They may not be the most studious
group of young people in college today, But Ill say this for them:
so far they are unafraid.
They have good will, enthusiasm, and an infinite capacity for making mistakes.
I have high hopes for them.
Prosecutor: Am I to understand, professor,You actually encourage mistakes in your class?
Professor Ned Brainard: Mr. Prosecutor, the road to genius is paved with fumble-Footing and bumbling. Anyone who falls flat on his
face is at least moving in the right direction: forward.
And the fellow who makes the most mistakes…
may be the one who will save the neck of the whole world someday.
This speech is at 1:27:00 mark in the movie.
A Disney movie with a Court Scene.
In 1961 when he took his family to Disneyland, a woman came up to him and asked “Are you Fred MacMurray?”, and when he answered he was, she hit him with her purse and told him she had taken her children to see him in “The Apartment” and was furious because “That was not a Disney movie”, he responded, “No ma’am, it wasn’t.” He then turned to his wife and announced he was done playing bad guys in movies.