I Love Lucy Trivia
Test your knowledge of all things related to Lucille Ball, Desi Arnaz, and I Love Lucy with the Lucy Desi Museum’s trivia game!
#1. Which of the I Love Lucy gang have been honored with stars along the Hollywood Walk of Fame?
The Hollywood Walk of Fame is a tribute to America’s legendary entertainers. The “walk” extends for more than two miles along Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street in Los Angeles. All four of I Love Lucy’s principal actors were honored with their own stars. Lucille Ball has two: at 6436 Hollywood Boulevard (for her film career) and one at 6100 Hollywood Boulevard (for her television career). Desi also has two: One at 6323 1/2 Hollywood Boulevard (for film) and 6254 Hollywood Boulevard (for television). Vivian Vance has one for television at 7000 Hollywood Boulevard. William Frawley has one for film at 6322 Hollywood Boulevard, but was never honored for his contributions on television.
#2. What were the original names the writers gave to Lucy and Ricky Ricardo?
When I Love Lucy writers wrote the pilot episode, the names of the characters were Lucy and Larry Lopez. At the time, there was a popular bandleader named Victor Lopez, so they decided to change the surname to avoid confusion.
#3. Desi Arnaz was born in which country?
Desi Arnaz was born on March 2, 1917 in Santiago de Cuba. The only child of a wealthy Cuban couple, Desi came from a long line of educated and powerful people. His mother’s side of the family was involved in the Bacardi Rum Company, and his father’s side had careers as physicians and politicians. Desi’s father served as Santiago’s mayor and as a congressman. Desi and his father moved to the United States in the mid-1930s. Although he loved his native land, Desi became a U.S. citizen in 1942 and proudly served his new country during World War II.
#4. Lucy and Ethel once wrote a musical called:
Having secretly borrowed money from her club treasury to balance her own books, Lucy is in trouble. The club wants to put on a show, but there is no money to pay for it. Lucy plans to save money by writing the operetta herself and hopes that the ticket sales will pay for the costume and set rentals. The play stars Ethel as “Lily of the Valley,” Fred as “Squire Quinn,” Ricky as “Prince Lancelot,” and Lucy as the snaggle-toothed Queen of the gypsies, “Camille.” The show is sold out and everything is going well…until repo men start dragging the set off the stage. It seems Lucy’s post-dated check bounced!
#5. Why did the I Love Lucy writers decide to move the show to Hollywood in the fourth season?
In the fourth season of the show, the writers needed a fresh canvas to work with. Feeling they had exhausted domestic storylines and outgrown the confines of the Ricardos’ apartment-bound setting, they sent the cast on an extended trip to a new locale. The Hollywood setting allowed for the introduction of more modern and varied settings, and permitted many of Lucy and Desi’s real-life celebrity friends to guest star on the show.
#6. What was Lucy Ricardo doing at film star Richard Widmark’s home?
Ricky has lunch plans with film star Richard Widmark and Lucy begs to be allowed to tag along. Ricky tells her no, so she and Ethel decide to go on a bus tour of movie star homes. When the bus passes Widmark’s home, the duo hops off to grab a souvenir grapefruit off a tree growing in his yard. Lucy climbs the wall and gets stuck on the other side, forced to sneak through the house to escape. Once inside, she gets cornered by housekeepers and a St. Bernard, and ends up hiding beneath a bearskin rug.
#7. Why did Desi Arnaz immigrate to the United States?
Desi’s life was permanently altered in 1933 when the Cuban government was overthrown in a revolution. The Arnaz family homes, cars, boats, farms, and animals were destroyed and burned. Desi and his mother escaped with their lives, and his father was thrown in jail. After a few months, the senior Arnaz was released, and he and Desi made their way to the United States. They had lost everything and began their new lives without money, a home, or connections. Desi’s father made sure his son graduated from high school and took any job that would put food on the table. Desi embraced his extraordinary talent for music and entertaining and was soon fulfilling his own American dream.
#8. What does Lucy do on stage with movie star Van Johnson?
Lucy’s hometown frenemy, Carolyn, is visiting California. Lucy is upset because she has been lying about her close relationships with famous stars; so she must come up with a scheme to make Carolyn think she has been hobnobbing with the rich and famous. Lucy meets Van Johnson by the hotel pool and begs him to allow her to perform with him. When Van’s dance partner suddenly becomes ill, he calls on Lucy to fill in for her. A nervous Lucy performs a song and dance on stage, leaving Carolyn with a great story to tell the girls back home.
#9. What did Desi Arnaz do during World War II?
Desi Arnaz became a naturalized American citizen in 1943. He loved the United States and all the opportunities it had given him, and he joined the U.S. Army, eventually becoming a sergeant. He made patriotic war-time films including The Navy Comes Through and Bataan, for which he won a Photoplay Award for his searing performance. He also toured the country for Army and Navy Relief and was part of the touring Hollywood Victory Caravan.
#10. Which guest star made the most appearances on I Love Lucy?
Tennessee Ernie Ford was a beloved radio and singing star when he appeared on I Love Lucy. He portrayed the comical “Cousin Ernie” in the latter part of season three in the show’s first two-part episode arc.
#11. What was the real-life relationship between Vivian Vance and William Frawley like?
Vivian Vance and William Frawley will forever be one of TV’s most beloved couples, but they didn’t always get along that well in real life. Frawley was a full 22 years older than Vance, but more saliently, their personalities did not match. Vivian Vance was a serious and methodical performer who rehearsed diligently; William Frawley was notorious for ripping the pages containing his own dialogue out of his scripts, memorizing his lines, and disengaging from the rest of the creative process. Vance was a sociable, charismatic person; Frawley was a devout sports fan, but otherwise reserved and introverted. Despite their differences, they collaborated professionally for years and set a standard for television comedy that has persisted for generations.
#12. Where was Lucille Ball born?
Lucille Desiree Ball was born on August 6, 1911, in Jamestown, New York. Her parents were Desiree (DeDe) Hunt and Henry Ball. At the age of one month, Lucy and her mother traveled to Montana, where Henry was working as a telephone linesman for the Michigan Bell Company. The family then moved to Wyandotte, Michigan, where Henry tragically succumbed to typhoid fever. Toddler Lucy and her pregnant mother returned to Jamestown, where they moved in with DeDe’s parents, who raised Lucy and her baby brother, Freddy.
#13. What was Lucille Ball’s job before she moved to Hollywood for an acting role?
Lucille Ball was a model at Hattie Carnegie’s prestigious salon in New York City. She also posed as a “poster girl” for advertising campaigns. One day while walking near the Palace Theatre, Lucy ran into talent agent Sylvia Halo who told her that comedian Eddie Cantor was looking for poster girls for his new movie Roman Scandals. Thinking the job was only for six weeks, Lucy looked upon it as a chance to see the country while earning a good salary, so she hopped on a train to California. A few years later, she was one of the brightest stars in Hollywood.
#14. What was the name of the radio program that was the precursor to I Love Lucy?
My Favorite Husband was a CBS radio program that aired from 1948 to 1951. It was based on the 1940 novel Mr. and Mrs. Cugat by Isabel Scott Rorick. The show featured Lucille Ball and Richard Denning as married couple Liz and George Cugat (later, Cooper). George was an upper-class banker, and the couple’s best friends were George’s boss, Rudolph Atterbury, and his wife, Iris (played by Gale Gordon and Bea Benaderet). Liz was a zany housewife character that became the model for Lucy Ricardo.
#15. While in London, Lucy is determined to perform for which famous person?
When Lucy hears that Ricky will be performing for the Queen and Prince Philip, she begs him to allow her to be in the act so she can be presented to Her Majesty. Knowing how much this means to his wife, Ricky tells her that she can be in the show. Overjoyed, Lucy practices her curtsey over and over for the royal presentation. When she performs the number for the Queen, her excessive curtsey practice causes her to get a charley horse in her leg, turning her dance into an accidental comedy show.
You sure do LOVE Lucy and Desi! Next stop: A trip to Jamestown, NY to visit the Lucy Desi Museum in-person and learn more about the first couple of comedy and their iconic TV show. Continue exploring our website to discover more!
You’ve got some splainin’ to do! Don’t worry, you’ll become a pro in no time if you make a trip to Jamestown, NY to visit the Lucy Desi Museum in-person, or continue learning more on our website.